The sweeping imagery and confessional tone of Joni Mitchell's lyrics have made her a pop icon for decades. Her writing, like that of Paul Simon and Bob Dylan, helped legitimize song lyrics as poetry by adding sophisticated shadings and nuances that earlier rock and folk music often lacked. What's more, as a woman writing in a medium dominated by men, Mitchell became an important role model for young women trying to make sense of their lives during turbulent times. Given her importance as a pop poet and the care and craft with which she approached her craft, it is a treat now to have her work compiled in one volume. Mitchell's has been an aural art, but having the words to read on the page without benefit of melody heightens one's appreciation of the lyrics as poems.
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From the Inside Flap
In the generation of singer-songwriters who came to fame in the '60s, none has had more impact--or created a more evocative, bittersweet, literate, and reflective body of work--than Joni Mitchell. Today's music owes much to her innovation and inspiration. This complete collection of her poetry and song lyrics reads like a poem cycle that finds unexpected meaning and beauty on the page.
After displaying a haunting and sophisticated quality in her first albums, Joni Mitchell (1968), Clouds (1969), Ladies of the Canyon (1970), and Blue (1972), Mitchell reached her poetic apotheosis in the surreal and mythical Hejira (1976) and Don Juan's Reckless Daughter (1977). During the '80s, Mitchell used her words to explore and mirror the commercial energy of the decade. She became more reflective in the following years with Night Ride Home (1991) and Turbulent Indigo (1994). Mitchell continues to grow her already remarkable talent, as is evident with her latest work, Taming the Tiger (1998).
The importance of Mitchell's entire oeuvre is unequivocal when seen as a lifetime of accomplished writing. As epic poet and tragedian, the power and honesty of her voice has inspired generations past and those to come. Joni Mitchell: The Complete Poems and Lyrics gives us the first opportunity to reconsider Mitchell's written work and her exalted place among the great poets and lyricists of our time.
This paperback edition includes the lyrics to Joni Mitchell's new album, Taming the Tiger, as well as an index for easy access to all titles.