We usually commemorate birthdays here at PA, but some deaths are so epochal in their consequences that we honor those, too. Jimi Hendrix died on this day 45 years ago, at the age of 27. There’s no telling what might have happened to rock music had he lived. Here he is with the Experience performing an indulgent solo-rific version of what was probably his most covered song–“Voodoo Chile (Slight Return)–in Stockholm in 1969, when the hourglass of his life was already approaching its end.

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.