Icky Girl Music: Joni Mitchell’s Birthday Mastermix
Joni Mitchell was born 61 years ago today, on November 7, 1943 in Alberta, Canada. Much as any decent person might normally hate Canadians, what with their beady little eyes and their heads so full of lies, you’ve got to stop and give respect to this classic artist.
She’s usually described primarily as a songwriter, and certainly not without reason. She’s had a unique melodic style, and a lot of jazz gained skill in harmonics that has coalesced into a hella catalogue of songs.
However, the known recordings of almost all her songs (save a Nazareth cover of “This Flight Tonight”) are her own. She’s quite a unique vocal performer with a really good instrument.
On top of which, whoever she’s got producing from record to record, she’s gotten a lot of really interesting arrangements that add a lot to the already excellent basic songs. Indeed, Led Zeppelin and Prince and Elvis Costello have all cited her as a model, particularly for creating orhcestral colors. Dig particularly, for examples, on “The Jungle Line” or “Carey.” She’s got a very painterly consciousness of her tone palette.
Here’s a little late arriving email quote from Sananda Matreiya aka Terence Trent D’Arby:
Were Joni Mitchell born instead John Mitchell, she’d easily and without typical chauvinist reluctance be ranked as one of the greatest artist of the second half of the century. Her genius is not only a novelists eye for vignettes and imagery but also in the complexity of her harmonic ear and brilliant melodies. More men owe a debt to her in my profession than have yet had the balls to own up to. For me she easily ranks with the big boys of my Valhalla, Wilson, Wonder, Dylan, Bacharach etc.
If you haven’t got any Joni Mitchell, then your priorities in life are just messed up. The Blue album comes top recommended, along with Court and Spark. I’ve never seen a Joni Mitchell compilation I was real satisified with, though.
So, of course, I’ve made my own mix CD. It would be worth your time to hunt down mp3s P2P and whip up your own copy of:
ICKY GIRL MUSIC – THE JONI MITCHELL MASTERMIX
The Jungle Line
Big Yellow Taxi
God Must Be a Boogie Man
This Flight Tonight
You Turn Me On, I’m a Radio
Raised on Robbery
Court and Spark
Free Man in Paris
In France They Kiss on Main Street
My Old Man
The Last Time I Saw Richard
All I Want
A Case of You
Song to Aging Children Come
Both Sides Now