Joplin in 1970
Side A of the US single
Joplin in 1960 as a graduating senior in high school
Joplin (seated) with Big Brother and the Holding Company, c. 1966–1967 photograph Bob Seidemann
Joplin performs with Tom Jones on This Is Tom Jones in late 1969
Newspaper review of Joplin's 1969 concert at Vets Memorial Auditorium in Columbus, Ohio includes the fact that before it started she walked to the lobby and watched audience members arrive.
Janis Joplin performing at the Newport Folk Festival in Rhode Island in July 1968
Joplin photographed by Jim Marshall in 1969, one year before her death

Pearl is the second and final solo studio album by Janis Joplin, released on January 11, 1971, three months after her death on October 4, 1970.

- Pearl (Janis Joplin album)

A posthumously released version by Janis Joplin topped the U.S. singles chart in 1971, making the song the second posthumously released No. 1 single in U.S. chart history after "(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay" by Otis Redding.

- Me and Bobby McGee

Five singles by Joplin reached the Billboard Hot 100, including a cover of the Kris Kristofferson song "Me and Bobby McGee", which reached number one in March 1971.

- Janis Joplin

A second solo album, Pearl, was released in January 1971, just over three months after her death.

- Janis Joplin

Pearl features the #1 hit "Me and Bobby McGee", on which she played acoustic guitar, written by Kris Kristofferson and Fred Foster; "Trust Me", by Bobby Womack, written for Joplin; Howard Tate's "Get It While You Can", showcasing her vocal range; and the original songs "Move Over" and "Mercedes Benz", the latter co-written by Joplin, Bobby Neuwirth, and Michael McClure.

- Pearl (Janis Joplin album)

Janis Joplin recorded the song for inclusion on her Pearl album only a few days before her death in October 1970.

- Me and Bobby McGee
Joplin in 1970

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Kristofferson in 2018

Kris Kristofferson

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Retired American singer, songwriter and actor.

Retired American singer, songwriter and actor.

Kristofferson in 2018
Kristofferson with Rita Coolidge at the 1972 Dripping Springs Reunion
Kristofferson in 1978
Kristofferson at the 2006 South by Southwest Festival
Kristofferson speaking at the 2014 PEN New England Song Lyrics Award ceremony held in Boston's John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum

Among his songwriting credits are the songs "Me and Bobby McGee", "For the Good Times", "Sunday Mornin' Comin' Down", and "Help Me Make It Through the Night", all of which were hits for other artists.

In 1971, Janis Joplin, who had dated Kristofferson, had a number one hit with "Me and Bobby McGee" from her posthumous album Pearl.