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SteppingOut

March 9 15, 2011

Cowboy up to a steak
See page 17.

Piece of her heart


Films by Janis Joplins former road manager debut Sunday.

By Katy Niner

anis Joplin did spot-on impersonations. She liked reading biographies of women and died before she could finish a book on Zelda Fitzgerald. When performing in Paris, she toured Chartres Cathedral. At her parents home in Port Arthur, Texas, she cooked eggs Benedict for the friends she had recruited as wingmen at her 10th high school reunion. This is the Janis Joplin who John Byrne Cooke knew as her road manager from late 1967 until her tragic death Oct. 7, 1970. Whenever anyone asks about Joplin, he highlights her humor and her intelligence. I always tell people what I think they dont know about her, which is that she was funny and she was very smart, he said. They dont think of Janis as doing W.C. Fields impersonations, which I also did, so we would have dueling W.C. Fieldses. Cooke is the only person to have been on the road with the iconic singer and all three of her bands: first, the family dynamic of Big Brother and the Holding Company, then the Kozmic Blues Band that never jelled and, finally, the best fit, the Full Tilt Boogie Band. The story I can tell that no one else can is being on the road for all three bands, Cooke said. Continued on page 12.

INSIDE
Excursion: Schwacking the slide, page 4. Music: Greensky Bluegrass at Tavern, page 5. The Arts: Public art pro to speak, page 9.
JOHN BYRNE COOKE / www.cookephoto.com