Editorial: The Release of the Jimi Hendrix Albert Hall film

The fully restored, long anticipated and much contested film of Jimi Hendrix at the Albert Hall was finally shown for the first time, at the Albert Hall on the 21st of October, 2019. 

One reason for the public screening was that, in order to keep the copyright from running out, the owners needed to have shown the property commercially within fifty years of the original claim. The chance to see this high resolution film – which looks great and has a slightly blue cast, presumably because of the green cast of the original – is amazing and a huge cause for celebration for the fans of Hendrix, music and this iconic film, often referred to as the Holy Grail of lost music films.

Albert Hall – Approximate schedule: 5:30 pm restaurants and bars open. 6:30 pm Boxes open. 6:45 pm Auditorium doors open. 7:30 pm The Jimi Hendrix Experience: The Royal Albert Hall. Event ends 9:35 pm .

My father, Tommy, knew Jimi socially and shot a multi-camera concert film called ‘Watch Out For Your Ears’ a year or so prior to the Albert Hall concert. It featured Jimi, The Animals, and Traffic (who filled in for The Who when they pulled out of the gig). Watching Jimi’s electric performance in that film is how I became infatuated with Hendrix. All musicians in that circle were connected to each other in some way and half of Traffic ended up onstage at the Albert Hall, including Chris Wood, Dave Mason and Rocky, the percussionist. I presume this is how we ended up visiting Traffic at the house in Buckinghamshire, when I became totally star struck at the sight of a young Windwood on the lawn playing frisbee among all the freaks.

I didn’t meet Hendrix until the Albert hall in ’69, when my father Tommy introduced my brother and me to him backstage prior to the show. Jimi hoisted me up onto his shoulders and ran around the dressing room with me. And then, presumably too excited to contain myself, at some point during the performance I ran onto the stage and whispered something in his ear. Who knows what I said. It could have been a song request or maybe I asked the address of his tailor. What exactly it was remains a mystery.

The black and white photo of that stage encounter only showed up for me at Christmas of 2013 when Yazid Manou, a French music publicist for Sony music and a photo-sleuth, contacted me on FB. I was blown away, of course. The picture is now in the Handel and Hendrix museum, at 23 Brook Street in Mayfair, along with some blurb on my father.

A reinterpretation of the Jimi Hendrix track ‘Angel’. Slightly modern with strings, my voice and guitar in the arrangement.

The introductory release of Alt-Generations is now available online. The E-Biography of a childhood in rock, Issue No.2, is coming mid-November. Please Like, Share and Follow. Alt-Generations is also on YouTube and on twitter @TheGenerations8

What Is Alt-Generations?

This is an ‘alternative’ monthly arts magazine, with artist interviews and an E-Book, in instalments, about growing up behind the scenes around music royalty and certain underworld figures.

The introductory issue of Alt-Generations features podcast interviews with Stephanie Rainey, a new singer and songwriter, as well as with Kim Shuck, The Poet Laureate of San Francisco. Next issue will feature the director of The Last Kingdom, Jon East, and another standout new music artist, Lola Lennox.

The highlights of my own generation’s music story, which we’ll hopefully get to in later chapters, takes place more towards the end of the nineties and the beginning of the noughties, with the arrival of dance and rave music as a culture. Although I’ve worked mostly in film, at the time I was also co-producing for a 24-hour, multi-stage dance music festival and directing a live stage club in Istanbul – all of which I hope to get to in later issues of the E-Book, if we get that far. 

These first issues of the project, embracing iconic artists like Jimi Hendrix and the Stones, are aimed at the baby boomer generation and also at a younger one.

The truth is that I’d find it just too crazy-making to be focusing purely on that early period from my childhood and not be talking to current artists as well. So, the counterbalance to all the historical content are the podcast interviews with current artists and film makers, writers and educators. Once the characters and setting surrounding our own unusual early family are established, as well as later on when I had a family and son in London in the eighties, the E-book will explore historical periods, like the Beat poets, early Jazz and Blues figures.

Striking a balance between the historical content in the E-biography and the present – what is happening right now in the arts – is the mix of editorial at which I’m aiming. There should be something for younger fans of current as well as iconic music and artists. And for those interested there is a lot of the wonder filled, child’s eye view of behind the scenes growing up in that strange and unusual rock ‘n’ roll environment. 

Although there are always new generational forms of music reacting to or bouncing off a previous one, thankfully: Punk, The New Romantics, Dance and Electronic – each as valid as the other – and a roller-coaster ride through the centre of any one of which is probably as unique and fascinating an experience as you’re likely to have, arguably the sixties brought the biggest sea change of all. So it seems like a good place to start and was definitely an unusual experience to have grown up around some of these extraordinary people. Although, as anyone knows who’s been through that particular type of hurricane, it was not without its darker moments.

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Author: Story Teller

I now work primarily as a digital skills trainer, writer, researcher and assessor with organisations like AIM. My career has mostly been as a film editor and sometimes producer in commercials, film and documentaries in the US and the Near East. In music, I've had releases in film and mostly worked as a club music director and contracting producer for a 24-hour music festival. With the surprisingly warm reception of my book 'Ragamuffin's Tale: Growing up in counterculture', my interest is increasingly turning toward writing.