Saturday, March 03, 2018

Jimi Hendrix - Roots of Hendrix

Again, forgive me if I have reviewed this somewhere on this blog before, but my search does not come up with it, which, again, I find odd. In any case, this record was released in order to cash in on Hendrix's immense fame, and I believe (if I remember correctly), it was after his death, when desire for new material from the man was at its greatest.

Of course, this is not actually a Hendrix record, but a compilation of some studio work that he had done before becoming a solo artist. Here the main man is actually Lonnie Youngblood, a sax player/vocalist who sets a funky/soulful tone throughout the sessions. Also appearing are two other guitarists - Herman Hitson and Lee Moses - along with an unnamed rhythm section. As I said, this is funky soul music, with the band acting as a band and Jimi only occasionally stepping out, and when he does, it is without the wild guitar histrionics that we now know him for. Naturally, this is not surprising as this was before he started working with Marshall amps and the various effects that are now synonymous with Hendrix. But, when you're a kid in the 70's looking for more Hendrix, this was a bit of a let-down.

Regardless, these days, it's a fun romp through some cool dance music where Jimi is mostly a backing musician, but he does get to tear off a few great leads and even vocalizes with Lonnie on one number. I'm not sure if this is still available - I can't even remember when I bought this first - but it's an entertaining look at the pre-fame side of Hendrix.