66th Grammy Awards: Joni Mitchell marks 1st ever Grammys performance with ‘Both Sides Now’

February 5, 2024
Joni Mitchell performed at the 66th edition of the Grammy Awards. She sang ‘Both Sides Now’ for her performance debut on the telecast

Music legend Joni Mitchell performed at the 66th edition of the Grammy Awards. She sang ‘Both Sides Now’ for her performance debut on the telecast.

‘Both Sides Now’ had some resonance as a performance pick for the Grammys. Her very first Grammy Award 55 years ago, back in 1969, was for the ‘Clouds’ album, on which ‘Both Sides Now’ appeared, reports Variety.

Joni Mitchell performed the song in the format that has brought her back to the stage on just a few occasions since she recovered from a 2015 brain aneurysm: it was done “Joni Jam”style, with the singer-songwriter seated on a comfortable-looking throne with her recent trademark cane, surrounded by similarly seated all-star accompanists — in this case, Brandi Carlile, Allison Russell, Jacob Collier, Lucius, Sista Strings and Blake Mills.

As per Variety, the performance followed an emotional moment at the pre-telecast Premiere Ceremony when Mitchell won yet another Grammy, picking up best folk album for ‘Joni Mitchell at Newport (Live)’, as recording’s producer, Carlile, stood beside her. It marked Mitchell’s 10th career Grammy.

In introducing Mitchell on the telecast, Carlile said: “Whether we know it or not, any one of us out here who ever dreamed of becoming a truly self-revealing singer-songwriter did it standing on the shoulders of one Joni Mitchell. Joni is one of the most influential and emotionally generous creators in human history. She redefined the very purpose of a song to reflect the contents of a person’s soul.”

Carlile further mentioned: “Before she took this leap, the popular song was observational… But the exhilarating risk that we all now take by turning ourselves inside out for all the world to see, started, as far as I can tell, with Joni Mitchell doing it first. She’s like the first person to strip down at a skinny dipping party, to take that awkward terrifying leap — before everyone else joyfully follows.”

The 65th annual Grammy Awards, which recognises the best recordings, compositions, and artists are being held at the Crypto.com Arena, Los Angeles Trevor Noah as the show’s host.

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