Although the studio work that Jimi Hendrix did, particularly on the 1968 album Electric Ladyland, was tremendously impressive, Jimi was also a great live musician as well. He was a standout guitarist of his generation and vocalist in his own band. Although the original Jimi Hendrix Experience had collapsed by this point, Jimi himself wanted to keep his musical flame alive by touring extensively and building his own recording studio. This is a very famous gig of Jimi and his Band Of Gypsys and was recorded several weeks prior to Jimi’sunfortunate death. The set mostly features previously unreleased songs from Jimi Hendrix. This should be an important and special listening experience from Jimi and the crew, so let’s hear it. This was also originally a soundtrack recorded for the 1971 Rainbow Bridge film, filmed in Maui, Hawaii. The band consisted of Jimi Hendrix (guitar and vocals), Billy Cox (bass guitar) and Mitch Mitchell (drums).

Chuck Wein Introduction is a great welcoming message from Chuck Wein himself. There is complete silence here as he talks about Jimi and other rather strange stuff. He promotes the idea of the building of said rainbow bridge between the heart and the all-knowing. He garbles a bit about things, but it’s short and ends after a minute or so. He then presents Jimi, and this live album begins. There is some crowd cheering at the end for Jimi.

Hey Baby (New Rising Sun) launches straight into some wet and watery wah-wah guitar parts that sound quite good. From the go, this is fantastic music and sounds a little like Black Sabbath in the guitar riffs. These guys were great musicians, period. Jimi plays very nicely on this tune, and he makes the guitar itself exude emotion and soul. A really awesome and wonderful piece of music, one can sense history being made. Jimi Hendrix eventually begins singing, and this is a very day glow Psychedelic tune that is fantastic. Jimi himself does a great job musically here and plays very nicely and decently here. No wonder people often thought of Jimi Hendrix as the greatest guitarist ever. In the second half is some better playing, before quite a mint guitar solo at hand. The rhythm section that is backing up Jimi are equally sensational. A good tune to enjoy, Hendrix is an absolute legend. The song gradually wraps up towards the end and sounds really good. Brilliant music, these guys deserve a lot of credit for this music. This eventually has some manic drumming from Mitch Mitchell, before segueing into the next song.

In From The Storm launches straight into an uplifting and powerful tune with Jimi playing excellently on his Fender Stratocaster. He really plays intensely, as though his life depends on it. A great and excellent piece of music to enjoy. Soon enough, Jimi Hendrix gets singing away and although he is not the greatest singer here, this is a pleasant and decent Blues music styled piece. A very lively and adventurous tune, this sounds very different. Jimi plays a mean guitar, and this tune is lively. A truly cool and amazing piece, Jimi loves to make his guitar squeal. All in all, this is a superb tune and demands your ears. In the second half is some very amazing playing throughout. The Band Of Gypsys certainly knew how to play as well. After the guitar solo, Jimi returns to singing for a bit, before blowing our minds with his guitar playing once again. A neat tune to hear, it ends well and the crowd approves. Great stuff. Jimi thanks the crowd nicely.

Foxey Lady launches into the tune after Jimi does a dedicated introduction to the song. Hammer-ons are present which lurch into feedback, and this song gets going. A great and different listening experience, this sounds punchy and electric. Jimi’s singing isn’t the best here, and his guitar quickly becomes out of tune from the use of extreme whammy bar work. Fortunately, this is easily overlooked in retrospect. Jimi Hendrix is a legend regardless, and the band totally support him nicely here. The guitar solo is deep, soulful and different, with Jimi going crazy playing it. Billy Cox and Mitch Mitchell back him up perfectly, and each musician has a musical character of their own. A great and decent listening experience, there is some insane feedback towards the end, before the outro is present and Jimi plays wonderfully. The outro sounds also insane, with Jimi Hendrix soloing by himself. Drum rolls then enter, and we have a great listen done here. The crowd goes nuts at the end of it all.

