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Band of Gypsys Live, Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered

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Audio CD, Live, Original recording reissued, January 13, 1998
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Jimi's short-lived post Experience band with Billy Cox and Buddy Miles, captured live at the Fillmore East. It may have been recorded to fulfill a contractual obligation to Capitol Records, but it proved to be one of his most powerful LPs with the menacing Machine Gun; Who Knows; Message of Love and more.

Tired of the showboating image that his early live performances had saddled him with--and that his black audience viewed as demeaning and degrading to his musical talent--Hendrix dissolved his Experience in 1969 in search of a more terra-firma-grounded, blues-oriented persona. On New Year's Eve, Hendrix, his old Army buddy bassist Billy Cox, and ex-Electric Flag drummer Buddy Miles performed a loose, jam-filled set at New York's Fillmore East (completists will want the panoramic though uneven Live at the Fillmore East). Released a few months after his New Year's Eve 1970 concert, Band of Gypsys underscored Hendrix's desired return to basics--even if his basic was at a level most guitarists could never attain in a lifetime of playing. --Billy Altman

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
  1. Who Knows (Live) (1997 Digital Remaster) 9:38$1.29  Buy MP3 
  2. Machine Gun (Live) (1997 Digital Remaster)12:40Album Only
  3. Changes (Live) (1997 Digital Remaster) 5:14$1.29  Buy MP3 
  4. Power To Love (Live) (1997 Digital Remaster) 6:58$1.29  Buy MP3 
  5. Message To Love (Live) (1997 Digital Remaster) 5:25$1.29  Buy MP3 
  6. We Gotta Live Together (Live) (1997 Digital Remaster) 5:49$1.29  Buy MP3 

Product Details

  • Audio CD (January 13, 1998)
  • Original Release Date: 1970
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Live, Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered
  • Label: Capitol / Experience Hendrix
  • ASIN: B000002UVX
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (376 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,941 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

100 of 102 people found the following review helpful By Frank Grimes on March 7, 2001
Format: Audio CD
Every rock fan knows that Jimi Hendrix's three studio recordings are absolutely essential. But I would argue that Band of Gypsys is just as important to own. This is where you get to hear Jimi cut loose. If you have any doubt of Hendrix's guitar genius, this album will quickly dispell that for you.
First of all, the Experience do not appear in this album. Instead, Buddy Miles and Billy Cox fill in for drums and bass respectively. The two provide Jimi with a much looser, funkier rhythm section than the Experience. As for Jimi, there isn't much to say... All you need to know is that Band of Gypsys contains some of the best guitar work of his career...if not THE best of his career. "Who Knows", and "Power to Love" are two standout tracks. But the masterpiece of the album is the 12 minute anti-war jam "Machine Gun". It's a song that has to be heard to believed. I still remember the first time I heard it....I was floored. The entire album is filled with enough passion and intensity to rival that of John Coltrane's Live at the Village Vanguard or Live at Birdland.
It is true that there have been hundreds of fantastic guitarists since the death of Jimi Hendrix. Many of them have much more speed and dexterity than Jimi. Still others are university trained and extremely knowledgeable in music theory. But I have yet to hear a guitarist play something as passionate and emotional as "Machine Gun". Band of Gypsys is well worth your money for that song alone.
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172 of 186 people found the following review helpful By old hombre on June 15, 2000
Format: Audio CD
Imagine hearing this album for the first time on the ear-plug "mono" headphones of a battery operated Panasonic mini reel-to-reel tape recorder. Now imagine that that annoying background noise spoiling the mood is from exploding Viet Cong 122mm rockets while you're hunkered down, cold, hungry, and wet from that incessant goddamn monsoon rain. But you're smiling at every riff 'cause you know Jimi knows what you're thinking. Maybe you're surrounded by living hell, but somehow...THIS MAKES YOU SANE! It's been 30 years since I first "experienced" Band of Gypsies. Nothing else will ever come close to having the same meaning to this old 'Nam vet.
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92 of 104 people found the following review helpful By P. Nicholas Keppler on November 15, 2001
Format: Audio CD
It was almost symbolic that Band of Gypsys was recorded on New Years Eve 1969/70. Jimi Hendrix had recently discarded his power trio, the Jimi Hendrix Experience, and formed the Band of Gypsys with bass-player, Billy Cox and drummer, Buddy Miles. Whereas the Experience exemplified the grinding, baroque, psychedelic rock that largely defined the sixties, the Band of Gypsys exemplified the melodic, groove-heavy, socially and spiritually conscious funk that would largely define the seventies. This live album was the first Hendrix fans heard of the guitarist's new project. Most would not be disappointed. Hendrix's new style nicely sustains the absolutely wicked, inventive guitar-playing from which his reputation was born. His fluid, wavy, hypnotizing jamming scampers through the six tracks, becoming slightly overdone on the nine-minute "Who Knows" and the thirteen-minute "Machine Gun." Still, small sections of unstructured noodling can not stop "Who Knows" from excellently setting the album's funky tone or "Machine Gun" from being one of the most intense, dramatic and stunning songs inspired by Vietnam (Only Hendrix had the ingenuity and skill to make his instrument screech like a battlefield). The two other Hendrix-penned tracks, the groove-rocker, "Power to Love" and the fervent "Message to Love" are two of his most spirit-inspiring works and nicely showcase the Gyspsys' rapid-fire arrangements. Buddy Miles does more than keep the band steady with his fast-paced trouncing, he also contributes two excellent foot-stompers, "Changes" and "We Gotta Live Together." Miles himself would go on to become a star of the upcoming funk/soul movement. Hendrix, tragically, would not live to see it. The artist would die of asphyxiation shortly after Band of Gypsys was released. Sadly, for Hendrix, this funkrock showstopper was not a sign of things to come, but a passing of the torch.
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27 of 28 people found the following review helpful By J P Ryan on August 21, 2006
Format: Audio CD
That - the title of this review - is what it said on the spine and green Capitol label of the very first copy (and first Henrix album) I ever bought, which was originally released in April 1970 - eighteen long months after the Jimi Hendrix Experience's third and final studio album, "Electric Ladyland." The group was already fracturing by then, though the soldiered on in the studio and on tour through a final US date June 30, 1969, after which a frustrated Noel Redding split for England and Fat Mattress (Reprise collected eight of the group's best known tracks, added four unreleased in the US, and a "giant poster" for "Smash Hits" that July). Many factors and motivations - financial, political, cultural, personal, musical - likely led to the short lived Band Of Gypsys. Jimi had already produced a Buddy Miles solo album and worked with the drummer (noteably on part of "Ladyland"). Billy Cox was an old Army buddy, fine bassist, with no ambitions to write songs - he patiently worked with Hendrix for over a year during 1969 - 70 as the guitarist developed new songs and opened his dream studio, almost until the end (Cox split after being dosed with PCP at one of Hendrix's final Euro dates). And, perhaps symbolically if not intentionally, BOG was an all black band.
1970 was a year in which live albums were in vogue, and recording technology had progressed sufficiently since the mid-60s (recall the Brit Invasion hysteria that dominates "Live Kinks" or the Stones' "Got Live") to make a good live album a desired addition to any important artist's body of work.
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