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California Company's Plans to Market Jimi Hendrix Energy Drink Upsets Fans

A new energy drink does not promise to give you the juice to play guitar like Jimi Hendrix, but it does hope to give you a "Liquid Experience."

Beverage Concepts says its non-alcoholic "Liquid Experience" drinks, named for Hendrix's breakthrough 1967 album, "Are You Experienced?" will debut in April.

The concept is irking some Hendrix fans, many of whom still consider him the greatest guitarist of all time.

"To see his image and the beautiful feelings it has created during my lifetime cheapened by base advertising ... is very disappointing to me," said bassist Michael Balzary, better known as Flea of the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

The image of Hendrix, who died in 1970 from a drug overdose in London, has been licensed for products including baby clothing, an air freshener, lava lamp and a Christmas ornament. Portions of royalties have gone to several educational causes, including the United Negro College Fund, said Bruce Kuhlman, director of licensing and brand development for Authentic Hendrix, the Seattle-based company that controls use of Hendrix's name and images.

Beverage Concepts Chief Executive Josh Glass said his company would honor Hendrix's memory by donating some of the profit from the Liquid Experience to an unidentified music education foundation.