Third and final volume in Experience Hendrix’s series of unreleased material. Also available on CD.
‘Both Sides of the Sky’ is the third volume in a trilogy of albums intended to present the best and most significant unissued studio recordings remaining in the music legend’s archive. Beginning with ‘Valleys of Neptune’ (2010), which earned top ten sales rankings in fifteen countries, followed by ‘People, Hell and Angels’ (2013) which peaked on Billboard’s Top 100 album chart at #2. This third release is anticipated to complete the spectacular recording event in epic fashion. “Since Experience Hendrix began its restoration of the Jimi Hendrix music catalog in 1997, our goal has been to present these important recordings to Jimi’s fans in the best possible quality. We are excited about achieving that. We’ve also been intent on generating album releases which present this amazing music in its proper context,” explains John McDermott, one of the album’s co-producers, together with Janie Hendrix and Eddie Kramer.
Recorded between January 1968 and February 1970, Jimi’s desire to push the boundaries of blues music can be heard throughout. Both Sides of the Sky additionally highlights Jimi’s mastery of studio production and his increasing use of these facilities as a proving ground for new sounds, material, and techniques. Many of the album’s tracks were recorded by the trio that would come to be known as Band of Gypsys: Jimi on guitar and vocals, Billy Cox on bass, and Buddy Miles on drums.
“Hear My Train A Comin’” features drummer Mitch Mitchell and bassist Noel Redding from the original Jimi Hendrix Experience. This original blues composition had become a staple of Hendrix’s concerts. This previously unreleased April 1969 recording captured the furious power and dynamic tension that made the song so memorable. Previously unheard recordings of “Stepping Stone,” “Jungle,” “Cherokee Mist” (which features Hendrix on both electric guitar and sitar) as well as the January 1968 recording of “Sweet Angel” provide further highlights.
‘Both Sides of the Sky’ also features an assortment of notable guest musicians. Stephen Stills befriended Hendrix at the June 1967 Monterey Pop Festival. In September of 1969 Stills was invited to a Hendrix session at the Record Plant in New York. Stills burst into the session with a song Joni Mitchell had recently composed, titled “Woodstock.” Joined by Hendrix and Buddy Miles, the trio recorded this version first–months before Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young released their popular rendition of Mitchell’s song. Stills would also contribute $20 Fine, an original song that featured Hendrix on multiple guitars, Mitchell on drums, Stills on organ and lead vocals and Duane Hitchings (Buddy Miles Express) on piano.
Another of the album’s unique band creations sees Jimi Hendrix and Johnny Winter on guitar, backed by Billy Cox and drummer Dallas Taylor of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. An excerpt of their rendition of Guitar Slim’s “Things I Used To Do” was initially heard as part of a 1990 nationally syndicated radio program and accompanying box set, but here it is presented in full, newly mixed by Eddie Kramer for Both Sides of The Sky. On “Georgia Blues,” Jimi is reunited with his old bandmate Lonnie Youngblood (vocals/sax) from his pre-fame days in Curtis Knight & The Squires. Briefly issued as part of the 2008 Martin Scorsese Presents the Blues series but out of print for nearly a decade, this special recording is once more available to Hendrix fans throughout the world on all audio formats.