Talks to be held over celebration concert to mark 50th anniversary of Jimi Hendrix’s performance in Dereham

Undated file photo of rock guitarist Jimi Hendrix . See PA story SHOWBIZ Auction. PA Photos

Undated file photo of rock guitarist Jimi Hendrix . See PA story SHOWBIZ Auction. PA Photos - Credit: PA

Enthusiasm is growing in Dereham over a possible celebration event to mark the 50th anniversary of guitar legend Jimi Hendrix's performance in Dereham.

A poster advertising the Jimi Hendrix concert in Dereham.

A poster advertising the Jimi Hendrix concert in Dereham. - Credit: Archant

Fans, including many who attended the show, have been sharing their memories of the concert on Saturday, October 7, 1967, which is seen by many as a pinnacle moment in Dereham and Norfolk's musical history.

Now talks are being held about recreating the concert, with a Hendrix tribute act on that date, later this year.

Norfolk Blues Society founder Stewart Aitken, who is the bass player in Against the Grain, said: 'We have performed Hendrix tribute nights, including on the 20th anniversary of Hendrix's death, at Norwich Arts Centre and would be up for getting involved in a tribute night on the 50th anniversary of his performance in Dereham.

'I think it would be a fantastic idea and I'm sure there would be a lot of interest.'


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Mr Aitken said the Norfolk Blues Society would meet to discuss the possibility of organising a celebration event.

Dereham Memorial Hall has been suggested as a possible venue. Tim Cara, chairman of Friends of Dereham Memorial Hall, said: 'I saw Hendrix myself at the Royal Albert Hall and I'd love to hear that sound again.

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'I would certainly be up for discussing the idea further.'

The Jimi Hendrix Experience performed at The Wellington Club, in Dereham Market Place, where Dereham's Hollywood Cinema now stands.

The concert was organised by Brian Cross, a well-known Dereham businessman.

It was originally due to be held the January, when Hendrix was relatively unknown. Hendrix cancelled as he had to record a follow-up to Hey Joe. That song was the smash hit Purple Haze and when Hendrix arrived in Dereham he was a global superstar.

Hendrix fans from all over the country walked, hitch-hiked and caught buses to Dereham to see the show.

Stories have resurfaced of how Hendrix delivered a lively performance, with extravagant solos, playing guitar with his teeth and smashing spotlights and the club's ceiling.

Were you at the concert?

Share your memories with us by e mailing adam.lazzari@archant.co.uk

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