Joni Mitchell has been active musically since 1964, but in more recent years her efforts have been rarer amid health issues. After suffering a brain aneurysm in 2015 she has occasionally made public appearances, but over the weekend gave her first full live set since 2002, 20 years ago.
Mitchell surprised an audience at Newport Folk Festival, joining Brandi Carlile for a couple of songs yesterday during a 13-song set.
The 78-year-old sang her classics Both Sides Now (1966) and A Case Of You (1971), while she also played the guitar solo from Just Like This Train (1974).
The pair were joined by Marcus Mumford, Wynonna Judd, Blake Mills, Jess Wolfe and Holly Laessig of the band Lucius, and Mitchell’s bandmates Phil and Tim Hanseroth and Celisse Henderson.
This was a live version of Mitchell’s private Joni Jams that she holds at her Los Angeles home with the likes of Sir Elton John and Bonnie Raitt in attendance.
According to The Guardian, Carlile told the audience: “I just realised, Joni’s the least nervous person up here.”
The group also covered Mitchell’s Carey, Amelia and Circle Game, alongside Gershwin’s Summertime, Frankie Lymon’s Why Do Fools Fall in Love and Leiber and Stoller’s Love Potion No 9.
This was the 78-year-old first full live concert since performing at the Wiltern in Los Angeles on November 13, 2002. She last sang at the Newport folk festival in 1969.
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Come in from the Cold
Case of You
Big Yellow Taxi
Just Like This Train
Why Do Fools Fall in Love
Love Potion No 9
Both Sides Now
The Circle Game