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Joni Mitchell – Joni Mitchell Archives – Vol. 1: The Early Years (1963-1967) (2020) [Official Digital Download 24bit/44,1kHz]

Joni Mitchell – Joni Mitchell Archives – Vol. 1- The Early Years (1963-1967) (2020)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/44,1 kHz | Time – 05:51:46 minutes | 3,35 GB | Genre: Folk
Studio Master, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Rhino

The 5-CD collection includes a 40-page booklet that features many unseen photos from Mitchell’s personal collection as well as new liner notes featuring conversations between writer/filmmaker Cameron Crowe and Mitchell, who recently spent a couple of Sunday afternoons together discussing her archives. Crowe will continue to provide liners for future releases in the series.

“I got to beat these leeches to the punch.” That’s one of the reasons put forth by Joni Mitchell—an artist famously averse to looking backward, especially at her earliest years as a musician—as to why she compiled this massive collection of the first recordings she ever made. The “leeches,” of course, are the bootleggers and other folks seeking to exploit her performances, so, in an approach similar to Neil Young’s Archives series, Mitchell’s audio biography cuts them off by presenting a set that is both chronological and comprehensive. And, surprisingly for broadcast tapes, demos, and live recordings from more than a half-century ago (but perhaps not so surprising for a collection overseen by the fidelity-conscious Mitchell), the audio quality is consistently superb. While many other artists have undertaken similar vault-clearing expeditions, the sheer fact that Mitchell was willing to revisit the era in which she was very explicitly a folk singer—a label she disliked and quickly pivoted away from creatively—is a real surprise. It’s almost as surprising as how good of a folk singer she was! The earliest recordings here, from a Saskatoon AM radio broadcast in 1963 and a 1964 cafe concert in Toronto, are all folk standards like “Nancy Whiskey,” “Maids When You’re Young Never Wed an Old Man,” and “House of the Rising Sun.” Mitchell’s voice molds itself to the warbly pitch favored by female folk singers of the era (and she even plays a ukulele), but it’s clear she’s merely trying on a costume, using a pre-built form to copy so she can develop her technical skills. By the time the first Mitchell originals appear on the set—on a tape she made for her mother’s birthday in 1965—both her music and her voice have begun to transform, and by the 1967 recordings, the more resonant singing voice associated with her—as well as her affinity for unique guitar tunings—s on full display. In fact, when one radio show host comments “Are you ever in straight tuning?” Mitchell kind of laughs and says “just in one song” like it’s the most normal thing in the world. (Mitchell’s infamous stage banter—honed so she could tune her guitar between songs without completely losing the audience—is in abundant evidence on this set. There is literally an album’s worth of her talking and tuning here, and it’s all pretty wonderful.) The early demos and concert performances of songs like “Morning Morgantown,” “Night in the City,” and, of course, “The Circle Game” and “Both Sides, Now” are revelatory in their own way, and one can hear on these recordings why so many of her contemporaries in the folk scene gravitated toward them and why Mitchell included them on her first three, pre-Blue albums. However, the Mitchell originals that never appeared again are even more interesting. Tracks like “Urge for Going” (which Mitchell calls her “first well-written song”) and “Born to Take the Highway” are exceptionally strong pieces of work that show just how high her standards were for her own work. To be sure, this era is the least interesting period in Joni Mitchell’s musical career, at least from a creative standpoint, but this installment of Archives is nonetheless a substantial, intriguing, and revelatory set, which bodes quite well for the future of the series. – Jason Ferguson

Tracklist

CD1

1. Joni Mitchell – House Of The Rising Sun
2. Joni Mitchell – John Hardy
3. Joni Mitchell – Dark As A Dungeon
4. Joni Mitchell – Tell Old Bill
5. Joni Mitchell – Nancy Whiskey
6. Joni Mitchell – Anathea
7. Joni Mitchell – Copper Kettle
8. Joni Mitchell – Fare Thee Well (Dink’s Song)
9. Joni Mitchell – Molly Malone
10. Joni Mitchell – Introduction (Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964)
11. Joni Mitchell – Nancy Whiskey (Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964)
12. Joni Mitchell – Intro To The Crow On The Cradle (Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964)
13. Joni Mitchell – The Crow On The Cradle (Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964)
14. Joni Mitchell – Pastures Of Plenty (Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964)
15. Joni Mitchell – Every Night When The Sun Goes In (Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964)
16. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Sail Away (Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964)
17. Joni Mitchell – Sail Away (Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964)
18. Joni Mitchell – John Hardy (Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964)
19. Joni Mitchell – Dark As A Dungeon (Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964)
20. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Maids When You’re Young Never Wed An Old Man (Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964)
21. Joni Mitchell – Maids When You’re Young Never Wed An Old Man (Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964)
22. Joni Mitchell – The Dowie Dens Of Yarrow (Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964)
23. Joni Mitchell – Deportee (Plane Crash At Los Gatos) [Live at The Half Beat, Yorkville, Toronto, Canada, 10/21/1964]
24. Joni Mitchell – The Long Black Rifle
25. Joni Mitchell – Ten Thousand Miles
26. Joni Mitchell – Seven Daffodils

