WCSX Classic Cuts
The Jimi Hendrix Experience: “Are You Experienced?”
The Hook: Backwards schmackwards, Jimi didn’t care.
Album: Are You Experienced
Writer: Jimi Hendrix
Stats: The closing cut on the album of the same title, it wasn’t released as a single. The album peaked at number-five on Billboard‘s album chart, where it stayed for two years.
The Background: Engineer Eddie Kramer, who helped capture on tape much of Jimi’s experimental guitar working alone in a room with him, tells us that Hendrix had an uncanny ability to know where he was in the song at all times, “no matter whether the tape was running forwards or backwards.” Kramer says Hendrix “knew exactly where he was, what he was going to play and that when the tape was turned around, it made perfect sense.”
Jimi Hendrix Experience engineer Eddie Kramer on Jimi’s backward guitar soloing on the song “Are You Experienced?” OC:…perfect sense. :22
“’Are You Experienced?’ is one particular one where there’s a wonderful backwards solo. One of the things about recording Jimi was his amazing ability to understand exactly where he was at all times on the tape, no matter whether it was being played backwards or forwards. When the tape was being played backwards, he knew exactly where he was, what he was going to play and that when the tape was turned around, it made perfect sense.”