CLEVELAND, Ohio — It may be hard to believe now, but there was a time when Jimi Hendrix wasn’t such a widely known guitar god.
By 1968, Hendrix had become a big star in Europe. But he had yet to breakthrough in the United States. All that changed after The Jimi Hendrix Experience’s 1968 American Tour.
The latest episode of the CLE Rocks Podcast looks back on that whirlwind run that took Hendrix and his bandmates coast to coast, eventually setting the stage for some of the finest performances of their career, including a memorable stop in Cleveland and a series of dates at San Francisco’s Winterland Arena that fall.
[Listen to CLE Rocks Presents…Jimi Hendrix’s 1968 American Tour is part of our CLE Rocks Podcast series. Listen to the entire episode and more on Apple, Spotify or Acast]
The Jimi Hendrix Experience’s stop in Cleveland on March 26, 1968 included two sold-out shows at Music Hall. But Hendrix made sure to immerse himself in the city. He took part in an impromptu jam session at storied music venue Otto’s Grotto, smoked a joint with Leonard Nimoy, aka Spock from “Star Trek,” and bought a Corvette Stingray from a Shaker Heights dealership that he would total later that year.
The Cleveland shows came during a period where Hendrix established his star power in the States, going on to become the highest-paid performer in music.
CLE Rocks revisits some of the most legendary concerts and tours to come through Northeast Ohio. You can check out some of the previous episodes below and visit our pages on Acast, Apple, Spotify and other major podcast platforms:
- The Beatles at Cleveland Stadium
- Prince’s Purple Rain Tour
- Pearl Jam at Peabody’s DownUnder
- Tina Turner’s 1985 comeback tour
- KISS’ Blizzard of 1978 concert at Richfield Coliseum
- Nirvana at Empire Concert Club 1991
- The Rolling Stones’ 1972 American Tour
- Bruce Springsteen’s 1978 Darkness Tour
- Led Zeppelin’s “Destroyer”