It would have been nice if the Fourth of July fell on Monday, but we’re not sticklers here at Museworthy. Let’s do an Independence Day “Music Monday”! Yeaaaaaahhh! This week it’s brought to us by the legend, the guitar god, Jimi Hendrix.
At the 1969 Woodstock festival, Hendrix famously gave an early morning performance of the Star-Spangled Banner. The thundering, ear-splitting, feedback-laden rendition is adored by some and reviled by others. Personal tastes aside, it should at least be acknowledged that Hendrix displays exceptional improvisational skills and creatively uses his instrument to replicate the sounds of bombs dropping, explosions, and a general feeling of wartime violence. Yet he still holds true to the song’s original melody. So whether you consider this version of our national anthem something treasonous and insolent or a brilliant avante-garde musical exercise, Hendrix’s Star-Spangled Banner is an appropriate reflection of America’s mood during a tumultuous period in our history.
Happy Fourth of July everyone!