- Influences included musical icons Leadbelly, Odetta and Bessie Smith, for whom Joplin provided a headstone 33 years after the blues great's death.
- An outcast in both high school and college who was frequently targeted for ridicule and torment.
- Pre-fame, occasionally performed with future Jefferson Airplane/Hot Tuna guitarist Jorma Kaukonen.
- Broke through with Big Brother and the Holding Company at the 1967 Monterey International Pop Festival, thanks to a mesmerizing set that included Joplin's take on the song "Ball and Chain."
- Cheap Thrills, Big Brother's second album, went to No. 1 upon its release in August 1968; Joplin left the band four months later.
- Had been scheduled to record vocals for "Buried Alive in the Blues," a song slated for the album Pearl, the day she died of a heroin overdose.
- Released in 1971, Pearl and the single "Me and Bobby McGee" both topped the charts.
- Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995 by folk-rock singer Melissa Etheridge.