Jimi Hendrix and Philosophy

Experience Required
by Theodore G. Ammon

Publisher: Open Court

Publication Date: March 01, 2018

ISBN: 9780812699562

Binding: Paperback

Availability: 7-14 Days

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In his brief career Jimi Hendrix transformed rock music, established himself as the greatest guitarist of all time, and left a rich legacy of original songs and dazzling recordings. In Jimi Hendrix and Philosophy, philosophers come to terms with the experience and the phenomenon of Hendrix, uncovering some surprising implications of Hendrix’s life and work. Much of this book is concerned with the restless polarities and dualities that reveal themselves through Hendrix.

His compositions display a preoccupation with the tragic nature of life, moving between the polarities of Schopenhauer’s The World as Will  and Idea and and Platonic philosophy. Jimi’s “guitar-being” has surprising implications for the philosophical relation between mind and body. There is in Hendrix a duality between innovation and tradition—innovation in psychedelic sonic adventures and tradition in the form of the blues. Hendrix exemplifies the interaction of technology and art, as seen in his use of feedback, varieties of noise, and backwards reel-to-reel playing. How much of the Hendrix phenomenon can be explained by the technological situation and how much by his own unique genius? Everyone knows about Hendrix’s use of feedback in the narrow sense, but feedback can also be viewed as a general phenomenon that arises in complex dynamical systems and emerges at the border of chaos and order.