Roberta Joan “Joni” Mitchell, CC (née Anderson; born November 7, 1943) is a Canadian singer-songwriter and painter. Mitchell’s work is highly respected by critics, and she has deeply influenced fellow musicians in a diverse range of genres. Rolling Stone has called her “one of the greatest songwriters ever”, and AllMusic has stated, “When the dust settles, Joni Mitchell may stand as the most important and influential female recording artist of the late 20th century”. Her lyrics are noted for their developed poetics, addressing social and environmental ideals alongside personal feelings of romantic longing, confusion, disillusion, and joy. (From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.)
When I was thinking of what song to choose for this week, I read back through my Blog Log from last year looking for a theme. It was actually a pretty eventful year for me both externally with the birth of a new granddaughter (finally a girl, yay me!), and internally with a lot of insights into my life leading to some buddling changes. And one song came to mind.
Though I never knew much about Joni Mitchell’s personal background, I’ve loved her Both Sides Now for a long time because of the progression of life I see in the lyrics. From dreaming about life to experiencing life for the first time, then finally understanding life for what it is with all its ups and downs, ins and outs, and other complexities. I figured over the last year I’d come to the same conclusion she had in her song. I really don’t know life at all — or at least nearly as well as I always thought I did. But I’m learning!
I don’t think I could have picked a better song…