Micky Dolenz Recalls Jimi Hendrix Being Booed As The Monkees’ Opening Act

Micky Dolenz recently sat down with Jimmy Fallon and recalled meeting Jimi Hendrix, suggesting the guitarist should be the Monkees‘ opening act. However, it turned out that the audience wouldn’t be a fan of that thought or Hendrix himself.

Dolenz had the chance to see the guitarist on stage before he became ‘the’ Jimi Hendrix, a household name in rock. The rocker had first heard the name Hendrix while visiting New York, and someone in his entourage suggested that he should go and see the guitar player taking the stage at Cafe A Go Go.

It seemed that Hendrix’s stage shows and eccentric playing forefronted his reputation since one of the first things that made its way to Micky was how Jimi would play the guitar with his teeth. So, when the Monkees icon went to the cafe and witnessed Hendrix on stage, he was amazed enough to suggest that the aspiring rocker should open for his band.

However, there were times when the anticipating crowds weren’t as eager to see the opening act perform, so when poor Hendrix took the stage before the Monkees and performed some of his future hits, the angry audience started booing him. It surely wasn’t the best stage experience for Jimi, especially early on in his career.

The rocker, on seeing a pre-fame Hendrix, suggesting he should open for them and witnessing all the boos he got from the audience:

“[He was] a wonderful, wonderful guy. I was in New York before he was ‘Jimi Hendrix,’ and somebody said, ‘You gotta go down to the Cafe A Go Go, see this guitar player playing with John Hammond’s band.’ I went down there, and sure enough… and they said he was known as this guy that plays guitar with his teeth.

We were looking for an opening act, and I suggested [to] them [that Hendrix should be the opening act]… [However] opening for the headlining act can be a problem sometimes for the opening act.

Well, it [Jimi’s show] was, I’m not kidding, it was [like], [imitates Jimi singing] ‘Purple haze come in my brain,’ [imitates the audience booing] ‘We want Davy, we want the Monkees!’ [imitates Jimi singing] ‘Foxy Lady…’ [imitates the crowd yelling] ‘Micky!’ It was embarrassing.

Even though Hendrix got a few boos from a reluctant audience, it might be fair to say that things didn’t get much better later in his career. Check out the time Ian Anderson recalled his upsetting last performance with Jimi, how Jethro Tull competed with the guitar icon, and why Hendrix was booed by the crowd.