The Jimi Hendrix Experience began recording “Purple Haze” on January 11, 1967, a…

Written by on February 3, 2018

The Jimi Hendrix Experience began recording “Purple Haze” on January 11, 1967, at De Lane Lea Studios in London. The basic track was recorded in four hours.

With ‘Purple Haze’, Hendrix was looking for a sound and just kept going back into the studio, two hours at a time, trying to achieve it. On Feb. 3, 1967, Jimi and his manager Chas Chandler took the four-track tape to Olympic Studios for overdubbing. At Olympic, they were assigned engineer Eddie Kramer. It was one of the first times Olympic let Eddie do a session by himself as an engineer. Jimi and Eddie hit it off from the very start. Unlike the conventional techniques used by the Experience to record previous songs, Kramer and Chandler decided to try out new effects and sounds for “Purple Haze”. Kramer enhanced background sounds by playing them back through headphones, which were moved around the recording microphone, creating “a weird echo”. He also used sped-up guitar parts recorded at half-speed (which also raises the pitch) and panning to create novel effects. The guitar solo features the first use of the Octavia guitar effects unit. The Octavia doubles the frequency of the sound it is fed, essentially adding an upper octave.

Jimi Hendrix met Eddie Kramer 51 years ago today. It was a musical partnership that would last the rest of Jimi’s life. To this day, the Hendrix estate still trusts Kramer to handle the release of old recordings that Jimi recorded with him.

(We are pretty sure this picture was not taken when they first met, but it shows Jimi and Eddie working together).

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