Noel Redding, the English bassist best known for playing in the
Jimi Hendrix Experience between 1966 and 1969, died yesterday of
unknown causes; he was fifty-seven.
Redding was born Christmas Day 1945 in Kent, England. Along with
drummer Mitch Mitchell, he was recruited by Hendrix’s manager, Chas
Chandler, to form the Experience, and one year after the band
started, it charted in the U.K. with “Hey Joe,” which reached
Number Six. The band’s debut album, Are You Experienced?,
reached Number Five, and the Experience reached legendary status in
the U.S. after an appearance at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967.
The band continued its successful ways with the release of two
albums in 1968, Axis: Bold as Love and Electric
Ladyland, which charted at Number Three and Number One
Amid creative and personal squabbling, Redding left the
Experience in 1969 and started Fat Mattress, who released a
self-titled album that year and Fat Mattress 2 in 1970.
Redding then formed the Noel Redding Band, which issued a pair of
recordings, Clonakilty Cowboys in 1975 and
Blowin’ in 1976.
Redding then moved to Ireland where he spent the remainder of
his life. Relations between the bassist and the Hendrix estate were
strained from the time of his departure from the band until his
death. Redding maintained that he was underpaid for his services in
the band, and that he had received no royalties from those three
As a member of the Jimi Hendrix Experience, Redding was inducted
into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992.