14 August 2010

Little Wing - Paid in Advance

Little Wing is a unearthly tune written by Jimi Hendrix. First recorded in 1967, it is no. 357 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

In the rendition of Little Wing below, tapping guitarist Carlos Vamos coaxes an other-worldly rendition from his axe.

Vamos' ethereal improvising caused one blown-away fan to wax existential:

Fan:I live a fast life, so I'm preparing for the end. You,sir, will play at my funeral.
Carlos Vamos:That's fine,you can book me now, but payment must be before the event.

Hendrix played Little Wing with a unique chord/melody guitar style where his guitar sounds like it is playing two parts. He did this by simultaneously laying down multiple complementary notes.
The unusual flanging sound of the lead guitar part is a result of the Doppler effect which is created using a rotating speaker cabinet, or Leslie speaker. ~From Wikipedia
Little Wing Covers
  • Tibor Tátrai plays Little Wing in a live performance. Stellar solo.
  • Carlos Vamos plays another (better) Little Wing acoustic tapping version.
  • The Corrs play their unplugged Little Wing with beautiful voices, flute, violin, and slide guitar.
  • Jim Richter plinks out a memorable Little Wing on octave mandolin.
  • Stevie Ray Vaughan's Little Wing is perhaps the most faithful tribute to the original Hendrix version but heightened by signature SRV licks.
  • Jamie Winchester & Hrutka Róbert perform a respectable rendition of Little Wing in Jamie's living room.
  • A young Sting with a pony tail plays Little Wing circa 1988.
  • Eric Clapton plays lead on a Little Wing cover featuring an '09 reincarnation of the legendary Allman Brothers Band.
  • Elijah Blue Allman is the son of Cher and Gregg Allman.. Elijah Blue absolutely rips in this stirring rendition.
Little Wing
by Jimi Hendrix

Well she's walking through the clouds
With a circus mind that's running round
Butterflies and zebras
And moonbeams and fairy tales
That's all she ever thinks about
Riding with the wind.

When I'm sad, she comes to me
With a thousand smiles, she gives to me free
It's alright she says it's alright
Take anything you want from me,

Fly on little wing,
Yeah yeah, yeah, little wing

Butterflies and zebras and moonbeams and fairy tales are about all one could hope for. I'd gladly pay Carlos in advance, but how do I know he'll outlive me?

1 comment:

  1. Thanks, man. What a great way to start a cool Sunday.

    Here's another one with Sting and Gil Evans at the Umbria Jazz Festival in 1987.


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