Saturday, June 14, 2014

Joni Mitchell's 'Both Sides Now' - 30 Years Apart ...

Joni Mitchell, 1970
Sometimes a song matures, sometimes it's the artist.

On occasion, it's both.

Joni Mitchell wrote and released the wonderful 'Both Sides Now' in 1969 on the 'Clouds' album. It's a simple but haunting song about learning the lessons of life.

Her original, uptempo version has always been a classic, and has been covered by 100s of artists. It's come perhaps to more attention since the release of 'Love, Actually', from the scene with Emma Thompson.

But the version used in the film was very different from the acoustic guitar pop hit of 1969 - it was re-recorded, transformed into a soft and mellow jazz ballad. Joni's voice has changed a lot, the arrangement is unique, and it ends up a whole different experience.

1969 Version 2000 Version

Testament to the beauty of the song is that - uniquely - both versions won Grammy Awards. 31 years apart.

Joni Mitchell, 2000