Half a century after his death, Jimi Hendrix is still inspiring grown men to pick up Stratocasters and record albums that clearly bear his imprint. But much in music has happened since, as evidenced by Seattle-based Dudley Taft. This guy has the master’s chops, while being sufficiently inventive to inject originality into a format that has been done to death for 50 years, through the inclusion of grunge and even pop elements.

An example of the latter is I Will Always Love You, which readers will be pleased to learn is not a Celine Dion cover. But as a piano ballad vaguely reminiscent of Queen, featuring backing vocals from Taft’s daughter Ashley Charmae, it is the least representative track in this entire package.


“This guy has the master’s chops”


If you want to cut to the chase, listen to All For One, where the solo work is evident homage to the Voodoo Chile himself, right down to the suppressed feedback, or the shades of Nirvana to be heard on One In A Billion. But the album’s highlight – to my ears anyway – is Going Away Baby, the Jimmy Rogers song, which is of course a paint by numbers 12 bar. It’s nothing blues lovers won’t have heard thousands of times before but done supremely well. Similarly, The End Of The Blues is a cleverly executed take on a conventional minor chord progression.


If you are curious about how Hendrix might have sounded if he’d stayed around long enough to jam with Kurt Cobain, check this one out.