Gary Talley was the lead guitar player for the 60s group The Boxtops and played on all of their top 10 hits. During the 1970s,(after the breakup of The Boxtops) Gary played concert dates with artists such as Freda Payne, Tennessee Ernie Ford, John Phillips (of the Mama & Papas), Billy Joe Royal, Pat Boone, and Jimmy Rogers.

In 1981 Gary was invited to Nashville by legendary producer Chips Moman and recorded with Willie Nelson, Waylon Jennings, Tammy Wynette, Webb Pierce, Billy Joe Royal, and others. Since 1981, he has worked with a diverse roster of artists, including Dobie Gray, Tracy Nelson, Pam Tillis, Dr. John, Brenda Lee, Tim McGraw, Porter Wagoner, and many others.

Gary still lives in Nashville where he teaches guitar and records and tours with the Boxtops.

BUT.....one of Gary's favorite RocknRoll memories was a night in 1968 when he saw Hendrix at The Scene Club in New York and met him after the show.

DP: Tell me about seeing Hendrix

GT: The Boxtops were in New York. I can't remember if we were there to visit the label or were playing a gig. We would play the Cheetah Club up there.

DP: There are some cool shots of Jimi playing there before his fame.

GT: Steve Paul had a place called The Scene Club.

DP: It's legendary!

GT: Yeah! Well we had gotten the word that Hendrix was coming down to jam with a Canadian band called Kensington Market. We went down early and got right up front. I was about 6 feet from the stage.

DP: It was a small club wasn't it?

GT: About 150 people maybe. The place was packed cause I guess the word had gotten out. Kensington Market played their set and then Jimi walked in. Everybody was like (in hushed tones) wow!......it's Hendrix. He had a white Stratocaster and a couple of his own foot pedals, a fuzzface and a wah wah . He plugged into a Fender dual showman that was there and they started to play some of Jimi's stuff.

DP: Jimi's songs?

GT: Yeah, it seemed they had done it before. They were playing tunes off Jimi's first album. He was just...... I had never seen anything like that. Amazing...it was like a dream or something seeing him play there. After it was over, I was like (shakes his head and blinks his eyes).

DP: What was the volume level like? Really loud?

GT: No..not really. You can turn a dual showman up and it's not that loud, not like a Marshall. I saw Traffic in there later and that was the loudest thing I had ever heard.

Anyway...after it was over, everyone was moving around the room and I was standing by the door. I thought he had left. When I turned around he was standing right next to me! I turned and put out my hand. I can't remember what I said, something like, "That was great man, really great!" He smiled and said, "Thanks man." Looking back, I wish I had brought my camera so I could have taken a picture with him.

To Rock 'n' Roll Heroes