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'It's like a religion': listen to Jimi Hendrix describe his music in this 1969 CBC interview

Editorial Staff

The Jimi Hendrix Experience only existed from 1966-69, but the influence of Jimi Hendrix, bassist Noel Redding and drummer Mitch Mitchell on rock music is immeasurable.

On Jan. 7, 1969 — a year after the release of Electric Ladyland, the band's third and last album — the three members sat down with freelance reporter Hugh Curry in Hendrix's London apartment for an interview that aired on CBC's afternoon youth program Through the Eyes of Tomorrow.

"We call our music 'electric church music,'" Hendrix said, laughing, while leaning back comfortably on his couch. "Because it's like a religion to us."

He also went on to describe what different audiences are like for the Experience, particularly in Canada — and just a few months before he'd be arrested for drug possession in Toronto (charges for which he was later acquitted).

"They listen to us, which is a groovy thing, you know, when the audience is quiet while you're playing, that's really great. That means they're listening. That's like around Canada, it's listening. There's a few little piggies in the back row, you know, squealing here and there every once in a while, but I don't know. I don't think about those things? I think about the feeling that is there. It's like all the spirits collect for an hour and a half or so. That's the way it's supposed to be, it doesn't call for talking or yelling."

Watch the full interview via CBC Archives below.


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