11.03.2017

listening to joni: a new wmtc feature

Two new books about Joni Mitchell have come out, with -- strangely -- the same title.

Reckless Daughter: A Joni Mitchell Anthology, edited by Barney Hoskyns, is a collection of stories about Joni* and reviews of her work. It's part of an ongoing collection called Rock's Backpages, which looks at rock through accomplished music writers of the last 50 years. I'm reading this now.

Reckless Daughter: A Portrait of Joni Mitchell, by David Yaffe, is a biography of the artist and her music. It's especially noteworthy because of the unusual access Yaffe had to his subject. I'm going to read this after I finish the anthology.

While reading reviews and impressions of Joni's earliest performances and recordings, I realized how long it's been since I've heard her early music. In some cases, at least her first two albums, I probably have never played as an adult! I decided I would listen to all her albums in chronological order, starting from the beginning. I'm going to try to write about the listening experience on wmtc.

I don't know how this will go. I don't think I have anything particularly insightful or interesting to say about these albums, and I've never been able to write very well about music. My response to music is very emotional -- not intellectual, not analytical, and not verbal. My love for Joni Mitchell and her place in my consciousness is intense -- profound -- and thus very difficult to articulate. But if I'm going on this musical journey, wmtc is coming with me. 

Your comments, as always, will be very welcome.









* I normally hate when female artists and athletes are referred to by their first names, often in contexts where men are referred to by their last names. But to her legion of devoted fans, Joni is Joni.

7 comments:

James Redekop said...

First names are appropriate for some artists more than others. Just think of Lemmy, Ozzy, or Ringo. :)

laura k said...

Well sure. And Bruce, and Mick and Keith! The difference is Joni came up in an era laden with overt sexism, much more than now. I don't like to perpetuate it. But...

impudent strumpet said...

#LeastImportantThing: is there any sort of Official List of Titles of Books Coming Out Soon, so publishers could avoid having two books with the same title on the same subject if they chose to do so?

allan said...

Yay! Now that you have posted about it, you are locked in! (Maybe since I pushed for you to write about the albums, I will listen to them, too. There are several of which I have not heard a note.)

You may have to wait a tiny bit for the Joni bio. I'm getting the Dylan Gospel Years book at the same time and ... Amazon Canada says December 1. Damn it, it got pushed back! US Amazon says November 28.

First names are appropriate for some artists more than others.

Iggy. Elvis. Pedro.

laura k said...

is there any sort of Official List of Titles of Books Coming Out Soon, so publishers could avoid having two books with the same title on the same subject if they chose to do so?

I don't think there's one central list but there's lots of insider information. Publishers can know what other publishers are doing well ahead of the public.

laura k said...

Now that you have posted about it, you are locked in! (Maybe since I pushed for you to write about the albums

#FullDisclosure: This was Allan's idea, and I originally said no. Readers, you've been warned!

You may have to wait a tiny bit for the Joni bio.

I have it on hold at the library. So a wait to own, but not to read.

John F said...

Whenever I think of Joni Mitchell, Free Man in Paris starts to play in my head. Then, suddenly, I am a very young boy again, playing with Fisher-Price toys on the floor in an Ottawa apartment.

Sorry - I seem to be prone to reminiscing this week...