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Noel Redding

Noel Redding was born on 25 December 1945 in Folkestone, Kent, England. His full birth name was Noel David Redding. At the age on nine, Redding played the violin at school, before taking up the mandolin and the guitar. He first performed at the Hythe Youth Club and at Harvey Grammar School. He was a member of various local bands starting with The Strangers, with John Andrews on bass. He was then in The Lonely Ones in 1961 with John Andrews on bass again, Bob Hiscocks on rhythm guitar, Mark Wibley on drums, Pete Kircher on vocals and then drums in 1962. They recorded an EP in 1963 with Derek Knights on vocals, Trevor Sutton drums and John Andrews on bass. In 1966 he was a part of The Loving Kind with Pete Kircher on drums, Jim Leverton on bass and Derek Knight on vocals.
At the age of 17 Redding became a professional. He toured Scotland and Germany with Neil Landon and the Burnettes. He would also tour with The Loving Kind and in 1964 The Lonely Ones reunited.
Redding was the first person recruited to join Jimi Hendrix in the Jimi Hendrix Experience, as he switched from guitar to bass. He was also the first member to leave the band in 1969. He was a part of three albums with the band, "Are You Experienced", "Axis: Bold as Love" and "Electric Ladyland". He wrote the album tracks "Little Miss Strange" and "She's So Fine". Hendrix's manager Michael Jeffery attempted to bring Noel Redding back to reunite the Jimi Hendrix Experience after the Woodstock festival. No shows or recording resulted though and Redding moved on.
In 1968, whilst still a member of the Experience Redding formed the group Fat Mattress. It featured Neil Landon on vocals, Jim Leverton on bass/keyboards and Eric Dillon on drums. The band toured in support of the Jimi Hendrix Experience, with Redding playing two sets a night. He would leave the band after only one album, though some of his compositions appeared on the second album.
After the Experience Redding formed the band Road with Rod Richards on guitar and Les Sampson on drums, Redding once more on bass. They released one album called "Road" in 1972.
In 1972 he moved to Ireland. There he formed The Noel Redding Band with Eric Bell, Dave Clarke, Les Sampson and Robbie Walsh. Redding would share the songwriting and vocals with Clarke. They released two albums and toured the Netherlands, England, Ireland and the US. The band dissolved after a dispute with their management company. Tracks that had been recorded for their third album were later released as "The Missing Album" on Mouse Records.
He was forced to sign away his Hendrix royalties in 1974 and in 1980 had to sell a bass guitar from the Experience. Redding received $100,000 as a one-off payment, being told that there would be no more releases of Jimi Hendrix material. Redding was planning legal action against the Hendrix estate up till his death.
In 1997 he met Keith Dion during the awarding of an English Heritage Blue Plaque Award. Redding joined Dion's band for several US tours.
Redding would regularly perform in Clonakilty where he lived, with a Friday night residency at De Barras pub. An annual Noel Redding Tribute Festival is now held in Clonakilty.
On 11 May 2003 Redding was found dead in his home.

The Music History Calendar is written by the Blues Rock artist Marshland Pete
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