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Joni Mitchell to Reissue Late '70s Albums in Box Set

The package comes with liner notes written by Meryl Streep.

joni s
Source: MEGA

The album set will feature one of Mitchell's paintings on the cover.

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Although Joni Mitchell's late-1960s and early-'70s albums were her most commercially successful, the singer-songwriter's jazzier turn in the late 1970s saw the release of some of her most musically adventurous material. On April 30, Mitchell and Rhino Records announced the upcoming release of box set The Asylum Albums (1976-1980), which will package remastered versions of Hejira, Don Juan's Reckless Daughter, Mingus and Shadows and Light. The set will be available on June 21 in 6LP and 5CD packages, featuring a painting by Mitchell as the cover art.

The set also features liner notes penned by three-time Oscar winner Meryl Streep, who writes in a short excerpt shared in the press release: “It’s not just the artifact – music and lyrics – that Joni gives us. Her artistry leaves us, ourselves, changed. She has shifted things around inside us. And that’s how artists change the world.”

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joni s set
Source: Rhino Records

The 'Asylum Albums' set will be released on June 21.

Of the albums in the set, Hejira is undoubtedly the most famous, featuring Mitchell classics like "Coyote" and "Song for Sharon." Though it sold slower than Mitchell's two previous LPs, Court and Spark and The Hissing of Summer Lawns, its reputation has only increased in recent decades, with Rolling Stone ranking it at No. 133 on the magazine's 2020 list of "The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time."

Don Juan's Reckless Daughter was more divisive upon release, and remains so today, particularly for its depiction of Mitchell in blackface on the cover. Mingus was the result of Mitchell's attempt to collaborate with jazz great Charles Mingus, who died in the midst of the recording process -- featuring contributions from the likes of Herbie Hancock, Jaco Pastorius and Wayne Shorter, the album is perhaps Mitchell's most fully-throated jazz effort. The live album Shadows and Light was recorded during the Mingus tour, and features some notable spotlight solos from Pastorius and guitarist Pat Metheny, as well as a radically reworked version of Mitchell's 1970 staple "Woodstock."

The Asylum Albums set is available for pre-order now.

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joni mitchell
Source: MEGA

Mitchell made her Grammy debut earlier this year.

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The set's release comes amid a resurgence of interest in Mitchell's music, as well as her wholly unexpected return to live performance after a devastating brain aneurysm in 2015 saw her largely disappear from public life for many years. Alongside Brandi Carlile, Mitchell made a surprise appearance at the Newport Folk Festival in 2022. Mitchell and Carlile followed that up in 2023 with a full-scale, three-hour concert at the Gorge Amphitheater in Washington, while Mitchell also made appearances at the Library of Congress and at the Gershwin Prize ceremony in her honor in Washington D.C.

Earlier this year, Mitchell performed at the Grammy Awards for the first time, singing "Both Sides Now" alongside Carlile. (She also won her 10th Grammy earlier in the evening, for Best Folk Album.)

Also this year, Mitchell announced plans to deliver a headlining set at the Hollywood Bowl next autumn.


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