Happy Birthday Janis Joplin

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Dear Janis,

I am so glad you were born. You taught us that expression is what it’s all about, and in many ways you were the Jackson Pollock of music. It’s almost as if you didn’t care how the song turned out as long as it had YOU in it, your real feelings, your real experience. And as a woman pioneer in that patriarchal 1960s culture, you rocked it, and paved the way for so many. Your death was a tragedy, perhaps a lapse in judgment, but your heart and soul live on.

Just two weeks ago I was privileged to walk the streets you walked, see the sites you saw. You still speak to me.  Thank you for pioneering Big Brother and the  Holding Co. Thank you for all the gut wrenching performances of “Cry Baby.” I have never head a bad version of it. Thank you  for the tongue in cheek ”Mercedes Benz” – we all know you’d opt for a Schwinn today. And thank you for that dirty red bandana that still inspires me every time I hear “Bobby McGee.” You are missed.

Yours,

Robin

 

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