All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

5

The Jimi Hendrix Experience: Miami Pop Festival

Doug Collette By

Sign in to view read count
An adjunct to the DVD release of Hear My Train A Comin', an installment of the PBS 'American Masters' series, Miami Pop Festival captures the original Jimi Hendrix Experience flush with success and the rightful expectation of more to come. At the time of this May 1968 appearance, the threesome was recording Electric Ladyland (Reprise, 1968) free of the ennui and creative/personal conflict that subsequently fractured the solid bond so evident in their musicianship here. (Or perhaps the nascent creative friction manifest itself positively on stage).

Containing the whole of the trio's evening set (and two selections from the afternoon performance) at a festival co-produced by Michael Lang, (who would go on to oversee 1969's Woodstock event), the cd is also notable for an early appearance of what would become a staple of the iconic guitarist's live sets for the remainder of his career: "Hear My Train A Comin'" emanates anticipation and foreboding in such a way that Hendrix' emotional investment is unmistakable in both the song and the performance.

The debut performance of "Tax Free" takes place on Miami Pop Festival as well, and while it's a slight tune to be sure, it remains significant not just as one of the rare covers the band adopted, but because this near-nine minute instrumental rendition offered a launching point for extended improvisation. The initial song of the set, "Hey Joe," is another of those non- originals-actually the first JHE single released in England in 1966- but the trio gives the tune an exploratory reading, phasing into it via a dissonant instrumental intro.

Apart from the aforementioned 'new' numbers, the eight- song setlist contained no surprises, at least on the surface, but Hendrix and Mitchell's unusually complementary bond with bassist Noel Redding was perhaps never tighter than at this point in the existence of the Experience. Though the drummer and guitarist play with comparable complexity during a slashing take on "Fire," all three sound equally prominent in the Eddie Kramer mix of "Red House," rendering this slow blues the high point of the disc: the Experience doesn't just play the changes, but engages in a savage romp mid-take that, in a different context, might well define British blues of the period.

The inclusion of two excerpts from the afternoon show at the rain- shortened festival is not random filler merely meant to stretch the cd to approximately an hour's playing time. Rather, these staples of the Jimi Hendrix Experience repertoire become purposeful in the context of Miami Pop Festival, the two fairly abbreviated numbers reaffirming the synchrony within the preceding playing.

Track Listing: Introduction: Hey Joe; Foxey Lady; Tax Free; Fire; Hear My Train A Comin
 ' ; I Don’t Live Today; Red House; Purple Haze; Fire; Foxey Lady.

Personnel: Jimi Hendrix: guitar, vocals; Noel Redding: bass, vocals; Mitch Mitchell: drums.

Title: Miami Pop Festival | Year Released: 2013 | Record Label: Legacy Recordings

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Dirt...And More Dirt CD/LP/Track Review
Dirt...And More Dirt
by Karl Ackermann
Published: May 22, 2018
Read Brother Raymond CD/LP/Track Review
Brother Raymond
by Roger Farbey
Published: May 22, 2018
Read Frescalalto CD/LP/Track Review
Frescalalto
by Ian Patterson
Published: May 22, 2018
Read Motion CD/LP/Track Review
Motion
by Geannine Reid
Published: May 22, 2018
Read El Duende CD/LP/Track Review
El Duende
by Chris Mosey
Published: May 22, 2018
Read Walk The Walk CD/LP/Track Review
Walk The Walk
by Mark Sullivan
Published: May 21, 2018
Read "ON Tour" CD/LP/Track Review ON Tour
by John Kelman
Published: October 22, 2017
Read "Open Air" CD/LP/Track Review Open Air
by John Kelman
Published: June 2, 2017
Read "The Tronosonic Experience" CD/LP/Track Review The Tronosonic Experience
by Mark Sullivan
Published: October 9, 2017
Read "Err Guitar" CD/LP/Track Review Err Guitar
by Don Phipps
Published: December 4, 2017
Read "Lello's Italian Job Volume 2" CD/LP/Track Review Lello's Italian Job Volume 2
by Jerome Wilson
Published: May 1, 2018
Read "Mikrojazz!: Neue Expressionistische Musik" CD/LP/Track Review Mikrojazz!: Neue Expressionistische Musik
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 5, 2017