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Last Updated: Tuesday, 13 May, 2003, 13:20 GMT 14:20 UK
Hendrix bassist dies
Noel Redding and Jimi Hendrix
Redding, left, was best known for his work with Hendrix

Noel Redding, bass player for 1960s rock legend Jimi Hendrix, has died aged 57.

His manager Ian Grant announced the news on his company Track Records' website.

"Noel re-unites with Jimi and... his mother Margaret who died only a few weeks ago," he wrote. No cause of death was given.

Jimi Hendrix's brother Leon said: "I first met Noel during his days with The Experience and he was always a beautiful guy.

"The last time I saw Noel was when he joined us to celebrate Jimi's 60th birthday in Los Angeles last year. It was one of his last performances. We loved him and we'll miss him."

Strip away all the glory of his musical career - as a human being he was a fabulous guy
Ian Grant

Redding's partner, Deborah McNaughton, said: "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."

Redding backed Hendrix on his 1967 debut album Are You Experienced, along with drummer Mitch Mitchell, forming The Jimi Hendrix Experience.

The album established Hendrix as a singer and composer as well a pioneering electric guitarist, as did tracks such as Hey Joe and Purple Haze.

But Hendrix dissolved the group shortly before his death in 1970.

Jimi Hendrix

Grant told BBC News Online on Tuesday Redding was "a lovely guy".

"Take away his role as the bass player in the largest rock trio of all time, and strip away all the glory of his musical career. As a human being he was a fabulous guy, he was very kind-hearted and warm," Grant said.

Grant had been seeking royalties for some of Redding's recordings.

Redding had accepted a $100,000 payment in the 1970s after being told there would be no more releases of Jimi Hendrix Experience material.

But this was before the invention of compact discs and other formats.

In February, Redding announced plans to sue Experience Hendrix, the company which looks after the Hendrix back catalogue, for up to $5m (3.26m) in what he said were lost earnings.

At the time, Grant said Redding did not "receive a single pence for the use of his image or performance".

The man with the big hair and the big bass sound will be missed by many
Nigel, England

'Denied his rights'

"I see a lot of people making money out of Noel, but I don't see Noel getting any of it," he said.

But on Tuesday Grant said: "Noel told me 'Ian, if I do win $5m I'll only give it away'. And I'm sure he would have done. It wasn't about the money. He had been denied his rights every which way."

Experience Hendrix also announced the news of Redding's death on its website saying: "Our prayers go out to his family and friends at this difficult time."

Redding, who Grant referred to as a "feted recluse", had been living in Ireland before his death.

"He used to play at a pub every Friday, The Barra, in Clonakilty where he lived," Grant said. "He was just happy to pick up his bass on a Friday night and just play with his friends."

He is survived by a brother and sister, and a son, Nicolas Noel Redding, by his former wife Susanne.

Redding: The accidental bass star
13 May 03  |  Entertainment
Noel Redding: Your tributes
13 May 03  |  Have Your Say
Tribute to 'fabulous guy' Redding
13 May 03  |  Entertainment
Row over Hendrix royalties
28 Feb 03  |  Entertainment
Hendrix memorial to open in Seattle
12 Feb 03  |  Entertainment


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