Fueled by such unforgettable songs, a remarkable cast, and breakout performances, A NIGHT WITH JANIS JOPLIN, written and directed by Randy Johnson, is a musical journey celebrating Janis and her biggest musical influences – icons like Aretha Franklin, Etta James, Odetta, Nina Simone and Bessie Smith, who inspired one of rock & roll’s greatest legend.
Janis Joplin exploded onto the music scene in 1967 and, almost overnight, became the queen of rock & roll. The unmistakable voice, filled with raw emotion and tinged with Southern Comfort, made her a must-see headliner from Monterey to Woodstock.
Fueled by such unforgettable songs as:
• “Me and Bobby McGee”
• “Piece of My Heart”
• “Mercedes Benz”
• “Cry Baby”
This sensational show is a musical journey celebrating Joplin and her biggest musical influences—icons like Aretha Franklin, Etta James, Odetta, Nina Simone and Bessie Smith, who inspired one of rock & roll’s greatest legends.
That voice—high, husky, earthy, explosive—remains among the most distinctive and galvanizing in pop history. But Janis Joplin didn’t merely possess a great instrument; she threw herself into every syllable, testifying from the very core of her being. She claimed the blues, soul, gospel and rock with unquestionable authority and verve, fearlessly inhabiting psychedelic guitar jams, back-porch roots and everything in between.
Born in Port Arthur, Texas on January 19, 1943, Joplin fell under the sway of Leadbelly, Bessie Smith and Big Mama Thornton in her teens, and the authenticity of these voices strongly influenced Janis’ decision to become a singer. A self-described “misfit” in high school, she suffered virtual ostracism, but dabbled in folk music with her friends and painted. She briefly attended college in Beaumont and Austin but was more drawn to blues legends and beat poetry than her studies; soon she dropped out and, in 1963, headed for San Francisco, eventually finding herself in the notoriously drug-fueled Haight Ashbury neighborhood.
She returned to Texas to escape the excesses of the Haight, enrolling as a sociology student at Lamar University, adopting a beehive hairdo and living a generally “straight” life despite occasional forays to perform in Austin. But California drew her back into its glittering embrace in 1966.The band’s increasingly high-profile shows earned them a devoted fan base and serious industry attention; they signed with Columbia Records and released their major-label debut in 1967.