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Welcome...we are X-RAY IMIJ...(Ray Gervato on Guitar & Vocals, Jeff Summerton on Bass, and Mitch Phillippe on Drums) A South Jersey trio dedicated to recapturing both the studio and live sound of the ledgendary Jimi Hendrix Experience!!! Sure, we do not LOOK like The Experience...or DRESS like them, or USE exclusively their specific gear, but we do make a true effort to SOUND like them. Our passion and respect for their music has led us to an *honest claim at the attempted replication of much of the great music that they wrote, played, and covered. We DO play some...of Jimi's "Band Of Gypsy's" trio as well, however mostly we focus on "The Experience."
The original band name started out as "Deja-Voodoo" and we performed 1 gig (outdoors- and a burned guitar to begin the journey!) before discovering online that the name already was being used by a couple of bands out there. So I somehow fell into the concept of my "Xamining the music closely" or "looking within it" in lieu of playing anything...or ad-libbing. And the phrase just hit me: X-RAY(me :) and Jimi backwards is IMIJ (image)...so it rang true enough to use and it stuck! (Plus I was informed that an x-ray is both black AND white- and THAT was kind of a confirmation :)
I knew 20 years ago when I visited Jimi's resting grounds outside of Seattle that I would one day form a tribute band. It just took a while for the "image" to come into focus, slowly. In 1995, in Seattle I saw 2/3 of "The Experience at a reunion show featuring Randy Hansen as Jimi. This was the celebration his family put on as they finally secured the rights back to his music royalties, 25 years after his death! Almost on cue, as if to say thank you, a perfectly clear day suddenly saw stormclouds roll in- as the Hendrix songs began to ring out<)))...It never rained on the stage or the crowd, but it was like the wizard of oz (Jimi) *and the hair on the back of my neck stood up as Randy Hansen (who I later met in 2011 and reminded him about this) freely pointed to the sky with each *lightning bolt that touched the nearby horizon. Yes, at that moment/concert, it felt to me like Jimi was providing not only a "thank you" to his family, AND the *special effects with the dry lightning bolts, but also...an *ironic LIVE album cover of his "Midnight Lightning" LP! That lit an inspirational fire in me... that is scorched in my memory, and continues to this day.
(Oddly, about ten years prior in the 80's I had a very vivid dream about Jimi......where outside my bedroom window on my neighbors porch roof, he was jamming heavily in the rain (like on a stage about nine feet off the ground). Then we hung out and laughed and got stoned in the dream! *What I am about to say truly happened about 3 days later. I was 20 feet from that porch sleeping in my room in the daytime when a bolt of lightning hit that very porch (stage) & blew me out of bed! ...I awoke to thunder rolling away, looked out the window, and saw smoke coming out of a hole next to the porch where just a few days prior Jimi was playing in my dream! The first thing I thought of WAS, *the dream I had just had 3 days prior!!! And THAT was really how my true interest all began. (Oh yeah, my neighbor's stereo componants all got completely fried -btw!!!)
Myself and bassist Jeff also had the pleasure of meeting Jimi's bassist and army buddy Billy Cox on 2 occasions at "Experience Hendrix" shows. And then we had the priviledge of having him call US back-after he provided info for us to send him our (old) demo! During rehearsal one day (*the 5 minutes we took a break from playing Hendrix music) the phone rings...and it's Billy Cox! ...saying that he just got off the road, and that he had *dug what we were sounding like! As it turned out, it was another stroke of lightning to me as we were all shocked to hear his voice coming through -on speaker! (*A kind of feather in our cap :)
To those doubters who would denounce Jimi Hendrix's true importance and contribution to the full scope of today's music, (as a pioneer of his era- to the present) ...or, who say he was overrated, ARE simply ignorant of THE musical truth. His playing and creativity (*not to mention his recording techniques), WERE ahead of MOST others of that era and OPENED up new musical possibilities through his vast influence ON MANY a guitarist in the decades since his sudden death in late 1970. Thus from 1967-1970 going forward, one Jimi Hendrix, stood the entire world of electric guitar playing on it's head -with his bold creativity, playing, performances, and sheer stage prowess. Bold as Love indeed. Along with Noel Redding and Mitch Mitchell playing behind him, The Jimi Hendrix "Experience" still today, is one of the most powerful and truly innovative rock trio's ever. (The JHE evolved into the "Band Of Gypsy's" for a short period from late '69 to early '70, with Billy Cox on bass replacing Noel Redding for good- and with Buddy Miles on drums. But alas, Mitch Mitchell returned to complete the 3rd and final trio "lineup" in mid 1970, along with Jimi and Billy. We will be adding some of this ***third JH trio's studio recordings in due time, to our future setlists).
***Thank you for visiting our reverbnation page... and stay tuned for our Hendrix tribute CD coming later in 2014! ~
*And please feel free to visit our Jimi content on the X-RAY IMIJ / Facebook page. Thanx again!