I was brought up on a diet of Joni Mitchell. This is not exactly news – I know a lot of people were. That is not like saying ‘I was brought up exclusively on a diet of Sun Ra, Captain Beefheart and pickled onions’. Which sounds pretty ideal to me, actually.
Anyway, Blue (the entire album) is engrained into my memory, its every note and cadence. I could probably sing it backwards.
I hadn’t listened to it in a while. Then, the other day, I sang along with the entire album while I was in the bath on a Saturday afternoon. I was in exactly the right mood and it was just the right day for it. A cold wintry day, a hot bath, a glass of wine.
I kind of want to say ‘I had forgotten how good it was’. But that is patently not true. Not possible.
It was more that, for some reason, I noticed some new things about it. Well, a couple.
a) Some of the singing on there has almost a hip hop rhythm to it. Just a tiny bit. In places. Honestly.
b) For every song on there that reduces you to tears – and that album literally slays me – the next one counteracts it. After Little Green there is Carey. After Blue there is California. I hope this might be a metaphor for life.