Music Video with Larry Klein and directed by Jim Blashfield.
The premiere of "Good Friends" was announced with some fanfare by MTV's VJ Mark Goodman: "Joni Mitchell-at last!", but the video received only light airplay for the next 2 months.
This song went through several rewrites. In the first draft, I wrote a line that went, "Sometimes change comes at you like a broadside accident, you get minor cuts and bruises, that's all, you can hammer out the dents." Then I rewrote it: "Sometimes change comes at you like a broadside accident, there is chaos to the order, random things you can't prevent."
One night after mixing this song, Klein and I were driving home to Malibu. We had just gotten off of the Santa Monica freeway and onto the PCH- which, in the summer, is the most dangerous road in California. It's full of drunk teenagers, coming back from the beach. That night a drunk kid ran into us. He was passed out at the wheel. He nailed us head on and totaled our car. My hard head went through the windshield. We were taken to the hospital where Klein took 16 stitches in his tongue and six hours later, we were sent home in a taxi.
We were approaching the site of our accident. Broken glass was strewn about- glinting in the morning light. I said to the cab driver, "Oh look, there's our glaaaa...s." Just as I was saying that, the car next to us swerved out of control and we had to dodge to miss it. So within six hours, we nearly bit it again on the same spot, as if something hovered there- laying in wait.
We made a video of this song with some animators who lived in Portland. We went up there to meet with them and we were sitting in a Vietnamese restaurant deciding what the accident should look like on film. We conceived of the car rolling on its side with the trunk and the doors flapping. At 11 o'clock, we left the restaurant. The driver pulled out without looking. There was a screech of brakes. I looked out the back window and saw a car coming at us sideways. He skidded. When he straightened out, he was so pissed-off that he chased us for 25 minutes through the alleys of Portland. My hands were in the prayer position in the back window pleading for him to calm down, calm down. We're sorry. We're sorry. It was an accident!
In the following month, every time I drove, "change came at me" threatening an accident. Time after time my car was nicked or grazed or rammed. Finally I stopped driving altogether. Then we went to England and the pattern broke.
-----Complete Geffen Recordings - Album Notes by Joni Mitchell
Premiered on MTV on November 27, 1985.