In a new PBS special, the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song honors the legendary Joni Mitchell with a cavalcade of performances by music royalty.
From the Library of Congress:
Mitchell got her start performing in coffee shops and nightclubs in her native Canada and would go on to become an icon among music makers, setting a new standard marrying music and lyrics.
With such songs as “Both Sides, Now,” “Chelsea Morning,” “Big Yellow Taxi,” “Woodstock” and “The Circle Game,” Mitchell became a household name.
Mitchell redefined the role of women musicians. She oversaw all aspects of her albums, including songwriting, arrangements, performance, production and artwork. Her sound crosses musical genres from folk to jazz, classical and rock, and she continues to inspire her fellow artists.
Mitchell is also a talented painter, creating the cover art for many of her albums, and her visual art will be featured prominently in the tribute concert, along with her music.
The lineup included performances by James Taylor, Brandi Carlile, Annie Lennox, Herbie Hancock, Cyndi Lauper, Marcus Mumford, Graham Nash, Angelique Kidjo, Diana Krall, Celisse, Lucius and Ledisi.
Plus, Mitchell herself takes the stage to channel Gershwin’s “Summertime” in a performance the Washington Post called “divine intervention.”
Related: Joni Mitchell – Both Sides Now 2000
Watch the luminous Annie Lennox deliver a spectacular performance of “Both Sides Now” in the new PBS special, Joni Mitchell: The Library of Congress Gershwin Prize.
Mitchell was only 23 when she wrote “Both Sides Now,” and many have written of the knowing insight built into the DNA of the song. Lennox is magical here, tapping into the joy of that knowingness.