Janis Joplin |  Artist

Janis Joplin | Artist

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Janis Lyn Joplin aka Pearl was an American rock, soul and blues singer and songwriter born 1943 in Port Arthur, Texas. As a teenager, Joplin immersed herself in the music of blues artists Bessie Smith, Ma Rainey and Lead Belly, and she started singing folk and blues in high school and later at Lamar University Texas. In 1963 she hitch-hiked from Texas to San Francisco where she fell in with musician from bands such as Jefferson Airplane and the Grateful Dead. After making several solo blues recordings, Joplin joined Psych-rock band Big Brother & The Holding Company, which was popular with the hippie community of Haight-Asbury. Janis played on Big Brother's eponymous first album and on the second, the masterpiece Cheap Thrills. She then split in 1968 and formed her own backing group The Full Tilt Boogie Band, with whom she recorded the classic albums I Got Dem Ol' Kozmic Blues Again Mama! and Pearl, before dying in 1970 at the age of 27. Five singles by Joplin became hits during her lifetime, the Kris Kristofferson song "Me and Bobby McGee", "Piece of My Heart", "Cry Baby", "Down on Me", "Ball and Chain" and her final recording, "Mercedes Benz". Joplin was one of the most gifted and widely known female rock stars of her era and all her studio and live albums are superb. Janis was also a devastatingly good live performer, as shown in her two most famous recorded performances at Monterey Pop Festival 1967 and Woodstock in 1969. Joplin's death in October 1970 from an accidental heroin overdose stunned her fans and shocked the music world, especially when coupled with the death just 16 days earlier of another rock icon, Jimi Hendrix, also at age 27. The film The Rose (1979) is loosely based on Joplin's life. Originally planned to be titled Pearl, the film was fictionalized after her family declined to allow the producers the rights to her story. Bette Midler earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress for her performance in the film. Janis was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995, and Rolling Stone ranked her #46 on its 2004 list of 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.

Artist Website: janisjoplin.com

Featured Albums: Janis Joplin

Related Artists: Big Brother & The Holding Company

Video Clips: Ball & Chain, To Love Somebody, Summertime

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