A reality TV search for the new Janis Joplin is bringing back lots of memories for Big Brother + THE HOLDING COMPANY founder SAM ANDREW - because he remembers stumbling upon the rock legend when he was originally looking for a singer.

Joplin's old backing band have joined the brains behind the TV project SEARCH FOR THE PEARL to tour with the new Joplin, and Andrew insists it's just like old times.

He says, "In one way or another since the 1960s I've been searching for Pearl.

"The bass player and I were such terrible singers that we said we just need a singer, so that was our Search for Pearl in 1965. To replace her, my life has been a constant search for Pearl since then."

But he hopes the potential departure of the new Pearl - Joplin's nickname - after the reality show airs won't be as tough on him as when the real thing quit the group and then died in 1970.

He admits the band collapsed and he became addicted to heroin.

31/03/2005 21:25