Friday, September 18, 2020

Friday's Playlist: Children of Jimi

Today marks a pretty sad anniversary: it's been exactly a half century since Jimi Hendrix died. Jimi was arguably the most influential guitarist, well, ever really. His contribution to the musical lexicon is immeasurable and goes way beyond the realm of rock. His appeal also transcends generations, instruments, gender and race. Because Jimi's music didn't just break down musical walls: it broke down racial ones, social ones. Face it, Jimi's music was woke. Cross-breeding music to fight cross-burning mentalities.

This Playlist is a little compilation of artists that are obviously indebted to Jimi's musical. They are his heritage. His legacy. Now, you might argue that everyone has been influenced by Jimi in some way, and you'd be right. Even Miles Davis felt his world shake when he heard Jimi. To think what could've happened if they had been able to record together as they had planned...

Every guitarist, every rock, metal, funk, fusion, blues, soul, and jazz band owes Jimi a little something, whether they realise it or not. And it's not limited to the guitar, either.

His music covered so much grounds that some artists have made a career of mining his innovations in specific genres and approaches. Stevie Ray Vaughan of course continued his exploration of the Blues, Robin Trower kept his psychedelic streak alive, Prince took his funk/soul stylings and found his own voice in the process, Bootsy Collins was arguably the Jimi of funk bass... and countless imitators have been somewhat successful in aping some of his music.

But none were quite as complete as James Marshall Hendrix, who said everything in three studio records, whose career only spanned a few years, and who died at the tragically young age of twenty-seven. And in all likelihood, no one will ever leave a mark quite as big as him.

The artist and songs featured in this Playlist aren't mere copycats, but they wear their influence on their sleeves. Enjoy this selection and let us know who else you would have picked for this playlist.

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