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106: Joni Mitchell, ‘Cactus Tree’

Much of the little I understand of the female psyche I’ve learned from Joni Mitchell. I don’t take her to be emblematic of Womanhood. She’s an individual, with a unique vision of the world, but one that is profoundly female. She has thoughts and feelings and desires and disinclinations that seem to me engendered in that other side of the fence, visions and versions that would never cross my testeronic landscape.
‘Cactus Tree’, from her first and very elusive album, is a catalogue of her ex-lovers. She’s new to the city, untethered and unbridled, liberated, exploiting to the fullest the sexual freedom just becoming available to the fairer sex circa the spring of 1968. One thing I’ve learned with Joni Mitchell – the more you focus and dig and concentrate and delve, the more you discover. You always get more than your money’s worth.

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260: David Crosby/Joni Mitchell, ‘Yvette in English’

David Crosby.
Sometimes he gives you a high.
Sometimes he makes you want to jump off something high.
In 1993, he and Joni Mitchell wrote a beautiful, enigmatic song together.

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259: Chris Thile & Brad Mehldau: ‘Marcie’ (Joni Mitchell), ‘Don’t Think Twice’ (Dylan)

You don’t need Thile and Mehldau to justify the standing of Dylan or Mitchell. But their fresh new readings may still amplify and even enhance the originals.

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