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Thread: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

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    Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    I pulled out "More Electricity From Newport" this evening (haven't listened to it for years).
    It's a lousy concert but fascinating none the less. There is some great playing from Jimi in there but generally the band struggle to get it together, faced with equipment and crowd trouble.
    One part is very revealing about Jimi's state of mind at the time. After oh so gently going into "Getting My Heart Back Together", with his philosophical rap and "fuck off" replies to the hecklers, he sings: "...Tears been burning me. Burning all down my cheeks. Tears way down in my heart, burnin' me,..ever since I split from the village." Then later, while he plays the first bars of "Voodoo Child (Slight Return", "This is a black militant song and don't you ever forget it!".

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    This is a show I enjoy. Strange as it's not he best and as you say PJ the band struggle. Never been sure quite what appeals here but some of Jimi's playing is sublime.
    I did a rough job of this show years ago using the aud recording in parts of the composite, it turned up in collectors circles but wasn't the best due to material available. Anyone got a really low gen copy of this aud recording they could supply me with?
    Jellycat did some art if I remember too, really nice :-)
    Back to OP. Yes a bad day but next time you listen, block out everything but Jimi's playing.
    "That's the best news I ever heard" Bob Dylan

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    I think several parts are very revealing about Jimi's state of mind at the time.

    The beginning of Getting My Heart back Together is when most of the heckling occurs for a couple of minutes during which Jimi mostly continues playing while firing the odd insult/comment at that section of the audience interrupting.

    In the first verse he sings:
    "Waiting for that train
    To take me the Hell out o’ here
    Take me awa-ay
    From this lonesome to-own


    Then:
    "It’s too bad you don’t love me no more, people, yeah
    Too bad you all have to act like a clown."


    Then:
    Quote Originally Posted by purple jim View Post
    I"...Tears been burning me. Burning all down my cheeks. Tears way down in my heart, burnin' me,..ever since I split from the village
    Then: "Too bad you and me had to grow away from each other."


    Then he ends with the line 'Too bad you don't love me, no"

    Then he plays another blues on top of that, Red House, where he sings at the end:
    "Hey! if my baby don’t love me no more
    I think I’ll go back over the tracks..."
    Which is Jimi pointedly saying ‘If you white folk don’t like me, then I’m going back to “the ‘black’ section of town” (that doesn't mean his considering buying some property in Harlem - okay;-). He mentions this context more precisely in “It’s Too Bad”.

    Then he plays Foxy Lady which he introduces sarcastically, it would appear at some particular women/woman, thus:
    "Yeah, this is dedicated to all the teeny-weeny’s out there. The one, the one in the fourth
    row with the yellow pants on. Yeah, you, yeah. The one with the eighteen…
    [Shouting from the audience]
    Jimi : …eighteen inch, yeah, right, heh.

    In the second verse he sings: "You make me, wanna get up and puke.”. The last two verses he sings “I’m tired of wastin’ all my precious time” missing out the last line in both.

    Then he plays Like A Rolling Stone.” which he is last recorded as playing seven months ago, and there is no record of him playing it subsequently, he’s obviously aimed this song with it’s cutting lyrics at that section of the audience.

    Quote Originally Posted by purple jim View Post
    Then later, while he plays the first bars of "Voodoo Child (Slight Return", "This is a black militant song and don't you ever forget it!".


    Then he finishes with Purple Haze missing out four lines, plays some sharp dischords in the solo, and they leave the stage without saying farewell, or thank you.
    Frank Zappa: "Rock journalism is people who can't write interviewing people who can't talk for people who can't read."

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    Yes a gloomy atmosphere indeed. This was the penultimate (original) JHE show of course, with Denver just 10 days away.
    I am particularly struck by that reference to the Village, as if he is fondly remembering those carefree days of the Café Wha?, before fame hit him and all that came with it.

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    ^
    No doubt.
    Frank Zappa: "Rock journalism is people who can't write interviewing people who can't talk for people who can't read."

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    Yes, he must have missed the freedom of those days, without fans and management breathing down his neck all the time. Before the drug bust, before the Chalpin lawsuit, before Noel,...

