James Marshall Hendrix (born Johnny Allen Hendrix; November 27, 1942 – September 18, 1970) , in Seattle, Washington, USA, was an American guitarist, singer and songwriter. He is widely considered to be the greatest guitarist in the history of rock music by other musicians and commentators in the industry, and one of the most important and influential musicians of his era across a range of genres. After initial success inEurope, he achieved fame in the United States following his 1967 performance at the Monterey Pop Festival. Later, Hendrix headlined the iconic 1969 Woodstock Festival and the 1970 Isle of Wight Festival.
Hendrix's first single was a cover of "Hey Joe", using Tim Rose's uniquely slower arrangement of the song including his addition of a female backing chorus. Backing this first 1966 "Experience" single was Hendrix's first songwriting effort, "Stone Free". Further success came in early 1967 with "Purple Haze" which featured the "Hendrix chord" and "The Wind Cries Mary". The three singles were all UK Top 10 hits and were also popular internationally including Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Japan (though failed to sell when released later in the USA).
Months later, Reprise Records released the US and Canadian version of Are You Experienced with a new cover by Karl Ferris, removing "Red House", "Remember" and "Can You See Me" to make room for the first three single A-sides. Where the (Rest of the World) album kicked off with "Foxy Lady", the US and Canadian one started with "Purple Haze". Both versions offered a startling introduction to the Jimi Hendrix Experience, and the album was a blueprint for what had become possible on an electric guitar, basically recorded on four tracks, mixed into mono and only modified at this point by a "fuzz" pedal, reverb and a small bit of the experimental "Octavia" pedal on "Purple Haze", produced by Roger Meyer in consultation with Hendrix. A remix using the mostly mono backing tracks with the guitar and vocal overdubs separated and occasionally panned to create a stereo mix was also released, only in the US and Canada.
The Jimi Hendrix Experience's second 1967 album, Axis: Bold as Love was his first recording made with a view to a stereo release and was where he first experimented with this format, using much panning and other stereo effects. It continued the style established by Are You Experienced, but showcased a profound use of melody, along with his well-known technical virtuosity, with tracks such as "Little Wing" and "If 6 Was 9". The opening track, "EXP", featured a stereo effect in which a ruckus of sound emanating from Hendrix's guitar appeared to revolve around the listener, fading out into the distance from the right channel, then returning in on the left. This album marked the first time Hendrix recorded the whole album with his guitar tuned down one half-step, to E♭, which he used exclusively thereafter and was his first to feature the wah-wah pedal and on 'Bold As Love' was probably the first record to feature the stereo phasing technique.
In 1992, Hendrix was awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.
Electric Ladyland includes a number of compositions and arrangements for which Hendrix is still remembered. These include "Voodoo Child (Slight Return)" as well as Hendrix's rendition of Bob Dylan's "All Along the Watchtower".
Hendrix won many of the most prestigious rock music awards in his lifetime, and has been posthumously awarded many more, including being inducted into the US Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992 and the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2005. An English Heritage "Blue plaque" was erected in his name on his former residence at Brook Street, London, in September 1997. A star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (at 6627 Hollywood Blvd.) was dedicated in 1994. In 2006, his debut US album, Are You Experienced, was inducted into the United StatesNational Recording Registry, and Rolling Stone named Hendrix the top guitarist on its list of the 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time in 2003. [wikipedia]