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Eddie Kramer On World Cafe

Eddie Kramer
Courtesy of the artist
Eddie Kramer

If you've ever wished you could be a fly on the wall at a recording session with Jimi Hendrix, it doesn't get much closer than this. From a technical standpoint, Eddie Kramer plugged in the wires, pulled the faders and placed the mics in studio with Hendrix. From a spiritual standpoint, he's responsible for capturing the electric genius of one of rock and roll's greatest.

Kramer had a hand in all the albums Hendrix made while he was alive, from The Jimi Hendrix Experience's 1967 debut Are You Experienced, through Cry of Love which he finished producing after Jimi died in 1970. In recent years, Kramer combed through the vaults of Hendrix recordings to put out songs or versions of songs that had never been released before. The brand new album, out today, called Both Sides of the Sky is co-produced by Kramer along with Jimi's step-sister, Janie Hendrix, and the vault keeper, John McDermott.

We hear some of that newly released music and talk to Kramer about his unbelievable career with Hendrix — everything from building Electric Lady Studios to recording Hendrix's legendary performance at Woodstock to the first time Eddie ever recorded Jimi after The Animals bassist-turned-music mogul Chas Chandler brought Hendrix from New York to London and helped put together the Experience with Mitch Mitchell and Noel Redding.

And just in case you're thinking Kramer is a one-artist wonder, he's also known for his long-time work with Led Zeppelin, that includes engineering Led Zeppelin II, and KISS, which began with producing and engineering their 1975 breakout album, Alive! Eddie has also worked with The Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton, David Bowie and more. You can start writing him your thank you note now.

Copyright 2021 XPN. To see more, visit XPN.

Talia Schlanger hosts World Cafe, which is distributed by NPR and produced by WXPN, the public radio service of the University of Pennsylvania. She got her start in broadcasting at the CBC, Canada's national public broadcaster. She hosted CBC Radio 2 Weekend Mornings on radio and was the on-camera host for two seasons of the television series CBC Music: Backstage, as well as several prime-time music TV specials for CBC, including the Quietest Concert Ever: On Fundy's Ocean Floor. Schlanger also guest hosted various flagship shows on CBC Radio One, including As It Happens, Day 6 and Because News. Schlanger also won a Canadian Screen Award as a producer for CBC Music Presents: The Beetle Roadtrip Sessions, a cross-country rock 'n' roll road trip.