The Story Of Jimi Hendrix Opening For The Monkees Proves He Was Ahead Of His Time

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An Unlikely Pair

In a nutshell, The Monkees were looking for an opening act for their 1967 US tour and someone told Micky Dolenz about Jimi Hendrix’s guitar showmanship. While Jimi left a good impression, Micky couldn’t remember his name. But after watching his legendary performance at the Monterey Pop Festival, Micky suggested that they hire his band to open for them. Besides, Jimi could help them create buzz in the rock community.

Jimi wasn’t exactly thrilled with The Monkees’ music but his manager convinced him to do it because while he was already making a name for himself in the UK, no one knew him in America.

“Oh God, I hate them! Dishwater….You can’t knock anybody for making it, but people like the Monkees?” – Jimi Hendrix in an interview with Melody Maker

On paper, it looks like a win-win situation for both acts. Unfortunately, the fans were somehow confused with Jimi Hendrix and instead, kept on yelling “We Want Davy!” when The Jimi Hendrix Experience were on stage. We can’t blame them though. They went to the concert to watch the teenyboppers and instead got themselves a guy who looked like he was making love to his guitar.

“You can’t imagine what it must have been like for an act like Jimi Hendrix opening for the Monkees. It was evident from the start that we were witness to a rare and phenomenal talent. I would stand in the wings and watch and listen in awe.” – Micky Dolenz

Eventually, Jimi got fed up so he flipped off the audience and stormed out. He didn’t finish all the dates. It wasn’t long before “Are You Experienced?” and “Purple Haze” started inching their way to the top of the charts. Besides, rumors that there was tension between Jimi and The Monkees aren’t true. There definitely was no bad blood whatsoever.