Hey Joe: Great drumming or overplaying?

Mongrel

Silver Member
...................Love you guys, but many of you of seem VERY certain that Mitchell is nailing the perfect drum part in this tune. But ask yourselves: if that drum performance is the perfect thing for that song, then what prompted the OP ask the question and create the post in the first place?

Why should the OP asking the question validate his view over ours?

Or put another way....

Should the fact that the OP created the post...automatically disqualify the drum part?

I, for one (among many) DO believe Mitch created a fantastic drum part in response to both the lyrics and content of the song, Jimi's guitar, and Noel's bass line.

Should that invalidate the OP's suggestion that Mitch's playing was "too busy"? Not at all...



lol
 

Mustion

Senior Member
Been a while since I listened to this so closely but I see nothing wrong with the fills. They actually do the opposite of what you suggest and truly do serve the music, fitting the cyclical structure of the song and serving as a bit of counterpoint to the main riff. And they increase in intensity as the song does, which itself is a long slow build... nah, I'd say this is a spot on approach by Mitch Mitchell here.
 

williamsbclontz

Silver Member
Hendrix once said that he liked the dynamic Mitchell/The Experience gave the their music, yes at times it’s all over the place and things are overplayed but that’s what made it work also and made it exciting. That freedom is what the band was about.

Which is probably why the core rhythm setup of ‘Band of Gypsys’ was very dissimilar when Hendrix briefly tried something new.

I hear guitarist debate the experience vs band of gypsys all the time

A lot of them say jimi was at his best with band of gypsys, and some would even say he was able to play at a higher level because of the trio used in band of gypsys

Miles gets overlooked a lot in my opinion. I understand Mitchell is a revolutionary drummer, but I'd argue Miles was equally or maybe even more influential than Mitchell. I mean, you do hear a lot of drummers play more in the style of Miles than Mitchell since then

A lot of people will disagree with me, but I'd challenge you with this. Miles had a lot more experience playing with groups like Buddy Guy, Electric Flag etc. And Miles was handpicked by jimi himself, while I think The Experience was set up for him

Both the Gypys and the Experience were completely different bands. And I love Mitch Mitchell. But I think Buddy Miles was extremely underrated, and if you think Mitchell overplayed, or you're more of a blues/soul fan, Buddy Miles is the man
 
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opentune

Platinum Member
Miles gets overlooked a lot in my opinion. I understand Mitchell is a revolutionary drummer, but I'd argue Miles was equally or maybe even more influential than Mitchell. I mean, you do hear a lot of drummers play more in the style of Miles than Mitchell since then

A lot of people will disagree with me, but I'd challenge you with this. Miles had a lot more experience playing with groups like Buddy Guy, Electric Flag etc. And Miles was handpicked by jimi himself, while I think The Experience was set up for him

Both the Gypys and the Experience were completely different bands. And I love Mitch Mitchell. But I think Buddy Miles was extremely underrated, and if you think Mitchell overplayed, or you're more of a blues/soul fan, Buddy Miles is the man

Well Mitchell wasn't setup for Jimi, he chose him....at the flip of a coin, over Aynsley Dunbar. They both auditioned. Just think how different THAT would have been.

Your point is well taken, but don't forget Jimi quickly released Buddy Miles and returned to Mitch in later 1970. Reason was not Miles's drumming, but that he was a leach, using Jimi's money and entourage (at least in the book I read).

Miles and Mitchell, two very different drummers for sure.
 

williamsbclontz

Silver Member
Your point is well taken, but don't forget Jimi quickly released Buddy Miles and returned to Mitch in later 1970. Reason was not Miles's drumming, but that he was a leach, using Jimi's money and entourage (at least in the book I read)

Interesting, I heard a story where Miles was released by Jimi's manager after a bad gig the manager sabatoged because he didn't like Miles? But I don't think anyone knows for sure, a lot of Jimi's family hated his manager and it's hard to get the truth from behind closed doors

At the end of the day, Mitchell and Miles both accomplished two different and great sounds for one of the best guitarist in history. I just hate how Miles always seems forgotten
 

Mongrel

Silver Member
I don't think Miles is "forgotten" as much as he was never known.

What I mean is that Jimi's work with "The Experience" was what propelled him into the spotlight and put him on the map. All those pop\rock hits were not going to be overshadowed by his later work with Band of Gypsys. Musically, The Experience had much broader appeal (and honestly, was just better music period for me and a lot of other people).

