7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
A MEMORABLE VOICE BY ANY OTHER NAME,
This review is from: Janis Joplin's Greatest Hits (Audio CD)
Janis Joplin's voice has been variously described over the years as, Raucous, Coarse, Cacophonus, Atonal, Vociferant, Rambunctious, Clamorous, Honest, Rough Deep Purple, Sends Shivers Down Your Spine, and many others. It is sufficient to say that whilst there may be more opinions describing her voice than most have had hot dinners, there is widespread accord that Janis possessed one of the most distinctive, charismatic singing voices of all time. To try and compare her to any other artist is doing her a disservice although, and many would disagree, there are fleeting vocal, delivery and posture similarities to Joe Cocker.
I have rarely come across a "Greatest Hits" album on which everybody agrees has the right tracks in it, and in reviews much 'argy-bargy' goes on debating what should, and what should not have been included. Whether you agree that the producers have the selection rightg on this album or not, does not detract one way or another from the fact that this is a darn fine album.
Janis's recording of "Piece Of My Heart" with The Big Brother and The Holding Company Band, which has been recorded by many artists, is the ultimate version. Her take on George Gershwin's "Summertime", is different and refreshing, and "Ball And Chain", is a belter. Other 'stand-out' tracks are "Try (Just A Little Bit Harder)", the soul ballad "Cry Baby", "Maybe", and Kris Kristofferson's "Me And Bobby McGee".
Janis Joplin's turbulent life and untimely death is well documented and does not need to be raked over. It seems that she was above all a lonely lady who was reaching out through her music and erratic behaviour for companionship as she highlights in her comment that "I make love to 25,000 people on stage, and then go home by myself". Aah!