August 14, 2008


Terri Sutton was and is still the best. If anyone has her 12 Ways Of Seeing Janis Joplin essay posted up anywhere, (from the outtaprint Rolling Stone WIMMINZINROCK book of 1997, the one with PJ making jazz hands around her vag--yeah, that one), holler so I can make a link. I am (still) pretty thumbs down on the women in rock books written only by women writers practice; it's ghettoizing I think, and sustains the myth that women crits can't understand big boy music and that womens music is for women. Anyhow, behold, Terri getting it in the way no one else had:

"The rock critic seeking Janis Joplin watches a Big brother and Holding Company clip from the 1967 Monterey Pop festival. She listens to the headstrong voice spiral and thrust; she's heard it before. What she sees for the first time is a foot encased in a delicate white sandal slamming into the stage like a headboard into a bedroom wall. She catches her breath--and realizes suddenly that everything she knows about Janis Joplin could be complete crap. Every fact about her, every image, every song and film sequence, has been processed and shaped and spindled and manipulated by someone who was not Janis Joplin...Everything she has imagined about Janis Joplin is someone else's story, she thinks, and wonders whether that was also true back in the sixties for people who did get to witness Janis Joplin live."

Posted by Jessica at August 14, 2008 06:20 PM | TrackBack