#280 Jimi Hendrix

Episode Summary

What I learned from reading Starting At Zero: His Own Story by Jimi Hendrix.

Episode Notes

What I learned from reading Starting At Zero: His Own Story by Jimi Hendrix. 


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[0:01] He was also a compulsive writer, using hotel stationery, scraps of paper, cigarette cartons, napkins—anything that came to hand.

[0:01] Decoded by Jay Z. (Founders #238)

[1:00] He always claimed that for him life and music were inseparable.

[5:00] I liked to be different.

[5:00] The Autobiography of Bob Dylan Chronicles: Volume One by Bob Dylan. (Founders #259)

[6:00] Bob Dylan: 

Billy asked me who I saw myself like in today's music scene.

I told him, nobody. I really didn't see myself like anybody.

What really set me apart in these days was my repertoire.

It was more formidable than the rest of the players

There were a lot of better musicians around but there wasn't anybody close in nature to what I was doing.

[7:00] Anthony Bourdain on Jimi Hendrix: I often compare the experience of going to Japan for the first time, going to Tokyo for the first time, to what Eric Clapton and Pete Townsend must have gone through, the reigning guitar gods of England, what they must have gone through the week that Jimi Hendrix came to town. 

You hear about it, you go see it.A whole window opens up into a whole new thing.And you think what does this mean? What do I have left to say? What do I do now?

[12:00] The first guitarist I was aware of was Muddy Waters. I heard one of his records when I was a little boy, and it scared me to death.  Wow! What was all that about?

[15:00] I loved my music, man. You see, I wasn't ever interested in any other things, just the music. I was trying to play like Chuck Berry and Muddy Waters. Trying to learn everything and anything.

[16:00] My first gig was at an armory, a National Guard place, and we earned thirty-five cents apiece and three hamburgers.

[16:00] It was so hard for me at first. I knew about three songs, and when it was time for us to play onstage I was all shaky, so I had to play behind the curtains. I just couldn't get up in front.

And then you get so very discouraged. You hear different bands playing around you, and the guitar player always seems like he's so much better than you are.

Most people give up at this point, but it's best not to. Just keep on; just keep on. Sometimes you are going to be so frustrated you'll hate the guitar, but all of this is just a part of learning. If you stick with it you're going to be rewarded. If you're very stubborn you can make it.

[18:00] I had very strange feelings that I was here for something and I was going to get a chance to be heard. I got the guitar together because that was all I had. Oh Daddy, one of these days I'm gonna be big and famous. I'm gonna make it, man!

[20:00] It was pretty tough at first. I lived in very miserable circumstances. I slept where I could and when I needed to eat, I had to steal it.

[24:00] I lived in very miserable circumstances. Sleeping among the garbage cans between them tall tenements was hell.

Rats runnin' all across your chest, cockroaches stealin' your last candy bar from your very pockets.

I even tried to eat orange peel and tomato paste.

People would say, "If you don't get a job you'll just starve to death."

But I didn't want to take a job outside music.

[27:00] I don't wanna play backup on somebody else's team. I have my own ideas that I have to bring to life, and I'm willing to sacrifice my comfort to do so.

[31:00] Obsess over customers.

[33:00] I don't give a damn so long as I have enough to eat and to play what I want to play. That's enough for me. I consider ourselves to be some of the luckiest cats alive, because we're playing just what we want to play and people seem to like that.

[37:00] A lesson from Charlie Munger: Look at the behavior of people you dislike, or you don't respect, and do the opposite.

[39:00] Once you've made a name for yourself you are all the more determined to keep it up.

[44:00] James Dyson’s 2nd autobiography: Invention: A Life by James Dyson. (Founders #205)

[49:00] We call our music Electric Church Music because it's like a religion to us.


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