Jimi Hendrix was born in Seattle on Nov. 27, 1942 and received his first guitar at age 15. On May 31, 1961, he enlisted in the Army, joining the 101st Airborne Division in Fort Campbell, Kentucky, on November 8. On base, Hendrix became friends with basis Billy Cox. Music soon eclipsed his interest in becoming a parachutist.
Playing in and around Clarksville with Cox and saxophonist Charles Washington, Hendrix made plans to return to Seattle, but a Clarksville area girlfriend and lack of travel money provided the impetus for him to stay. Cox and Hendrix had already formed the King Kasuals, playing R&B in Clarksville clubs and occasionally venturing to Nashville and Murfreesboro. In October 1962, Hendrix and Cox settled in Nashville with a steady gig as the house band at the Del Morocco Club on Jefferson Street. Hendrix’s last known trip to Clarksville was in 1963 when he part-exchanged his old Danelectro guitar at Collins Music Store.