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Jimi Hendrix, his first album




Jimi Hendrix, his first album

                                                       

                                               Are You Experienced

As the greatest, most influential debut album ever released, Are You Experienced is that sort of music

equivalent to the BigBang that scientists believed originated the universe. In both cases, many generations

later, the world is still trying to absorb, organize and make sense of what that initiating event spewed forth.

No other rock artist has, from the outset, violated so many rules with completely fulfilling so many espectations.



The proof is that thirty years after it first hit the turntables, Are you Experienced still sounds not only fresh but

startling.

Are You Experienced was important as album, however, for more reasons than just Jimi Hendrix´s guitar

playing. Like any great work, it succeded on several levels, most notably, by featuring great compositions,

played by a great band, and by using the past as a palette from which to create its seeming future. The

album´s moods are multiple: brooding, joyful, humorous and serious. Its musical modes include flat-out

rock´n´roll, pure blues, psychodelic extravaganzas, and within its own rules, elements of jazz and modernist

music too. It is a marvel of recording, with layers of sound nevertheless resolving into songs that could, for the

most part, be played live on stage. The singing ist great rock´n´roll, not a sweet voice, but one that learned the

lessons that Bob Dylan and the blues have to teach. And it is driven by a vision of freedom and danger, the

equal of any rock´n´roll.

R U Experienced also exploded the idea of the concept album as expounded on Pet Sounds´, 'Freak Out!!!',

and e.g. Sgt. Peppers Band. None of these record had been able to resolve their highest ambitions within the

fundamentally context of rock´n´roll; they had sacrified speed, power and grit for brainpower. Jimi Hendrix and

company brought them back together again, and they did it from the very first note of the very first song: The

stop-time-blues-pulse of 'Purple Haze'. Furthermore the band sustained the frenzy through the entire album,

even on the slower placed numbers as like 'Hey Joe' or 'The wind cries Mary'. That is one reason why it´s

fundamentally important that Eddie Kramer and John McDermott have restored the original running orders. You

have to start with the BigBang to get where Jimi wanted to take you, on a part of his own 'universe', an

experience that would not just entertain but change your life at its very core.For me, that moment when Jimi




screams, 'Lately things don´t seem the same' puts the whole album into perspective, because these things

would never again!!

The other noticable thing about R U Experienced is that Jimi is surrounded by great support. Mitch Mitchell is

the only drummer of the psychodelic periode whose playing compares in power to Keith Moon´s, so much that

he is the only force on the record that in any way challenges Jimi´s dominance.

Noel Redding´s role is to keep the beat, the 'basic bedrock time' that the band returns to periodically,

throughout its excursions. In this way, the 'experience' functioned more as a jazz trio, although the

comparisons to 'The Who' or 'Cream' are obvious. Redding´s bass occasionally too, but its most important

role is to keep the entire Experience 'together'. ---otherwise, it would slip past my ability to comprehend it at all.

The roles of Eddie Kramer and Chas Chandler as engineer and producer were vital but too complex to

summarize. But it must be said that some of the conceptual ideas emanated from Chas Chandler and that

without the know-how and imagination of Eddie Kramer 'behind the board' the Jimi Hendrix sound wouldn´t be

that kinda Jimi Hendrix sound.

Some people say Jimi Hendrix brought light to our darkness, his accomplishments really blinded us like a

lightning. He ignited a revolution in music that is still heard in the music of today.

There may be music better than this is, but we will have to journey where Mr. James Marshall Hendrix went

before us to hear it.










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