Album: Are You Experienced? (1967)
Play Video


  • The main lyrics in this song ("let me stand next to your fire") came from a time when the band had just finished a gig in the cold around Christmas, 1966. They went to bass player Noel Redding's mother's house in Folkestone, England, and when they got there, Jimi asked Redding's mother Margaret if he could "stand next to her fire" to warm up. The family dog, a German Shepherd, lay by the fire, which inspired the line, "Move over Rover, and let Jimi take over."

    This lyrical lightning bolt was a breakthrough for Hendrix, who had just started writing songs at the request of his manager Chas Chandler. Writing riffs was easy for him, and it turned out he had a talent for crafting lyrics as well, as he was able to turn a simple line into a fiery tale of lustful passion. (This story is verified in Mat Snow's Mojo story on Hendrix that ran in the October 2006 issue.)
  • Hendrix is legendary for theatrics like setting his guitar on fire and playing it with his teeth (not at the same time). This was the song he was (appropriately) playing when he set it on fire for the first time. It happened at a concert in London in March 1967, two months before the Are You Experienced? album was released. Hendrix was low on the bill (below Engelbert Humperdinck), and looking to garner some media attention. When he ignited his guitar, he created a buzz that grew to a roar as his career took off.

    Hendrix set fire to his guitar once again at the Monterey Pop Festival in 1967. At that show, he didn't do the bit during "Fire," he did it after playing "Wild Thing."
  • The Red Hot Chili Peppers often covered this song in their early years. They decided to play it again at Woodstock '99 in Rome, New York, but this was a very different festival than the one where Jimi Hendrix performed the song in 1969. The '99 crowd was violent and unruly; when RHCP launched into this song, they increased their level of mayhem, tearing the place up and setting fires (yes, Rome was burning). >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Tom - Trowbridge, England
  • Gary Moore covered this on his 1999 release A Different Beat. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Mike - Victoria, B.C., Canada
  • In the movie Wayne's World, Wayne falls in love with the bassist from an all-girl band (Tia Carrere) after seeing them cover this song at Gasworks. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Jamin King - Puyallup, WA

Comments: 41

  • Jim from 32038This song is about his girl Kathy and sex. It also has lines from Noels mothers house, like Move over Rover let Jimmi take over, which came from the dog sitting in front of the fire.
  • Ryan from Anahola, HiThe Band Deep Purple once covered this song at one of their concerts.
  • Ryan from Anahola, HiThis song is in Lego Rock Band and a downloadable song on Guitar Hero: World Tour.
  • Ryan from Anahola, HiThis song is in Lego Rock Band, where it is one of the hardest on drums.
  • Nick from Seattle, Albaniadrums are amazing on this
  • Kevin from Los Angeles, Ca...the title was INSPIRED by that night at Noels mother's but the song is TALKING about sex...but of course the song is really ABOUT Mitch Mitchell's drumming...Noels bass is kickin' too.
  • Goku from South City, Pato pete from kansas city you're wrong because jimi didnt grow up in london he grew up in seattle. and i dont think this song is about noel reddings mom's house. i thinks its has something to do with his girlfriend kathy
  • Scott from Boston, MaRIP Mitch Mitchell. This was his finest song in my opinion.
  • Pippin from Rhye, CaI think that he's comparing his girlfriend to fire because he thinks she's hot. I rather like the comparison.
  • Chad from Bath, PaI thought this song was about VD.
  • Pete from Kansas City, KsThe song is actually about when Jimi was a kid and he was standing next to a fire truck in London. "Move over Rover.." was reference to a Land Rover that was parked too close to a fire hydrant.
  • Meredith from Wauwatosa, WiGreat song! Cassandra's band sings this song in Wayne's World and "wails"!
  • Mike from Victoria, B.c., CanadaGreat song!I also like Gary Moore's cover of "Fire" on the 1999 release 'A different Beat'. He's not too shabby as a guitar player himself! Kinda reminiscent of another guitar great ; Stevie Ray Vaughan!
  • Jim from Does It Matter, NcI honestly think that he is singing to his wife and he is saying that shes hot by shaying let me stand next to your fire.
  • Alex from Winona, MnOne of my favorite drumming songs... very fast-paced but relatively easy to pick up and fun to improvise to!
  • Scoop from Denver, Co"Move over Rover" refers to a popular adolescent dirty rhyme of that era, which I'm sure Jimi remembered. "Old Mother Hubbard went to the cupboard to get her poor dog a bone, but as she bent over, ol' Rover drove her, because he had a bone of his own." I'm sure that's it because I'm of that generation. Hah!
  • Hendrixlover from Does It Matter?, Cain the last few seconds of the recording, you can hear noel redding go back to the intro riff while jimi and mitch keep goin in that groove. before you can really realize whats happenin, noel gets back into it and if youre not listenin for it, you wouldnt know.
  • Iceman from South Glastonbury, Ct Each team holds hands in a line, thus forming two parallel lines (or chains) facing each other.

    The game starts when the first team (usually the East or South team) calls out, "Red rover, red rover, send [name of player on opposite team] right over." The person called must run to the other line and break the chain (formed by the linking of hands). If the runner fails to break the chain, he joins the team that had called "Red rover." However, if the player successfully breaks the chain, he may take his pick of either of the two "links" broken by his successful jaunt. This broken link, along with the runner, joins the runner's team. The other team then calls out "Red rover" for a player on the first team, and so on. The game ends when one long super-chain is formed.

