Hendrix Tapes: Concert Reviews.
Raucous Anthem Ends "Experience"
|A raucous rendition of the Star Spangled Banner in this year of the rejuvenation of the anthem brought to a crashing close an electronically charged Jimi Hendrix Experience concert in the Minneapolis Auditorium Saturday night. What an experience it was listening to and watching Jimi Hendrix!|
|His biggest hangup is that he creates so much excitement that he must compete for attention with the audience and all the security measures to protect him from the audience. There were more than 80 ushers, about 20 police officers, 10 of Hendrix's own security men, some Hennepin County deputy marshals, and according to a crack from Hendrix, some narcotics agents, "enjoying" the Experience. And some of the loudest sounds in a night of mighty amplification were the sighs of relief heard from the officers when the concert ended and the estimated 7,500 persons in the audience did not charge the stage.|
|From the moment he appeared onstage with drummer Mitch Mitchell and bassist Noel Redding, the 22 year-old Seattle-born Hendrix had the audience with him. Mostly youngsters, the audience surged to the stage-front as soon as Hendrix appeared, and this move chased us backstage from where we watched and listened to the one hour performance. Fire marshals tried to get the audience back to their seats ... so did a local radio station disc jockey, who sounded as if he would cry if the concert could not continue. "We'll never be able to get great talent like this back in the Twin Cities if we don't sit down. Please sit down," he pleaded. No one budged. Hendrix made a half-hearted appeal. No one moved. Guess who won the struggle?|
|So with kids - thousands of them - jammed against the stage, Hendrix and cohorts rocked into their program (after some delays because of trouble with amplifiers, a source of difficulty for nearly all acid rock groups): "Are You Experienced?" "Foxy spangled spectacular. As if to rub it into those who have made an issue of the singing of the anthem by Aretha Franklin and Jose Feliciano in recent months, the Hendrix Experience charged wildly into the song.|
|Drummer Mitchell, a 24 year-old Londoner, went off on his own on a smashing solo; 23 year-old bassist Redding (also from England) set the pulsating pace; and Hendrix hurled himself into an atonal, quavering improvisation - barely touching upon the melody of the anthem. This version made those of Aretha and Jose sound like a Sunday school class sing-a-long.|
|Hendrix, often an exciting guitarist and a good blues vocalist, ended things with his biggie, "Purple Haze," and the throng of kids - their appetites apparently satisfied - stood silently, seemingly stunned for awhile, before trudging slowly from the auditorium.|
|My thanks to Gregg B. Fields, Ph.D. who kindly provided this review.|
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