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The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Smash Hits

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Album Review

These are the recordings that Jimi Hendrix made for BBC radio in the late '60s. As such, they're loose, informal, and off-the-top-of-his-head improvisational fun. These versions of the hits "Foxey Lady," "Fire," two versions of "Purple Haze," and "Hey Joe" stay surprisingly close to the studio versions, but the tone of Hendrix's guitar on these is positively blistering and worth the price of admission alone. There's also a lot of blues on this two-disc collection, and Hendrix's versions of "Hoochie Coochie Man" (with Alexis Korner on slide guitar), "Catfish Blues," "Killing Floor," and "Hear My Train A-Comin'" find him in excellent form. But perhaps the best example of how loosely conceived these sessions were are the oddball covers that Hendrix tackles, including Stevie Wonder's "I Was Made to Love Her" (featuring Wonder on drums), Dylan's "Can You Please Crawl out Your Window?," The Beatles' "Day Tripper," and, in recognition of his immediate competition, Cream's "Sunshine of Your Love." No lo-fi bootleg tapes here (everything's from the original masters and gone over by Eddie Kramer), the music and sound are class-A all the way, making a worthwhile addition to anyone's Hendrix collection.


Genre: Rock

In his brief four-year reign as a superstar, Jimi Hendrix expanded the vocabulary of the electric rock guitar more than anyone before or since. Hendrix was a master at coaxing all manner of unforeseen sonics from his instrument, often with innovative amplification experiments that produced astral-quality feedback and roaring distortion. His frequent hurricane blasts of noise and dazzling showmanship -- he could and would play behind his back and with his teeth and set his guitar on fire -- has sometimes...
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The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Smash Hits, The Jimi Hendrix Experience
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