I idolised Hendrix as a teen/20s guitarist as everyone did, but he came on the telly at woodstock not long ago and I watched it with great enthusiasm then found about 10 minutes into the 128th guitar solo that it was really fucking boring to watch on TV in 20xx
in 1969 I'm sure it would have blown me away to be there, but any solo for that length of time becomes a tedious exercise in ego without the context of actually being there......
The other amazing thing is like so many rockstars he was only 27 when he died. It's fucking annoying now to think of 20 somethings as the envelope pushers..... the filthy young whipper snappers, they know NOTHING!!! ....
Nice points, f.
It is difficult, in this age of virtuoso players like Buckethead or whomever, to listen to Hendrix the guitar player
and not want to make comparisons or think "meh, the playing is not so great and it's kinda boring me at this point." I think that's what happens with a lot of folks that say that Hendrix is over-rated. They are comparing technical ability and prowess to current artists who have really taken all that to unthinkable levels in rock/pop music. There was also an enormous gap between Hendrix the live artist, and Hendrix the studio musician. Many a Hendrix scholar has bemoaned the fact that his raw energy and fearlessness of playing was never properly captured in the studio.
While that solo seems long and self indulgent now, that's another important thing that Hendrix pioneered - the notion of massive extended solos that reached deep into what was happening in the jazz world at the time. NO ONE was doing that kind of thing in the rock/pop world. Solos were there, but they were relatively short and sweet. No one was making a PhD out of guitar solos until Hendrix, really. It blew people away who where like "Um...he's going to be getting back to the chorus sometime this year, right?"
That sort of thing (rightfully or wrongfully) opened the door for an endless number of rock musicians to stand on stage on endlessly jam.
He also pretty much wrote the book on live improvisation in the rock music world; completely taking his songs in entirely new directions at the spur of the moment. Cream and others had dabbled in this kind of jazz performance, but nothing like Hendrix.
Lord knows what he would have done had he not died so young. The collaboration that was talked about but sadly never happened; one that many feel would have REDEFINIED both jazz and rock, was a record with he and Miles Davis.