Jimi Hendrix: Voodoo Child

Synopsis: Jimi Hendrix talking about how he became who he is.
91 min

Oh, no!


Well, one of the best

in this studio anyway.

How about some of the best

sitting in this chair?

Another rapid return visit by a trio

which is blazing a trail through Britain

with exciting new sounds.

I just wish I Could just grab you, man,

and just...

An experience for Jimi Hendrix, retaining

his title as the world's top musician.

I can't explain myself like this at that

sometimes 'cause it doesn't come out like that.

Wait, don't waste all that Elm there.

Stop it for a second.

I was born in Seattle, Washington, USA,

on November 27th 1942

at the age of zero.

My dad used to call me

Buster, or buddy boy,

and my mother

used to call me Jimmy.

Mostly my dad took care of me.

My dad was very strict and taught me

that I must respect my elders always.

I couldn't speak

unless I was spoken to first by grown-ups.

A fish wouldn't get into trouble,

if he kept his mouth shut.

So I've always been very quiet.

But I saw a lot of things.

My grandmother is part Cherokee.

I used to spend a lot of time on a

reservation in Vancouver, British Columbia.

My mother and father used to fall out a lot

and I always had to be ready

to go tippy-toeing off to Canada.

My dad was level-headed and religious

but my mother used to like

having a good time and dressing up.

She used to drink a lot

and didn't take care of herself.

She died when I was about ten

but she was a groovy mother.

I went to school in Seattle,

then Vancouver, then back to Seattle.

On the whole,

my school was pretty relaxed.

We had Chinese, Japanese,

Puerto Ricans, Philippines.

We won all the football games.

At school I used to write poetry a lot

and I wanted to be an actor or a painter.

They said I used to be late all the time

but I was getting As and Bs.

I had a girlfriend in the art class

and we used to hold hands all the time.

The art teacher didn't dig that at all.

I left school early.

School was nothing for me.

I wanted something to happen to me.

My father told me to look for a job,

so that's what I did.

I worked for my father

for a couple of weeks.

I had to work very hard.

Dad was a gardener

and it got pretty bad in the winter

when there wasn't any grass to cut.

Have you heard of Muddy Waters?

The first guitarist

I was aware of was Muddy Waters.

I heard one of his old records when I was

a little boy and it scared me to death,

because I heard all of those sounds.

Wow! What is all that about?

It was great!

One of the funkiest I've heard.

I dug Howlin' Wolf

and Elmore James, Jimmy Reed,

but I was into other stuff.

I used to like Buddy Holly

and Ritchie Valens, Eddie Cochran.

But you get your inspiration

from everything.

Color just doesn't make any difference.

Look at Elvis.

He could sing the blues and he was white.

I always say, let the best man win.

Whether you're black, white or purple.

I was about 14 or 15

when I started playing guitar.

I learned all the riffs I could.

I never had any lessons.

I learned guitar from records and the radio.

I was trying to play like

Muddy Waters and Chuck Berry.

Trying to learn everything and anything.

I played in my back yard at home

and the kids used to gather round

and said it was cool.

When I was 17, I formed this group

with some other guys

but they drowned me out.

I didn't know why at first

but after about three months, I realized:

I had to get an electric guitar.

My first electric was a Danelectro

which my dad bought for me.

Must have busted him for a long time.

I got the guitar together

because it was all I had.

No city I've ever seen

is as pretty as Seattle.

But I couldn't live there.

You get restless and, before you know it,

you're too old

and you haven't seen any of the world.

There's more for you

in today's "Action: Army".

I bet you didn't wear

this in the paratroops.

Not necessarily.

You were a para... What is it?

A paratrooper or a parachutist? Or "shoutist"?

It doesn't make a difference.

I was 18. I figured I'd have to go

into the army sooner or later

so I walked into the first recruiting office

I saw and volunteered.

I wanted to get everything over with

before I tried to get into

music as a career,

so they wouldn't call me up in the middle of

something that might be happening.

I had no musical training

so I couldn't sign up as a musician.

I figured I might as well go all the way,

so I joined the Airborne.

This is the Airborne.

Tough. Rugged. Big.

This is the outfit that one enemy called

"those devils in baggy pants

This is the outfit where brawn

has to match brains,

where every man has to be

in top-notch condition,

mentally, physically.

If you're that man,

this is your outfit.

I had to buy two pairs of jump boots

and four sets of tailored fatigues,

plus 20 Screaming Eagle badges.

You know what that represents?

The 101st Airborne Division,

Fort Campbell, Kentucky.

Yes, indeed.

"Dear Dad,

Well, here I am,

"exactly where I wanted to go:

in the 101st Airborne.

"How are you and Leon, and everybody?

Fine, I really hope.

"Well, it is pretty rough, but I can't

complain and I don't regret it so far.

"We jumped out of the 34-foot tower

on the third day we were here.

"It was almost fun.

"We were the first nine

out of 150 in our group.

"There were these three guys that quit

when they got to the top of the tower.

"But I have in my mind

that whatever happens, I am not quitting.

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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