Chickenfoot’s Kenny Aronoff Details His ‘Intense Two Days’ Working On Music For New Hendrix Biopic
The on again/off again Jimi Hendrix biopic starring Andre 3000 of Outkast appears to be back on track with a new working title of ‘All Is By My Side.’ We now have more details on the project, thanks to our recent interview with Chickenfoot’s Kenny Aronoff, who has been tapped for drumming duties on the music for the new film.
The veteran drummer tells us that he is part of a group of musicians working to face the challenge of authentically recreating the music of the Jimi Hendrix Experience. Aronoff was joined by fellow session vets Waddy Wachtel on guitar and Lee Sklar on bass for the initial sessions, which took place during a touring break from Chickenfoot.
“We basically had to become the Jimi Hendrix Experience -- which is ridiculous. First of all, you’re talking about, how are we going to get those sounds, how are we going to get the feel.... I honestly believe that you have to have grown up in that time, you have to have lived through that time to understand and feel it. It’s not just playing the notes, you have to understand and have felt the whole cultural movement in the ‘60s.”
The group spent two days in the studio with Andre 3000 and recorded a number of tracks, including ‘Wild Thing’ and ‘Killing Floor.’ The latter found them revisiting the period when Hendrix traveled to England and met up with many of his musical peers for the first time.
“He goes there and all of the sudden everybody - Zeppelin, the Who, Cream, everybody came down to see ‘who is this guy?’ I think it started where he got on stage with Cream and his manager pushed him up there and said ‘c’mon, show ‘em what you got.’ He goes up there and does this ‘Killing Floor’ song, wicked fast and he says to them something like ‘do you guys know the song ‘Killing Floor,’ and they were stumped.’”
For the Cream segment, Aronoff was suddenly marching to the beat of a different drummer.. “I had to be Ginger Baker. Waddy even said ‘don’t play like Mitch [Mitchell], you’ve got to play like Ginger.’ Because remember, Jimi is sitting in with Cream and these guys are trying to keep up with him, because these guys are like ‘who the f--k are you?’ So you’ve got to have an attitude like ‘hey, little f--ker from the USA, I can keep up with you.’ So stylistically, I’ve got to be Ginger Baker, which is a whole another guy. I mean, I flew to England to see the reunion when they played in London once, because I’m such a massive fan. That was an intense two days.”
Aronoff also shared his thoughts during the conversation on being a contender for the classic rock version of ‘The Avengers,’ where he’s facing off against former boss Meat Loaf, Tom Petty and Axl Rose.