New Music Excess

Jimi Hendrix – Valleys of Neptune

Posted in Blues-Rock, Hard Rock, Psychedelic Rock by newmusicexcess on March 1, 2010

Jimi Hendrix - Valleys Of Neptune

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the death of Jimi Hendrix (born Johnny Allen Hendrix on November 27, 1942 and died on September 18, 1970). As a commemoration of Hendrix’s death, Legacy Recordings (the catalogue division of Sony Music Entertainment) will be releasing a new CD, Valleys of Neptune, on March 9th. This will be the first album containing previously unreleased studio recordings in more than a decade. It’s the result of a deal between Enterprise Hendrix (the company that overseas his musical estate) and Legacy Recordings that should see other Hendrix related releases/events to follow. For example, re-releases of classic titles, a tribute tour and a Hendrix version of the Rock Band video game.

Track listing for Valleys of Neptune:

  1. Stone Free
  2. Valleys of Neptune 
  3. Bleeding Heart
  4. Hear My Train a Comin’
  5. Mr. Bad Luck
  6. Sunshine of Your Love (instrumental Cream cover)
  7. Lover Man
  8. Ships Passing Through the Night
  9. Fire
  10. Red House
  11. Lullaby for the Summer
  12. Crying Blue Rain

Hendrix was a mere 27 when he died as a result of drinking heavily and consuming some of his girlfriend’s sleeping pills (it is thought that Hendrix was unfamiliar with this particular stronger German brand of pills).

One result of his relatively short life is that the amount of posthumous releases far exceeds those released while he was alive. It is often easy to forget that he released only three studio albums during his career, such is the volume of exploitative material available both legally and illegally. Here is a list of the recordings issued while he was still alive:

Studio albums

  • Are You Experienced? (UK, May 12, 1967 – Track)
  • Are You Experienced? (US, August 23, 1967 – Reprise)
  • Axis: Bold As Love (UK, December 1, 1967 – Track)
  • Axis: Bold As Love (US, January 15, 1968 – Reprise)
  • Electric Ladyland (UK, October 25, 1968 – Track)
  • Electric Ladyland (US, September 16, 1968 – Reprise)

Live Albums

  • Band Of Gypsys (US, March 25, 1970 – Capitol)
  • Historic Performances Recorded at the Monterey International Pop Festival (US, August 26, 1970 – Reprise) [Side 1 – Jimi Hendrix / Side 2 – Otis Redding]

Compilation Albums

  • Smash Hits (UK, April 16, 1968 – Track)
  • Smash Hits (US, July 30, 1969 – Reprise)
  • Electric Jimi Hendrix (UK, August 16, 1970 – Track)


  • Hey Joe / Stone Free (UK, December 16, 1966 – Polydor)
  • Hey Joe /51st Anniversary  (US, May 1, 1967 – Reprise)
  • Purple Haze / 51st Anniversary (UK, March 17, 1967 – Track)
  • The Wind Cries Mary / Highway Chile (UK, May 5, 1967 – Track)
  • Burning of the Midnight Lamp / The Stars That Play with Laughing Sam’s Dice (UK, August 19, 1967 – Track)
  • Foxy Lady / Hey Joe (US, August, 1967 – Reprise)
  • Up from the Skies / One Rainy Wish (US, 26 February, 1968 – Reprise)
  • All Along the Watchtower / Burning of the Midnight Lamp (US, September 21, 1968 – Reprise)
  • All Along the Watchtower / Long Hot Summer Night (UK, October 18, 1968 – Track)
  • Crosstown Traffic / Gypsy Eyes (US, November 21, 1968 – Reprise)
  • Crosstown Traffic / Gypsy Eyes (UK, April 11, 1969 – Track)
  • Stone Free / If 6 Was 9 (US, September 15, 1969 – Reprise)
  • Fire / Burning Of The Midnight Lamp (UK, April, 1969 – Track)
  • Stepping Stone / Izabella (US, April 8, 1970 – Reprise)

Looking at the list above it appears that the release window for Hendrix’s recording was from late 1966 to mid 1970, however those 4-5 years had such an impact on so many different genres of music and not just guitar based, as it’s important to remember the musical legacy of some of the studio techniques/tricks used on various recordings.

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