A young screenwriter is invited to collaborate with Jimi Hendrix on a film, resulting in the wildest eighteen months of his life and coinciding with the tumultuous final months of Hendrix’s life.
In 1969, a twenty-something screenwriter with one movie credit to his name is approached by Jimi’s management after the legendary guitarist saw the obscure indie film in London and had the idea to collaborate on a project of his own. Jonathan Stathakis had no idea how thrilling the next eighteen months would be, as he and Hendrix formed not just a working partnership but a unique friendship. Hendrix ushered Jonathan into his world, where plenty of sex and drugs surrounded the rock ’n’ roll. From Woodstock to Electric Ladyland, Jonathan leads readers inside one of the craziest trips ever taken in music history.
While writing their script, Jonathan and Hendrix talked about life and where their roads were leading. Hendrix the performer was a flamboyant unpredictable force of nature. But Hendrix the friend was a thoughtful, frustrated, dedicated artist who oftentimes just needed somebody to talk to. Sadly, Hendrix’s journey ended far too soon, and his last phone call to Jonathan—just two days before his death in London—almost seemed to foretell his fate.
With many never-before-told stories and never-before-seen photographs, Jimi Hendrix comes back to life as you’ve never experienced him before. Backstage, on stage, and everyplace in between, get ready to ride through the purple haze and experience one of the most creative and powerful cultural eras in history. It’s Almost Famous with a Hendrix twist.
TV producer Stathakis's claim that his debut memoir will help "complete all that's ever been written about Jimi Hendrix" is as unrealistic as the movie plan that brought the two men together. Hendrix and Stathakis met in 1969, when the guitarist sought out the "wannabe filmmaker/writer" to help him write a movie script. Though the project (a Western with instrumental music instead of dialogue) eventually fizzled, it led the author to spend nearly two years in Hendrix's orbit before his 1970 death. Through accounts of their freewheeling brainstorming sessions and sidelong peeks into the star's private life, Stathakis portrays Hendrix as shy and humorous, complicating the well-known image of the luminous rock god. His behind-the-scenes commentary on such key cultural events of the era as Hendrix's performance of "The Star-Spangled Banner" at Woodstock adds definite interest. However, the storytelling suffers from abrupt transitions and the author's biases and odd takes, as when he absolves Hendrix of responsibility for his drug use and instead places blame on two women, Monika Dannemann and Devon Wilson, the latter of whom he dubs "the bitch from hell." The result is an off-kilter portrait that, despite its colorful insider detail, lacks nuance. This overpromises and underdelivers.