Normally, we don't care much for cover bands or tribute acts. Not that there's anything inherently wrong with a group of musicians choosing to forgo creating original music in lieu of capitalizing on the artistic works of others; it's just that nine times out of 10, there's nothing worth writing about besides the mad lib "(Cover band) plays the music of (famous rock stars) and does so (Poorly/Adequately/Well)."
We'll break that rule, though, for Experience Hendrix.
For more than a decade, Experience Hendrix -- put on by Experience Hendrix L.L.C., led by President/CEO/Jimi's sister Janie Hendrix -- has gathered marquee guitarists to collaborate and otherwise cover the music of Hendrix. This time around, the project brings several impressive names to town, and will stop for a concert at the Mesa Arts Center on Tuesday, Oct. 7.
Paying tribute to Jimi on this tour are Billy Cox, who played bass on almost all of Jimi's landmark albums; legendary blues man Buddy Guy; metal shredder and former Ozzy Osbourne guitarist Zakk Wylde; Kenny Wayne Shepherd; Jonny Lang; and more.
Yes, having guys like Wylde and Lang might seem a touch off. Wylde is many things -- possessor of staggering metal chops, and owner of kickass guitar among them -- but he's not a blues player. How do sweep picking and tapping transfer to Hendrix's songs, where blues is the foundation on which every song is built? The answer depends on your taste. But there's no denying that having Guy and Cox on the bill lends a legitimacy to this project, so maybe the spirit of Hendrix's music just might shine through.
Tickets go on sale to the general public on Saturday, June 21, at 10 a.m. Visit www.mesaartscenter.com or call the box office at 480-644-6500 for tickets.
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