Thanks to some unique insight into reusing old tape to film with, many of Jimi Hendrix’s greatest moments on British television seem to be lost. Perhaps one of the most notable moments is when Hendrix appeared on Dusty Springfield’s show on this day in 1968 and completely brought the house down.
It Must Be Dusty, Springfield’s acclaimed show, was filmed for ITV and welcomed Hendrix and The Experience to the show on June 5th, 1968 for a very special performance. While much of the video documentation of the event has been lost to frugal producers, a warped clip of Hendrix and his host singing ‘Mockingbird’ has survived.
The footage, it has to be said, is not up to a great standard. The film comes from a Super 8 camera pointed directly at the original transmission and is therefore patchy at best. But thankfully, the audio of the entire show has been preserved and is now available to take a look at below.
As well as performing the somewhat novelty track ‘Mockingbird’, Hendrix and The Experience were also ready to start a few fires. “This is dedicated to Brian Jones,” begins Hendrix before launching into ‘Stone Free’ and Hendrix’s imposing vocal which rallies until relenting to let his guitar do the talking.
Then comes a comfortable chat, “Hey, whatcha been doing Jim?” says Springfield before the equally warm and friendly duet of the classic track ‘Mockingbird’ is brought out. Soon enough, the band once again take over and perform ‘Voodoo Child’ for the baying audience at home who undoubtedly gobbled it up with glee.
In 1968, many more Britons held Hendrix dear to their heart than in his native America and you can hear from the audience’s responses. It’s clear that Hendrix had won over Britain a long time ago and was now as big a star as anyone. Sadly, Hendrix would never get to reach his full potential and died just over two years later.
We can at least take some solace in the fact we have clips, however murky they may be, like this to remember when Jimi Hendrix was on top of the world.
Below you can find the footage of Hendrix and Dusty performing and below that an audiotape of the entire performance.