Black Diamonds, The

Band members                         Related acts

- Jerry Cole -- guitar


The Animated Egg

- The Inner Sounds of the Id (Jerry Cole)





Genre: psych

Rating: 4 stars ****

Title:  A Tribute To Jimi Hendrix

Company: Alshire

Catalog: S-5220

Year: 1971

Country/State: US

Grade (cover/record): VG+ / VG+

Comments: minor cover wear

Available: 1

Catalog ID: 5117

Price: $120.00


Released by Al Sherman and D.L. Miller's budget Alshire label, 1971's "A Tribute To Jimi Hendrix" stood as your typical exploitation set - shoddy artwork, minimal liner notes and no writing or performance credits.  That said, it's also one of psychplotation's crowning glories and album that should find equal favor among Hendrix's fans, fuzz fanatics, and psychploitation devotess.


The album certainly sported a lengthy and demented history.  Giving you the executive summary, most of these tracks were written by guitarist Jerry Cole, though Sherman and Miller shamelessly helped themselves to the credits.  Cole was best known as an in-demand sessions player and as a member of the short lived The Inner Sounds of the Id (see separate entry).  While a member of The Id, Cole wrote and recorded a large number of songs; most which weren't included on The Id's sole 1967 album for RCA.  When the band broke up producer/manager Paul Arnold apparently took off with the unreleased material, subsequently shopping it around to various labels, including Alshire.  Then best know for releasing millions of 101 Strings albums on the American public (which was more than eager to lap them up), by the mid-1960s Alshire executives saw an opportunity to tap into the growing youth market.  Some of The Id material was subsequently recycled for a series of Alshire releases including The 101 String's "Astro Sounds From Beyond the Year 2000" and The Animated Egg's self-titled album.  More than willing to cash in on Jimi Hendrix's untimely death, many of those same tracks were slapped with new titles and released credited to The Black Diamonds.


Okay, okay ... what about the music?  Well, as mentioned the Hendrix angle was nothing more than a marketing gimmick.  The only real Hendrix connection was the fact that several of these previously released tracks were given new Hendrix-ish titles ('Hazy Color', 'Flame' and 'Experienced You'). That shouldn't scare anyone off since Cole was a truly first-rate guitarist.  Capable of handling a mind numbing array of styles, he managed to out-Hendrix the master on 'Hazy Color', while finding time to display equally impressive folk-rock (yes, Cole played on a couple of Byrds albums), rockabilly ('V.I.P.'') and jazzy chops throughout the set.  All ten tracks were worth hearing with the highlights including The Byrds-styled jangle rocker 'Burp Gun', the cool jazzy 'Hey Horse' and the truly stunning reverb-powered 'Let's All Mix Together'.  Elsewhere 'Lady Wolf' was nothing more than an uncredited cover of The Spencer Davis Group's 'Gimme a Little Lovin''.


"A Tribute To Jimi Hendrix" track listing:
(side 1)

1.) Hazy Color (instrumental)   (Al Sherman - D.L. Miller) - 2:59

2.) Flame (instrumental)   (Al Sherman - D.L. Miller) - 2:55

3.) Lady Wolf (instrumental)   (Al Sherman - D.L. Miller) - 2:08

4.) Experienced You (instrumental)   (Al Sherman - D.L. Miller) - 2:28

5.) Turn It Up (instrumental)   (Al Sherman - D.L. Miller) - 1:44


(side 2)
1.) Burp Gun (instrumental)   (
Al Sherman - D.L. Miller) - 2:10

2.) V.I.P. (instrumental)   (Al Sherman - D.L. Miller) - 1:50

3.) Devil Eyes (instrumental)   (Al Sherman - D.L. Miller) - 2:18

4.) Let's All Mix Together (instrumental)   (Al Sherman - D.L. Miller) - 3:25

5.) Hey Horse (instrumental)   (Al Sherman - D.L. Miller) - 3:25