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  • Writer's pictureLucas Lima

The Day Alcione Met Janis Joplin in Rio de Janeiro

Updated: Apr 11

The singer from Maranhão was walking with Serguei when she spotted the American artist.

Janis Joplin e Alcione
Janis Joplin and Alcione

It's common knowledge that Janis Joplin came to Brazil in 1970 to enjoy our famous Carnival. However, that wasn't the only purpose of the American singer. Joplin planned to perform in Rio de Janeiro, and the show even had a name: Unending Carnival. However, the performance was blocked by the military, considering we were in a dictatorial period in the country.

So, the only option left for the artist was the bars and nightclubs of the Rio de Janeiro city. It was on one of these occasions that Alcione accidentally encountered Janis Joplin. The "Marrom" was strolling with Serguei when they spotted the foreign artist giving a performance. The event took place near Galeria Alaska, the most famous gay hotspot in Rio de Janeiro at the time.

Seeing Janis Joplin, Serguei became enthusiastic: "My God, the queen of underground!" "What queen of underground, Serguei?" asked Alcione.

The Brazilian rocker introduced the two singers, and the three of them went to Porão 73, one of the bars where Alcione and Serguei used to perform. It was there that Janis Joplin sang the songs "Ball and Chain" from the album "Cheap Thrills" (1968) and "What'd I Say" by Ray Charles.

"Her sound was strange," recalls Alcione. "All I know is that the crowd applauded. And she was grateful too. Serguei took her for a walk afterward. That's how I met Janis Joplin," Alcione told the BBC.

Watch Alcione's show "Boleros" now on WePlay, the first platform for streaming Brazilian concert shows.



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