Hear My Train A-Comin’ is introduced by Jimi as a Blues number and does some proto-Rapping here of some lyrics, which is very strange. He quickly launches into this awesome Blues number that sounds really fine, excellent and greatest. Again, the playing on these live numbers is really sensational, and Jimi does a mindblowing and artistic job on the guitar. Using the Fender Stratocaster neck pickup to deliver impressive playing, Jimi Hendrix is a real musical legend. He eventually gets singing this tune, and Jimi and crew’s music come alive. Nonetheless, this is a good piece of Rock music that sounds really awesome and sweet. Jimi Hendrix sings and plays with ferocity. He eventually launches into a wailing guitar solo that is shred city. He plays amazingly, and Jimi was a true talent of musical ability. The playing here is wonderful, and Jimi Hendrix was fantastic as a guitarist virtuoso. The long Blues jam that is here is a decent listening experience, and most likely improvised. The only issue with this live music is that Jimi’s guitar whammy work makes the guitar go out of tune all the time. In the second half is some more subtle and impressive guitar work from Jimi, and the whole thing goes super quiet, as Jimi Hendrix resumes singing again. A brilliant and effortless tune by the Band Of Gypsys, this is a great live listen to enjoy to this day. A monumental and brilliant listening experience, worth your time and ears. Great music throughout, and Jimi shows the music world how it’s done. It eventually wraps up after the nine minute mark with a slowed down outro and some subtle riffing, before a brief audience cheer occurs. Nice.

Voodoo Child (Slight Return) is a live rendition of the classic song by Jimi Hendrix on his Electric Ladyland album. It is at double speed though, and the intro sounds awesome and magical, with the rest of the band playing a little bit of catch-up here. A really great and interesting listen is present here, and this is another extended piece of music that goes on for over seven minutes long. Jimi’s singing is not a strong point in this live performance, but he does okay here. The musicianship and playing here are fantastic to hear in other ways, however, and the guitar soloing is really insane listening throughout. There are some interesting and tripped-out guitar effects on this live tune, as Jimi Hendrix shows himself to be a true pioneer of electric guitar playing and artistry. Playing away with real soul, he was an amazing musician and artist on this release. A great listening experience. Jimi shows the world of music his true brilliance on his live albums here. The playing of this song is really divine and amazing, something that Jimi should be proud of. An intense and interesting listening experience, Jimi asks the crowd to stand up and dance along to this piece. This is an outstanding listen with many twists and turns along the way. An extraordinary tune. Towards the end is a soft breakdown by the group, just before Mitch Mitchell plays some neat drumming to conclude this tune. Awesome and brilliant. The drum solo here is amazing, and he showcases his skills here. This segues into the next song.

Fire launches into it straight away from before, and the whole thing doesn’t sound that good live. Again, Jimi’s guitar playing is a little out of tune and his singing isn’t the greatest. Still, this is a wonderful and enjoyable piece of music, but a little lacking here. The guitar playing itself is really quite adventurous and different, and the music at hand is really cool and awesome. For all its flaws, this is very decent music to listen to. The main riff is repeated throughout the second half before Jimi launches back into the verses and choruses. Decent, even if it is very flawed. The guitar playing present is quite mindblowing, and it wraps up with guitars and drums to conclude. Not bad, the audience cheers and this piece ends with Jimi Hendrix tuning his guitar, which it should have been done in the first place.

Purple Haze sounds very different to the original and is a really interesting and clever piece of listening. Jimi Hendrix and crew do a fantastic job of playing and musicality for this catchy Pop number. It is a truly wonderful listening experience, and this has some blistering guitar playing, solid basslines and pounding drums galore. An excellent listening experience, this is one of the better pieces of this double album. Jimi Hendrix and crew then revert to the song section here, and this is a really good and amazing tune to enjoy. In the second half is some insane wah-wah guitar playing and soloing that sounds really awesome. The main riff then returns, and the rest of the band pause for Jimi to solo away, which is actually quite impressive, and he plays The Star Spangled Banner, aka the USA national anthem here, before the Band Of Gypsys conclude this tune. Great work man. The crowd approves nicely.

Spanish Castle Magic begins with Jimi Hendrix talking to the crowd, introducing the song very nicely with a quick count-in and some great guitar riffing and drums galore here. Jimi Hendrix is a true legend of Pop/Rock culture and this is good proof of such legendary actions. The guitar playing here is really sublime, and it is equally supported by the grooving rhythms of the Band Of Gypsys. In the middle of the song is another amazing guitar solo section which sounds really cool and brilliant. A tremendously awesome and fantastic listening experience, this music is very amazing. A really interesting and far-out listen, this sounds great to this day. A great piece of music listening, please listen to this if you love Hendrix. It ends with some drumrolls and whammy guitar work.

Lover Man begins with some upbeat guitar work and launches straight into a very short piece (for this live album) which is just under three minutes in length. This is just as good as the other work on this album, and it sounds interesting, with more wah-wah guitar solos to hear. A very cool and different piece of music, the band play as Rock Gods should do. A simple, short and interesting piece, especially lyrically, this eventually concludes nicely with some passionate drum rolls and good guitar work. Nice effort. Jimi then introduces the next song in line.

