The King Kasuals were a covers band playing the Chitlin Circuit in 1962. One day the singer pointed out to the guitarist that the latter had busted the speaker in his amplifier. “Yeah, but listen to that tone, man,” grinned the rule-breaking, future guitar-smasher Jimi Hendrix , barely 20, proving that a key ingredient of virtuosity is the insistence on dancing with the muse that brung ya. Stories like this from Becoming Jimi Hendrix by Steven Roby and Brad Schreiber make it more than just a crucial rock bio; it's also a how-to-be-a-musical-genius in 274 pages. The authors meticulously trace Jimi's rise from shy Seattle kid to visionary musician, who remains ahead of his time 40 years after his death (the tragic anniversary is Sept. 18). With a treasure trove of forthcoming releases, including West Coast Seattle Boy, a 4-CD, 1-DVD box, this is an exciting, if bittersweet, autumn for JH fans, kicked off tonight with Roby and Schreiber reading, answering audience questions, screening a PowerPoint presentation and raffling off an electric guitar. Bring your own feedback.

Fri., Sept. 17, 7:30 p.m., 2010

Advertising disclosure: We may receive compensation for some of the links in our stories. Thank you for supporting LA Weekly and our advertisers.