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May 20, 2016

34 Fascinating Color Photographs of Janis Joplin in the 1960s

In the Rock ‘n Roll firmament of the 1960s, Janis Joplin was a shooting star who burned white hot for five short years. She died of a heroin overdose at age 27 on October 4, 1970. Joplin sang her own brand of the blues in an incendiary style.

et in her short time — between 1966 and 1970 — she carved out a piece of music history that was distinctly her own. During these years, she traveled from the conservative community of Port Arthur, Texas to the expansive and unpredictable world that was the drug/hippie/music scene of 1960s San Francisco — and mostly in the glare of national stardom.

Joplin was born in Port Arthur, an oil refinery town, January 19, 1943. As a teenager in the late 1950s, she had read about Jack Kerouac and the Beatniks, began to dress in her own style, and started listening to blues music with a few high school friends. Black blues singers Bessie Smith and Leadbelly were among her heroes.

An outcast in Port Arthur by the early 1960s, Joplin had made her way to California a time or two, and eventually came to San Francisco’s music and hippie scene. At the June 1967 Monterey Pop Festival she captured national attention with a stunning blues performance of “Ball and Chain.” From that point on, she became something of national phenomenon.

Here, below is a color photo collection of lovely Joplin in the 1960s.


  1. ok, how are u gonna not mention that hte first image is photoshopped!!! here i was thinking she smoked that many cigarettes before 27

  2. How I admired and loved that wild child!

  3. Wow! Great photos, TY! I wish I would've had the hindsight to take photos of her folks and their home in Prescott, Az. when I visited them in the 70's. Their whole hallway was full of Janis's photos. They were so proud of her and concerned about her and her lifestyle.

  4. Picture 4 - showing Janis on the bed with here hands together - her beautiful blue eyes have pin-sized pupils. That tells us a very sad thing.




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