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Thread: 1968-04-29 Record Plant, New York City, New York USA

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    1968-04-29 Record Plant, New York City, New York USA

    Monday, April 29th, 1968

    Gypsy Eyes
    Tax Free
    Little Miss Strange

    Jimi Hendrix (not present for the mixing of Little Miss Strange)
    Mitch Mitchell (not present for the mixing of Little Miss Strange)
    Noel Redding (not present for Gypsy Eyes, but present for Tax Free)
    Eddie Kramer
    Chas Chandler


    Jimi and Mitch worked through 41 takes of Gypsy Eyes without the presence of Noel, but still couldn't produce a basic track that Jimi wanted. For Tax Free, Jimi and Mitch were joined by Noel and they performed 3 takes (take 3 becoming the new master contrary to the January master.) At a later time on this day, Noel came back and prepared more mixes for Little Miss Strange, finally getting the master for Electric Ladyland.

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    Re: 1968-04-29 Record Plant, New York City, New York USA

    Monday 29 April 1968, Record Plant, New York City. [see 24 April, possibly confused dates]
    17:15 – 19:30: 2 & 1/4 hours
    Jimi - guitar, Mitch Mitchell - drums
    Producer: Chas Chandler
    Engineer: Eddie Kramer

    Gypsy Eyes (41 takes, no master finished) - unreleased
    Jimi: “Have you ever done this many takes before?”
    Mitch: “Ha-ha-ha. One. Two. Three...”

    Tax Free (3 takes) - unreleased

    Eddie: “Jimi at this point feels, ‘Wow! I’m in New York [Eddie should have added, ‘again’ Ed.]. This is my real spiritual home [not sure about ‘spiritual’, but Jimi already apparently felt it was ‘home’ since he moved there in 1963 and spent most of his time there from then, and when he could, until his death Ed.]. And the Record Plant’s a cool studio, brand new facility, sounds cool, Eddie’s comin’ over. An’ I just wanna just do as many takes as I can. I wanna create something different here.” An’ you can just about sense there’s a little bit of tension building up here. ‘Cause Jimi wants to do this, he wants to play ‘Gypsy Eyes’ like this, [plays a short take]. It stops, it breaks down. Here we go again - and it’s only Mitch and Jimi [another take starts]. You know, we can hear, this is the beginning of a, potentially a good take, but Jimi did this for 30-40 takes, and it would drive Chas up the bloody wall.”

    “Jimi’s initial rhythm guitar part was recorded using a Fender Bassman top. We were looking for a specific sound and he got a great tone out of that amplifier.
    I remember trying to get as big a bass drum sound as possible

    Chas: “And songs was starting to being ceated actually in the studio and that’s, that’s hard work. It really is.”

    “I was sitting there listening to him playing the same song over and over again, thinking to myself. ‘What’s going on?’ Jimi head wanted this to be a double album and I distinctly recall being glad that I had done so much at Olympic [two songs, only. Ed.], because at this pace, the album would never be finished.”

    Noel: “Hendrix was into the thing then of doing, like, 38 39 takes.”

    “He’d lose his train of thought, skip to something else, fail to convey what he was up to...I told him he was being silly to try to do to much at once – writer, producer, singer, guitarist, arranger – but he took no notice. Things had to be done Jimi’s way or no way and Jimi’s way was getting more and more unproductive.”

    Eddie: “It’s an interesting dynamic now that’s going on between Chas and Jimi. Jimi says, ‘Well. You know, I-I-I I wanna create something a little different. You know, we need to stretch out in the studio.’ And Chas is saying, ‘Look at the time, mate.’ Nah, that is not gonna happen.”

    Mitch: “Things did get chaotic though and Chas got pissed off with the way things were going, partly with Jimi's attitude, partly with Mike Jeffery — he just didn't need the aggravation.
    Jimi wanted more freedom in the studio and more control, which was fine, but someone should have had more overall control. As much as there were good things that came out of the 'Electric Ladyland' sessions there was far too much wasted time and energy. It wasn't that I didn't enjoy all the partying; I did, but it was no way to work..”

    Noel: “Going on the road for three or four days, coming back into New York, go into the studio for two or three days [how often did that happen & for how many hours a day & why were they there? Ed.] which isn’t very sensible [Exactly, that’s why Jimi took a load of time off playing gigs to produce Axis and four months between his 1st and 2nd US tours for ELL! Ed.]

    Gerry: “Many of the sessions were just an expensive way to have fun.” [Especially the later sessions at TTG!]

    Eddie: “The hangers-on became a problem. They became a problem for Chas, and certainly for me. Sessions would be tough, because Jimi couldn’t say no to his buddies. He’d have invited the street sweeper and the cleaning lady and the record company president with him.”

    Mitch: “The security at the Record Plant wasn't terribly good and Hendrix would turn up with endless streams of people, so to get any kind of work done was really difficult. Looking back it was amazing that the album was finished. In the end the bulk of it got it got done in about a month, although at the time it seemed to take forever.”

    Trixie: “Chas [she could add: Mitch, Noel & Eddie] didn’t like the hangers on, but they were Jimi’s hangers on [friends?], and so it was Jimi’s decision to have them out [at the studio]…”

    JMcD: “Oh, Chris and Gary loved Jimi [laughs]. At the end of the day it was like, ‘Just keep stacking those tapes up, fellas. Let him be in there as long as he wants to.’ Because they’d be able to say, ‘Hey, we got the top guy at our facility.’ And the bills always got paid. It wasn’t like they had to chase someone to get paid. Jimi paid his bills.
    It never went through the record company. It drove his management and his accountant crazy, but the bills went to his management company, and they paid for all those sessions.”
    [McD doesn’t say where he got this info from, so it’s debateable that Warners didn’t contribute. Jimi didn’t have a ‘mangement company’ he just had two managers, unless he’s referring to Yameta? Why would his accountant care? If true it looks like the two months of heavy touring he did just prior to producing ELL went largely towards paying for the ELL sessions, as all earnings from record sales were being held in escrow]

    Larry Coryell: “I watched Hendrix record the album Electric Ladyland; I went to a few of the sessions. I tell you, he was a hell of a man in the studio – and in spite of everything going on around him. I mean, he had to put up with the groupies, all the kids from The Village, sitting around the studio. He had a Christ like appeal; he was more than just a guitar player, he was a personality. He had a kind of charisma that I imagine Charlie Parker had...All of us were attracted to him like a magnet whenever he came to New York.”

    Kathy: “Chas would tell Jimi to get into the studio to record and Jimi would just shrug and say, ‘Yeah,when I feel like it’.”

    “Sometimes he would disappear for days on end and then he would invite different people to be his manager and producer [eg Dave Mason. Ed.] or take part on his albums, none of whom his actual management wanted. He would make glowing promises he couldn’t keep, to anyone who happened to be around.”

    Gerry: “Considering it’s still selling twenty five years later, I think everybody got their money’s worth, and all those people [ie Reprise (Mo), Chas, Noel, Mitch, Eddie. Ed.] who got frustrated by the length of time [etc.], should sit and say: “I was wrong.” [Hear! Hear! Ed.]

    Engineer: Gary Kellgren

    Noel only:

    Little Miss Strange (final mix) (2, 3, 4)
    Last edited by stplsd; 10-31-16 at 10:39 AM.

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