Early last month, late electric guitar legend Jimi Hendrix was honored with a blue plaque at London’s Hard Rock Hotel – a building formerly known as the Cumberland hotel, which was the location of Hendrix’s last interview.
To celebrate, the unveiling of the historical marker coincided with two days of festivities that paid tribute to the legacy of the torch-bearing blues giant, including a screening of Music, Money, Madness… Jimi Hendrix in Maui and a Q&A with his producer/engineer, Eddie Kramer.
Another notable inclusion to the agenda was a rooftop performance by blues guitar great Christone “Kingfish” Ingram, who treated the citizens of the city to a sublime, Hendrix-inspired set that honored his hero.
Now, a Guitar World-exclusive premiere of footage from that evening captures this concert in all its glory, and showcases Ingram as he makes his way through a scorching cover of Hey Joe.
As evident from the footage, Kingfish dons his purple Fender Telecaster Deluxe to devastating effect, serving up a faithful rendition of Hey Joe that flexes his own musical flair while simultaneously paying respect to the original material.
Employing a dirty, gain-laden tone for the iconic intro riff, the Grammy Award winner gives things a Kingfish kick by decorating the opening lead lines with plenty of rapid-fire improvisation and introducing some scorching high-end bends, oozing with vibrato.
“Jimi Hendrix has long been an inspiration to me as a musician,” the guitarist said at the time. “I’m excited to participate in this historic event that honors his memory.”
Kingfish continued, “Jimi means a whole lot to me. He was for me, like, the first Black rocker. He showed you how to be unique.”
The event – which was organized by Experience Hendrix L.L.C, the Nubian Jak Community Trust and the Hard Rock Hotel London – was attended by Jeff Beck, who helped unveil Hendrix’s blue plaque.
Ingram's concert was also joined on the itinerary by a special presentation of Linda McCartney’s Hendrix photography, as well as a Q&A with Hendrix’s sister, Janie.
“I’m so proud of my brother Jimi and his being honored again in London,” Janie Hendrix commented. “His mission was to spread love across the world through his music, and we continue to see that come to fruition all these years later.”
It’s the second blue plaque that has been unveiled in Hendrix’s memory, making the guitarist part of a small group to have more than one of these honors in their name. The first arrived in 1997, and is located at his 1968-69 Mayfair residence, also in London.
Hendrix’s connection to the Hard Rock Hotel, meanwhile, is strengthened by the existence of handwritten lyrics – now stored in the Experience Hendrix archives – that were created using the hotel’s stationery. It is also, as per his death certificate, his last official place of residence.