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Singer Janis Joplin rose to fame in the late 1960s and was known for her powerful, blues-inspired vocals. She died of an accidental drug overdose in 1970.
Janis Joplin - Blues Woman (1:14)
Grace Slick - Mini Biography (2:11)
Watch a short video about famed singer Janis Joplin and the short but fully lived life she led.
Janis Joplin broke the mold of how women in rock and roll were expected to act and took the world of music by storm.
In the 1990's, Neil Young joined the grunge band Pearl Jam. Young was also a prime mover in Farm Aid and participated in the 9-11 fundraiser in New York.
Grace Slick is a former model and a rock singer and songwriter who is best known for being the lead singer in Jefferson Airplane and Jefferson Starship.
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Born January 19, 1943, in Port Arthur, Texas, Janis Joplin developed a love of music at an early age, but her career never really took off until she joined Big Brother in 1966. Their album Cheap Thrills was a huge hit, but caused strife between Joplin and the band. Joplin left and her second solo album became her most successful, but she died of an accidental overdose before it was released.
You can fill your life up with ideas and still go home lonely. All you really have that really matters are feelings. That's what music is to me.
Don't compromise yourself. You are all you've got.
You got to get it while you can.
You can fill your life up with ideas and still go home lonely.
Singer. Born on January 19, 1943, in Port Arthur, Texas. Breaking new ground for women in rock music, Janis Joplin rose to fame in the late 1960s and was known for her powerful, blues-inspired vocals. She grew up in a small Texas town known for its connections to the oil industry with a skyline dotted with oil tanks and oil refineries. For years, Joplin struggled to escape from this confining community and spent even longer to trying to overcome her memories of her difficult years there.
Developing a love for music at an early age, Joplin sang in her church choir as a child and showed some promise as a performer. She was an only child until the age of 6 when her sister Laura was born. Four years later, her brother Michael arrived. Joplin was a good student and fairly popular until around the age of 14 when some side effects of puberty started to kick in. She got acne and gained some weight.
At Thomas Jefferson High School, Joplin started to rebel. She eschewed the popular girls' fashions of the late 1950s, often choosing to wear men's shirts and tights or short skirts. While she liked to stand out from the crowd, Joplin also found herself the target of some teasing and a popular subject in the school's rumor mill. She was called a "pig" by some while others said that she was sexually promiscuous.
Joplin eventually developed a group of guy friends who shared her interest in music and the Beat Generation, which rejected the standard norms and emphasized creative expression. Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg were two of the leading figures in the movement.
Musically, Joplin and her friends gravitated toward blues and jazz music, admiring such artists as Leadbelly. She also was inspired by legendary blues vocalists Bessie Smith and Ma Rainey and Odetta, an early leading figure in the folk music movement. The group also frequented local working-class bars in the nearby Louisiana of Vinton. By her senior year of high school, Joplin had developed a persona of sorts — a ballsy, tough-talking girl who like to drink and be outrageous.
After graduating high school, Joplin enrolled at Lamar State College of Technology in the neighboring town of Beaumont. There she spent more time hanging out and drinking than on her studies. At the end of the semester, Joplin left school. She took some secretarial courses at Port Arthur College and moved to Los Angeles in the summer of 1961. This first effort to break away from home failed, and she returned to Port Arthur and her studies at Lamar for a time.
In 1962, Joplin left again to study at the University of Texas at Austin.
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American society experienced a revolution in the late 1960s and early 70s, especially for African-Americans and women. Janis Joplin was the finest white blues singer of her generation; female singer-songwriters like Carole King and Joni Mitchell shared their innermost thoughts and feelings; Aretha Franklin emerged as the Queen of Soul; and Bonnie Raitt established herself as both a strong vocalist and a brilliant guitarist. Through their music, the women of this era created the soundtrack of social progress.
Influential Female Musicians of the 1960s 17 people in this group
The 27 club is a group of artists who died tragically at the young age of 27. They were some of the most talented minds of their generation, and in their short lives each made an enormous impact. Sadly, many led hard-partying lifestyles, abusing drugs and alcohol. These are the musicians and artists who make up the 27 club.
The 27 Club 8 people in this group
presented by The 27 Club
Woodstock, the legendary 1969 music festival, changed the history of rock and roll. For three days on a 600-acre dairy farm in the Castkills of New York, 32 performers put on one of the biggest rock shows of all time in front of 500,000 fans. Here are some of the famous musicians who were part of Woodstock history.
Woodstock Performers 23 people in this group