    The distance between the two lines is subject to variation, but tends to fall within about 9 metres (30 feet).

    A slight variation of the game is known as "Green Rover". In this version, the person calls the people over by a color, and if they are wearing that color they need to run across. In conventional Red Rover, participants are called over one by one.

  • Abi from Toronto, Canadai always like the move over rover line b/c it can also seem like him telling his band members to move over and let him steal the stage for the guitar solo
  • Stefanie from Rock Hill, ScI agree Fyodor. That's what I think too. I'm sure JMimi knew how people would think of those lines.
  • Fyodor from Denver, CoThe biography of Hendrix I read cited an actual fire, though I believe it was an outside bonfire, IIRC. I don't claim that proves it's true and I haven't read what Jimi said himself. Either way, folks, don't forget it's not against the law for a song lyric to have more than one meaning! The line in question certainly conjures the image of Rover getting in the way of Jimi making his move, regardless of what actually made him think of it, and he was obviously aware of that meaning by the time he sang it!!
  • Josh from New York, Nyi dont understand u say this is about a fireplace story but then on "the wind cries mary" page someone says that this was written about his love life w/ cathy. maybe it should be looked into.
  • Sam from Shanghai, ChinaWhat do you mean not very original? The drumming in this song is absolutely incredible! I love the Woodstock recording, where you can see how totally animated Mitch Mitchell is. Crazy stuff.
  • Ben from Nyc, MsMitch Mitchell. Not very original is he?
  • Dan from Santa Clarita, Caactually i have heard the fireplace story as well. though i do believe its the basis for an induendo
  • Kika from Nyc, NyI always thought this was a sexual innuendo, but i sort of like the other explanation too.
  • Windle from Montgomery, AlThis song is about Jimi's girlfriend Cathy.
    The fireplace story is so wrong. Please, just read any of Jimi's interviews on the song. There is a BBC interview where he talks about the night she inspired the song.
  • Calvin from Kyle, Txa totally awesome song.
  • Mat from Sydney, Australiathe line 'move over rover let jimi take over' is a reference to the ditty: Old mother Hubbard went to the cupboard to get her poor doggy a bone when she got there the cupboard was bare so he gave her a bone of his own
  • Jonathan from Deltona, FlMitch Mitchell really shows off his chops in this song. This song is so catchy, it just sticks to you.
  • Stefanie Magura from Rock Hill, ScI always thought it was about some girl he was attracted to.
  • Blair from Milan, ItalyPeople the line "Move over Rover, and let Jimi take over" signifies the fact that the person "Rover" struck out with a girl or is failing at winning some girl, and Jimi wants to "take it from here" as we say...not about a dog, maybe he was inspired by that dog/fire scene but it was totally about a real person.
  • Danny from Sydney, AustraliaAnyone heard Steve Vai perform this? if not, you should.
  • Sonu from Brantford, CanadaBlair I thought of the same thing too.
  • Stefany from Kansas City, MoI believe I read somewhere that Noel Redding was singing "let me stand next to your fire" in the background.
  • Jade from Chippewa Falls, Wi Why would Jimi tell the dog, 'Move over Rover and let Jimi take over'? Doesn't make much sense...... Who is singing 'Let me stand next to your fire' in the background?
  • Blair from Milan, ItalyIts about being with a girl, not about standing to any fire, your making it to literal...its a metaphoric meaning, its not literially about fire, its about an "ora" or an attraction to someone he likes...and all jimi wants is to be around them
  • Jennifer Prather from Newcomb, TnJimi Hendrix is the best guitar player of all time!
  • Mitch from Winnipeg, CanadaThe line "Move over Rover and let Jimi take over" comes from when they were at Noel Redding's mothers house. Jimi wanted to stand by the fire, but the Reddings' German Shepard dog was in the way.
  • Brian from Mayfield Heights, OhI love the line where he goes "Move over Rover...and let Jimi take over..."
  • Will from Portland, OrThe drums in this song are great
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Tony Joe White

Tony Joe WhiteSongwriter Interviews

The writer of "Rainy Night in Georgia" and "Polk Salad Annie" explains how he cooks up his Louisiana swamp rock.

Martin Page

Martin PageSongwriter Interviews

With Bernie Taupin, Martin co-wrote the #1 hits "We Built This City" and "These Dreams." After writing the Pretty Woman song for Go West, he had his own hit with "In the House of Stone and Light."

U2 Lyrics

U2 LyricsMusic Quiz

How well do you know the lyrics of U2?

Graham Nash

Graham NashSongwriter Interviews

Graham Nash tells the stories behind some of his famous songs and photos, and is asked about "yacht rock" for the first time.

John Lee Hooker

John Lee HookerSongwriter Interviews

Into the vaults for Bruce Pollock's 1984 conversation with the esteemed bluesman. Hooker talks about transforming a Tony Bennett classic and why you don't have to be sad and lonely to write the blues.

Black Sabbath

Black SabbathFact or Fiction

Dwarfs on stage with an oversize Stonehenge set? Dabbling in Satanism? Find out which Spinal Tap-moments were true for Black Sabbath.