Re: The Big Lie (multiple posts)
Sun, 19 Apr 1998 12:48:16 -0400

Interesting post by David Biddle on Jimi Hendrix and the 60s....
But I was troubled by part of his conclusion:

>As to the Lying and simplistic discussion of Hendrix since his death
>nearly 30 years ago, we must not let the history of alternative reality
>and cosmic consciousness disappear from the face of the earth, but we
>also need to let the establishment have the myths they need to survive.
>Those of us who are Experienced know what Jimi was doing with drugs and
>we know how dangerous it was (and still is) to do those things. Worst
>thing about his death is that it was completely unnecessary.

Precisely why to we "need to let the establishment have the myths they need to
survive?" Who, would you say, IS the establishment? Why is their survival
desirable? Don't we, in fact, need to confront and counter those myths because
they disempower people today?

Ted Morgan

Department of Political Science
Maginnes Hall #9
Lehigh University
Bethlehem, PA 18015
phone: (610) 758-3345
fax: (610) 758-6554

From: Wally Sass

Michael Wright writes:

>First you say that the belief that Hendrix was a drug addict is a
>"big lie." Then you say he did "ALOT" of drugs.
>I have several questions:
>1. When does doing "ALOT" of drugs cross the line into abuse
>or addiction?

I'm not competent to give an authoritative answer to this question: I
do not know. According to the official autopsy Jimi Hendrix "was not
addicted to heroin at the time of his death'. There was no heroin in
Jimis autopsied body. There is absolutely NO documented evidence
that he was EVER addicted to heroin. It's an 'Urban Myth'. A falsehood.
A lie.

>2. I'm no Hendrix historian, but didn't he die of an overdose?

Quoting from the death certificate, Jimi Hendrix died of 'inhalation
of vomit'. He'd been unable to sleep and was given some sleeping pills.
After taking a few and still remaining sleepless, he took a few more;
seven in all. Sleeping on his back, after vomiting in his sleep he was
unable to roll over and so suffocated.

>Or is this belief another "big lie"?

This belief is the big lie I was referring to, yes.

>We know he died young,

He was only 27.

>or was that Hendrix I saw with Elvis last week at the bowling alley?

? I'm afraid you've rolled a gutter ball with this one.:-)))
Is there a point in the middle of all this sarcasm?

One sees (and hears) Jimi Hendrix everywhere. His influence on
numerous and diverse musical forms (Rock, Pop, Blues, Soul, Rap,
Grunge, Funk, Punk, and Modern Rock, to name a few) continues
undiminished to this day.

>3. Regardless of the ethnic characteristics of users, and putting
>aside issues of criminalization, is recreational drug use a healthful

Your point being, I presume, that recreational drug use is NOT 'a healthful
practice'? As Angelica Huston put it:

"Of course drugs were fun. And that's what's so stupid about
anti-drug campaigns:They don't admit that. I can't say I feel
particularly scarred or lessened by my experimentation with drugs.
They've gotten a very bad name."

I would personally echo her sentiments. Like anything else, one persons
use is anothers abuse. For every person you can point to who died of
'drugs' (do you include booze in your anti-drug philosophy?), I can point
to one who survived and profited from the experience.

But, for the sake of discussion (only), I will concede this point:
*Recreational drug use is not a 'healthy practice'.*


Someone else, in a post notable for its dogmatic rightousness, writes:

>If Jimi was not a junkie, Mr. Ed was not a horse.

According to the official autopsy, Jimi Hendrix "was not addicted to

Poor Wilbur's going to have a few questions, huh?

From: Jango <>

Michael Wright wrote:

> 2. I'm no Hendrix historian, but didn't he die of an
> overdose? Or is this belief another "big lie"? We
> know he died young, or was that Hendrix I saw with
> Elvis last week at the bowling alley?

No. Hendrix died of two things, as best I can tell. First of all he seems
to have mixed barbituates and alcohol (I have read several accounts
stating that the barbs were basically hard core sleeping pills because
Jimi often had trouble with his sleep schedule). In doing this he managed
to pass out and then later vomit. When his girl friend found him, he was
apparently alive, but she didn't think to turn him over, so while she
called for help, he lay there, face up, choking on his own vomit.

Truly pitiful. Was he a drug addict? Doubtful. Was he a user? Yes. Did he
know what he was doing? Not likely. Was it an overdose? No, it was a
really stupid thing to do.

What is most pitiful though, is that Jimi Hendrix was barely 27 years old
when he died. He had been the apex of rock music for barely 4 years.
Think about it. Stones, Dead, Allman Bros., and many others have now been
(or were) around for well over 30 years. Where would music be if Jimi had
lived? Things would be completely different.

David Biddle
Philadelphia, PA

David Biddle
7366 Rural Lane
Philadelphia, PA 19119
215-247-2974 (voice and fax)