Talk:Little Wing

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Letter to Bil[edit]

According to biographer Harry Shapiro,[1] Hendrix wrote a letter to a female fan named Bil while on a UK tour with the Walker Brothers in April 1967, which he later followed up with a note (Shapiro says the two never actually met). However, nothing in his biography (or others) suggests a connection between Bil and "Little Wing". The letter and lyrics don't appear to share similar words or phrasing. Without a WP:Reliable source comparing the letter and the lyrics, to conclude that they "bear a resemblance" is WP:Original research. —Ojorojo (talk) 17:18, 29 February 2016 (UTC)

[copied from User talk:Ojorojo#Little Wing edit]:
Hi Ojorojo. Please would you explain why you have edited out what I wrote on the Little Wing page, about the letter to Bil. I think this is interesting information to add to the heading of 'Interpretation'. I am not asserting anything, just giving the information about the similarity between the Little Wing lyrics & the sentiments in the letter to Bil. I do not think that Hendrix often made mention of women's minds and imagination, so it could be significant. People will of course make up their own minds, but I don't see why this info should be suppressed, and I have quoted my sources. It is no more speculative than the comments of Leon Hendrix and Charles Shaar Murray, particularly as Hendrix said the song was about one girl. I am new to editing, so I would like to know in what way I have transgressed! Jaspermont (talk) 21:31, 3 March 2016 (UTC)
First of all, welcome to Wikipedia. I think it's great that you have an interest in Jimi Hendrix – many of his articles are in need of attention. "Little Wing" is a WP:GOODARTICLE, which means it has gone through a review process to ensure it meets the WP:Good article criteria. Criterion #2 is "Verifiable with no original research", which basically means that anything included in an article should be found in a reliable source ("RS"). All the sources for background material regarding the song specifically mention "Little Wing" – Shapiro, Hendrix himself, Murray, Leon Hendrix, etc. I kept your quote from the 1969 interview, because Hendrix mentions the song by name. However, in the Bil letter, he makes no mention of LW and his biographers have not made this connection (the Katerina quote is included because he noted "My Angel Catherina (Return of Little Wing)" shortly after meeting her). The ideas expressed by Murray and Leon may be speculative, but they are tied to LW and come from a RS. However, speculation about a connection between the Bil letter and LW is yours alone and is not supported by a RS. "...Your mind is, so imaginative, so beautiful there's no words for the sweet little drops of dreams that you manage to put on paper...No way to describe how happy you make me dureing (sic) these dark hours of today or any day..." seems to express much more general sentiments than "a circus mind that's running wild, Butterflies and zebras, and moonbeams and fairy tales, That's all she ever thinks about, riding with the wind". Unless there is a RS noting the similarity, to state this would be original research. To include the letter alone seems off-topic ("The most readable articles contain no irrelevant (nor only loosely relevant) information", emphasis added). I don't see that adding this contributes to a reader's understanding of LW. Hendrix's relationships and views on women are more appropriate in a biographical article. —Ojorojo (talk) 15:56, 4 March 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for your reply. I had not understood that only information that had been published could be put on Wikipedia. Incidentally, whatever Shapiro said, Hendrix and Bil did meet, and the letter I quoted is the third one that I have seen published. She wrote a short account of their first meeting in Univibes, and they also printed a poster on which Hendrix had written 'Please write me in London. We must see each other again'. Presumably they did, as he dedicated Electric Ladyland to her. So published sources are not necessarily reliable! But I accept your point and rules are rules. Jaspermont (talk) 20:51, 4 March 2016 (UTC)
Sometimes there are mistakes or inaccuracies, especially in works on pop music subjects. "Verifiability, not truth" should be balanced with common sense. The essay Wikipedia:Verifiability, not truth#"If it's written in a book, it must be true!" includes: "Even the most reliable sources commit mistakes from time to time, such as misspelling a name or getting some detail wrong. Such mistakes, when found, should be ignored, and not be employed to describe a non-existent dispute." —Ojorojo (talk) 15:09, 5 March 2016 (UTC)