In 1971 Janis Joplin famously sang that her “Friends all drive Porsches.” Little did we know that she did, too. Now you can drive her Porsche if you’re the high bidder in RM/Sotheby’s New York auction in December.
The queen of psychedelic soul – who sang such hits as A Little Piece of my Heart, Me and Bobby McGee, Cry Baby, and Down On Me – purchased her Porsche 356 in 1968. She immediately engaged Dave Richards, a friend and roadie with her band, Big Brother and the Holding Company, to customize the car with a kaleidoscopic mural. Described by Richards to represent ‘The History of the Universe’, the dramatic artwork included such graphics as butterflies and jellyfish, as well as a portrait of Joplin with members of the band. The finished product was as colorful as the singer’s personality and certainly representative of the era – a one-of-a-kind flamboyant symbol of San Francisco’s psychedelic rock age.
Following Joplin’s untimely passing in 1970, the Porsche has remained in her family’s ownership ever since. It was restored in the 1990s and has been on display at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland for the past two decades. It is offered at RM’s New York auction on December 10th by her family and will be on display in Sotheby’s 10th floor gallery in the days leading up to the sale. Head over to their website for more details and to register to bid on this and other classic cars.