They only met once, and it didn't go that well.
We love to think there’s some sort of Rock and Roll Heaven where our beloved idols hang out together playing their tunes and having one big party. Considering how a lot of these icons passed at a very young age, we could even say they’re forever young, but no matter how amazing this might sound, I bet that if there’s such thing like this heaven, most likely it must be an awkward place. I mean we love them, they were talented and extraordinary characters but they weren’t particularly sane figures.
So, most likely if we were to have a glimpse of that place, I bet peace isn’t something we would be getting that much. Leaving aside ego fights and probably a lot of hostile attitudes, I bet that this place would look more like a high school where everybody hooked up and now it’s all basically weird sharing a room. The environment where our favorite rock and roll legends lived through wasn’t just that hippie environment in which people drank a lot and used massive amounts of drugs to be happy. These were really damaged people with obscure lives. But let’s go directly to our story.
Let’s travel to the late sixties the Golden Age of Rock and Roll. Our protagonists Jim Morrison and Janis Joplin are at the peak of their careers. Besides the fact that they now belong to the 27 Club and that their names started with the same letter, they had nothing in common but a relationship with legendary producer Paul Rothchild who thought, like many fans at the time, that both the King and Queen of Rock and Roll needed to meet. So, convinced that they would make a great duo that could probably end up in a majestic and emblematic collaboration, he introduced them at a party.
It all took place at Hidden Hills in L.A. and knowing that both were particularly fond of drinking he suggested they arrive sober to the encounter so that they could remember the meeting and make the most of it, and so they did. Rothchild remembers Janis was absolutely infatuated by Morrison. Jim was into Janis’ free-spirited and fascinating personality. It seemed like it was the beginning of something quite special.
As the night progressed and the alcohol started running out, our characters started showing their true colors, especially Jim. He would transform when drunk, and in words of Rothchild, he really “turned into a cretin and disgusting drunk”, something that broke the spell and began to annoy Janis. Knowing that this meeting was something that her producer was really looking up to, she decided to put up with it for a while but Morrison’s obnoxious advances didn’t stop until she had had enough and asked Rothchild to get her out of there.
Now, you’d think that after rejecting his advances all night he would have gotten the message, but Morrison’s idea of love and relationships wasn’t the most healthy. Every time Joplin rejected him, he felt more attracted to her. So, when he realized she was leaving, he got really mad and went after them. In his drunkenness, he reached the car and tried to convince her to stay, to which she responded with a clear and direct “fuck off”. Angry, he grabbed her by the hair and pulled her, I mean who dared to reject the Lizard King? Well, little did he know that she wasn’t a regular woman that would fall for his charms and grab a bottle to hit him on the head to free herself and leave.
You’d think that this time the message couldn’t get any clearer, but no, he actually got even more turned on by strong personality. The next day, he asked Rothchild for Janis' number. The producer talked to Janis and told her Morrison was really into her and wanted to meet again, but she was a more reasonable person and politely refused to meet him again, something that really crushed our legend. As you know Janis passed away in 1970 and Morrison in 1971, so there wasn’t a chance to really make up for the situation. Probably, if there’s such thing as a Rock and Roll heaven, Morrison is still making advances to her and receiving really strong blows in exchange. But hey, even when this special bond only happened once and didn’t really worked out, it’s still one of the coolest anecdotes in Rock history.
Do you live and breath rock? Don’t miss these, then: