[ ]   [ ]   [ ]                        [ ]      [ ]   [ ]
Joni Mitchell — For The Roses
Album: For The Roses
Avg rating:
6.8

Your rating:
Total ratings: 745









Released: 1972
Length: 3:42
Plays (last 30 days): 1
I heard it in the wind last night
It sounded like applause
Did you get a round resounding for you
Way up here
It seems like many dim years ago
Since I heard that face to face
Or seen you face to face
Though tonight I can feel you here
I get these notes
On butterflies and lilac sprays
From girls who just have to tell me
They saw you somewhere

In some office sits a poet
And he trembles as he sings
And he asks some guy
To circulate his soul around
On your mark red ribbon runner
The caressing rev of motors
Finely tuned like fancy women
In thirties evening gowns
Up the charts
Off to the airport
Your name's in the news
Everything's first class
The lights go down
And it's just you up there
Getting them to feel like that

Remember the days when you used to sit
And make up your tunes for love
And pour your simple sorrow
To the soundhole and your knee
And now you're seen
On giant screens
And at parties for the press
And for people who have slices of you
From the company
They toss around your latest golden egg
Speculation well who's to know
If the next one in the nest
Will glitter for them so

I guess I seem ungrateful
With my teeth sunk in the hand
That brings me things
I really can't give up just yet
Now I sit up here the critic
And they introduce some band
But they seem so much confetti
Looking at them on my TV set
Oh the power and the glory
Just when you're getting a taste for worship
They start bringing out the hammers
And the boards
And the nails

I heard it in the wind last night
It sounded like applause
Chilly now
End of summer
No more shiny hot nights
It was just the arbutus rustling
And the bumping of the logs
And the moon swept down black water
Like an empty spotlight
Comments (117)add comment
Can't stand her voice.
 michaelgmitchell wrote:
Thought I knew a lot about Joni's history, until I learned only recently that the reason her songs are so bloody hard to play (chord structure) is because of the myriads of open tunings; she contracted polio at age 9, thus, couldn't play the frets as one normally does.  I've seen some video since and can actually see how she uses her fingers to play such amazing open chords.  Also, that discovery in '97 of the reunion with her daughter that she gave up for adoption in the 60's.  I always wondered about that line in "Chinese Cafe", and knew it had to be personal.  Anyway, sorry for the blithering.  Just amazes me, her history.
 
I remember long ago reading or hearing her call them "chords of inquiry".  Regardless of the technical reasons for alternate tunings, they imbue her "sound" with subtle complexity.  To wit: compare the standard recordings of "Both Sides Now" done by Joni and by Judy Collins.  Both are beautiful renditions, both with the same lyrics and melody, but very different emotional results.
Just play the album "Blue".  

Or  "Court and Spark". 
Joni sucks big time so much... She is the reason (together with Leonard Cohen) why I hardly listen to RP anymore nowadays....
 
...so long!
Discovered her as a 20-year-old in 1968 and fell in love immediately.  I'm still in love with her and her timelessly beautiful music.  A true artist.  Truly one of a kind.
Unparalleled. 

I recently read the bio of Joni that was released late last year. Being a long time fan, there were only a handful of things I'd never heard before. The most impressive and surprising was that she spent a good deal of time with Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, and spent a few days in an egoless state. In another way it just made tremendous sense... it was in the Hissing of Summer LawnsHejira time period, and so many of her lyrics after that encounter reflect what she'd learned from the Buddhist master.
 membeth wrote:
More Joni, please!
 
Anything but Joni...please.
More Joni, please!
{#Notworthy} {#Hearteyes}

I'd ditto BBoyes' post, but it's already been done. 
 BBoyes wrote:
Joni is a true treasure. I had a huge crush on her when I was 18, and about 15 years younger than her. I love her music in part because her tunings and melodies are so unconventional: never three-chord repitition. Truly original. And her voice: celestial and so effortless. Lyrics that make me close my eyes and listen (not while driving...). I can listen to her songs over and over and they never get monotonous. Here phrasing and enunciation are flawless.

Gorgeous! 

"And the moon swept down black water like an empty spotlight" 

Thanks, Bill. 

 
Thanks BBoyes - my words and experiences uncannily similar. Love this song and the memories it stirs.
Exquisite 
Thank you  
PSD to the rescue.  
Always lovely to hear her unique authentic voice and composition.

Did you know that the photograph on this album was taken at Mathews Point on Galiano Island, overlooking Active Pass (Sqthaqa'lh). If you have ever sailed (by ferry or otherwise) between Vancouver and Victoria (on Vancouver Island), you have travelled past this location.

All of these place names, of course, are from the Spanish and English colonial powers that recently settled this traditional Lekwungen and Hul’q’umi’num’ area of the Salish Sea. 


Gosh - what is with all the Joni Mitchell Bill has been playing recently - he is on a Joni "kick?!"  A bit much for my taste.... {#Eh}
class act
Joni is a true treasure. I had a huge crush on her when I was 18, and about 15 years younger than her. I love her music in part because her tunings and melodies are so unconventional: never three-chord repitition. Truly original. And her voice: celestial and so effortless. Lyrics that make me close my eyes and listen (not while driving...). I can listen to her songs over and over and they never get monotonous. