Hear My Train A Comin' [Blu-ray]
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This special Blu-Ray presentation of Jimi Hendrix: Hear My Train A Comin' presents the definitive documentary about the extraordinary life of the greatest guitarist of all time, now in high definition video.
As seen on American Masters (PBS), this critically acclaimed film, directed by Bob Smeaton (The Beatles Anthology; Festival Express), unveils previously unseen performance footage and home movies while sourcing an extensive archive of photographs, drawings, family letters and more to provide new insight into the musician's personality and genius with interviews with Hendrix himself, commentary from well-known friends and musicians including Paul McCartney, Noel Redding, Mitch Mitchell, Billy Cox, Eddie Kramer, Steve Winwood, as well as revealing glimpses into Jimi from those closest to him. The film details the meteoric rise of the Experience, the creation of his groundbreaking music, the building of Electric Lady Studios, his state of the art recording facility in Greenwich Village and concludes with poignant footage from his final performance in Germany in September 1970, just 12 days before his death at age 27.
A pioneering electric guitarist, Hendrix had only four years of mainstream exposure and recognition, but his influential music and riveting stage presence left an enduring legacy.
BONUS FEATURES INCLUDE 13 PREVIOUSLY UNSEEN PERFORMANCES ONLY AVAILABLE ON THIS DVD :
MIAMI POP FESTIVAL: 5.1 Stereo
Never before released color film footage of the group's legendary May 18, 1968 festival performance, including "Foxey Lady," "Tax Free," and "Fire" together with interviews with festival promoter Michael Lang and engineer Eddie Kramer.
NEW YORK POP FESTIVAL: 5.1 Stereo
Never before released color film footage of the group's July 17, 1970 festival performance, including "Message To Love," "Lover Man," "All Along The Watchtower," "Purple Haze," and "Voodoo Child (Slight Return)."
LOVE & PEACE FESTIVAL: Official 'Bootleg'
Newly discovered archival film footage of the final performance by the Jimi Hendrix Experience on September 6, 1970 at the Isle Of Fehmarn, Germany. Includes "Killing Floor," "Spanish Castle Magic," "All Along The Watchtower" and "Foxey Lady" and an amateur soundtrack recording recorded by the festival promoters using stage microphones.
TOP OF THE POPS:
View the March 30, 1967 appearance featuring the group performing "Purple Haze"
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Top Customer Reviews
First off, the showing I went to happened to also be attended by the director Bob Smeaton! Kind of cool! We got to ask him questions about the doc after it was over. Nice guy and very frank about the challenges of editing a doc like this one with so many voices and pieces of footage to choose from and showcase.
Overall, this is a fine job. Keep in mind that for us "Jimi heads" we've seen the vast majority of the footage that's out there in one form or another. The two or three biggest "new Jimi visuals" included in the doc are Miami (obviously) and we get nearly a complete performance of Foxy Lady. We also get snippets of Tax Free and plenty of footage of the Miami crowd. But given this is a documentary, you're going to have to wait for the "Extras" in order to really enjoy all of the new footage, including Isle of Fehrman, which is briefly shown in the doc when Jimi performs Spanish Castle Magic (with the audience tape the family released as the audio for the cut). We also get, for what was for me anyways, some previously unseen footage of Jimi performing in a full blue velvet get-up. I forget which concert this was taken from.
The majority of the people interviewed in the doc have since passed on. Noel, Mitch, Chas, Paul Caruso, Buddy Miles, and a few more. Surprise, Faye Pridgeon is still around, so is Billy Cox (thank goodness), Linda Keith, but we still don't get any updated interview with Eric Barrett, unfortunately. Bob Smeaton mentioned that Eric didn't like how he was quoted in the original Jimi Hendrix biopic back in '73 and hence has never allowed himself to be interviewed on camera about Jimi since. Also, Leon chose not to be interviewed for this doc.
Linda Keith summed up Jimi's two passions in his life: music and women! Won't debate it.
