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Noel Redding - 25th December 1945 - 11th May 2003


Noel Redding Folkestone's Own -

Noel Redding died Sunday May 11 2003 at his home in Ireland at the age of 57.

In Folkestone and throughout Kent, Noel will be particularly missed by his old friends from his earlier days who have kept up the stories and mystique of the skinny kid from the Marsh who really "made it".

During my time in the music business it seems that everyone knew him, with his fuzzy hairdo pale complexion and quiet personality. Those that didn't know him would pretend they did, his name synonymous with success (Folkestone Style) but I suppose the person who knew him better than anyone else over the past few years his girlfriend, who said in the press " “Noel was an extremely gentle and gracious soul. He had a kind of chivalry and nobility about him and he was kind to everyone bar none, people and animals alike."

Noel, famous as the Bass player for the Jimi Hendrix Experience between 1966 to 1969 had a varied and torturous career in the music business.

At 9 Noel, played the violin at school, and then mandolin at about 12 and guitar at fourteen years old. His first public appearances were at Hythe Youth Club then at Harvey Grammar School where he was a student due to take his GCE's.

Starting in Hythe as a young skinny teenager his first local bands were
The Strangers: with John"Andy" Andrews (Bass)
The Lonely Ones: 1961 - John Andrews ( Bass) - Bob Hiscocks ( Rhythm guitar) - Mick Wibley ( Drums) - Pete Kircher ( Vocals and in'63 drums) The Lonely Ones made (45 EP vinyl, private record)at the Hayton Manor Studio in Stanford Kent in 1963.
Derek Knight on vocals, Trevor Sutton on Drums?, Noel Redding on Lead Guitar and John Andrews on Bass .
Ttacks: Some Other Guy - Money - Talking About You - Anna

The Loving Kind: 1966 with Pete Carter Drums - Jim Leverton Bass - Derek Knight Vocals

At 17 Noel had gone professional and on touring in Scotland and Germany, in the clubs with The Burnettes and The Loving Kind.

Noel was the first person to join the Experience and that was by accident. He had gone to audition on guitar with Eric Burdon of The Animals and got the job as Jimmy's Bass Player. The rest is History.

After the split of the band Noel and Jimmy remained friends. Noel went on to form - Fat Mattress with another Kent musician Neil Landon on vocals , Jimmy Leverton from Dover and Eric Dillon, the drummer, from Swindon.

Whilst living in Los Angeles. Noel joined "Road" a Heavy Metal outfit. They released one Album : Road (1972) Kama Sutra

Noel moved to Ireland in 1972

He formed The" Noel Redding Band" with Eric Bell from Thin Lizzy, Dave Clark and Les Samson. They did two albums for RCA, three tours of Holland, two tours of England, one tour of Ireland and a ten week tour in America. This Ending in tears after a dispute with their management company .

During the last 30 years, Noel has been living in a large house in West Cork . He put the property up for sale in 2002 so he and partner Deborah McNaughton could move to a smaller place in the country. Living on the rental of a cottage on the property and royalties from music he wrote with other artists he has also supplemented his income for the last 17 years playing weekly at a local pub. Regular drummer with this band was Les Sampson from Ashford who also moved to Cork some years ago.

Noel has featured in many recordings over the years including

The Loving Kind
45s/ Singles: Accidental Love/Nothing Can Change This Love (Piccadilly 7N 35299)1966
I Love The Things You Do/Treat Me Nice (Piccadilly 7N 35318) 1966
Ain't That Peculiar/With Rhyme And Reason (Piccadilly 7N 35342)1966

The Jimi Hendrix Experience
Are You Experienced? (1967) Polydor - Axis Bold As Love (1967) Polydor - Electric Ladyland (1968) Polydor - Smash Hits (1968) Polydor - Radio One (1989) Castle Communications

Fat Mattress
Fat Mattress (1969) Polydor - Fat Mattress II (1970) Polydor
45/Singles:Naturally/Iridescent Butterfly (Polydor 56352) 1969 - Magic Lanterns/Bright New Way (Polydor 56367) 1970 - Highway/Black Sheep Of The Family (Polydor 2058 053) 1970

Road (1972) Kama Sutra

Noel Redding Band (AKA The Clonakilty Cowboys)
Clonakilty Cowboys (1975) RCA - Blowin (1976) RCA
45s/Singles: Roller Coaster Kids/Snowstorm ( RCA 2662) - Take It Easy/Back On The Road Again (RCA PB 9026)

In his book and publicly he has spoken openly about his disappointment in his being cut off from the profits of the continued sale of the Hendrix recordings. He was forced to sign away his royalties in 1974. and later had to sell bass guitar he used during that time.

Book: Are You Experienced? (Redding/Appelby)Fourth Estate Books

A statement was released by "Experience Hendrix!, the family enterprise which manages the Hendrix estate, it said, "We at Experience Hendrix mourn the loss of Noel Redding. His contributions to the Jimi Hendrix Experience shall never be forgotten. Our prayers go out to his family and friends during this difficult time."

Noel's Manager told that the battle over money dating to Redding's time with Hendrix was just about to enter a new phase. "We were about to be in court over it, and we were on top,” Grant said. “And now he will never know how it turns out. I don't know what will happen with it now." Grant, who'd been Redding's manager for the past two years, added, "I was on a mission to right the wrongs that had been done to him."

Despite his bitterness about the way he thought the music business had treated him, Redding always understood what his music meant to fans, according to Jim Fricke, curatorial manager at the Experience Music Project (EMP) in Seattle. "I don't think he could have missed the impact of what he had done and the joy he'd brought to people's lives, 'cause, you know, he was a recognizable figure,” Fricke said. “And particularly coming through the Jimi Hendrix gallery at Experience Music Project, people lit up, and everyone kind of gravitated to him."

The EMP features among its permanent displays a stage set with Redding's bass and amplifier alongside Mitch Mitchell's drums and the guitar Hendrix played at the original Woodstock festival in 1969. Fricke said that seeing his equipment in such a place of honor made Redding proud. "He was really proud, I think, to have this pride of place in a major cultural institution--that, in itself, you know, he seemed to get some gratification from,” Fricke said. “But just walking through the building, you know, it's just person after person coming up to him and wanting to shake his hand and all of that. So, I think he realized the impact that he'd had."

Of his client and friend, Grant said, "In working with him, I knew him as a very kind, considerate man, especially given what happened to him with royalties and such. He struggled at various times to reap the benefits of that part of his career...He's now with Jimi, I guess, and they'll be comparing notes."

...Christopher Ashman

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