If there is an audio CD that represents being one of the best tribute albums ever made it is Gary Moore’s Blues For Jimi. Recorded at the London Hippodrome on October 25, 2007, this release captures a once-in-a-lifetime concert of Moore playing twelve Hendrix classics in his honor, with the help of guest musicians Billy Cox and Mitch Mitchell (the event was to celebrate the launch of The Jimi Hendrix Experience – Live At Monterey DVD). And extra poignancy is added when you consider that both Moore and Mitchell have now joined Hendrix in the great gig in the sky.

Upon hearing Moore’s renditions of “Purple Haze” and “Foxy Lady,” it can be best described as being as close to the Hendrix style as humanly possible. It’s only when Moore’s less distinctive voice comes into play do you know it’s not the real Jimi. However, Moore is on every little Hendrix note, and adding the right feel to every great guitar lead. In fact, the guitar lead in “Manic Depression,” for instance, is so lofty and electric that it can have the effect of being like that old Memorex ad where the listener’s long hair is flying back from the sonic effect of the music. Ditto on the lead jams on “Voodoo Child” as well.

The kickers are when Moore adds a little more of his touch to tunes like “I Don’t Live Today” and the more peppy “Fire.” Then there’s Cox and Mitchell adding extra insight with “Red House,” “Stone Free” and “Voodoo Child.” Very nice.

But when it comes right down to it, Blues For Jimi is a well-written love letter from one great guitarist to another.


Label: Eagle Rock (order Audio CD here)