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Room Full of Mirrors: A Biography of Jimi Hendrix Paperback – August 9, 2006
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"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
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Now in paperback, the national bestselling biography of American musical icon Jimi Hendrix
It has been more than thirty-five years since Jimi Hendrix died, but his music and spirit are still very much alive for his fans everywhere. Charles R. Cross vividly recounts the life of Hendrix, from his difficult childhood and adolescence in Seattle through his incredible rise to celebrity in London's swinging sixties. It is the story of an outrageous life -- with legendary tales of sex, drugs, and excess -- while it also reveals a man who struggled to accept his role as idol and who privately craved the kind of normal family life he never had. Using never-before-seen documents and private letters, and based on hundreds of interviews with those who knew Hendrix -- many of whom had never before agreed to be interviewed -- Room Full of Mirrors unlocks the vast mystery of one of music's most enduring legends.
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My very special friend, Glenn, obtained two tickets to see Jimi at Madison Square Garden, and invited me along. The music was incredible. I still recall All Along the Watchtower, and much of what was on Electric Ladyland. The stage was in the center of the house and it slowly turned. To make things even wierder, tons of picture flashes continued to go off. I have often thought Jimi must have disliked having that stage turn and nothing being done about all the camera flashes, as though he was in the circus, and when the book got to that show, it confirmed my assumption.
On a second occasion, with my same friend, we went to see what was billed as the "Festival for Peace" at Madison Square Garden, but fortunately this time, the stage was at the end of the floor and stationary. Jimi played just a few songs, and I was utterly blown away with a smile ear to ear. Wish you were all there, as attempting to explain that experience is impossible to do with words. After just a few songs, Jimi let his guitar fall to the floor and walked off stage. I never understood what the problem was, since he sounded amazing. The book touches on that show as well and provides insight.
As I began reading this book, I was a bit turned off by all the detail behind Jimi's family, and very young years, but this detail proved essential in having a proper context to understand much that followed, choices Jimi made, and revealed Jimi the person, not the star.
This book is an excellent place to start, or finish, for that matter, for any one looking to read about Jimi. So many people that knew Jimi particularly well, have been extremely generous to share such intimate details. This book pulls you in, bringing the past into the present leaving you feeling as though you were there, during each step of the journey.
The details in this book are just incredible. The time Jimi spent in England, personal relationships, friends, fans, fellow muscisians sharing stories. Wow!
Jimi left us too early, but with a body of work that stands among the best ever recorded. To read this book is also to understand Jimi the person, full of sound, fury, and a huge heart with a tender soul.
Awesome job Mr. Cross. Thank you for writing this.
There are no boring sections in this book....quite the contrary as I found myself resentful of anything or anyone that got in the way of my reading time.I highly recommend this book to those like me who came of age in that wonderful time of the 60's and also to those younger who want to gain some insight into what makes a Rock n roll legend like Jimi Hendriks tick and whose life was snuffed out way too soon.