This limited edition is released on the Experience Hendrix’s Dagger Records label. The Paris show was recorded by RTE, the national French broadcasting company on January 29, 1968. The Ottawa performances were taped by Hendrix himself during the group’s appearance at the Capitol Theater on March 19, 1968.
The 12-track live CD kicks off at Paris, France’s famed L’Olympia Theatre with Hendrix belting out a killer version of “Killing Floor.” He plays the Hendrix classics (although not classics at the time) “Foxy Lady” and “Fire” and closes the show with “Purple Haze.” No question that these – and other guitar-driven songs – rock, but it’s Hendrix’s slower “The Wind Cries Mary” and the wonderful blues jam “Red House” which really stand out.
Only three tracks are taken from the Canadian show: “Fire” and “Purple Haze.” And the guitar master also throws in a compelling version of the Beatles “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.”
When going into Live 1968 Paris/Ottawa you have to take into consideration that these tracks were recorded in 1968 and even though premastered, still are sparsely recorded in lo-fi. Nonetheless, the songs stand on their own merit and Hendrix’s guitar playing is just astounding. Not to mention his in-between banter with the crowd is pretty damn funny. For Hendrix collectors, this is another one to explore, but for the casual fan, they’d best stick to the many best of compilations.