Jimi Hendrix is one of Seattle’s most famous sons, so there are quite a few places you can visit in the Seattle area that are Jimi-related. With the anniversary of Jimi’s death coming on September 18, I decided to visit a few of these sites.
Opened in 2003, the Jimi Hendrix Memorial was a project spearheaded by his father Al. Originally buried in a normal grave at Greenwood Memorial Gardens, Al wanted to create a monument worthy of his son’s musical legacy. Unfortunately Al didn’t get to see the completed project—he died two months before it’s opening.
On each of the walls of the memorial, there are etchings of Jimi’s likeness along with lyrics from his most famous songs.
The center of the monument was supposed to house a statue of the guitar god, but it has never made it to the spot—if it even exists. Much of the Hendrix estate has been contested among the family members and many suggest the statue remained in limbo as a result of that family discord.
Visit the memorial at 350 Monroe Ave NE, Renton, WA 98056
The Hendrix’s home in Seattle is now the site of a couple of town homes. At the time of their construction (2001), the original home was moved from that site to an open lot directly across the street from Greenwood Memorial Gardens. The plan was to turn the home into a museum, but after a few years the house was never fixed up and the city ordered it’s destruction (2009). Now, the lot is a mobile home park.
Jimi died in London, but the family had him returned to Seattle for a ceremony and burial.
The former Dunlap Baptist Church is now the Medhane-Alem Evangelical Church. Still there, still basically the same.
Visit the church at 8445 Rainier Ave S, Seattle, WA 98118
In the Central District, just up from the church, is Jimi Hendrix Park. While not much is there now, the park is in phase one (of two) of a multi-million dollar renovation—meaning there is a whole lot more there than there used to be, and whole lot more to come. When I visited in September 2016 the park was still under construction and surrounded by chain link fence.
The main Hendrix attraction in Seattle is his statue on Broadway in Capitol Hill.
Originally commissioned by AEI Music in 1996, the statue was created by a local artist Daryl Smith whose shop was based in the Fremont neighborhood.
Hendrix’s pose is one pictured in a famous photograph from the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967 where he famously lit his guitar on fire. Hendrix was left-handed, but played a right-handed guitar strung backwards, a detail the artist got right.
Bronze Jimi still attracts fans 20 years after first being placed here.
Visit the statue at 1604 Broadway, Seattle, WA 98122
If you’re looking for a few more ways to get your Jimi fix, visit the Experience Music Project (known as the EMP). Also, you could visit Garfield High School, where Jimi was expelled for poor grades and spotty attendance. Other notable alumni from Garfield are Quincy Jones, Bruce Lee and Macklemore.
Once again, I'm taking part in the 2017 Distinguished Gentleman's Ride fundraiser for prostate cancer research.