Janis Joplin Pearl on Numbered Edition Hybrid SACD from Mobile Fidelity
1971's Pearl Showcases Janis Joplin at Her Peak:
Chart-Topping Record Includes Hits "Me and Bobby McGee," "Mercedes
Benz," and "Get It While You Can"
Mastered From the Original Master Tapes: Mobile Fidelity Hybrid SACD is Definitive-Sounding Version of Masterpiece Ranked
#135 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time
Joplin Displays Balance of Impeccable Timing, Devastating
Vulnerability, and Raw Emotion: Full Tilt Boogie Band, Producer Paul
Rothchild Complete Album Steeped in Soul and Loaded With Spirit
Janis Joplin wouldn't be denied on Pearl. The
powerhouse vocalist had kicked her addictions, teamed with a stupendous
band, and partnered with a producer that knew how to best showcase her
voice on record. She came to the sessions with an armload of astonishing
songs, and a burst of creative energy that mirrored her rejuvenated
emotional state and undeniable spirit. You can hear it on every note of
the 1971 record. Ranked #135 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Albums of All Time list, Pearl sold more than four million copies and stands as the first female rock superstar's definitive studio work. Mobile Fidelity's hybrid SACD presents the lasting artwork like never before.
Mastered from the original master tapes, the iconic audiophile label's SACD takes Joplin and Co.'s stupendous performances to newly transcendent levels. Boasting a fidelity that further magnifies the singer's passion and producer Paul A. Rothchild's clear production, this sterling reissue reveals increased spaciousness, dynamics, and openness. Joplin's husky, strong, and penetrating singing has never sounded so vibrant or made deeper connections.
Warm, organic, and free of any artificial ceilings, this version lets
you step into Sunset Sound Recorders with the performers, such is the
degree of realism and authenticity. Indeed, few, if any words, describe Joplin better than "authentic," and her spirit comes to life on this reissue in positively transcendent fashion. Like its headliner, this SACD leaves it all on the floor.
While Joplin's electrifying vocal prowess is universally lauded – she's recognized as the greatest white female blues singer the world has ever seen –
her mix of compassion, confidence, and charm play as large a role in
attracting listeners and keeping them ensnared more than four decades
after her tragic death. And on Pearl, she burrows into
deeper stylistic veins, teasing out sides of her persona and craft she'd
never previously displayed. Her signature desperation, sadness, and
vulnerability remain – the harrowing, lonely wail that begins her
soul-ravishing take on Jerry Ragovoy's "Cry Baby," underlined
with a Wall of Sound-like piano accompaniment, could only come from a
person severely scarred by loss and disappointment – yet Joplin also
reveals a sense of humor and beatnik innocence that helped propel the
album to the top of the charts for nine straight weeks.
Playfully introduced as "a song of great social and political import," the acapella "Mercedes Benz" reflects Joplin's throaty timbre as well as her enhanced, sunnier mood. Similarly, her definitive read of Kris Kristofferson's
"Me and Bobby McGee" signals a laidback demeanor and a move into
country strains, with the delivery as natural, carefree, and loving as
any in the rock canon. As she does throughout the record, Joplin invests her all in the narrative so that there's no line between the performer and the song. She makes everything on Pearl feel autobiographical, and by extension, gut-wrenchingly honest, and devastatingly intimate. Joplin achieved these feats often during her brief career, yet there are differences on Pearl, chiefly among them her balance of impeccable timing and raw emotion.
Heart-aching anthems such as "A Woman Left Lonely" offer both grit and
control, subtlety and attack, resulting in cathartic releases
distinguished with originality, personality, and instinctual passion.
Pearl remains Joplin's finest hour, with credit also owed to the Full Tilt Boogie Band – the only group she ever considered to be her own – as well as the Doors alum that sat behind the boards. Joplin and Rothchild both admitted to sharing a common bond and understanding, with the latter inheriting the role of teacher and Joplin,
a willing student ready to discover how she could use her voice in new,
more expressive ways. The fruits of the pair's labors fill Pearl, be it the guardedly optimistic "Get It While You Can" or assertive, fleet-footed "Move Over."
Experienced in the new light brought to fore by this definitive Mobile Fidelity SACD, Joplin's swan song is no longer about a masterpiece that its creator never lived to see finished.
Rather, it's about a once-in-a-lifetime vocalist realizing mammoth
potential and wringing passion out of every note. It's not a tragedy,
but a triumph. Get it while you can.
Janis Joplin Pearl Track Listing:
1. Move Over
2. Cry Baby
3. A Woman Left Lonely
4. Half Moon
5. Buried Alive In the Blues
6. My Baby
7. Me and Bobby McGee
8. Mercedes Benz
9. Trust Me
10. Get It While You Can