Picture this – When Arthur Brown met Jimi Hendrix

Arthur Brown shares a photo moment with Jimi Hendrix

Kyle Fisher
  • By Kyle Fisher
  • 18 Sep 2013
  • min read
I’m pretty sure this picture was taken at the Saville Theatre, London, on 27 August 1967. At the time Jimi and I were stable mates at Track Records, but we hadn’t yet become the friends that we would later.

On that particular night the record label had put on a bash for us in between the performances. All of the Jimi Hendrix Experience were there, along with various others from the bill including Tomorrow, Georgie Fame, Eric Burdon and The Animals, Denny Laine’s Electric String Band and Dantalion’s Chariot. It was a very wonderful time and of course there was a lot of naughtiness and misbehaviour going on. This photo is a precursor to all of that.

Jimi and I hit it off straight away when we met. You can really see the spirit in this picture – there was something magical between us. We were both people who loved performing and we were enjoying the openness of the times. Lots of musicians came together to play in the sixties then and the audiences loved it. For instance, I remember doing an incredible jam with Frank Zappa and John Lee Hooker – it’s just how it was then. Suddenly you’re on stage with your heroes!

As our friendship progressed, I got to sing and jam with Jimi at various clubs and festivals in the UK and US. Our understanding of each other began to grow. We even began to work on a band together but, sadly, it never quite happened.

By the summer of ‘68 we were both high in the charts at the same time – himself with the Experience and me with The Crazy World of Arthur Brown - and were booked for lots of American appearances.

Once I sang with him at The Scene Club in New York and I remember someone coming up afterwards and saying, ‘Wow! A festival of joy!’

When we played together his energy took us both into a very positive place - he was very inspirational. We all know about his rock capacity, but he also had a great capacity for freeform music. That opened up a lot of other musicians who were on stage with him.

Jimi was very unselfish musically and never tried to dominate you. The energy was so high that our music would get carried into a different dimension without him ever having to push or direct. I think some of it was down to his charisma. Men respected him because of his musical ability but the ladies just loved him. There was a point where he could’ve done absolutely anything he wanted to.


Singer, songwriter and outlandish performer Arthur Brown is best known for his 1968 number one hit Fire – a song that defined the first great epoch of experimental pop. During the late sixties and early seventies his group, The Crazy World of Arthur Brown, graced festival stages across America, playing alongside the likes of Bob Dylan, The Soft Machine and Pink Floyd.

This year Arthur has been working on new material, using crowd-funding platform PledgeMusic to raise the funds to release an album entitled Zim Zam Zim.


Read our interview with Arthur Brown