Jimi Hendrix is a venerable name for every guitarist and musician. He was a pioneering instrumentalist who changed the way Rock and Roll were done and heard. His techniques inspired countless musicians across the globe and still continue to do so.

Jimi: A Legend & Trailblazer

There are many reasons that make James Marshall “Jimi” Hendrix one of the most influential musicians of the 20th century. His technique was not just different but it was totally groundbreaking on many fronts.

Here are some key attributes that differentiated Hendrix’s music:-

He brought the practice of using an overdriven amplifier with volume and gain.

He pioneered the use of stereophonic phasing effects during the recording.

He made the use of tone-altering effect units very popular in rock music.

He turned feedback and distortion into a controlled and fluid vocabulary.

He was the first musician to use the guitar as the source of electronic sound.

Such groundbreaking methods had earned him one of the most coveted accolades during his lifetime and posthumously:-

Pop Musician of the Year in 1967

Artist of the Year in 1968

Performer of the Year in 1968

World’s Top Musician in 1969

Rock Guitarist of the Year in 1970

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1992

UK Music Hall of Fame in 2005

Even in a short career span of 4 years, Jimi Hendrix did a contribution to the music world that is totally nonpareil. He had African American and Irish ancestry, and he served in the military before embracing music. He was born on November 27, 1942, and his predilection towards guitar was first noticed by his school’s social worker.

As a child, Hendrix used to carry a broom while acting like he was carrying the guitar. The worker requested to provide him the instrument, but it was denied. At the same time, his father also refused to buy him a guitar. Later in 1957, when he was 14, Hendrix found a ukulele while helping his father with a side job.

He started playing single notes while listening to Elvis Presley songs. In the very next year, Hendrix bought his first acoustic guitar for $5. In the initial days, he listened to many blues artists like Robert Johnson, Howlin’ Wolf, B.B. King, and Muddy Waters.

He practised for hours and also observed many other seasoned instrumentalists. Jimi started jamming with his keyboard-playing brother and his childhood friend Sammy Drain shortly thereafter. In the year 1959, he met Billy Davis and the two remained friends until Jimi’s demise.

Billy was impressed with Jimi’s passion for guitar so taught him some licks and was allowed to play in a short gig in their band, Midnighters. Hendrix went through quite a rough time before getting fame. He found his first band called the Velvetones with an acoustic guitar and realized that he needed an electric one.

Soon after his first gig, he was fired for showing off. He then joined the Rocking Kings and left the band when his guitar was stolen. Jimi was caught riding in stolen cars and was given a choice of either going to jail or joining the army.

He joined the army but was not interested in leading a soldier’s life. His destiny took him to the world of music where he reigned as long as he lived.