Reckless Daughter: A Portrait of Joni Mitchell

Reckless Daughter A Portrait of Joni Mitchell She was like a storm Leonard CohenJoni Mitchell may be the most influential female recording artist and composer of the late twentieth century In Reckless Daughter the music critic David Yaffe tells
  • Title: Reckless Daughter: A Portrait of Joni Mitchell
  • Author: David Yaffe
  • ISBN: 9780374248130
  • Page: 388
  • Format: Hardcover
  • She was like a storm Leonard CohenJoni Mitchell may be the most influential female recording artist and composer of the late twentieth century In Reckless Daughter, the music critic David Yaffe tells the remarkable, heart wrenching story of how the blond girl with the guitar became a superstar of folk music in the 1960s, a key figure in the Laurel Canyon music scene o She was like a storm Leonard CohenJoni Mitchell may be the most influential female recording artist and composer of the late twentieth century In Reckless Daughter, the music critic David Yaffe tells the remarkable, heart wrenching story of how the blond girl with the guitar became a superstar of folk music in the 1960s, a key figure in the Laurel Canyon music scene of the 1970s, and the songwriter who spoke resonantly to, and for, audiences across the country A Canadian prairie girl, a free spirited artist, Mitchell never wanted to be a pop star She was nothing than a painter derailed by circumstances, she would explain And yet, she went on to become a talented self taught musician and a brilliant bandleader, releasing album after album, each distinctly experimental, challenging, and revealing Her lyrics captivated listeners with their perceptive language and naked emotion, born out of Mitchell s life, loves, complaints, and prophecies As an artist whose work deftly balances narrative and musical complexity, she has been admired by such legendary lyricists as Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen and beloved by such groundbreaking jazz musicians as Jaco Pastorius, Wayne Shorter, and Herbie Hancock Her hits from Big Yellow Taxi to Both Sides, Now to A Case of You endure as timeless favorites, and her influence on the generations of singer songwriters who would follow her, from her devoted fan Prince to Bj rk, is undeniable.In this intimate biography, drawing on dozens of unprecedented in person interviews with Mitchell, her childhood friends, and a cast of famous characters, Yaffe reveals the backstory behind the famous songs from Mitchell s youth in Canada, her bout with polio at age nine, and her early marriage and the child she gave up for adoption, through the love affairs that inspired masterpieces, and up to the present and shows us why Mitchell has so enthralled her listeners, her lovers, and her friends Reckless Daughter is the story of an artist and an era that have left an indelible mark on American music.
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    2 thoughts on “Reckless Daughter: A Portrait of Joni Mitchell

    1. David Yaffe is an assistant professor of English at Syracuse University His writings have appeared in many publications, including The Nation, Slate, The New York Times, The Village Voice, and The Chronicle of Higher Education.During the 2008 2009 academic year, he was the Gould Faculty Fellow in the Humanities at Claremont McKenna College He subsequently returned to Syracuse.

    2. Biographies are quite dangerous books, they can turn on you just like that, take a whole lump out of you before you can say wait, I didn t want to know that Don t tell me Please No I like biographies of people I don t care too much about, like the Marquis de Sade, or Kathy Acker or H P Lovecraft or Marlon Brando I get nervous when they re about people who I love or think I love like Nina Simone or John Fahey or Joni Mitchell But I want the information I m so greedy Joni was everything they said [...]

    3. Joni Mitchell is a very important artist to me, as she is for many people I ve never really been able, however, to articulate why she means so much to me I think that s a universal experience though Her music speaks to people in ways they can t explain And in this new biography, what s so compelling about not only Joni s story but Yaffe s telling of it is that he s able to, every once in a while, put into words how Mitchell s music makes you feel.This is a special book because you can tell the a [...]

    4. This book really celebrates the unique talent of Joni Mitchell, someone who conjures the true hippie spirit of the 60 s 70 s, a singer that is quintessentially and synonymously the voice of the folk hippie scene.A simple prairie girl from Canada emerges when she picks up the guitar and discovers her raw untapped talent She s the real deal A true talent with soul in her heart and voice She s strong but also fragile She s not always portrayed perfectly There are vulnerabilities which you can hear [...]

    5. I was just walking near Lake Michigan and saw a young woman wearing a Woodstock T Shirt, I had just listened to this biography s focus on that period, and I stopped to tell her Oh she said, Who s Joni Mitchell I smiled, seeing my mistake that the t shirt might have actually meant something to her Oh, I said She s just a genius I ve always been in love with Click on this as you read, her Blue youtube watch v w5782I love Joni Mitchell, always have Of course, like most people, I prefer her earlier [...]

    6. This a remarkable biography of the iconic Joni Mitchell Reckless Daughter provides not only the background of the famous singer songwriter but also delves into her brilliant musicality A must read for rabid fans.

