Jimi HendrixJimi Hendrix

In 1966 the name Jimi Hendrix was know by just about everyone in the U.K. His sensational and innovative guitar playing wowed audiences. This was a unique, fresh and exciting change to the known bands of the time. This was the era of The Beatles, The Who, Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page and Jeff Beck. Jimi became a huge success with top ten hits, such as 'Hey Joe', 'Purple Jimi HendrixHaze' and 'The Wind Cries Mary '.

But life wasn't always this rosy for James Marshal Hendrix who was born in Seattle , Washington , on November 27, 1942. His childhood was unsettled and Jimi spent much of his early years living with his grandmother in Canada . His heritage was colourful; he was an American of widely mixed descent including African, European, Cherokee Indian and Mexican. Jimi's mother died when he was 15yrs old At16yrs old he was thrown out of school, apparently for holding hands with a white girl. He had joined the army at 17yrs of age, but Jimi's career as a paratrooper was short lived, and after Jimi Hendrixserving 14months he was discharged due to an injury.

It was fortunate for Jimi and for the rest of us, that he had been developing his musical skills since the age of 12yrs old, when he got his first electric guitar. When he left the army he decided to pursue a musical career. Jimi formed his first band in 1965 after playing back-up guitar for Wilson Pickett, Jimi HendrixIsley Brothers, Ike and Tina Turner and Little Richard. But Jimi was not suited to a musical life in the shadow of others; he was radical and innovative in his approach and destined to make his mark on modern music.

His first band was called 'Jimmy James and the Blue Flames'. They played in the clubs of Grenwich Village which were frequented by other musicians. Chas Chandler who was the bassist with the Animals became his manager and soon they were on their way to Jimi to England . The Jimi Hendrix Jimi HendrixExperience hit the clubs and crowds flocked to hear this young black artist. His sensational appearance at the Monterey festival followed and gained his musicianship even more adoration and respect.

Hendrix was new and charismic; he was a terrific performer and an outstanding guitarist who was as exciting to watch as listenJimi Hendrix to. He 'used' his guitar in a way that defied belief - playing it behind his back and sometimes with his teeth - there will never be another Hendrix.