Jimi Hendrix’s early recordings with Curtis Knight & The Squires is the subject of a remaster release next month.
You Can’t Use My Name: The RSVO/PPX Sessions is the first in a series to focus on the work Hendrix did before The Animals’ Chas Chandler took him to London in 1966 and set him on the road to icon status.
The recordings were the subject of near-constant legal battles during Hendrix’s life, after he’d been signed up for $1 and a 1% royalty by PPX boss Ed Chalpin in 1965.
But his estate secured ownership in 2003. As a result, the 14-track compilation is the first fully-official edition of his work with the Squires, featuring recordings made between 1965 and 1967. It includes How Would You Feel and Welcome Home, which gave Hendrix his first recording credits, plus his early compositions Hornet’s Nest and Knock Yourself Out [Flying On Instruments].
The title You Can’t Use My Name comes from a studio conversation, included on the album ahead of the track. Hendrix, who’s already involved in litigation against Chalpin, tells the businessman to keep his name out of marketing material related to the release.
Veteran recording engineer Eddie Kramer once again handled production duties. He says: “We’ve taken every performance as far back as we could do in terms of source, stripped them back, remixed them and made the best representation of these recordings.
“It’s what I call ‘forensic audio’ – we use every available piece of outboard gear, plug-ins and whatever tools are available to us. It’s been hours and hours of intensive work, but it’s truly been fun.”
Hendrix said in 1967 of his time with Knight: “I was a backing musician playing guitar. I was always kept in the background – but I was thinking all the time about what I wanted to do.”
You Can’t Use My Name: Curtis Knight & The Squires (Featuring Jimi Hendrix) The RSVP/PPX Sessions is released on March 24 on CD and 150g vinyl LP. Hendrix is the cover star of the latest edition of The Blues Magazine, on sale now and also featuring Ian McLagan, Steve Earle, JJ Grey & Mofro and more.
How Would You Feel
Gotta Have A New Dress
Don’t Accuse Me
Fool For You Baby
No Such Animal
Knock Yourself Out [Flying On Instruments]
You Don’t Want Me
You Can’t Use My Name