The former lesbian lover of late rockstar Janis Joplin has spoken out about their relationship – and denying she was responsible for Joplin’s death – in a new interview.
Peggy Caserta, 77, had an on-off relationship with Joplin, who was nicknamed “Pearl,” in San Francisco between 1966 and 1970, the same year when the rocker died from a suspected heroin overdose aged 27.
Caserta, who now lives in Louisiana, infamously revealed her romance with Joplin in her ghostwritten book Going Down With Janis, published in 1973.
However, she has since disowned the work, and criticised ghostwriter Dan Knapp.
Now, Caserta has spoken to Vulture about being Joplin’s lover, following the release of her second memoir I Ran Into Some Trouble on August 1.
Caserta, who met Joplin at a Big Brother and the Holding Company gig in San Francisco in November 1966, told the entertainment news site that she released her latest book in order to re-write her story about her relationship with the rocker.
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In the interview, Caserta, who ran a clothing boutique when she met Joplin, denied being responsible for the star’s death.
She added that her friends fell out with her over the book, with some blaming her for Joplin’s death.
Speaking about the impact of her 1973 book, Caserta told Vulture: “It’s been awful. It’s been awful. I sometimes just wanted so badly to scream out and say, ‘I didn’t write that trash. That’s not me. I wasn’t responsible for her using or her dying.'” I loved her.
“I adored her. So I just stayed hidden for, God, 25 years or more because I just couldn’t take the criticism. It’s just too much.”
Both Caserta and Joplin were addicted to heroin at the time of the rockstar’s death.
Caserta, who ran a clothing boutique when she met Joplin, also said that she did not believe Joplin was a lesbian.
“I never saw Janis as a gay girl. She was straight. She was wild. I’m gay, and lived a gay lifestyle even then,” she said.
Joplin released two albums when she was the lead singer of rock band Big Brother and the Holding Company.
She then left the band and put out two more albums: I Got Dem Ol’ Kozmic Blues Again Mama! in 1969, and Pearl, which was released four months after her death in 1971.