Controversial question - how good was Hendrix in reality

mudfinger

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I've got everything that T-Bone, Muddy, and Wolf ever recorded. :shock: Lately, I've been pretty much studying Muddy's Blue Sky recordings, refining my take on his vocal style, and just generally enjoying the modern sound on those records.

Muddy doesn't get enuff credit, in my view, for the way he took the music itself to a new level, and I often wonder if it has something to do with the way rock players revere Robert Johnson so much; high-pitched vocals and flashy guitar work, which is just about the opposite of how Muddy laid down his grooves.

The thing that STILL amazes me about T-Bone is the fact that he really wasn't playing guitar all that long before he developed his style, which has everything going on in it that every other electric guitarist since then has leaned on, including Muddy and Jimi.

I'm still not 100% on using Voodoo Chile (SR) as a demo tune, but I respect the guys I'm working with enuff to go with it. Seems like a pretty bold move for a bar gig demo, the point of it being to convince blues and rock club owners that the band can play right and do the music justice. :shock: Just never heard of anyone pulling that tune out as track one on a demo...we'll be using "Muddy Water Blues" for the slow track, so no room for Voodoo Child, or Little Wing (which is the Jimi tune I think is most overdone), or Wind Cries Mary. Meh, we'll see. If we track a wicked good version of something else that's hard and driving, and that people will recognize instantly, might end up going with that.

Good show on an all-original demo, by the way; I've always had the best luck with 2 standards and an original, but that's for the kinda gigs where you hold down the house all night, so it's a different "market".
 

geochem1st

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Although Jimi did play some straight blues, he took the blues to a completely different level never heard before. Cosmic Interstellar Blues. To compare him to Muddy and others is an apples to oranges thing. In his minds 'ear' he was hearing music never before imagined and placed them in a contemporary framework.

If minds were analogous to cable TV channels, some of us got the basic package, some of us got high end HD packages.... and then there was Jimi who got channels none of us could imagine were there.
 

planks

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really really really really really really really really really really really really really
really really really really really really really really really really really really really
good


























okay?
 

fatb0t

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First and foremore, Jimi Hendrix is my biggest influence. That being said, I'm completely biased.
Honestly, who ever played rhythm guitar like Jimi Hendrix before him? I mean, Little Wing? This song is still so relevant today. The way he touched the guitar was just different than anyone before him.
A true visionary. If you disagree, simply you're wrong. Sorry haha!
 

River

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Jimi's reputation was not established after his untimely death. My peers and I recognized his ability, talent, and creativity well prior to that.
 

upl8tr

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Pfffffft ? Hendrix??
As far as i'm concerned he's no better than those Wright brother's with their stupid little plane, I mean have you seen the jet fighters we have today?:rolleyes:
 

PINKBITS

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His singing sucked. His playing could be just sloppy at times. Some of his worse stuff is just noise. At his best, he was ONE of the best. He has been schrouded in a mystic cloak of urban myth. He was not the greatest that ever lived.
Why?

Who in your opinion is as good, or better than Hendrix?
 

hobbyman

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Aside from Voodoo Chile (Slight Return), I've never liked his music. Not a fan, sorry!
 

Ride on a Pony

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Jimmy played the guitar incredibly well, but within a strict set of boundaries.

Eric played the guitar a little better, but within an even stricter set of boundaries.

Jimi had no boundaries, and played like the guitar was a part of him.

Carlos used to play the guitar quite well, before his boundaries collapsed upon him...and his shoes.
 

Roman

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His singing sucked. His playing could be just sloppy at times. Some of his worse stuff is just noise. At his best, he was ONE of the best. He has been schrouded in a mystic cloak of urban myth. He was not the greatest that ever lived.
Jimi Hendrix: The patron saint of electric guitar. Bout time to get the Pope in on this. :shock:
I am the Pope. :cool:

Son, I forgive you, for you know not of what you speak. Some times musical delusions can inflict us all with the inability to recognize pure genius when we see it. In an effort to cling to misguided beliefs we may criticize the great ones and hold lesser talent up on a pedestal.
Since you are inflicted with this frail human condition, I forgive you.
Someday in the near or distant future, you will see the greatness that Hendrix was and still is. :D
 

slapshot

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Wow....

But I guess Jimi was quite prophetic as well, as for Mr. Dale and his musical genre:

“You'll never hear Surf music again.."
Third Stone From the Sun
do you know the whole story with that?

surf is alive and well much the same as drug fucked hippie psychadelic rock is
 

Blackie

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I am the Pope. :cool:

Son, I forgive you, for you know not of what you speak. Some times musical delusions can inflict us all with the inability to recognize pure genius when we see it. In an effort to cling to misguided beliefs we may criticize the great ones and hold lesser talent up on a pedestal.
Since you are inflicted with this frail human condition, I forgive you.
Someday in the near or distant future, you will see the greatness that Hendrix was and still is. :D
Plus a Zillion..............All Hail Pope Rist the First !!
 

