Hear Zayn Malik's take on Jimi Hendrix's Angel

Zayn Malik and Jimi Hendrix Angel
(Image credit: Steve Granitz / Michael Putland / Getty)

Former One Direction vocalist Zayn Malik might not be the first name you would associate with Jimi Hendrix fandom, but last week the popstar followed up on his earlier teaser post and shared his take on the guitar hero's track, Angel

Recorded and released in time for what would have been Hendrix's 80th birthday (November 27, 2022), it sees Malik take a respectfully light touch approach, incorporating Hendrix's original guitar recordings. 

As a result, the song, presented as 'Zayn, Jimi Hendrix' is surprisingly gentle and charmingly rough around the edges, thanks to the vintage tapes. Malilk‘s vocal, in this context, showcases his classic rock credentials, pulling in elements of '60s R&B and soul, recalling some of the rawer Memphis soul sound, and some of the rock crossover hits by the likes of Bobby Womack. 

The Hendrix estate has endorsed the release, too. “We are pleased that Zayn has been inspired to use original music from Jimi Hendrix’s Angel in his recording of the song,” reads a statement from organisation, made to Billboard (opens in new tab).

“We’re hopeful that this version of a Hendrix classic will enlighten a new generation of listeners about Jimi’s genius and further propel his continuing legacy.”

Guitar World has also been celebrating Hendrix at 80. Christone ‘Kingfish’ Ingram performed an exclusive tribute, covering Red House on the roof of London’s Hard Rock Hotel, a building Hendrix had lived in during his London tenure. 

We've also shared this classic interview with Billy Cox and Mitch Mitchell recalling their iconic Woodstock set, and spoken to the guitar hero’s go-to tone guru Roger Mayer about Jimi Hendrix's Strat tones, alongside pulling together a compilation of the greatest Hendrix covers.

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Matt Parker

Matt is a freelance journalist who has spent the last decade interviewing musicians for the likes of Total Guitar, Guitarist, Guitar World, MusicRadar, NME.com, DJ Mag and Electronic Sound. In 2020, he launched CreativeMoney.co.uk (opens in new tab), which aims to share the ideas that make creative lifestyles more sustainable. He plays guitar, but should not be allowed near your delay pedals.