CD2

1. Joni Mitchell – Urge For Going
2. Joni Mitchell – Born To Take The Highway
3. Joni Mitchell – Here Today And Gone Tomorrow
4. Joni Mitchell – What Will You Give Me
5. Joni Mitchell – Let It Be Me
6. Joni Mitchell – The Student Song
7. Joni Mitchell – Day After Day
8. Joni Mitchell – Like The Lonely Swallow
9. Joni Mitchell – Favorite Colour
10. Joni Mitchell – Me And My Uncle
11. Joni Mitchell – Sad Winds Blowin’
12. Joni Mitchell – Just Like Me
13. Joni Mitchell – Night In The City
14. Joni Mitchell – Brandy Eyes (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 11/1966)
15. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Urge For Going (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 11/1966)
16. Joni Mitchell – Urge For Going (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 11/1966)
17. Joni Mitchell – Intro To What’s The Story Mr. Blue (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 11/1966)
18. Joni Mitchell – What’s The Story Mr. Blue (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 11/1966)
19. Joni Mitchell – Eastern Rain (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 11/1966)
20. Joni Mitchell – Intro To The Circle Game (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 11/1966)
21. Joni Mitchell – The Circle Game (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 11/1966)
22. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Night In The City (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 11/1966)
23. Joni Mitchell – Night In The City (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 11/1966)

CD3

1. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Both Sides Now
2. Joni Mitchell – Both Sides Now
3. Joni Mitchell – Intro To The Circle Game
4. Joni Mitchell – The Circle Game
5. Joni Mitchell – Morning Morgantown (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 3/17/1967) [2nd Set]
6. Joni Mitchell – Born To Take The Highway (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 3/17/1967) [2nd Set]
7. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Song To A Seagull (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 3/17/1967) [2nd Set]
8. Joni Mitchell – Song To A Seagull (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 3/17/1967) [2nd Set]
9. Joni Mitchell – Winter Lady (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 3/17/1967) [3rd Set]
10. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Both Sides Now (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 3/17/1967) [3rd Set]
11. Joni Mitchell – Both Sides Now (Live at The 2nd Fret, Philadelphia, PA, 3/17/1967) [3rd Set]
12. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Eastern Rain
13. Joni Mitchell – Eastern Rain
14. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Blue On Blue
15. Joni Mitchell – Blue On Blue
16. Joni Mitchell – Gemini Twin
17. Joni Mitchell – Strawflower Me
18. Joni Mitchell – A Melody In Your Name
19. Joni Mitchell – Tin Angel
20. Joni Mitchell – I Don’t Know Where I Stand
21. Joni Mitchell – Joni Improvising
22. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Sugar Mountain
23. Joni Mitchell – Sugar Mountain

CD4

1. Joni Mitchell – I Had A King
2. Joni Mitchell – Free Darling
3. Joni Mitchell – Conversation
4. Joni Mitchell – Morning Morgantown
5. Joni Mitchell – Dr. Junk
6. Joni Mitchell – Gift Of The Magi
7. Joni Mitchell – Chelsea Morning
8. Joni Mitchell – Michael From Mountains
9. Joni Mitchell – Cara’s Castle
10. Joni Mitchell – Jeremy (Incomplete)
11. Joni Mitchell – Conversation (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
12. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Come To The Sunshine (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
13. Joni Mitchell – Come To The Sunshine (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
14. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Chelsea Morning (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
15. Joni Mitchell – Chelsea Morning (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
16. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Gift Of The Magi (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
17. Joni Mitchell – Gift Of The Magi (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
18. Joni Mitchell – Play Little David (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
19. Joni Mitchell – Intro To The Dowie Dens Of Yarrow (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
20. Joni Mitchell – The Dowie Dens Of Yarrow (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
21. Joni Mitchell – I Had A King (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
22. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Free Darling (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
23. Joni Mitchell – Free Darling (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
24. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Cactus Tree (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]
25. Joni Mitchell – Cactus Tree (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [1st Set]

CD5

1. Joni Mitchell – Little Green (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [2nd Set]
2. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Marcie (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [2nd Set]
3. Joni Mitchell – Marcie (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [2nd Set]
4. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Ballerina Valerie (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [2nd Set]
5. Joni Mitchell – Ballerina Valerie (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [2nd Set]
6. Joni Mitchell – The Circle Game (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [2nd Set]
7. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Michael From Mountains (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [2nd Set]
8. Joni Mitchell – Michael From Mountains (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [2nd Set]
9. Joni Mitchell – Go Tell The Drummer Man (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [2nd Set]
10. Joni Mitchell – Intro To I Don’t Know Where I Stand (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [2nd Set]
11. Joni Mitchell – I Don’t Know Where I Stand (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [2nd Set]
12. Joni Mitchell – A Melody In Your Name (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [3rd Set]
13. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Carnival In Kenora (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [3rd Set]
14. Joni Mitchell – Carnival In Kenora (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [3rd Set]
15. Joni Mitchell – Songs To Aging Children Come (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [3rd Set]
16. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Dr. Junk (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [3rd Set]
17. Joni Mitchell – Dr. Junk (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [3rd Set]
18. Joni Mitchell – Morning Morgantown (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [3rd Set]
19. Joni Mitchell – Intro To Night In The City (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [3rd Set]
20. Joni Mitchell – Night In The City (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [3rd Set]
21. Joni Mitchell – Both Sides Now (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [3rd Set]
22. Joni Mitchell – Urge For Going (Live at Canterbury House, Ann Arbor, MI, 10/27/1967) [3rd Set]

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