    7. Since it looks like she won t be writing the autobiography I ve been waiting for, this will probably be the closest we ll get Maybe a tad too deferential, but with so many details I ve never read before about her fascinating life and the genesis of the songs that I can hardly complain If you re going to read a Joni book, read this one Then be sure to play the records one by one Over and over and over and over.youtu PVxZSp1QN9I

    8. I wasn t sure what to expect from Reckless Daughter There are an awful lot of terrible showbiz biographies around, so as someone who has loved Joni Mitchell s music for nigh on half a century now I approached this with some trepidation but it turns out to be very good Yaffe s style is readable and pretty straightforward and although it s a little over written in places for my taste I never found that intruding too badly and I found the whole thing an enjoyable and fascinating read.David Yaffe kn [...]

    9. As someone who scrawled Joni s first name basis, of course lyrics across my college notebooks and in my journals, I consider myself a pretty ardent fan My husband can t stand the shrieking voice or the mopey lyrics but even he, as I read this book and played certain songs alongside it, had to concede that she was a force to be reckoned with So with this new bio and its beautiful cover photo, I set out to fall in love with her again, or at least with her story But I didn t David Yaffe s portrait [...]

    10. An excellent job of research Yaffe seems to have spoken with all the major figures from each musical period in Joni s career He also certainly knows his music history and music theory, being able to discuss the harmonic and rhythmic elements in Joni s always expanding palette of song types.The trajectory of Joni Mitchell s career went from sensitive and articulate folk songwriter through a rock accompanied period that led her into jazz Much the way Steely Dan accrued accomplished jazz musicians [...]

    11. Ms Mitchell gets the book she deserves detailed, balanced, and while full of respect and admiration inclusive of actions, events and statements that do not paint the lady of the canyon in a flattering light The author s deep understanding of music allows a depth not normally found in biographies of this sort Expect feeling a need to work your way carefully through Mitchell s catalogue while reading, and once you ve finished this.

    12. I ve been a Joni Mitchell fan since, well, forever So is the author, and he s done a nice job talking to his subject, her various lovers and friends, and other significant people in her life He writes well, and I m learning tons of cool, interesting stuff about one of my favorite musicians.I paired the book with re listening to all of her albums, or less in order as Yaffe describes them Which adds a lot to both the book and the music, so I recommend this approach to you, too.I wish he d done a [...]

    13. Granted, Joni Mitchell is an innovator who has lived the life of an artist, creating some enduring music, and this book is well written, but after a while Joni wears you down She lacks warmth or generosity of spirit, unlike Springsteen or Robbie Robertson in their recent books, which made it difficult to finish.

    14. Joni Mitchell s first album was released in March, 1968 I was an off and on student at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, dropping out and then enrolling again I was also singing in various spots around campus, covering songs recorded by Judy Collins, Joan Baez, and Bob Dylan, already playing Judy Collins version of Both Sides Now So of course, I bought the album the minute it came out and listened to it daily Eventually a couple friends of mine helped me figure out her open tunings and ho [...]

    15. I am a fan of Joni Mitchell, and while I appreciated David Yaffee s focus on her music, this biography was a slog I only recommend it to those who truly admire Mitchell s music and are interested in that aspect of her life Yes, there are details regarding her many lovers and her reunion with the daughter she gave up for adoption, but as a reader, I was left with the impression of Mitchell as woman who is difficult, full of herself, and always has been It made me sad I enjoy reading biographies a [...]

    16. Reckless Daughter is a biography of legendary songstress Joni Mitchell that seamlessly combines biographical details with analysis of her lyrics and her musicianship For those of us who grew up with her music, but never bothered to learn the biography, it was quite interesting to learn that she grew up in Canada, had polio as a child before widespread application of the Salk vaccine, had a child out of wedlock at a young age who she gave up for adoption, and other details Many of these things ap [...]

    17. Joni could roar, but many people had no idea how easily she could be wounded, how she would see and feel daggers that other people didn t even know they had thrown Joni Mitchell and I share a birthday and she is very special to me This was such an honest yet celebratory novel I loved how much you could just tell Yaffe loves and admires Mitchell Everything he wrote was filtered through that and what came out was such a feeling of warmth versus coming off as a little preach y which i feel like a l [...]

    18. This book is incredibly precise and detailed yet still holds Joni at a distance Kind of like Joni herself I imagine Still, I miss her now that it s over I guess you don t know what you got till it s gone HAHAHAHAHA but I did enjoy this book immensely and am inspired by her devotion, always, to herself.

    19. Interesting look at Joni Mitchell, her songwriting and singing, as well as the times 70s on for her career and the famous singers she knew More an appreciation than a straightforward, balanced biography, this still provides details of her life and career, much drawn from interviews with Mitchell and others Reading while listening to some of her greatest hits isn t a bad suggestion.

