b. November 27, 1942
d. September 18, 1970
James Marshall Hendrix’s, father and gave him his first guitar at age three. Being left-handed, he turned it upside down and reversed the strings, teaching himself by listening to artists like Muddy Waters, Robert Johnson, B.B. King and Chuck Berry.
Jimi’s first band in high school, in Seattle, was called The Rocking Kings. Shortly after high school he joined the Army and became a paratrooper.
After injuring himself in a jump, he was discharged in 1962. He worked his way around New York, playing in backup bands for groups like Ike & Tina Turner and the Isley Brothers. His reputation was growing, and he was seen by former Animal, Chas Chandler, who invited him to come to England.
After auditioning and hiring Noel Redding and Mitch Mitchell as his rhythm section, The Jimi Hendrix Experience exploded onto the UK airwaves with a cover of “Hey Joe”. The first Hendrix-written 45, “Purple Haze” made the UK Top 3, and so did it’s source, the amazing 1967 debut album Are You Experienced? The Experience then made the baffling move of deciding to open for The Monkees on a US tour.
Jimi Hendrix released three albums with The Experience, and another with Band of Gypsys, comprised of Buddy Miles and Billy Cox. He died of an apparent drug overdose in London in September 1970 at only twenty-seven.