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Hendrix In The West Import

4.1 out of 5 stars 119 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Import, September 13, 2011
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Editorial Reviews

Consisting of live material recorded at venues ranging from the Berkeley Community Theatre and the San Diego Sports Arena to the Isle of Wight Festival, Hendrix In The West captures the guitarist exploring new directions in sound during 1969-70. Robert Christgau, the Dean of American Rock Critics, called Hendrix's versions of "Red House" and, "Johnny B. Goode" on this album "definitive." Out of print in the US since 1974 and for more than two decades internationally, Hendrix In TheWest, has remained one of the most requested albums by fans to return to the commercial marketplace.

Hendrix In The West will be reissued as an expanded single disc featuring five additional, previously unavailable performances. The album's iconic cover features a classic Jim Marshall photograph of the guitarist and the twenty-four page book is filled with rare and previously unseen images captured by Marshall s distinctive lens.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 13, 2011)
  • Original Release Date: September 13, 2011
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Sony Legacy
  • Run Time: 65 minutes
  • ASIN: B0055IU3WW
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (119 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #22,512 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Amazon's price of $9.00 is very low considering the quality of the performances on this disk, newly mastered and finally released today on CD for the first time in the States. Originally released in 1972, In The West was the first Hendrix live album to showcase his work with both versions of the Experience as opposed to the Band of Gypsys. Back then, Eddie Kramer was given the daunting task of quickly recreating a Hendrix concert from a great variety of source material. The result was uneven, but some of the performances remain among the greatest examples of his amazing live work 40 years later ( Red House and Johnny B. Goode). With a single CD running nearly twice as long as a single LP, Kramer finally has achieved his goal with this remake, by filling the extra space with more great material, including Hendrix's best version of I Don't Live Today and a steller Spanish Castle Magic.

Other than the nice packaging job, great sound and low price there are two other notable changes from the original package. First is the exclusion of two first-rate performances culled from the 69-02-24 Albert Hall-London show. These songs, Little Wing and Voodoo Child: Slight Return, are probably the best versions ever recorded. They were incorrectly listed on the album cover as being from San Diego 69-5-31. These were replaced on the new release by the lesser quality but still excellent Winterland and San Diego versions. This makes perfect sense when you consider that the superior Albert Hall show has been in the works at Experience Hendrix for some time, and I expect due to the fact that it may ultimately be released in combination with a film, (like what was done with the 70-08-30 Isle Of Wight concert) I expect we will have to wait at least another year for that one.
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Format: Audio CD
Yes, this is a fine collection of live tracks, with a TOWERING version of "Red House", a stunning "Spanish Castle Magic" (added for this release), and the best "Johnny B Goode" Jimi ever played (from the Berkeley Community Theatre).

As a REISSUE, however, I marvel at the weird logic in play here, centering around why the powers that be substituted an INFERIOR version of Little Wing? If you're going to reissue "Hendrix in the West," AT LEAST include the tracks on the original album!!!

It doesn't matter that the original album's "Little Wing" came from the Royal Albert Hall (not exactly "the West" as we think of it). What matters is that THAT version is a) the best live rendition Jimi ever did (his most lyrical playing, which surpasses even the original studio cut), and b) THAT was the one on the original album. And that version is ONE of the reasons why the original "Hendrix in the West" is so special.

On behalf of people who value the long out of print original LP and CD (in sufficient numbers that it was obviously thought to be worth reissuing), or people who want to HEAR the original because they can't find or afford the originals, I'm stupefied when a substitution is made like this. (By the way, they also rearranged the track order. Note to reissuers: including the ORIGINAL tracks used, AND the order in which they were originally presented, actually matters. Each contributes towards shaping the listeners' experience with, and perception, of the work).

In the future, please: just create a new compilation using some other theme or concept. The Hendrix Estate is doing a swell job with that. And I'll buy it.

But DO NOT present an out of print title like this without, AT A MINIMUM, including ALL of the tracks that make the record worth reissuing in the first place. (P.S., bonus tracks are fine, you can always program around them if they upset the flow).
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.. but until such time, YIHAAAA! This guy could play. He wasn't just the best ever, he still is. It's like Trane or Miles. One might carp about this point or that, but you simply can not deny that such artists changed everything. The entire landscape. Hendrix's aura may have been romantically enhanced by dying young (and stupidly) but cast that aside and look at his work. Only Trane measures up in the way the man took a tradition, enhanced it in its own metre, and then took the entire trajectory elsewhere. It was in his finger work - the man had extraordinary hands, like Rachmaninoff - and it was in his intellectual commitiment and passionate devotion to his craft, to Music itself. A number of the tracks here I've had on Experience Hendrix Live releases, but they all sound better. There is more definition here, and as an assembly they give you a cross section of Hendrix's humour as well as his power. No doubt he must have been a charmer off stage. The genuine sincerity comes through in the music and that's not something you simply effect. A lot of what is on offer here is Jimi working in the lab - only it's live, with no safety net, no blowout wall. The results are astounding and inspiring. Coltrane's 4 disc Live in Japan, or his 2 stints at the Village Vanguard are the only comparisons that come to mind. If you are a fan of Jimi I'm preaching to the choir. If you're wondering what the fuss was all about - here you go. These efforts do underscore what a dirty rotten crime it was that he died at 27. But let's be honest, we should be grateful for what he offered all of us, and we can only stand in awe of where he might have gone with us, just like Coltrane.
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