Axis: Bold as Love, the second studio album by The Jimi Hendrix Experience was released in December of 1967. The record label chose an Indian based painting of the band for the cover because at the time, “All Things Indian” was the fad of the music world. The cover shows a painting of Jimi Hendrix, Noel Redding and Mitch Mitchell superimposed over a mass-produced Hindu painting.
Here is the actual photo of the band taken by photographer Kal Ferris and used by artist Roger Law for the painting.
Although he appreciated the symbolic meaning, Hendrix was disappointed with the album cover. He thought it would have been more appropriate if the painting showcased his Native American “Indian” heritage instead of Middle Eastern “Indian”. Despite Hendrix’ disappointment with the cover, it is one of the most popular Hendrix images around, gracing tons memorabilia, shirts and posters. Here is the full version of the painting.
This wasn’t the only time Hendrix was upset with an album cover. Click below to read about that one…