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    Not sure how "care free" they were;-) I imagine they would be very much less stressful though.
    I hear... "'the spirit' from The Village"... could be 'I split' it's a bit distorted sound, similar in meaning anyway.
    Frank Zappa: "Rock journalism is people who can't write interviewing people who can't talk for people who can't read."

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    Quote Originally Posted by stplsd View Post
    Then he plays Like A Rolling Stone.” which he is last recorded as playing seven months ago, and there is no record of him playing it subsequently, he’s obviously aimed this song with it’s cutting lyrics at that section of the audience.
    Just before LARS he even quickly plays part of the intro to Little Wing....but the last recorded complete version of that song is from RAH. None after, either.
    Seems he considered playing it at Newport20 though, but not for long

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969



    A reminder of the set-list:

    1. Stone Free
    2. Are You Experienced
    3. Sunshine Of Your Love
    4. Fire
    5. Get My Heart Back Together
    6. Red House
    7. Foxy Lady
    8. Like A Rolling Stone
    9. Voodoo Child (Slight Return)
    10. Purple Haze

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    Quote Originally Posted by johanincr View Post
    Just before LARS he even quickly plays part of the intro to Little Wing....but the last recorded complete version of that song is from RAH. None after, either.
    Seems he considered playing it at Newport20 though, but not for long
    Right, I also noticed it, as if he wanted to play Little Wing but could not muster the strength for it or forgot the words, and then changed his mind. In the end of AYE he also changes (back?) to Stone Free. He was obviously not in such a good shape. But it gives a very exciting listening!

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    Quote Originally Posted by johanincr View Post
    Just before LARS he even quickly plays part of the intro to Little Wing....but the last recorded complete version of that song is from RAH. None after, either.
    Seems he considered playing it at Newport20 though, but not for long :)
    Thanks, yeah, maybe he thought he'd have a jab at them instead of being sweet. Perhaps he was teasing them;-) It's so brief and quiet, maybe just checking his tuning?
    The choice of Rolling Stone totally fits in context with his bitter and confrontational changes of lyrics / adlibs / comments during and after the outburst of heckling etc. during the intro to GMHBTA.
    Last edited by stplsd; 06-19-11 at 07:59 PM.
    Frank Zappa: "Rock journalism is people who can't write interviewing people who can't talk for people who can't read."

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    Quote Originally Posted by gesikang View Post
    In the end of AYE he also changes (back?) to Stone Free. He was obviously not in such a good shape. But it gives a very exciting listening!
    He does this during several shows (when he is in 'decent' shape) where he plays two or more songs as a medley and slips back into a brief reprise of the first song as a coda.
    He also quotes two passages from 3rd Stone and the opening to Star Spangled B.
    Last edited by stplsd; 06-19-11 at 08:10 PM.
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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    Noel Redding said that some Black Panthers members were present at this show and "pressured" Jimi, maybe that's the reason for his foul mood? And the "black militant protest song" jibe before Voodoo Child. Which some (clueless?) writers has taken at face value.

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    Not the first time something was dedicated to black radicals...like Come on Part one in indianapolis (an obvious joke, as I doubt there were too many there sharing his color). One would be a fool to take the dedication seriously.
    Let me live my life, the way I want to.

