Photos From Janis Joplin’s Final Live Show at Harvard Surface Online

By Matt Dolloff (@mattdolloff)

Previously unseen photos from Janis Joplin’s final show have surfaced in a new exhibit on Boston photographer Peter Warrack, who passed away in 2008. You can see a sampling of the photos, among others, at Rolling Stone.

In what would be Joplin’s final public live performance, fans packed Harvard Stadium in Cambridge to the brim and beyond on August 12, 1970 to see her in a show that goes down as one of Boston’s most famous live music moments.

It was also Joplin’s final live performance before her tragic death on October 4, 1970.

According to an article on Harvard.edu about a photographer at the show, only about 10,000 people were allowed inside the stadium – but the crowd of people that gathered around the stadium to get a glimpse of the show reached as high as about 40,000. Many fans even climbed the walls of the stadium to get inside!

Janis had been touring with the Full Tilt Boogie Band, who recorded with her for her final album Pearl. Not surprisingly, the relatively brief setlist included cuts from that album like “Mercedes Benz” and “My Baby.” Joplin died less than two months after the show due to a drug overdose.

Setlist: Janis Joplin at Harvard Stadium, 8/12/12

  1. Intro
  2. Tell Mama
  3. Half Moon
  4. Mercedes Benz
  5. My Baby
  6. Try
  7. Maybe
  8. Summertime
  9. Full Tilt

This post was updated to reflect new information on August 12, 2015.

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