National Press Club

Janis Joplin's road manager tells inside story of rock legend, 6:30 pm Oct. 28

October 1, 2014 | By Nicole Hoffman |

John Byrne Cooke, Janis Joplin’s road manager from 1967 until her death, will give a behind-the-scenes look at the years he spent with Joplin, from her legendary rise to her tragic last days, at a National Press Club Book Rap at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 28.

Tickets are $5 for Club members and $10 public. The ticket fee for Club members is waived with the pre-order of a book. Members should login for the promo code.

In "On the Road with Janis Joplin," Cooke reveals the never-before-told story of his years with the young woman from Port Arthur who would become the first female rock and roll superstar.

In 1967, as the new sound of rock and roll was taking over popular music, John Byrne Cooke was at the center of it all. As a member of D.A. Pennebaker’s film crew, he witnessed the astonishing breakout performances of Janis Joplin and Jimi Hendrix at the Monterey Pop Festival that June.

Less than six months later, he was on a plane to San Francisco, taking a job as road manager for Janis and her band, Big Brother and the Holding Company. From then on, Cooke was Joplin’s road manager amid a rotating cast of musicians and personnel, a constant presence behind the scenes as the woman called Pearl took the world by storm.

Proceeds benefit the non-profit National Press Club Journalism Institute. A book signing will follow the discussion.