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    Quote Originally Posted by dino77 View Post
    Noel Redding said that some Black Panthers members were present at this show and "pressured" Jimi, maybe that's the reason for his foul mood? And the "black militant protest song" jibe before Voodoo Child. Which some (clueless?) writers has taken at face value.
    It's not "clueless" there's plenty of "clues" I think it's pretty clear, it's not the only occasion he introduced a song in that fashion and there is no trace of sarcasm, he also spoke in those terms sometimes. The Twins testimony etc. etc. One might be percieved as whatever to discount the abundant evidence on Jimi's feelings on the matter of the Panthers. How Noel percieved these alleged "Panthers" if they indeed were, if indeed the story is not just a distorted "memory", true etc. ie if one takes Noel's story at "face value";-) How about Jimi and the boys were "a bit the worse for wear." It is abundantly clear that there was friction between Jimi and the audience, who were already shouting and swearing at each other as he started the intro to Stone Free. Sunshine of Your love just falls apart.
    Last edited by stplsd; 06-20-11 at 07:21 AM.
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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    Quote Originally Posted by soccertackle14 View Post
    Not the first time something was dedicated to black radicals...like Come on Part one in indianapolis (an obvious joke, as I doubt there were too many there sharing his color). One would be a fool to take the dedication seriously.
    If you listen he does not dedicate Come On.
    In his opening rap he dedicates the show to the Black Panthers, and the American Indian.
    He usually dedicated the two together.
    So are we to assume you think he is just making "an obvious joke" in his dedications to the American Indigenes, his identifying with them and in his interviews, other commentary as well?
    Not too many American Indigenes in his audiences either, I would hazard;-)
    The majority of the audience "not sharing his color" was the whole point -
    - ie no point in preaching to the converted;-)
    He also spoke of Bobby Seale being in jail.
    Then there's those "other soldiers" ("you know the one's I mean";-) [ie black berets, combat jackets, boots, armed with military combat weapons? Some of the most prominent being ex-Garfield High from Jimi's year;-)]
    Let's not forget the Panthers and MLK (are we to assume you think he was "joking" about his support for MLK too?) were integrationists, like the vast majority of the Civil Rights movement, including Jimi & Bo Diddley who were both vocal on the matter. Not separitist ("Black Nationalists") like Ronald "Maulana ('master teacher' - so modest;-) Karenga" Everett and his, West Coast, Simbas (ie 'Lions' - Panthers/Lions geddit? - that he set up as rivals to the Panthers), and of course the Nation of Islam, neither of which Jimi ever mentioned.
    Last edited by stplsd; 06-20-11 at 08:23 AM.
    Frank Zappa: "Rock journalism is people who can't write interviewing people who can't talk for people who can't read."

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    "This is a black militant song and don't you ever forget it!". Although there is no way to confirm that Jimi wrote "Voodoo Chile (Slight Return) with black militancy in mind, one can feel that it lends itself well to the mood of the times. There is no reference to race or colour in the lyrics but as Jimi often said, "it's about a cat, building himself up...", on a God-like scale, full of self assertion and pride (Say it loud: I'm black and I'm proud).
    Last edited by purple jim; 06-20-11 at 10:27 AM.

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    ^
    Nice observation PJ. Interesting that JB's SILIBAIProud was # 1 in October 68. Then Jose Feliciano released the SSbanner later that month.

    A very interesting - potential - set list if he'd attempted a bit more than just a brief quote of some of them:

    01. Stone Free
    02. 3rd Stone From The Sun
    03. Star Spangled Banner
    04. Are You Experienced
    05. Sunshine Of Your Love
    06. Fire
    07. Get My Heart Back Together
    08. Red House
    09. Foxy Lady
    10. Little Wing
    11. Like A Rolling Stone
    12. Voodoo Child (Slight Return)
    13. Purple Haze
    Last edited by stplsd; 06-20-11 at 08:11 AM.
    Frank Zappa: "Rock journalism is people who can't write interviewing people who can't talk for people who can't read."

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    Quote Originally Posted by purple jim View Post
    "This is a black militant song and don't you ever forget it!".

    Jimi did a couple of pro-Panthers statements, but this particular utterance does sound tongue in cheek to me - whatever his intensions were.

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    Re: Bad day at Newport - June 20, 1969

    Quote Originally Posted by stplsd View Post
    It's not "clueless" there's plenty of "clues" I think it's pretty clear, it's not the only occasion he introduced a song in that fashion and there is no trace of sarcasm, he also spoke in those terms sometimes. The Twins testimony etc. etc. One might be percieved as whatever to discount the abundant evidence on Jimi's feelings on the matter of the Panthers. How Noel percieved these alleged "Panthers" if they indeed were, if indeed the story is not just a distorted "memory", true etc. ie if one takes Noel's story at "face value";-) How about Jimi and the boys were "a bit the worse for wear." It is abundantly clear that there was friction between Jimi and the audience, who were already shouting and swearing at each other as he started the intro to Stone Free. Sunshine of Your love just falls apart.
    Would you really take the Twins' tales at face value? Yup, there is audience friction, but excepting New York Pop July 1970 this usually does not affect the concert to this degree, so it's a good guess he was royally pissed off at something beforehand - not necessarily Panthers.

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