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Becoming Jimi Hendrix/CLASSIC ROCK magazine (UK)
Date of Review: 
Published Work: 
Charles Shaar Murray
CLASSIC ROCK magazine (UK)

This unique and fascinating book ends pretty much where most rock fans' awareness of Jimi Hendrix begins: on his arrival in the UK in the autumn of 1966 with little more than a battered Stratocaster, a few scribbled lyrics, a change of clothes and a jar of acne cream to his name.

BECOMING JIMI HENDRIX is the most thorough account yet seen of the years during which a shy, spacey, chronically untogether young guitarist learned his craft. We follow him as he grew in confidence, defined his vision and developed his style while living hand-to-mouth and scuffling for jobs on the R&B circuit for the first half of the 1960s, playing alongside the likes of The Isley Brothers, Little Richard, Don Covay, King Curtis and John Hammond Jr.

It seemed in the London of 1966 that Hendrix had arrived fully formed and in full control of his massive talent. Roby and Schreiber's account fleshes in the musical backstory of Hendrix's long and arduous journey from tyro to maestro. It tells us more, and more deeply, than any previous volume about exactly what went into his Becoming Jimi Hendrix.