When Jimi Hendrix arrived in London in 1966, he was just another would-be rock star with a few pennies to his name. Within a few months, he’d become an international phenomenon — and cemented an association with Britain that remains a cause for celebration in the UK today.
Hendrix’s British roots are reflected in the new exhibit ‘Hear My Train a Comin’: Hendrix Hits London,’ currently showing in London’s Hospital Club and scheduled to move to the EMP Museum in November. Occupying an impressive 2,500 square feet, ‘Hear My Train a Comin” offers visitors the chance to get up close and personal with more than 100 Hendrix artifacts, including some that have never before been shown in public.
The show is coming together with the full cooperation of the Hendrix estate, with his sister Janie showing her support in a press release where she promised it’s “certain to be an informative and fascinating exhibition.” Added Janie, “It is wonderful to be able to share so much of Jimi with fans. There is no question that it will solidify my brother’s place at the very top of music’s pantheon.”
“Jimi Hendrix surmounted racial and cultural barriers in America and Great Britain at a time when youth culture, pop music, and society were radically changing,” observed Jacob McMurray, senior curator for the EMP. “One of the most innovative musicians of the 20th century, Hendrix continues to influence an ever-increasing number of musicians, artists, and fans in the 21st century.”
Highlights from the exhibit include Hendrix’s handwritten lyrics for ‘Love or Confusion,’ pieces from the guitar he smashed during his June 4, 1967 gig at the Saville Theater, Experience drummer Mitch Mitchell’s kit, and assorted articles of clothing.