Tag Archives: Joni Mitchell

Archives: Joni Mitchell – Never Boring…

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“Every journalist has their dream list of interview subjects. Mine was Marvin Gaye, Neil Young and Joni Mitchell. I never got to Marvin Gaye, but Joni Mitchell more than made up for it. My last cover story for the magazine, and still my favorite. Years later, though, I was still chasing that elusive interview with Marvin Gaye. A mutual friend spoke to Gaye about it, and Gaye enigmatically sent me back a copy of What’s Going On signed in spangly colored pen. It read: ‘Dear Cameron – Keep Getting It On! Love Love Love, Marvin Gaye.’ A couple months later he was dead. Through earthquakes and rain damage, the record remains one of my most prized possessions.”
- Cameron Crowe – Summer 2000

Several days before beginning these interviews, I overheard two teenagers looking for a good party album in a record store. “How about this one,” said one, holding up Joni Mitchell’s ‘Miles of Aisles.’” “Naaaaaah,” said the other, “it’s got good songs on it, but it’s kind of like jazz.” They bought a Cheap Trick album.

When I told this story to Joni Mitchell later, I could see the disappointment flicker across her face for an instant. Then she laughed and took a long drag from her cigarette. “Here’s the thing, ” she said forcefully. “You have two options. You can stay the same and protect the formula that gave you your initial success. They’re going to crucify you for staying the same. If you change, they’re going to crucify you for changing. But staying the same is boring. And change is interesting. So of the two options,” she concluded cheerfully, “I’d rather he crucified for changing. ”

Joni Mitchell, thirty-six, has been living in exile from a mainstream audience for the last three years. Her last resoundingly successful album of new material was ‘Court and Spark,’ a landmark in poetic songwriting, performing and in the growth of an artist we had all watched mature. From folk ballads through Woodstock-era anthems to jazz-inflected experimentalism, Joni Mitchell had influenced a generation of musicians.

Then, in 1975, she released ‘The Hissing of Summer Lawns,’ her ambitious follow-up to ‘Court and Spark.’ She introduced jazz overtones, veered away from confessional songwriting and received a nearly unanimous critical drubbing. Mitchell reacted to the criticism by keeping an even lower personal profile. She spent most of her time traveling (the road album, ‘Hejira,’ was released in 1976), associating with progressive jazz artists and asking questions. With ‘Don Juan’s Reckless Daughter, ‘ a double album released in the winter of 1977, she and pop music had nearly parted ways. In a time when the record-buying public was rewarding craftsmen, Mitchell seemed to be steadfastly carrying the torch for art. Her sales suffered, but this direction was leading to a historic juncture in her career.

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Oct 12, 2014

Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young: Carry On

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Neil Young & Stephen Stills in San Francisco (7/15/74)   Photo by Neal Preston

Cameron digs deep with this 6,000 plus profile of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young’s 1974 tour kick off for Crawdaddy magazine. Highlights include a 4 1/2 hour show in Seattle, Joni Mitchell’s serenades in Vancouver, B.C. and some great quotes all the parties involved. We hope you enjoy the latest addition to the Journalism section. 

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Jan 11, 2013

The Masterpiece of Joni Mitchell

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1968 Photo By Jack Robinson

We honor the incomparable Joni Mitchell today as she celebrates her birthday. Here’s three things for you to consider on her special day.

1. Listen to her music. N’uff said.

2. Revisit Cameron’s July, 1979 Rolling Stone cover story

3. Check out the liner notes for 2004′s Dreamland

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Nov 7, 2012

Marvin Gaye: Trouble Man 40th Anniversary

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Hip-O Select.com/Motown will release a brand new edition of Marvin Gaye’s Trouble Man to celebrate its 40th anniversary on November 19th. The new 2 CD exapanded edition will feature not only the remastered original soundtrack album, but also include 29 unreleased performances including alternate takes, rare vocals and the full score for the film.

The set will also include a 28 page booklet with essays by Cameron, Dr. Andrew Flory, George Tillman, Jr., Lenny Kravitz, Joni Mitchell and Christian McBride. It’s a limited edition of only 5,000 copies and you can order yours directly from the Hip-O website now.

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Oct 29, 2012

10 Records That Affected or Changed Your Life in Some Way

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As part of a feature in the November, 1980 issue of Pro Fun magazine, Cameron was amongst a group of rock critics that shared 10 Records (or singles /artists) that in some way affected them or changed their lives. We thought it might be fun to peek back and share those with you today.

1. Everybody Knows This is Nowhere – Neil Young

2. After the Goldrush – Neil Young

3. Born To Run – Bruce Springsteen

4. Bayou Country – Creedence Clearwater Revival

5. For the Roses – Joni Mitchell

6. Something/Anything? – Todd Rundgren

7. Blood on the Tracks – Bob Dylan

8. “The Wild One, Forever” – Tom Petty

9. Cloud Nine – The Temptations

10. James Brown

 

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Jul 23, 2012

Favorite Set Lists

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Cameron shares some of his favorite concert set lists in the December 2011 issue of Filter magazine. He discusses the reasons for each inclusion along with the actual scan of the set list. Selections include Pearl Jam, Joni Mitchell, U2, Eddie Vedder, Simon and Garfunkel and My Morning Jacket. You can check out the full article in the Journalism section.

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Nov 29, 2011

Exclusive: Cameron On Music – PJ20, We Bought A Zoo & More

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I’m very excited to share a recent interview that I conducted with Cameron on all things music entitled “Music Matters”. We chatted about a variety of musical topics including Neil Young, Linda Ronstadt, Todd Rundgren, Led Zeppelin, the best guitarists he’s seen live and much more. Then the questions turned to the musical aspects of both Pearl Jam Twenty and We Bought A Zoo. Another in-depth interview will occur this Fall and cover more specifics around the films, but today’s interview is all about the music…

 

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Jul 19, 2011

Paste: 11 Vinyl Albums, 10 Essential Films & More!

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Today we look back at the Paste magazine profile of Cameron and Elizabethtown from September 2005. The cover art was done by none other than Joni Mitchell and the issue included an interview with Cameron, his 11 Albums to Seek Out on Vinyl, 10 Essential Films for Stormy Night and Crowe on Crowe (as he reflects back on his all his major projects from Fast Times to Vanilla Sky). I sure do miss holding the physical Paste magazine in my hands, but at least they are still alive and kicking online.

 

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Jun 14, 2011


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