“All Along the Watchtower” Live: Bill Cox’s Isolated Bass (1970)

Editor’s note: This week is Isolated Bass Week III. Follow along and be sure to check out all of the Isolated Bass Week archives too.

On July 4th, 1970, Jimi Hendrix performed at the Atlanta Pop Festival – just two months before the guitarist’s death.

By this point, Hendrix had assembled his Band of Gypsys, recruiting his Army buddy, bassist Billy Cox.

For a long time, fans traded this concert recording as a bootleg. In 1991, Warner Bros. released a four disc set which included the Atlanta concert and three others. The album, Stages is out of print.

Here is Cox’s isolated bass line for “All Along the Watchtower” from that performance. You can hear the vocals and the other instruments leak through in the background.

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Share your thoughts

  1. too bad the cameraman didn’t think billy was actually onstage.

    • André Follot

      Agreed. But notice virtually all films of shows, especially in those days, exclude camera time for bass players. It’s a shame, really….

  2. Jerry Bone

    If it’s true Hendrix played the bass track on the studio version
    I thought Jimi’s bass playing was extraordinary ..
    Would love to hear that bass track isolated ..

  3. André Follot

    It’s a shame the most boring song they played together was chosen for this article.
    Billy’s bass parts in “Power of Soul” we’re far more remarkable.