Friday, April 21, 2006

Not necessarily experienced, but ... beautiful

While our local libraries do reasonably well with cinema (I just got Kings and Queen, the new Arnaud Desplechin movie, which I'm looking forward to very much), the CD collections are virtually worthless, except for the classical discs. I did find one recently though, a 1993 disc called Stone Free: A Tribute to Jimi Hendrix.

Here's the lineup:
The Cure - Purple Haze
Eric Clapton - Stone Free
Spin Doctors - Spanish Castle Magic
Buddy Guy - Red House
Body Count - Hey Joe
Seal and Jeff Beck - Manic Depression
Nigel Kennedy - Fire
Pretenders - Bold as Love
P. M. Dawn - You Got Me Floatin'
Slash and Paul Rodgers with the Band of Gypsys - I Don't Live Today
Belly - Are You Experienced?
Living Colour - Crosstown Traffic
Pat Metheny - Third Stone From The Sun
M. A. C. C. - Hey Baby (Land of the New Rising Sun)
Some okay material there – perhaps not surprisingly, the less faithful renderings tend to be more successful, the P. M. Dawn track for example. Some are just embarrassing, like Nigel Kennedy (yes, the violinist), and most are pointless at best.

I don't mean to dump on this project – it's more dull than actively offensive. But it did get me thinking what a better tribute (and yes, one more faithful by my lights to the actual significance of the man's music) might look like. Here's my (wish)list, beginning as one indeed must with "Purple Haze":
Disc 1:

Heldon – Purple Haze (8:51)
Robert Wyatt/Terje Rypdal/Carla Bley/Steve Swallow/Jack DeJohnette – If 6 Was 9 (6:44)
Oren Ambarchi/Noël Akchote (produced by François Tétaz) – Machine Gun (12:11)
James Blood Ulmer – Voodoo Child (Slight Return) (7:08)
Fripp & Eno – Castles Made of Sand (9:23)
Robert Rich/jhno – Burning of the Midnight Lamp (15:00)

Disc 2:

Lassigue Bendthaus – Fire (4:21)
Naked City – Foxy Lady (5:50)
Supersilent w/Tore Elgarøy – House Burning Down (12:53)
Sun Ra Arkestra w/Vernon Reid – Little Wing (9:15)
Marcus Schmickler/C-Schulz/Manuel Göttsching – Rainy Day, Dream Away (8:33)
Jon Hassell/Michael Brook – 1983 (15:02)
Rafael Toral – Moon Turn the Tides ... gently gently away (13:06)

Disc 3:

Mark Nauseef/Miroslav Tadic (w/David Torn and Jack Bruce) – The Wind Cries Mary (5:44)
Windy & Carl – One Rainy Wish (30:05)
Francisco López/Joe Colley/John Duncan – ... and the gods made love (13:55)
Steve Tibbetts/Marc Anderson – Third Stone from the Sun (9:32)
Massacre w/Bob Ostertag – Are You Experienced? (8:19)
Okay, that's more than 14 (so sue me). And there's one point of overlap, but I never said there couldn't be. By the way, the Nauseef/Tadic track actually exists, on The Snake Music (CMP, 1994). As for the others – well, we can dream, can't we?

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