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When Janis met Otis

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Posted 7 years ago


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There's a great story about the shows advertised on this postcard. Bill Graham had booked Otis Redding for three nights at the end of 1966, December 20-22 for those of you at home keeping score. Wes Wilson did the poster, and although he had used photos in a few of his other posters that year (the one of Grace Slick in the center of a poster for a show headlined by 13th Floor Elevators is a classic), this one for Redding made clear that the performer was going to trump the art.

Sort of. Below the image of Redding on this beat up card that I purchased at a event from Eric King, Wilson's intricate lettering spells out the dates, as well as the bands that had been selected by Graham to open for the great R&B star. The Grateful Dead opened on Tuesday, Johnny Talbot and De Thangs on Wednesday, and Country Joe and the Fish on Thursday. What a week!

But back to the story. Almost as interesting as who was on the stage was who was in the audience, and according to Graham's autobiography, Janis Joplin was standing front and center all three nights, learning everything she could from the master. So, when I see this card, I find myself also thinking about Janis.

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