Hendrix rocks the chitlin circuit

Four decades after his death, Jimi Hendrix is still the object of fascination. SoundCheck just received galleys for yet another new book about the flamboyant guitarist: Steven Roby and Brad Schreiber’s “Becoming Jimi Hendrix,” scheduled for publication in September by Da Capo Press. The tome focuses on possibly the most interesting and under-examined chapter in the musician’s career: His life on the Southern chitlin circuit, where he worked with Little Richard, the Isley Brothers, King Curtis, Curtis Knight, and other black performers.

This period is not very well documented visually, but SoundCheck was delighted to find that the amazing 1965 footage of Hendrix backing the Nashville soul act Buddy and Stacy on the local TV show “Night Train” was available on YouTube. Jimi can be seen on the far left in the instrumental line-up behind the two vocalists, playing what looks like a right-handed Fender Stratocaster upside down.

We first encountered this clip a few years ago in the Country Music Hall of Fame’s exhibit about Music City R&B, “Night Train to Nashville.” It’s still mind-blowing.

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