EasyAce

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Muddy doesn't get enuff credit, in my view, for the way he took the music itself to a new level, and I often wonder if it has something to do with the way rock players revere Robert Johnson so much; high-pitched vocals and flashy guitar work, which is just about the opposite of how Muddy laid down his grooves.
I think you may be conflating how they view Robert Johnson himself with how they were affected by the first introductions of Robert Johnson to any kind of mass hearing, by way of Eric Clapton's Cream arrangement of "Crossroads." The funny thing of it is, back in the year I was as much a fan of Cream's "Crossroads" as anybody . . . but I'd also hooked into Muddy Waters by way of Steppenwolf's very psychedelic cover of "Hoochie Coochie Man," and it was only by making my way to Muddy that I got to Robert Johnson whole, since I found both Muddy's early music and Robert's posthumous King of the Delta Blues Singers. That's where I got the connection between Robert and Muddy, especially since Muddy developed "Rollin' and Tumblin'" off Robert's "If I Had Possession Over Judgment Day" more or less.

Now, I'm not going to say Robert Johnson wasn't a slick guitarist in his own right, but for me the big grip Robert Johnson got on me was his songwriting and his feeling. I wasn't exactly unaware of high-range blues and rock singers, so Robert Johnson didn't affect me that way and, anyway, these days my voice range is low enough to make John Lee Hooker sound like a falsetto. But getting Robert Johnson's songwriting skill and soul feeling . . . I've got no words for that. Calling it haunting would be an understatement.

I came to feel the same way about Muddy's writing and feeling and singing, and Muddy isn't exactly a tenor. I figured out in due course that Mick Jagger---who isn't exactly one of the world's great high-pitchers---got it about Muddy early on, you can hear the clear enough lineage from Muddy to Mick even if the early Rolling Stones pared much of the Muddy Waters material they once used, pre-fame, down to one or two numbers.

About Muddy's guitar playing, I think there's something to be said about the fact that he isn't exactly Mr. Flash, though his slide playing is a revelation and his leads are clean, spiky, and right-note/right-place. The feeling was the thing with him. It may be why he's not so respected right off the bat for his guitar work and underrated as a vocalist, on individual skill levels, yet he's still revered as what he really is: the father of Chicago blues as we came to know it. He took what he grew up with, blended it with what he was working with before he got his clean shot, and it came out his own.

And we're still feeling the reverberations even now. Just as we have with what B.B. King blended from various parts T-Bone Walker, his cousin Bukka White, and sundry unknown southern players.

The thing that STILL amazes me about T-Bone is the fact that he really wasn't playing guitar all that long before he developed his style, which has everything going on in it that every other electric guitarist since then has leaned on, including Muddy and Jimi.
He was playing guitar longer than you think. (He was still a kid when Blind Lemon Jefferson befriended his family and took him on as his guide through the Texas thoroughfares to play for tips, and Bone probably got a few of his first guitar rudiments from Lemon.) It was when he hipped to plugging in---most likely, by way of hearing Charlie Christian---that his style developed very rapidly, practically overnight.

And yet . . . and yet . . . T-Bone, too, was a master of economy and of what Lester Young would come to say singing lyrics with his instrument. That's the real blues, brother. Sing lyrics with your instrument. That's what Robert and Muddy had that made them great even if their guitar approaches were polar opposites; that's what T-Bone and B.B. King had (has, in B.B.'s case still) that made them great; that's what Albert King, Buddy Guy, Otis Rush (oh, man, talk about an underrated guitarist!), Mike Bloomfield, Eric Clapton, Peter Green, Luther Allison, Duane Allman had that made them great.

And, when they cut out the bullshit and just played, that's what Jimi Hendrix playing the blues and Stevie Ray Vaughan not torn between wanting to be Hendrix and Albert King when he grew up had.

I'm still not 100% on using Voodoo Chile (SR) as a demo tune, but I respect the guys I'm working with enuff to go with it. Seems like a pretty bold move for a bar gig demo, the point of it being to convince blues and rock club owners that the band can play right and do the music justice. :shock:
I'll give you one little tip---you may or may not impress the club owners with "Voodoo Chile, Slight Return" as much as you might with "Voodoo Chile," if you absolutely must have a Hendrix blues in your demo set or your set set. Maybe it's a little different where you are, but where I am "Voodoo Child, Slight Return" has become a dollar-a-dozen thing. I've spoken to club owners who are actually turning down bands who feature "Slight Return" in their demos. They're beginning to get tired of what's turned into the usual blues crap, same as I am. There's a vast blues repertoire that doesn't get explored and is yet to be written, and my gut tells me that's going to be the way blues players will have to start learning to survive.

