News archive

JoniMitchell.com has been bringing you the news on Joni since the day the website went live in 1996. It's all archived and searchable here. In addition to the news, you can find an archive of "upcoming tributes and events" that have been listed on the site as well.

News archive

Joni Mitchell Archives, Vol. 1: The Early Years (1963-1967) was nominated for a Grammy today for Best Historical Album. Other contenders are Beyond The Music: Marian Anderson's Complete RCA Victor Recordings; Etching The Voice: Emile Berliner And The First Commercial Gramophone Discs, 1889-1895; Excavated Shellac: An Alternate History Of The World’s Music; and Prince's Sign O' The Times Deluxe Edition.

This year’s Kennedy Center Honors, the nation’s highest honor for the arts, will pay tribute to Joni and other iconic cultural figures Justino Diaz, Berry Gordy, Lorne Michaels, and Bette Midler. The December 5 ceremony will be filmed and a highlights broadcast shown on CBS- Wednesday, December 22 at 9pm Eastern time.

Today's the day we finally get to hear the second volume in Joni's ongoing Archive series. Focusing on the period from late 1967 through early 1971, it's 5 CDs (and, in February, 10 LPs) worth of previously unreleased material. Click the Store link to get your copy!

In August of 1970, Joni traveled to the Four Corners region of the American Southwest to visit James on the set of Two-Lane Blacktop, his first and only starring acting role. While filming on location in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Taylor wrote “You Can Close Your Eyes” for Mitchell and performed the song live in October 1970 when they were in Vancouver to play at Amchitka, a benefit concert supporting Greenpeace’s protest against nuclear weapons tests at Amchitka, Alaska.

Taylor played the song again a few days later at the Paris Theatre in London on October 29, 1970, where he and Mitchell sang it together. Their performance was recorded (and later broadcast on December 27) for “In Concert,” a weekly show on BBC Radio hosted by famed British DJ John Peel.

Today it's being released digitally. Read the full press release here.

Reservoir Media has signed a new deal with Joni, which sees the company become the worldwide administrator of her publishing catalog.

The nine-time Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter's catalog was previously administered by Sony Music Publishing, following a worldwide deal struck 24 years ago in 1997.

"I'm looking forward to working with Reservoir," said Joni.

Reservoir Founder & CEO Golnar Khosrowshahi added: "I am so proud to welcome Joni Mitchell to our Reservoir family. Joni is a musical pioneer and a once-in-a-lifetime creator, and we look forward to safeguarding her catalog and championing her legacy." More information here.

Joni scholars will recognize the name Frankie McKitrick. Joni: "The first record that I had to have was a classical piece of music. At that time we were living in North Battleford, and my best friend was a musical prodigy, Frankie McKitrick. His feet could barely reach the pedals of the church organ but he could play the thing. And we had gone to a movie. It was called “The Story of Three Loves” and the theme was Rachmaninoff’s “Variations on a Theme” by Paganini. Beautiful melody. I had to have that record. That was my first piece of inspirational music..." Frankie passed away on August 9.

LOS ANGELES - On February 1, 1969, almost a year after Joni Mitchell released her debut album Song to a Seagull, the 25-year-old singer-songwriter was standing on stage at Carnegie Hall in New York City playing the first major concert of her young career for a sold-out crowd that included Bob Dylan. Graham Nash, who was Mitchell's partner at the time, was there too, along with her parents visiting from Canada. Her performance that night earned glowing reviews, including this one from Billboard's Fred Kirby:

"Joni Mitchell charmed a packed Carnegie Hall audience on Saturday...Miss Mitchell doesn't merely sing a song, the fine folk artist effectively interprets her material. And what a lineup of material! Beginning with 'Chelsea Morning" and ending with a medley of 'The Circle Game' and the new 'Little Green,' the outstanding material flowed."

Fatefully, her label Reprise Records recorded the entire concert with plans to release it. More than 50 years later, the show will finally make its long-awaited debut on November 12 as part of JONI MITCHELL ARCHIVES VOL. 2: THE REPRISE YEARS (1968-1971). On the same day, the performance will be released separately as a 3-LP set on 180-gram vinyl for $59.98, with an exclusive 180-gram, white vinyl version, limited to 3,000 copies, available at www.JoniMitchell.com. The vinyl showcases the full audio across five LP sides with the sixth side featuring an etching of the American eagle that donned Mitchell's skirt at the Carnegie Hall show. As a preview, Mitchell's performance of "Chelsea Morning" from the show is available today digitally. Listen here.

MusiCares announced today that Joni has been chosen as the 2022 MusiCares Person of the Year. Mitchell is the honoree of the 31st annual Person of the Year benefit gala.

Proceeds from the event will provide essential support for MusiCares, the leading music charity providing music professionals health and human services across a spectrum of needs. The tribute will be held at the Los Angeles Convention Center on Sat, January 29, 2022, two nights before the 64th Annual GRAMMY Awards.

"We are so excited to bring together an amazing line-up of artists to celebrate the musical legacy of Joni Mitchell," said Laura Segura, Executive Director of MusiCares. "She is being honored not only for her iconic music and lyrics, but for her trailblazing spirit and the inspiration she's brought to so many artists."

The MusiCares Person of the Year tribute ceremony is one of the most prestigious events held during GRAMMY Week. It includes a reception and silent auction, offering an exclusive selection of one-of-a-kind items for bidding guests, followed by a dinner and tribute concert, featuring renowned musicians and other artists paying tribute to Mitchell.

"I’m honored to be chosen as person of the year by this great charity,” said Joni, “I look forward to being part of this gala that will help MusiCares continue their inspired work in providing a support system for those in need.” More information here.

On March 19, 1968, a 24-year-old Joni Mitchell was in the midst of a two-week residency at Le Hibou Coffee House in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, playing to rave reviews in anticipation of her debut album, Song To A Seagull, which was set for release just a few days later on Reprise. Not long before Mitchell was scheduled to take the stage, Jimi Hendrix was just finishing his second sold-out show of the night at the Capitol Theater a few blocks away. Earlier in the day, Hendrix had spoken to Mitchell and noted his plans to record her in his diary entry for that day:

“talked with Joni Mitchell on the phone. I think I’ll record her tonight with my excellent tape recorder (knock on wood) . . . hmmm . . . can’t find any wood . . . everything’s plastic”

Following his two performances on that night, Hendrix rolled in to Le Hibou with his reel-to-reel recorder as promised and kneeled in front of the stage, unnoticed by most, and recorded Mitchell’s two sets that evening. As he also noted in his diary, Hendrix, like many others at the time, was mesmerized by Mitchell: “fantastic girl with heaven words.”

Were you in attendance at this event? Let's talk!

Listen to the entire song on this page, and read the press release here.