A highlight from Janis Joplin Episode 2: The Pontiac Was Full of Grass, the Kool-Aid Was Full of Acid, and Summertime Was Just Beginning

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Richard rodgers sat in the waiting room of columbia records. New york office one leg crossed perfectly on top of the other pants pleaded and pressed straight windsor not honest necktie. He noticed a hair on the pocket of his drabs suit jacket and brushed it off before anyone else was the wiser. The cross leg interfered with the com- symmetry of his neatly tailored in well quaffed image but in moments of impatience across legs sent a message. He sat with kind of impatience six year. Old composer the kind whose mark in the great american songbook was epic the impatience of a man whose name appeared alongside lorenzo heart and oscar hammerstein and therefore shouldn't be made to wayne rogers was an mba. But it was got eg ot not just any he got but the first gop for that was even a thing to be e in one thousand nine hundred sixty two for the music for an abc show on winston churchill t a grammy in nineteen sixty for the sound of music. Oh an oscar in one thousand nine hundred forty six the song it might as well be spring from the movie state fair in a tony. Nineteen fifty multiple. Tony's actually for self pacific but it had been a few years since an war. It was now one thousand nine hundred sixty eight rogers broadway sensibilities were rapidly being replaced by noisemakers folksingers in men. With long hair. They called the. Who's tommy araca crafter. All garages was concerned that his kind of music was losing market. Share columbia to the likes of simon and garfunkel and johnny cash. In schefter. think the birds he wanted to share his concerns with goddard levers top brass columbia levers sin was a bit old guard himself. He understand but it was unlikely. Rescind to make rogers wait. so long. While roger sat waiting when legs still crossed and silent protests that the prospect of more waiting. Clive davis happened. By davis was colombia's new president appointed by lieber sohn to maintain columbia status as a hip record label while rock and roll trends continued to evolve as fast as some of the hair that was growing on. Its front line. Purveyors davis clouds. His hands together at the unexpected sight of roger sitting. There davis said he had an idea. You could practically see the light bulb turn on his forehead. His receding hairline. Richard clash shouted. Do you have a minute. I've got something on a play inside. Davis is office. Rodgers watched as davis pulled record from its sleeve and gently placed it on a turntable. The record coverer looked like comic book. Panels some five and dime schlock meant to attract the lowest common denominator at the top john and red and yellow electric-shock fuzz. It read cheap thrills. Well at least they've got the good sense to admit what they are thought to himself. He was willing to give davis a chance on this though he could tell it wasn't going to like it. You're gonna dig this man davison as if he could read. Rogers mind wanted to blatantly contradict him and then he put the needle down on the record. The third track on side one. The reckon crackle. This piece of fuzz was caught between the stylists and the vinyl bass and drums slowly used from the speakers playing a descending progression. That was immediately recognizable. Rogers and then an electric guitar. Toss some classical sounding nudity notes on top. It was all very remedial rogers. The musicians were far from terrific. Still he could tell. The song was summertime the great gershwin songs from porgy and bess a musical so refined and so important that it had been deemed an opera when it originally debuted in nineteen thirty five. Rogers didn't write summertime but he always wished he'd had written it. He could see why dave is wanted. His opinion because davis couldn't go straight to the source material. George gershwin

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