Which seems only right. All that music, all that blues, and these tools playing now can't get out of the idea that the blues only existed between 1972 and 1981-90 on an axis between Texas and Chicago and back and drenched in fuzz, overdrive, feedback, wah-wah, phasing, and all that other crap? Are they trying to tell me John Lee Hooker did nothing but "One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer?" Or Muddy did nothing but "Hoochie Coochie Man?" Or SRV nothing but "Pride and Joy" or "Cold Shot?" And if I have to hear one more playing of "Tush"---which is absolutely the worst song ever written about trolling for a piece of ass---I'm going to lose my dinner, my lunch, my breakfast, and my previous night's snack in a single shot.

...we'll be using "Muddy Water Blues" for the slow track, so no room for Voodoo Child, or Little Wing (which is the Jimi tune I think is most overdone), or Wind Cries Mary. Meh, we'll see. If we track a wicked good version of something else that's hard and driving, and that people will recognize instantly, might end up going with that.
I'm surprised to hear you say "Little Wing" is so overdone out your way. Out here, only a few people do it, if any, and the few who do waver between the original Hendrix arrangement or Eric Clapton's take with Derek and the Dominos. It isn't exactly my favourite Hendrix song, anyway, so I'm not exactly losing sleep over it. ;)

Good show on an all-original demo, by the way; I've always had the best luck with 2 standards and an original, but that's for the kinda gigs where you hold down the house all night, so it's a different "market".
Thanks! But I'd do it my way no matter the market, and out my way you just about have to hold the house down all night, too. And the houses, I think, are beginning to want to know what you have to say yourself, not just whether you can ape the elders. Keep aping the elders and all you've got, really, is just another tribute band.

Just as I said above---there's a vast blues repertoire out there already and yet to be written, way more vast than the tools locked into the ZZ Ray Hendrix/Hoochie Tush Bourbon mentality would be willing to admit. And here's the part that would drive them up the wall---the guys from whose feet they can't lift their heads didn't get themselves locked into any one mentality. Neither did Robert or Muddy or Wolf or Bone or B. or Otis or Mike, just to recycle the men I've mentioned already.
 

DRF

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Me too, can a person imagine when that song came out,its like it never aged. I've always said if this song was released tomorrow as it is,people would still be blown away.

This song is very orchestral,I mean he could've been using a lap steel in some parts for all I know. People talk about lead players and rhythm players but the guy was a master of both,he was a master of fills too while singing.
 

mudfinger

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I am the Pope. :cool:

Son, I forgive you, for you know not of what you speak. Some times musical delusions can inflict us all with the inability to recognize pure genius when we see it. In an effort to cling to misguided beliefs we may criticize the great ones and hold lesser talent up on a pedestal.
Since you are inflicted with this frail human condition, I forgive you.
Someday in the near or distant future, you will see the greatness that Hendrix was and still is. :D
:laugh2:

Well said, your eminence! :naughty::dude:
 

DRF

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I respectfully disagree with others on 2 points. 1st I think he was a pretty decent singer-ya no R J Dio,but that was to heavy for his music maybe, he had a very smooth voice...Wellll Alllll A loooong The Watch-Tower!!!. Very nice.

Second,if you cant see the technical prowess you're a musical retard. Quit listening to scales and shred and gobs of gain. for some reason shredding fast scales are regarded as more difficult to play,I'm here to tell you they are not. Learn the solo to live Creams Crossroads and get back. You can do it already? good, shredding is just finger memory too...see?.
 

Wilko

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The whole OP is a question that shows a lack of understanding of several aspects of art, music, critique and perspective. It assumes that musical quality is based on technical ability or dexerity and then applies a judgment to that scale.

There isn't an objective scale to apply to the guitar that we can all agree on. Assume the most accurate metric to date, the Segovia method, and apply that. Well in that case Hendrix was not good at all. His body position is all wrong. he uses his thumb on the fretboard. His fourth finger is almost useless. yatta yatta. You see where that gets you.

From a purely "rock and roll" mechanics point of view at the time he was playing, he was pretty much the "best". He was extremely dexterous and played lots of complicated chords and "scales". ANd that's just talking about how he handled a guitar without effects and all the innovation he was responsible for. I can't even scratch the surface of his contributions that were made inclusive of his ability to "play a guitar"
 


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