    20. A balanced view of Mitchell s person And a through but not wonky look at all her albums Has some pictures and end notes

    21. A recurring motif in Reckless Daughter is the attempt to find a suitable comparison for Joni Mitchell The author, the subejct, and contemporaries of hers take their best shot Miles Davis, Rembrandt, Beethoven, Schubert, Van Gogh, and Picasso are all mentioned Joni, who always considered herself as much a painter as a musician, would appreciate the cross medium comparisons, and as someone who grew up loving Rachmaninoff and Debussy and took pride in her compositions, she wouldn t mind being menti [...]

    22. Wild Things Run Fast, released in October 1982, is never anyone s favorite Joni Mitchell album Writing like that is why musician biographies are always lacking Every reader has their own experience of the artist.Wild Things Run Fast is my favorite Joni Mitchell album It is the album I heard first and through which I discovered her others Elaboration on just why it s my favorite album will have to wait for my own biographyhehe In the same chapter, it was odd to hear the tour that accompanied that [...]

    23. Although my oldest sister was a big fan of Joni Mitchell and played her records all the time while we were growing up, it wasn t until Mitchell s Wild Things Run Fast LP of 1982 that I became a genuine fan and immediately began amassing her old stuff During the rest of the eighties and throughout the nineties Mitchell would release a new record every few years and I would always be all over it, right away Though I genuinely enjoyed all of those records, even 1985 s oft maligned Dog Eat Dog, none [...]

    24. My sister gave me Song to a Seagull when I was in high school and Joni Mitchell s albums from Ladies of the Canyon through Hejira lived with me from then through college and after She was important to me because she was a female artist, living mostly alone, writing about the difficulties of loving men and loving herself at the same time of negotiating independence and closeness She was an image of a kind of female power that seemed possible to me Court and Spark and Hejira were and are my favori [...]

    25. Well researched and thorough Portrays Mitchell as a consummate musician who, due to weakness in her left hand from polio developed unique open turnings that left other guitarists like Eric Clapton, astounded She wanted full control of her unique sound, but her backup musicians loved working with her There were problems on the road, mostly due to the female partners of her band mates When Joni gave one of them the job of wardrobe manager, the wife assumed that she would be able to help herself to [...]

    26. Despite being a big Joni Mitchell fan, I did not care for this book I think there are three reasons First, I am not a musician and could not follow the technical discussion of open tunings, fretless basses, etc As a writer, I never assume knowledge on the part of my reader and I found it distracting that Yaffe did not even try to put the technicalities into layman s terms He seemed to be trying to show how much music he knew than I did, which is undoubtedly true, but does not make for good writ [...]

    27. It was the forty fifth episode of Ally McBeal Ally is questioning true love and in the background a cover of Both Sides Now by Joni Mitchell starts playing Sung by Vonda Shepard I think This was the first time I heard the song and fell in love with the words I was too young but I was growing up gay only known to me then and somehow this song meant something Something so much A year or two passed and then I realized that the original singer was Joni Mitchell I fell in love with her, with her voi [...]

    28. I loved this book but I m a huge fan of Mitchell s music and very, very familiar with the lyrics For those who are casual listeners this might be a slog The author makes many references to single lines of lyrics and they aren t always from her top hits This could REALLY slow down the biography for those who are unfamiliar For those who love her music this is a fascinating read I played a lot of Mitchell s music as I read and I also referred to another book Joni Mitchell The Complete Poems and Ly [...]

    29. Of course everyone knows Joni Mitchell, but how much do we actually know about her In my case, I knew some of her songs, but I was not that familiar with her albums or her personal life and I jumped at the chance to find out about her I am glad I did This is a really well written biography, which is hung on the skeleton of her excellent discography and fleshed out from there.David Yaffe does an excellent job bringing Joni to life her music is disected with passion and her personal life is told [...]

    30. Short TakesReckless Daughter A Portrait of Joni Mitchell by David Yaffe Pub Date October 17, 2017 Liner Notes to a LifeBack in the day, before albums became CDs, my favorite part of getting a new album was the liner notes Pulling off the shrink wrap, putting the yet scratch free disc on its spindle, and settling in to read the backstory of the artist and the songs, liner notes gave the music a context Reckless Daughter is the liner notes to Joni Mitchell s life While chronological in structure, [...]

    31. This intimate look at Joni Mitchell is interesting though not very probing Although it is well constructed there are some periods that feel skirted over to avoid any real controversy Not saying that there is anything in her life that would lead to controversy but it does suffer from a friend writing a biography than an impartial writer The book is interesting and informative and if you have a casual interest in the singer songwriter than this biography is for you If you are a lifelong fan, then [...]

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