May This Be Love

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"May This Be Love"
Song by the Jimi Hendrix Experience from the album Are You Experienced
Released May 12, 1967 (1967-05-12) (UK)
Recorded Olympic Studios, London, April 3, 1967
Genre Rock ballad[1]
Length 3:10
Label Track (no. 612 001)
Writer Jimi Hendrix
Producer Chas Chandler
Are You Experienced track listing

"May This Be Love" is a song by the Jimi Hendrix Experience, released on May 12, 1967, on the band's debut album Are You Experienced. Recorded on April 3, the track is a soft ballad that demonstrates Hendrix's ability to write thoughtful lyrics and subtle melodies.

Background[edit]

Are You Experienced and its preceding singles were recorded over a five-month period from late October 1966 through early April 1967.[2] The album was completed in sixteen recording sessions at three London locations, including De Lane Lea Studios, CBS, and Olympic. Chas Chandler booked many of the sessions at Olympic because the facility was acoustically superior and equipped with most of the latest technology, though it was still using four-track recorders, whereas American studios were using eight-track.[3]

Recording[edit]

On April 3, the Experience returned to Olympic, adding overdubs and completing final mixes on several unfinished masters.[4] During the eight-hour session, the band recorded three new songs, including "Highway Chile", "May This Be Love", and "Are You Experienced?".[5]

Music and lyrics[edit]

"May This Be Love" is a soft ballad that demonstrates Hendrix's ability to write thoughtful lyrics and subtle melodies.[6] Author and musicologist Keith Shadwick wrote: "This is a melodic, romantic composition that borders on the sentimental".[1] Author David Stubbs described the song as "far and away the prettiest track on" the album, and an example of Hendrix's versatility as a guitarist.[7] According to musicologist Dave Whitehill, the song is characteristic of Hendrix's "gentler side", utilizing the E and A major Pentatonic scales to create a "pastorale setting befitting the lyrical content".[8] Whitehill described the guitar solo as "one of Jimi's most lyrical and lovely".[8]

Covers[edit]

"May This Be Love" was covered by The Pretenders on their 1990 album Packed!. The song was covered by American country/folk singer Emmylou Harris on her eighteenth studio album Wrecking Ball (Emmylou Harris album), which was released in 1995. The song was also covered by American soul musician Meshell Ndegeocello on her third studio album Bitter (album), which was released in 1999. The song was also covered by British soul singer Michael Kiwanuka in 2012 for an EP titled "Spotify Sessions", released on the music streaming service Spotify.

Notes[edit]

Citations
  1. ^ a b Shadwick 2003, p. 106.
  2. ^ Roby 2002, p. 71.
  3. ^ Roby 2002, pp. 71–72.
  4. ^ McDermott 2009, p. 42.
  5. ^ Egan 2013, pp. 159–160.
  6. ^ Egan 2013, p. 199.
  7. ^ Stubbs 2003, p. 34.
  8. ^ a b Whitehill 1989, p. 42.
References
Documentaries
  • Joe Boyd, John Head, Gary Weis (Directors) (2005) [1973]. Jimi Hendrix (DVD) (in English Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround and Dolby Digital 5.1). Warner Home Video. ASIN B0009E3234. 
  • Bob Smeaton (Director) (2013). Jimi Hendrix: Hear My Train A Comin' (DVD, Blu-ray) (in English Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo). Sony Legacy. ASIN B00F031WB8. 
  • Bob Smeaton (Director) (2012). West Coast Seattle Boy: Jimi Hendrix: Voodoo Child (DVD, Blu-ray) (in English Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo). Sony Legacy. ASIN B007ZC92FA.