Hendrix wildly wails Wales
December 31, 2006 10:42 PM   Subscribe

A week before Jimi Hendrix died in London he (probably) recorded the Welsh anthem "Land of our Fathers" (embedded audio). The eight-track recording languished in a corner of a recording studio until recently.
posted by Rumple (30 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Soothe your bleeding ears with a more sedate version.
posted by Rumple at 10:43 PM on December 31, 2006

I dunno about this... I mean, the page claims that Williams is an authority on Hendrix, having auditioned to replace Rick Danko in Hendrix's "Band of Gypsies", but from what I can tell, Danko never played with Hendrix at all... Plus, the whole thing is just too easily faked. Maybe it's the New Year's Grinch that's got ahold of me.
posted by jonson at 10:50 PM on December 31, 2006

jonson's comment on the Danko Band/Band of Gypsies mistake was enough to make me look elsewhere and I found this (last paragraph):

Rock guitarist Robert 'Tich' Gwilym...perhaps best known for his Hendrix-inspired interpretation of Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau on the electric guitar.

That's what I assume the recording playing on that site really is. Does anyone have the Gwilym version to compare?
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 11:02 PM on December 31, 2006

I give it a provisional "yes", provided the original tape still survives (article said he "transfered it" it digital media ... hmmm). I'm pretty sure a forensic audiologist (I just made that up!) could tell if the recording on the tape matched the age, rather than being recently recorded on old media. In short -- easy to fake the sound NOW, not so easy back then.

Of course, my New Year's resolution is to try to shake the cynicism I developed during the reign of King George.
posted by RavinDave at 11:07 PM on December 31, 2006

The guitarist doesn't play fast or demonstrate any technique so I assume it is not Hendrix.
posted by MonkeySaltedNuts at 11:13 PM on December 31, 2006

That ain't Hendrix, and that ain't no Marshall, and that's a locking tailpiece (which wasn't invented 'til years after Hendrix died).

The rendition is Hendrix-inspired, certainly, but it ain't Hendrix. I like Slack-a-gogo's explanation as being most likely to be true.
posted by whozyerdaddy at 11:26 PM on December 31, 2006 [1 favorite]

See now, Saddam could have simply been sentenced to listen to that noise for the rest of his natural life.
posted by crowman at 1:11 AM on January 1, 2007


posted by tehloki at 2:43 AM on January 1, 2007

Cynical proclivities aside, this piece works well with ~400ml of The Macallan 18. To my knowledge, Jimi never finished a piece with that signature slide out. But for a beautiful taste of American homage to UK musical endeavor I give you this 2/9/06 installment from the purple one. Happy Yew Nuckin Fear.
posted by MapGuy at 3:03 AM on January 1, 2007

So, that's why they call it Wales.
posted by crispynubbins at 4:00 AM on January 1, 2007

Track down some Velvert Turner if you want to hear Hendrix faked properly.
posted by the cuban at 4:12 AM on January 1, 2007

Whoever recorded this did a welsh of a job. But he's no 'Tich' Gwilym.
posted by hal9k at 4:49 AM on January 1, 2007

If it had been Hendrix, you would have known instantly from the chills you would have gotten. And really, confusing the Band with the Band of Gypsies (Billy Cox and that putz from the Electric Flag)?
posted by Faze at 5:57 AM on January 1, 2007

that putz from the Electric Flag

Buddy Miles was no putz. Noel Redding, on the other hand ...
posted by krinklyfig at 6:36 AM on January 1, 2007

Regardless of source, the music's pretty decent. I think the mistake is assuming that anyone who sounds like that must have been Hendrix, especially back in the day. Well, my nine year old son plays a pretty compelling version of The Star Spangled Banner. It ain't Hendrix, but it ain't bad. My vote on this stuff goes with Gwilym, especially given that he was known for this song and why would Jimi be motivated to play the Welsh national anthem and if he did why would it be kept in the dark for so long, you think some Welshman in the know would have been excited to share, but who knows? It still sounds nice.
posted by caddis at 6:49 AM on January 1, 2007

Star Spangled Banner... Welsh National Anthem... Were he alive today, "Fat" Jimi might be soaring through "Carmen Ohio" at the BCS title halftime.
posted by hal9k at 7:21 AM on January 1, 2007

Shit, that's awful. It's more of a parody of Jimi than anything. Just because there's feedback and distortion and someone playing a fairly simple arrangement of a national anthem doesn't mean it's at all Hendrix-inspired. It's like when people say Godspeed You Black Emperor sounds like classical music just because it's instrumental and has violins.