Message To Love launches straight into it, with some ascending guitar leads and a piece that could have been bettered here. Nonetheless, this is okay but not really that good. Jimi Hendrix does playing excellently here, and this tune is a powerful piece of music at hand. The guitar soloing here is really cool and impressive, despite the quality of this tune. This music no doubt will still be hugely influential to this day, and the live efforts here are appreciated when listening. Jimi does a good call-and-response with vocals and guitar here. The second half of this tune is full of more soloing and free Jazz styled playing from the Band Of Gypsys. An excellent listening experience and this gets better as it goes along. Eventually, this tune concludes with some manic drumming and wah-wah guitars. The crowd cheer and this is the end of side one of the album.

Dolly Dagger begins with a dark and distorted riff, launching quickly into a strange and surreal sounding tune. It’s okay, but very far away from being the best Jimi Hendrix tune. Regardless, it’s okay to listen to but it isn’t overly impressive. Jimi’s singing isn’t the best here, either, sadly. Nonetheless, despite this being a mediocre song, it’s good to hear Jimi Hendrix and the crew perform it live. The guitar solo is okay here but is nothing really too great. A weird song that doesn’t really sound that great, Jimi does do his best to impress, however. It is a bit of a disappointment on this live album to hear this. Also, it seems a bit long for such a song at nearly five minutes long. There is a quite cool wah-wah guitar solo towards the end, but the rest of the track is very ordinary. Still, Jimi could play some great wah-wah solos. The song is saved by the guitar solo at the end, which is pretty cool. This song segues into the next tune.

Villanova Junction comes next and begins with some slowed down playing, which is quite different and interesting. This tune gets going nicely and this is a subdued and sublime listen. Jimi Hendrix plays wonderfully here, and there are no surprises why Jimi is often rated as one of the greatest guitarists of all time. He plays in such an awesome and articulate way that you want to go back for repeat listens. Towards the middle, this tune gets much more intense and Jimi plays some awesome guitar to match Billy Cox’s thumping basslines as well as Mitch MItchell’s extraordinary drumming. This is fantastic listening, and although this is fairly lengthy, it works incredibly well. Jimi’s guitar playing is wonderful here, and he goes back into wah-wah mode in the second half. Hendrix was a great guitarist, period. Some of the guitar parts here are really awesome and fantastic, and this part towards the outro sounds a lot like 1983 (A Merman I Should Turn To Be) from the Electric Ladyland album. It sounds really interesting and legendary here, and this tune builds up in intensity right towards the end. Great effort by all. Again, this segues into the next track.

Ezy Ryder begins with some interesting muted guitars, along with some syncopated drumming to match. The song’s title likely comes from the film of a similar name, Easy Rider, released in 1969. Nonetheless, this quickly launches into a decent and interesting tune. Jimi’s singing is quite raspy and ordinary here, and his guitar work is much better than his singing here. An interesting and nicely delivered piece of music otherwise, it has a cool riff in the middle, along with thunderous drums to match. This is an awesome effort, regardless of the singing. Jimi was such a great guitarist that his music will last many years to come via his influence, and this tune is no different as a result. A good tune to hear, warts and all, especially likely so if one were under the influence. A good and passionate tune to hear, this speeds up right towards the end and sounds great as a result. Awesome stuff, it ends with some screaming guitars and then cheering by the audience.

Red House is a classic Blues tune by Jimi Hendrix. It begins with some weird and warped playing, and Jimi introduces the song very nicely. He plays really excellently here and makes a slower piece such as this come alive. This is awesome Blues music that deserves to be listened to and enjoyed. A tremendously wonderful and interesting effort on this tune, the Band Of Gypsys could easily show the world how it’s done. Hendrix eventually gets singing away very well, and this is an excellent and wonderful effort to hear. Jimi plays some amazing licks as the song progresses along nicely. Mitch Mitchell’s intricate drumming and Billy Cox’s thumping basslines add to this awesome slow Blues jam. Jimi sounds like he is really having fun singing and playing this tune, and he was a musical genius. This music will no doubt last forever, and it sounds really great and amazing for people to enjoy. A great rendition of a Blues classic, Jimi eventually gets his wah-wah on and plays very nicely here. A tremendously brilliant effort and Jimi Hendrix plays some insane licks on this song. It eventually launches into the final verses towards the end and this tune is very good from a live perspective. Great effort.

