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Jimi Hendrix (Hey Joe) - 1965-All about the Song

The pioneer mentioned in the annals and who performed this composition for the world for the first time is Tim Rose. On the cover of Are You Experienced? 60s psychedelic rock band The Jimi Hendrix Experience says it's "a bluesy arrangement of an old cowboy song about a hundred years old".

All about the song: Jimi Hendrix (Jimi Hendrix) - Hey Joe (1965)

It has always been a mystery: why do some compositions have such a fate, despite the light text and simple melody, they manage to sink into the soul of the listener and go with them almost through their whole lives, tightly planted in their heads ... Other songs that seemed promising to us, we forget the next month.

Why is that? I do not know…

But I know something else, that the composition “Hey Joe” by Jimi Hendrix, the greatest electric guitarist of all time, undoubtedly belongs to the first category!

This song has some magical properties! She's amazingly simple! But at the same time it is impossible to forget. This song has hundreds of covers, and in such different styles that sometimes you even wonder: how did people think of this before?!

The most popular version by far remains Jimi's version. Let's hear how he plays solo with his teeth on his stratum:

The plot of the song is very simple: the wife cheated on her husband, and now he has no choice - he must kill her. And of course, escape to Mexico. The original text is by Billy Roberts, he wrote it in 1962.

Billy Roberts
Billy Roberts

The pioneer mentioned in the annals and who performed this composition for the world for the first time is Tim Rose. On the cover of Are You Experienced? 60s psychedelic rock band The Jimi Hendrix Experience says it's "a bluesy arrangement of an old cowboy song about a hundred years old". Many claimed the authorship of the song, but in fact it is really folk. The fact is that “Hey Joe” was written by Billy Roberts, and he was part of a folk fraternity in Greenwich Village in the early 60s.

In 1965, The Leaves made 3 versions of the song Hey Joe. One was faster than the other two and reached number 31 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. At the same time, one of the most iconic meetings in the history of rock music took place: Chas Chandler saw a young virtuoso playing the guitar in a cafe "Wha?", he also sang the song "Hey, Joe". Chandler eventually became the manager of a successful guitarist who would later turn the course of musical history on its head. Chas convinces Jimi to go to England with him to record a single. We all know what happened next...

When Music Becomes Religion.

The song incorporates a lot of blues elements, including a progression of FCGDA chords, a tale of infidelity and murder, giving it just the right amount of truthfulness needed for old blues. This led many to believe that it was a much older folk version, but it was a new, original composition.

At the end of the song Wild Thing, Jimi set fire to the guitar and began to feed the energy
At the end of the song Wild Thing, Jimi set fire to the guitar and began to feed the energy

Hendrix played it for the first time at the 1967 Monterey Festival. This was the first time the band played in America. Jimi then set the guitar on fire at the end of the performance.

Hendrix himself has 4 versions of this song, one better than the other:

On the third version, a trio called "Breakaways" (Jean Hawker, Margot Newman and Vicki Brown) performed female backing vocals. They were found by producer Chas Chandler. On this version, Hendrix skips the first verse and then laughs. It's great that they decided to release this version.

https://youtu.be/5eJz0kdOrLw

While Jimi's version is by far the most famous, "Hey Joe" has been recorded by over 1,000 musicians...

https://youtu.be/HLiUJPrwNn8

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