A. Jimi Hendrix was banned from the BBC after going off-script when he and his band, The Jimi Hendrix Experience, appear on the show Happening for Lulu, hosted by the “To Sir With Love” singer Lulu.
The band play “Voodoo Child (Slight Return)” as scheduled, but then veer from the plan during their second number, which is supposed to be a performance of “Hey Joe,” with Lulu joining them near the end of the song and then signing off.
After getting about halfway though “Hey Joe,” Hendrix stops the music and declares, “We’d like to stop playing this rubbish and dedicate a song to the Cream, regardless of what kind of group they may be in. We dedicate this to Eric Clapton, Ginger Baker and Jack Bruce.”
The group then launches into “Sunshine Of Your Love” to the dismay of the show’s producer, who must cut out of his broadcast without the proper close.
Experience bass player Noel Redding explains that the band smoked some hash before they went on, so they weren’t concerned about procedures and repercussions.
This incident becomes well known in BBC lore. One aspiring musician who takes note is Elvis Costello, who eight years later pulls a similar stunt, halting his approved song on Saturday Night Live to play a song of his choosing instead. Costello credits the Hendrix subversion as inspiration.