Why ELP Said No To Hendrix

Emerson, Lake and Palmer resisted pressure to invite guitar hero Jimi Hendrix into the band, they've revealed and it's not just because they'd have had to call the band Help.

Why ELP Said No To Hendrix
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Emerson, Lake and Palmer resisted pressure to invite guitar hero Jimi Hendrix into the band, they've revealed and it's not just because they'd have had to call the band Help. Keyboard wizard Keith Emerson worked with Hendrix when they toured together in a concert package in 1967 in a bill featuring the Experience, Pink Floyd, the Move, Amen Corner and Emerson's band the Nice. Experience drummer Mitch Mitchell later suggested the tie-up. Emerson tells the Daily Mail: "Mitch talked about getting him to join, but quite honestly, I wasn't that interested. I had jammed with Jimi he was so loud he'd have drowned me out." Bassist Greg Lake says: "Keith and Jimi both understood music brilliantly, but there would have been clashes. "Plus, we'd have had to call ourselves HELP..." Emerson, Lake and drummer Carl Palmer are currently rehearsing for their 40th anniversary show, which takes places at Classic Rock magazine's High Voltage festival on July 24-25. They're promising a show which lives up to their larger-than-life legend. Emerson, who at 65 is the oldest of the trio, says: "Our age is a factor. If we don't do it now we might not get the chance again." Palmer, 63, who's two years older than Lake, adds: "It's great to be playing again and High Voltage is the right stage for us." The festival, which takes place in London's Victoria Park, is co-headlined by ZZ Top and will feature Heaven and Hell's final concert, in memory of singer Ronnie James Dio. Thanks for the report to Rock Radio.

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    travislausch
    There's no denying that Hendrix was an amazing player, but I don't think he'd ever have fit in with ELP's style. Jimi was too steeped in his R&B/blues-rock style, while ELP were deeper into classical music. So either ELP would have sounded nothing like they do today, or Hendrix would have had to make a complete about-face in every aspect of his playing style, which could have had bad results.
    slaveskinJACKET
    jrcsgtpeppers wrote: woah there hold the phone a tour consisting of both hendrix and pink floyd??? what id give to have been alive then....
    It sounds cool, but it was before Pink Floyd really started making good music. They were really just a psychedelic-noise band back then. They had virtually no decent original material and were practically incapable of playing others'. David Gilmour wouldn't have even been in the band yet, in '67.
    miumiu
    Yeah, I have read about this HELP thing for years. I guess Jimi chose not to pursue it. They all played at a Love and Peace festival and an Open Air festival both in Germany after the above mentioned jam that Emerson talked about. Jimi H. died a month or so later. Kind of a bust before it started. But it does make for good press. I agree with Gezzy and travis above that they would have had a hard time to make room for all of each other. I include Lake and Palmer with Emerson and Hendrix, since they all are strong musicians (and, no doubt, personalities).
    jrcsgtpeppers
    woah there hold the phone a tour consisting of both hendrix and pink floyd??? what id give to have been alive then....
    UnaLaguna
    I thought it was mainly due to scheduling issues - Hendrix had a commitment to touring while the others didn't, or something.
    slaveskinJACKET
    ---Why ELP really said "No" to Hendrix--- So they could refer to the situation as self-promotion for a show, 40 years later
    GezzyDiversion
    Emerson and Hendrix are both lead players, I doubt they would have been able to make room for each other in the songs.