Freedom launches straight into the song at hand and is a great live piece by the Band Of Gypsys. Jimi makes a great tune come alive here, and he does such an awesome and wonderful job at articulating his own art form here. The guitars here are quite powerful as well. Jimi sings and plays with his band well, and he was a true talent of this planet. Singing about the concept of freedom and relationship issues, Jimi delivers a very good live rendition here. In the midsection is some insane guitar riffing, and some very catchy playing to match. Indeed, this is a real joy to hear and to listen to. This retains the Hippie ideals and spirit throughout this song, more so than other songs on this album. Towards the end are some great guitar riffs, just before this tune begins to wrap up. An awesome listen, and one for Jimi Hendrix fans indeed. The outro is fairly chaotic, and the crowd cheer nicely at the end.

Jam Back at the House is an extended piece at over eight minutes long. It begins with some intricate and interesting playing from the group, with Jimi playing some really awesome guitar licks. This is quite a good listen, and the jamming launches into a Jazzy yet wah-wah heavy section to enjoy. Nonetheless, an awesome tune with many twists and turns throughout, which is extremely cool. Jimi plays a great guitar solo which is emotional and descriptive. A really sweet jam session, this is the sort of music you would play at home when you have mates over. A cool and interesting tune. Jimi Hendrix and his band really knew how to impress, and this is good for what it is. Mitch MItchell’s drumming is fantastic here, as he plays in a super frenetic way. He is an underrated drummer for sure. This tune has some very Bluesy licks in the middle, and it does sound great. A brilliant and classy live jam, the second half has Jimi soloing by himself, before Mitch Mitchell does a solo drum part. This is superb. Jimi and Billy Cox then return to play this piece and do so well and professionally. A really cool and excellent tune, this has some interestingly treated guitar parts. This sort of music was groundbreaking at the time. Towards the end, things get rather subtle with the playing and muted sounds throughout, super cool. Jimi Hendrix then launches into the final part of the song with a neat sounding guitar, and eventually, it becomes much more prominent right at the end. He plays a few pretty melodies to finish up this tune. Excellent music. It segues into the next track.

Straight Ahead begins with some muted riffing, and the rest of the band chases Jimi Hendrix as he performs. This tune then gets going, and fortunately, this is much shorter at three minutes long. Jimi plays and sings in a wonderful way, and his guitar work in particular is quite impressive. He plays with a bunch of different techniques and textures that sound fantastic. Billy Cox’s bass guitar playing on this tune is thumping and fantastic. In the second half, things slow and then build up in pace and intensity. A good listen, and something that is worth hearing as it is a lot shorter than other tracks on this live album. The song eventually ends and Jimi thanks the crowd for listening.

Hey Baby (New Rising Sun) / Midnight Lightning begins with some subtle drums, watery wah-wah guitar and some intricate bass playing. Jimi takes the lead here, and he sounds fantastic on guitar. The playing and performances on this album are really stunning and decent. If anything, Jimi would be proud of this sort of thing musically if he were alive today. There are some interesting scale styled work on the guitar present here, followed by Mitch Mitchell drumming very nicely. A good listen, this breaks down again with just the wah-wah guitar parts present in the middle of the song. Jimi Hendrix was one legendary guitarist that is for sure. Playing a bunch of different riffs, this changes tempo and rhythm once the band eventually return into the mix. A wonderful and joyous listen, there is a great guitar soloing section towards the end. An incredibly cool listen, this is interesting music. It continues on nicely and finishes quickly.

Stone Free is the very last track on this double live album. Jimi plays a very nice intro, with Mitch Mitchell and Billy Cox following along nicely. This isn’t as good as the album version, but it is okay for a listenable tune. There is a good call-and-response section between Jimi and the rest of the group. A good way to conclude a good live album that shows that Jimi Hendrix’s abilities as a musician were still evolving right before his sad and unfortunate death. He plays some interesting guitar solos right towards the middle of this song and does a great job here of doing so. An awesome tune, although like most of the songs on this live album, could have been shortened. This quickly launches into a brief Hey Joe interlude, before the band return to the jam at that time. A really awesome and joyous listen, everyone here plays like they are on fire. This eventually concludes with some interesting whammy bar action by Jimi, and we finish this album here, with Jimi Hendrix thanking the crowd and wishing the audience good night.

This is a very good live album for any listener to explore Jimi Hendrix’s music through. The only real issue is that some of these songs are very lengthy. However, given the context of this album, this is unsurprising. Jimi Hendrix was a great musician, period, along with Billy Cox and Mitch Mitchell. Should you listen to this live double album? Yes, you should, if you have the patience to go through a live double album that lasts nearly two hours. Still, this is good for what it is.

A great leap backwards in time to 1970.