on this, the weekend that the world experienced woodstock 39 years ago, i'd like to appreciate a woman who didn't get to go: joni mitchell. as she describes at the beginning of the video below, she stayed back in new york city because her manager thought it more advantageous to appear on a TV show instead. as soon as i heard that story, i felt that she probably regretted that choice the moment it was made. she immediately wrote the song "woodstock" for her friends (a young CS&N) to commemorate the event. most will recognize the more familiar version of woodstock performed by crosby, stills, nash, & young, recorded a few years later. i honestly have no idea how their version came about from the original song. joni mitchell's solo piano version is as haunting as it is hopeful....
i find it unfortunate that there have not been recent pop singers in the soprano range. joni mitchell's soprano sound is naked and gorgeous because she allows her natural vibrato to enhance the melody. i'm easily annoyed by the endless mariah carey-type quick note-hopping at the ends of phrases and carried notes. dont get me wrong, total props to mariah for introducing this sound and performing it incredibly well, it's just that too many damn pop stars are imitating it these days, and not very well!
i've enjoyed listening to joni mature as a singer, because her voice has changed over the years. her voice has grown deeper with time, as i feel mine has too. i'm not the soprano i used to be!
so as i pack today for the big move tuesday, i know who i'll be listening to!