I will mention, however, that towards the conclusion of the doc there is some beautiful guitar playing. And guess what it is? It's from One Rainy Wish and I guess Eddie Kramer or whomever it was made available Jimi's guitar from this gorgeous composition without the drums or any other instruments. When you hear it, it's like heaven! Just exquisite. I'd love to hear One Rainy Wish in its entirety without drums or bass. Just Jimi's soulful strumming. Maybe one day the family will release some additional outtakes of Axis and include Jimi's guitar parts from this tune without the added bass and drums.
The doc runs close to two hours. The rest of the footage we've seen before. Bob relies heavily on the Dick Cavett interview. A good dose of Berkeley, Monterey, but barely any Newport! Some of the most gorgeous, exquisite blues playing EVER caught of Jimi performing live and Bob doesn't use ANY OF IT! (there's a second or two from the stage but it doesn't count in my book) Sacrilegious! Maybe the family is still waiting to release this stuff on something else. Or maybe it's on the Extras. I don't know. But it's footage that captures what for me is what makes Jimi the greatest R&B electric guitarist of all time. Whenever someone asks me, I just say, go watch Newport!
It would have been super if Bob had bothered to get permission to include more footage from Maui. We get In From The Storm at the conclusion of the doc but man, we know there's much more, including Dolly Dagger and the instrumental that follows it. This is footage crying to be seen by the public at large, in particular, to show the more intricate and softer side of Jimi's playing.
Also, the doc fibs when it's mentioned why Jimi got out of the Army. We know now that it wasn't a "broken ankle" that got Jimi his discharge. But that's minor. Also, there's zero mention of LSD, pot, drugs, etc....Bob told us that because there was no recorded interviews with Jimi about his taking any drugs he decided not to include any footage with other people who knew Jimi that mentioned his drug use. Fair enough. But I think LSD is an important drug (PERIOD) and LSD was an influence on Jimi when it came to some of his greatest compositions, including 1983. I seem to recall that there is a recorded interview with Jimi where he does discuss LSD (I could be mistaken).
All in all, this is a very good production and we have to keep in mind that there are always new Jimi fans to initiate and many should find this doc a real delight.
I can't WAIT to see the extras!!! This is what all Jimi heads are salivating the most about. More Miami, more Isle of Fehrman, more New York '70, yeah!
The first produced in the early 1970s was made shortly after Jimi's passing. It had interviews with Eric Clapton, Pete Townshend and other people close to Jimi. It is still a great document of the life of Jimi Hendrix and is also available on DVD.
The last decade has seen more documentaries of Jimi produced including one that was issued with the West Coast Seattle Boy Box Set.
This new documentary includes some footage from all the previous films plus some new concert footage such as Miami Pop and some snippets that fans have identified as the concert Jimi played at Madison Square Garden from 1969 and some snippets of Jimi's concert at the Hollywood Bowl.
The film itself has a lot of interview footage of an ageing Fayne Pridgeon and the woman who discovered Jimi Linda Keith.
I feel this is a very well produced story about Jimi but it does not include several important people who were heavily involved in Jimi's life such as Kathy Ethingham and even his brother Leon who is never mentioned.
Chas Chandler is mentioned but does not get the recognition he deserved as the major producer for Jimi's 3 studio albums.
Although there are some flaws this is an entertaining film and well worth getting.
The extras are what most Hendrix fans want this DVD for. The 4 songs from Miami 1968 have been highly anticipated and are well worth the wait. The NewYork Pop 1970 footage is poor visually but a great performance.
Jimi's final concert from Germany is a bit of a let down despite being very historic and the final testament of Jimi's legacy on film. The picture is poor as is the sound and I find it not easy to watch due to the poor sound. However this is the last chance we have of seeing Jimi Live therefore it is essential to view at least once.
Overall this is a good document of Jimi Hendrix that hopefully will enable the bonus Miami footage issued in full in the near future.
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