Jimi Hendrix At the Elecric Factory - 1968

I'm fortunate in that I grew up in a time when there was a musical revolution taking place.  I'm a card-carrying music-aholic, and I've seen some true genius perform live over the years.  To mention a few: The Original Five Blind Boys From Alabama, The Mighty Clouds Of Joy, Sarah Vaughan, Roland Kirk, McCoy Tyner, Stephanie Mills, Cream, Sun Ra (won't forget that soon!), Keith Jarrett, and others, even wandered into a NOLA bar by accident at 17 only to see Fats Domino holding court.  So I've seen world-class players up close.  But nothing like the evening in 1968 when, as an 18 year old, I packed into a remodeled tire warehouse in Philadelphia along with about 200 other heavily medicated kids to see Jimi Hendrix, who had only recently released Are You Experienced - his debut album which completely transformed modern music.  None of us knew then that he would influence every guitar player that followed, and we didn't know he'd be dead in a couple of years.  All we knew was for those few hours he owned us heart and soul.  He played his damn guitar behind his head with his eyes closed, he picked it with his teeth, he played it inbetween his legs, this cat was working on a level of technical viruosity that would have made Charlie Parker and Art Tatum sweat.  I'm just so glad I was there that night, because genius is a rare thing, but genius that shapes history is once in a lifetime thing - if at all.  
ElLagarto ElLagarto
56-60, M
22 Responses Jun 20, 2007

I got to meet Mr.Ra-(mistermystery?) and attend a few workshops in which he shared his cosmology and methodology,he was definitely a more evolved order of being than most people I have witnessed.<br />
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and to hang out and share a few laughs with the Arkestra-Pat Patrick,Michael Ray,John Gilmore...?<br />
unforgettable. they were very disciplined pla<x>yers,I barely appreciated it at the time-I was fairly young-but they left a lasting impression which has inspired much heliocentric exploration in me over the years.

It's impossible for me to him justice. Sun Ra was jazz musician, for a long time he and his Arkestra lived and worked right here in Philly. He literally believed he was a messenger for outer space. Do yourself a favor and Google him or check him out on Wikipedia. A true American original.

WOW!!! You have definitely lived the dream. Just a question. Who is Sun Ra?<br />
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Rock on!!

"I got my Mojo woikin' - I got my Mojo woikin' - I got my Mojo woikin' - Sure gwan woik on you." Muddy Waters<br />
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Joplin was not attractive, didn't really have a good voice, and was painfully insecure. She hurled herself into self-destruction, drug abuse, sexual excess. What people remember is that when she sang it was so raw, so intense. There really wasn't a precedent for a female singer to act that way, and people latched onto it. But that was her only trick. She his behind her stage persona.<br />
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Mojo. You weren't born too late, the world never cared, and if wishes were fishes I'd swim in the ocean all day.

Take a little piece of my heart now baby...............in what way do you mean pathetic and grotesque? I suppose I have put her on a pedestal, and cant really see her in that way. But hey, you were there, Il take your word for it. Im so very jealous tho, Joplin, Hendrix..........I was born too late, into a world that doesnt care, oh I wish I was.................

Agreed. There was a revolution going on and music was at the heart of it.<br />
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Personally, I'm waiting for the Rolling Stones, "I'm Incontinent" tour, sponsored by Depends.

music of that period wasn't as much about ticket sales as it was changing people's perception. those were the good old days. Can't wait for the Korn, "Make Me Continent tour"

I haven't heard much about "I Never Sausage A Thing" lately. Maybe they had creative differences - or ran afould of the black plague.<br />
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I don't think there will be. I'm sure there's still genius out there, but the music industry has changed so much, companies don't invest in talented new artists now. They manufacture music like sausage.

I often wonder if there are any groups or individual artists people will be talking about in this manner in 20 years. Music seems so manufactured these days and it doesn't seem there is any real genius out there any more. At least not in the mainstream...who will be the next Hendrix, Joplin, Led Zep?

Dreams: Free tickets for Britney Spears is a high price to pay. I do like the nickname though. <br />
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Celery: I was just fortunate, my timing was perfect. I got to see these groups when you could still catch them in small venues. I saw the Stones on their 2nd American tour - Brian Jones was still alive! Same with Cream - THAT was a hot show.

ElLagarto, I think YOU are something of a musical legend! S'cuz me while I kiss this guy!!!

Yes I did, later that same year. She was ahead of her time, that girl could surely wail - but even then there was something grotesque and pathetic about her. Take it!!!

Dont you dare tell me you saw Janis Joplin live.........( no please tell me if you did):))

Mind-numbing. Like Hendrix, saw them at the Electric Factory, which really only held about 300 people.

Traffic (Low Spark tour), The Who (Tommy tour), Kronos String Quarter (Yikes!), Jefferson Airplane, John Mayall - with Mick Taylor, Sonny Rollins (standing on the bar in a joint in West Philly), Richie Havens......

Grams - it's not really an age thing, more of a bandwidth thing. The artists you mentioned are all accomplished, truly professional, and well known for dazzling live performances. (Midler and Diamond in particular.) But Sun Ra and Arkestrka are (were) at the very edge of the bandwidth, where light meets the immensity of black space. I once saw them in a venue so small there were more people on the stage than in the audience. It was one of the highlights of my life - not just musical highlights - highlight highlights.

Now I'm going to sound like an ole fart but here I go, Lizza minelli, Bet Midler, Kenny Loggins and Neil Diomand.

You rock coffeegirl. -- Space Is The Place! -- It's after the end of the world, don't you know that yet? -- Anyone who has even heard of Sun Ra, much less seen him, is all right with me.

I never did see Dylan - or the Beatles - did see the Stones though - on their 2nd American tour - wow. Dylan is an amazing song writer and poet, maybe America's best - but I just could never get past that horrible singing - not to mention the ridiculous harmonica playing. I do like when other people do his songs.

You are lucky to have seen those artists. My first concert was Lief Garret and my last one was Green day. I did see Dylan a few years ago...but I fell asleep-can you believe that??? He is one of my favorite song writers of all time...but he totally sucked.

That's really awesome...I would have died to see that show...too bad I wasn't alive yet