That over-the-top, nervous sounding vibrato just makes me cringe. It's not a strat, clearly. It sounds as Eruption-inspired as anything. And... shit, it's awful.
posted by mragreeable at 7:25 AM on January 1, 2007

in your not so humbe opinion
posted by caddis at 9:12 AM on January 1, 2007

or even humble
posted by caddis at 9:13 AM on January 1, 2007

The CIA has positively confirmed the recording is indeed the voice of Osama Bin Laden.
posted by CynicalKnight at 9:13 AM on January 1, 2007

a locking tailpiece

i assume you mean floating tremelo bridge, ala floyd rose, which may be locking or double-locking (referring to the manner in which the strings attach at either end). but it is possible to loosen the vintage strat tremelo springs and 6 anchor screws sufficiently to produce similar effects, indeed, you can hear hendrix doing octave-plus dives all the time. of course, it never comes back up in tune, but as jimi once said, "it's close enough for rock and roll."
posted by quonsar at 9:25 AM on January 1, 2007

Interesting, but I don't think it's Hendrix either. Still - thanks.
posted by stinkycheese at 10:02 AM on January 1, 2007

oh, i totally agree. not hendrix. a cheesy parody at best.
posted by quonsar at 10:57 AM on January 1, 2007

The guitarist doesn't play fast or demonstrate any technique so I assume it is not Hendrix.

Hendrix didn't play another national anthem, the Star Spangled Banner, very fast at Woodstock, either.
posted by beagle at 11:20 AM on January 1, 2007

Yeah, that's a Floyd and a humbucker, and it uses some techniques that Hendrix never bothered with.

Jimi used powertube distortion in his Marshalls. This is all distorting in the preamp.
posted by ikkyu2 at 11:24 AM on January 1, 2007

I hear that Yngwie Malmsteen actually did this.

OK, maybe not.
posted by RubberHen at 11:28 AM on January 1, 2007

I don't think it's Hendrix but it's pretty good -- it's clearly inspired by Hendrix, even more specifically by the Star Spangled Banner. Some sweet feedback there at the end.

The giveaway for me is the whammy bar stuff -- it's much more mechanically even than Hendrix' and it sounds like the whole assemblage is stiffer and less responsive. Is that the "locking tailpiece"?

And of course -- the player never cuts loose. A giveaway.

Still, a nice bit of psychedelia and a good start to the New Year....
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 11:54 AM on January 1, 2007

That's ridiculous. It's not Hendrix. The player's pitch control is atrocious, and Hendrix's was superb, even in deep feedback land.

"Elvis' footprint found on moon."
posted by digaman at 12:31 PM on January 1, 2007

Better version.
posted by afx237vi at 1:21 PM on January 1, 2007

ikkyu2 and digaman both pretty much nailed it, but it's worth elaborating a bit, since the post does defame Hendrix to some degree.

It's really difficult to say based on the poor quality of the recording, but dollars to donuts, it doesn't sound at all like his signature gear (a Strats through a Marshall SLP "Plexi"... even though I have seen him playing through other gear, even Les Pauls), it sounds more like a double-coiled guitar pickup through a cheaper pedal and amp set up, like a Crate or Peavey. Definitely sounds very thin, and lacks Hendrix's roar.

Hendrix's vibrato and control over it was flawless; nigh peerless. This guy is all over the place and his vibrato is sickening and distracting rather than propulsive.
posted by psmealey at 6:30 AM on January 2, 2007

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