There are a fee good tunes that came out of that period (Machine Gun live anyone?), but when put up against say, "Axis: Bold as Love"? Not so much.

Doesn't really have as much to do with ability but timing.
 

blinky

Senior Member
Nah, no overplaying, just some intensity. Great drumming for my ears, I wish more music could be a bit more free and not so quantized and held back.
 

Juniper

Gold Member
Interesting, I heard a story where Miles was released by Jimi's manager after a bad gig the manager sabatoged because he didn't like Miles? But I don't think anyone knows for sure, a lot of Jimi's family hated his manager and it's hard to get the truth from behind closed doors

At the end of the day, Mitchell and Miles both accomplished two different and great sounds for one of the best guitarist in history. I just hate how Miles always seems forgotten

I'd have to disagree that Buddy Miles has been forgotten, we're discussing him on a thread about Mitch Mitchell. Buddy musically had his own thing/projects going on, where up to that point Mitchell was only known for Hendrix.

You do also need to factor in his time with Hendrix was brief.

Gerry Stickels (one of Hendrix's crew) sums up the Buddy Miles and Mitchell situation from Hendrix's point of view in the book 'Hendrix: Setting The Record Straight'

"Mitchell was reasonably secure because Hendrix had come to the realisation that he was the only drummer who could play around him. Hendrix's only gripe had been that Mitch was a bit of a light drummer. He didn't hit the drums as hard as, say, Buddy Miles.

Jimi needed to see if that style still fitted his music, but after a while realised that his music required someone who played the drums like he played guitar. Buddy Miles was like Ringo Star, a quality Player who was rock steady, but Hendrix needed someone who could challenge him"
 

Icetech

Gold Member
I think it's a near perfect drum part, my only issue is that there is this weird like left>right fast slapback panning on the snare that i find annoying, nothing to do with the playing though.

BTW... this is by far my favorite version of the song..

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FMcjPZgK9GM
 

rebonn

Senior Member
I think Mitch played it like no other would have. Buddy Miles and Billy Cox were solid players but a let down for me, just not having that spark of Mitch Mitchell and Noel Redding.
 

Icetech

Gold Member
I think Mitch played it like no other would have. Buddy Miles and Billy Cox were solid players but a let down for me, just not having that spark of Mitch Mitchell and Noel Redding.

Mitch actually reminds me a bit of moon on the drums, just less insane.. sort of a freedom, doing whatever he wants but making it fit in extremely well. The way in hey jot that he follows the guitar line to me is really a great touch.
 
Hey Joe by Hendrix came on the radio the other day and it was the first time I'd heard it in a good while. I remember marveling at it as a kid, impressed with all those fills, but now as I'm approaching 40, maybe my tastes have changed. As I listened the other day, I couldn't help feeling that a lot of those fills were unnecessary and the drummer should have stuck with "playing the song" as a lot of people talk about on this forum.

So what is it folks? A master class in in triplet and 32nd note fills or a load of unnecessary embellishments? How do you see it?

Somewhere in between, and more of a reflection of the musical times and approach by musicians who were coming from Jazz and Blues backgrounds in to the rock scene of the day.
Mitch did have a tendency to overplay a bit, but Jimi loved him so no harm, no foul in my book.
 

williamsbclontz

Silver Member
Somewhere in between, and more of a reflection of the musical times and approach by musicians who were coming from Jazz and Blues backgrounds in to the rock scene of the day.
Mitch did have a tendency to overplay a bit, but Jimi loved him so no harm, no foul in my book.

That's very inciteful and a very good point. When I was playing a lot of jazz in college I loved Mitchell and how much he used improvisation and played to the songs. And now that I'm much more into blues and soul type stuff buddy miles is my hero
 
I remember listening to "Third Stone from the Sun" when I was 16 and being pretty mesmerized by Mitch's playing. That was in 1987, so it's cool to think about how Jimi's music jumped in to the next generation without missing a beat, no pun intended.
 

Roadydad

Senior Member
IMHO, It suits the song.
Our band has been playing this, but with a twist, for the guitar solo, I change into swing time, and once done, return to the original beat for the remainder of the song.
It's heaps of fun.
 

DrumWhipper

Member
Hey Joe is by far my most favorite song to cover. It is a blast to play.
 

oldskoolsoul

Silver Member
The problem is more that most people nowadays just can not play like that anymore..

The focus should not be to criticize legendary drumming (Manic Depression....i mean..........), but to admire that sort of musical freedom, power and expression..

And, to learn from that..
 
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