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Miami Pop Festival
Ref.: Experience Hendrix / Sony Legacy 888837699228
Date: 2013
Musicians: The Jimi Hendrix Experience
(1) Live
[76] mp3


01. (introduction)
02. Hey Joe
03. Foxy Lady
Foxey Lady
Foxey Lady
04. Tax Free
05. Fire
06. Hear My Train A Comin'
07. I Don't Live Today
08. Red House
09. Purple Haze
10. Fire
(afternoon show)
(afternoon show)
11. Foxy Lady
Foxey Lady (afternoon show)
Foxey Lady (afternoon show)


The Jimi Hendrix Experience - Miami Pop Festival

1. Introduction [01:52]
2. Hey Joe [06:20]
3. Foxey Lady [04:31]
4. Tax Free [08:19]
5. Fire [02:45]
6. Hear My Train a Comin' [07:40]
7. I Don't Live Today [04:48]
8. Red House [12:05]
9. Purple Haze [04:18]
10. Fire (afternoon show) [03:05]
11. Foxey Lady (afternoon show)[04:54]

Playing Time: 01:00:42

In the spring of 1968, the Miami Pop Festival became the first major multi-day rock festival to be held on the East Coast in the wake of 1967's groundbreaking Monterey Pop Festival. The Jimi Hendrix Experience had been the breakthrough act that wowed audiences at Monterey, so promoter Michael Lang (who would help put together the Woodstock Music and Art Fair a year later) persuaded Hendrix to headline the Miami event.
Hendrix, who was recording Electric Ladyland at the time, brought along recording engineer Eddie Kramer to tape his gig in Miami, and while Hendrix’s set has circulated for years as a bootleg, Miami Pop Festival finally gives this performance an authorized release, with Kramer mixing the 45-year-old tapes. This recording has long been celebrated by Hendrix enthusiasts over the years, and it’s not hard to see why; thanks to Kramer, the recording is clean and full of detail (right down to the rattle of the springs in Hendrix’s whammy bar), and the Experience sound quite good, with Hendrix and drummer Mitch Mitchell interacting with their usual intuitive skill, while Noel Redding serviceably holds down the bottom end on bass. However, while this is a dynamic and well-preserved performance from Hendrix and the Experience (and you can’t have too many of those), it isn’t an especially exciting one. There’s plenty of nuance but noticeably less fire in Hendrix’s guitar work, and he seems most comfortable stretching out on slow blues numbers, while sounding just a bit too relaxed on Are You Experienced? material like “Foxey Lady,” “Purple Haze,” and “Fire” (though he brings a welcome emotional intensity to “I Don’t Live Today”); the group curiously ignores songs from the more recent Axis: Bold as Love. It’s worth noting that Hendrix played two sets on the first day of the May 1968 Miamifest; this release features the evening set in full, while just two tunes from the afternoon show are included as a bonus, and “Fire” and “Foxey Lady” sound tougher and more committed in their first run through of the day than their second. Perhaps Kramer and the Hendrix estate should scour the vaults to find the rest of the afternoon set; as it is, Miami Pop Festival is a welcome addition to the authorized Hendrix catalog, but it doesn’t cast much new light on his music or his performance style, making for a good but not a great live release.
Miami Pop Festival (Experience Hendrix / Sony Legacy 888837699228 / EU / 2013) 1CD
Miami Pop Festival (Experience Hendrix / Sony Legacy 888837699228 / USA / 2013) 1CD


Additional information for Saturday, 18 May 1968 The Experience Miami Pop Festival (Underground Pop Festival), Gulf Stream Race Track, Hallandale
Update Experience Hendrix LLC has apparently acquired good quality video and 4 track audio from this show. Could be available to buy late 2004/ early 2005.
1. Foxy Lady
2. Fire
3. Hear My Train A Comin'
4. Purple Haze
1-4. Soundboard, 21.02, E
2-3. Soundboard, 10.00, VG+

Release - November 2013 (Sony)

Hey Joe, Foxy Lady, Tax Free, Fire*, Hear My Train A Comin'*, I Don't Live Today, Red House, Purple Haze
Bonus tracks (afternoon show): Foxy Lady , Fire

* Previously released on "Calling Long Distance" - a very rare CD exclusive to subscribers to Univibes magazine (so "previously unreleased" for general consumption).

1968 was the year when the original Jimi Hendrix Experience were at their peak. The following year came disillusionment as Jimi felt that the band were repeating themselves. Despite a series of great 1969 concerts, the band broke up in June of that year.
So at the Miami Pop Festival, we find them full of passion and riding on a crest of a wave, shortly before their brief tour of Italy. This recording and "Winterland" are in fact the only official mainstream releases of performances from this period (some 1968 good quality soundboard recordings have appeared on the mail-order only Dagger Records). Like at the Winterland, Miami is a professional multi-track recording made by Eddie Kramer (at the demand of Jimi).
We already had some excellent songs from this gig on the official "Calling Long Distance" (Univibes 1992) and on various bootlegs ("1968 A.D." for example) and they gave us an indication that the recordings caught the band on a good day. They in fact played an afternoon and an evening show (unusual at pop festivals) and this album mixes the two performances together to create a neat flow, with the repeated songs tagged on as "bonuses".
It opens just like a bootleg, with the MC announcement and general tune-ups before they go into a superb "Hey Joe" complete with a grand two minute fanfare introduction. Then we hear a great series of crowd pleasing hits, all brilliantly executed and we are also treated to some cool jamming on "Hear My Train A Comin" (only the second live performance of the song), "Red House" and "Tax Free" for good measure. Great playing from Jimi and the guys, especially Mitch (who recounted in his autobiography that he and Jimi were as high as kites on acid at the festival).
So after the very long wait, this is a very rewarding release with great sound and an essential addition to the collection for any Hendrix fan.
Here are the actual set-lists from the two shows (which shows that only a version of "Purple Haze" is missing).

Afternoon show: Tax Free, Foxy Lady, Fire, Hear My Train A Comin', Purple Haze
Evening show: Hey Joe, Fire, I Don't Live Today, Foxy Lady, Red House, Purple Haze

We had hoped that his release would have been backed up by a stand-alone DVD release but alas only fragments of the performances seem to have survived (no CBS news team footage has been found) and the sequences are included as bonuses (along with other rare film from Randall Island and Fehmarn in 1970!) with a new documentary DVD titled "Hear My Train A Comin" which is released the same month (it has already been seen in a shortened form on TV in some countries).

> Quick: listen to the full album here!!!!

+ 3 Complete tracks on my "Latest News" page.

A very nicely balanced cover shot of Jimi on stage during the afternoon show. - 8/10

Fire/Foxy Lady (Sony) - vinyl single. November 29, 2013

Heads up collectors, this is the vinyl single will be released at the same time. What a fabulous photo of the man in action!
Jimi Hendrix