Becoming Jimi Hendrix: From Southern Crossroads to Psychedelic London, the Untold Story of a Musical Genius

Becoming Jimi Hendrix: From Southern Crossroads to Psychedelic London, the Untold Story of a Musical Genius

Steven Roby, Brad Schreiber

Language: English

Pages: 304

ISBN: 0306819104

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Becoming Jimi Hendrix traces “Jimmy’s” early musical roots, from a harrowing, hand-to-mouth upbringing in a poverty-stricken, broken Seattle home to his early discovery of the blues to his stint as a reluctant recruit of the 101st Airborne who was magnetically drawn to the rhythm and blues scene in Nashville. As a sideman, Hendrix played with the likes of Little Richard, Ike and Tina Turner, the Isley Brothers, and Sam & Dave—but none knew what to make of his spotlight-stealing rock guitar experimentation, the likes of which had never been heard before.
From 1962 to 1966, on the rough and tumble club circuit, Hendrix learned to please a crowd, deal with racism, and navigate shady music industry characters, all while evolving his own astonishing style. Finally, in New York’s Greenwich Village, two key women helped him survive, and his discovery in a tiny basement club in 1966 led to Hendrix instantly being heralded as a major act in Europe before he returned to America, appeared at the Monterey Pop Festival, and entered the pantheon of rock’s greatest musicians.
Becoming Jimi Hendrix is based on over one hundred interviews with those who knew Hendrix best during his lean years, more than half of whom have never spoken about him on the record. Utilizing court transcripts, FBI files, private letters, unpublished photos, and U.S. Army documents, this is the story of a young musician who overcame enormous odds, a past that drove him to outbursts of violence, and terrible professional and personal decisions that complicated his life before his untimely demise.

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his pocket, James Marshall Hendrix was at another crossroads in his life. He could buy a bus ticket back to Seattle, reunite with Betty Jean Morgan, and possibly resume a career in his father’s landscape business, while continuing his pursuit of music there. But the greatest enjoyment Jimi had experienced in live music was playing with Billy Cox, who was still serving and would not be out for three more months. Also, Jimi had sold the Danelectro guitar he painted red with the white letters

original that impressed Jimi so much, he later recorded his own version, renamed “Driving South.” Jimi always stretched the tune past Collins’s original 2:41 duration, and in a live recording of the song later that year bandleader Curtis Knight can be heard yelling, “Eat that guitar, Jimi,” while Jimi played the solo with his teeth. The purely instrumental version of “Driving South” on Jimi’s BBC Sessions album features a definitive, propulsive blending of R&B and rock guitar, of feedback and

Richard decided to add a new opening act to his show. Buddy Travis and Leroy “Stacy” Johnson Jr. were one of the hottest song-and-dance duos on the club circuit, and Richard used their energy and syncopated moves to get the crowd warmed up. Richard found the singers, billed as Soul Deuce, at the California Club and made them not only change their name to Buddy and Stacy but also cut their opening act to one song. “Jimi was my best friend and my seatmate on the tour bus,” said Travis. “Every time

a source of ridicule. As in Seattle, the scorn sometimes turned physical, and some of his fellow paratroopers, as a prank, hid his guitar. He was forced to beg before they returned it to him. IN SEATTLE, JIMI HAD FOUND MANY MUSICIANS TO JAM WITH, although most rejected his sonic experimentations. But at Fort Campbell, one soldier in particular discovered Jimi. His staggering inventiveness brought them together for life. One rainy night, Private Billy Cox and a friend, after seeing a John

Stadium (Seattle, WA) Simon, Jerry Simon and Garfunkel (group) Sinatra, Frank Sire Records (record label) Skull’s Rainbow Room (club) (Nashville, TN) “The Sky Is Crying” (song) Sledge, Percy “Sleep Walk” (song) Small’s Paradise (club) (New York City) Smith, Mabel Louise. See Big Maybelle So Many Roads (album) Soft Machine (group) “Soldier Boy” (song) Solomon, Howard The Sopranos (TV series) Soul City (club) (Atlanta, GA) Soul Deuce (group). See Buddy and Stacy “Soul Food (That’s

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