Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Bravo! Joni Mitchell Landmark Album “Blue” Is Number 1 on iTunes 50 Years After Its Release (Listen to Unreleased Demos Here)




Tomorrow is the 50th anniversary of Joni Mitchell’s landmark “Blue” album. Cameron Crowe did a lovely interview with her yesterday in the LA Times.

“Blue” has just hit number 1 on iTunes, 50 years to the day after its release. Bravo! It’s also the number 1 Audio CD on amazon.com.

To celebrate the anniversary Rhino has released a digital 5 track EP of demo’s which you can hear right here on Spotify and YouTube.

“Blue” launched Joni’s classic period that went on to include “For the Roses,” “Court and Spark,” “The Hissing of Summer Lawns,” “Hejira,” and “Mingus.” It’s an extraordinary run of albums considering this was all after “Woodstock,” The Circle Game,” “Both Sides Now,” and “Big Yellow Taxi.”

In the interview with Crowe, there’s talk of Joni as producer of her own albums. What they don’t discuss is that with all those records, no producer was ever listed. Henry Lewy was always the engineer. It wasn’t until new editions of the CDs were released in the 2000s that Joni finally took producer’s credit. She did it all. When you listen to the albums beginning with “Court and Spark” she should get retroactive awards for producing. They are works of genius.

The “Blue” demo tracks will be included this fall on October 29th in a Joni Mitchell Archives set, vol. 2.

Digital EP Track Listing

1. “A Case Of You” – Demo
2. “California” – Demo
3. “Hunter”
4. “River” – with French horns
5. “Urge For Going” – with strings

Full Track Listing

Disc One
Joni’s home (late 1967/early 1968)
1. “Midnight Cowboy” – Version one
2. “The Dawntreader” – Demo with vocal overdub
3. “Song To A Seagull”
4. “Midnight Cowboy” – Version two
Jane Lurie’s Apartment, Chelsea, Manhattan, New York City, NY (late 1967/early 1968)
5. “The Way It Is”
6. “Turn Around” – Incomplete
Home Demo, Joni’s home (late 1967/early 1968)
7. “I Had A King” – Demo with piano overdub
8. “Roses Blue” – Demo with peacock harp overdub
9. “The Fiddle And The Drum” – Piano demo
Song To A Seagull Session, Sunset Sound, Hollywood, CA (January 24, 1968)
10. “Jeremy”
11. “Conversation”
12. “Both Sides Now”
13. “The Gift Of The Magi”
Jane Lurie’s Apartment, Chelsea, Manhattan, New York City, NY (early 1968)
14. “It’s Easy”
15. “Another Melody”
Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI (March 10, 1968)
16. Introduction
17. “Jeremy”
18. “Songs To Aging Children Come”

Disc Two
Le Hibou Coffee House, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, Recorded by Jimi Hendrix (March 19, 1968)
First Set
1. “Night In The City”
2. “Come To The Sunshine”
3. Intro to “The Pirate Of Penance”
4. “The Pirate Of Penance”
5. “Conversation”
6. “The Way It Is”
7. Intro to “The Dawntreader”
8. “The Dawntreader”
Second Set
9. “Marcie”
10. Intro to “Nathan La Franeer”
11. “Nathan La Franeer”
12. Intro to “Dr. Junk”
13. “Dr. Junk”
14. Intro to “Michael From Mountains”
15. “Michael From Mountains”
16. “Go Tell The Drummer Man”
17. Intro to “I Don’t Know Where I Stand”
18. “I Don’t Know Where I Stand”
19. Intro to “Sisotowbell Lane”
20. “Sisotowbell Lane”
21. Intro to “Ladies Of The Canyon”
22. “Ladies Of The Canyon”
Studio Session, Western Recorders, Hollywood, CA (May 31, 1968)
23. “Come To The Sunshine”
Jane Lurie’s Apartment, Chelsea, Manhattan, New York City, NY (summer 1968)
24. “My Second Album”
25. “Lambert, Hendricks & Ross”
26. “The Pirate Of Penance”
Top Gear BBC Radio Broadcast, London, England (recorded September 23, 1968)
27. Intro to “Chelsea Morning”
28. “Chelsea Morning” – with the John Cameron Group
29. Intro to “The Gallery”
30. “The Gallery”
31. Intro to “Night In The City”
32. “Night In The City” – with the John Cameron Group

Disc Three
Live at Carnegie Hall, New York City, NY (February 1, 1969)
First Set
1. “Chelsea Morning”
2. A Valentine for Joni
3. “Cactus Tree”
4. “Night In The City”
5. “I Had A King”
6. “Blue Boy”
7. My American Skirt
8. “The Fiddle And The Drum”
9. Spoony’s Wonderful Adventure
10. “That Song About The Midway”
11. “Both Sides Now”
Second Set
12. “Marcie”
13. “Nathan La Franeer”
14. Intro to “The Gallery”
15. “The Gallery”
16. “Hunter”
17. “Morning Morgantown”
18. Intro to “Get Together”
19. “Get Together”
20. Intro to “The Circle Game/Little Green”
21. “The Circle Game/Little Green”
22. “Michael From Mountains”

Disc Four

Live at Carnegie Hall, New York City, NY (February 1, 1969)
1. Intro to “Urge For Going”
2. “Urge For Going”
Clouds Sessions, A&M Studios, Hollywood, CA (spring 1969)
3. “Conversation”
4. “Blue Boy”
5. “The Priest”
Jane Lurie’s Apartment, Chelsea, Manhattan, New York City, NY (mid 1969)
6. “Jesus”
7. Playing piano and vocalizing
The Dick Cavett Show ABC TV Broadcast, New York City, NY (Recorded August 18, 1969)
8. “Chelsea Morning”
9. “Willy”
10. “For Free”
11. Interview
12. “The Fiddle And The Drum”
Ladies Of The Canyon Demo Session, A&M Studios, Hollywood, CA (late 1969)
13. “Woodstock”
Live at Centennial Auditorium, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada (November 1, 1969)
14. “As I Lie Thinking In My Backyard On August 2nd”
15. “Roses Blue”
16. “Rainy Night House”
Ladies Of The Canyon Sessions, A&M Studios, Hollywood, CA (late 1969)
17. “Ladies Of The Canyon” – with cellos
18. “Blue Boy” – with recorder coda
In Concert BBC TV Broadcast, (recorded September 3, 1970)
19. “All I Want”
Blue Demo Sessions, A&M Studios, Hollywood, CA (September 1970)
20. “A Case Of You”
21. “California”

Disc Five
In Concert BBC Radio Broadcast, Paris Theatre, London England (recorded October 29, 1970)
1. Introduction
2. “That Song About The Midway”
3. Intro to “The Gallery”
4. “The Gallery”
5. “Hunter”
6. Intro to “River”
7. “River”
8. “My Old Man”
9. “The Priest”
10. This is a mountain dulcimer
11. “Carey”
12. “A Case Of You” – with James Taylor
13. Intro to “California” – with James Taylor
14. “California” – with James Taylor
15. Intro to “For Free” – with James Taylor
16. “For Free” – with James Taylor
17. Intro to “The Circle Game” – with James Taylor
18. “The Circle Game” – with James Taylor
19. Intro to “You Can Close Your Eyes” – with James Taylor
20. “You Can Close Your Eyes” – with James Taylor
21. “Both Sides Now”
22. Intro to “Big Yellow Taxi”
23. “Big Yellow Taxi”
Blue Sessions, A&M Studios, Hollywood, CA (late 1970/early 1971)
24. “Hunter”
25. “River” – with French horns
26. “Urge For Going” – with strings

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedmanhttps://www.showbiz411.com
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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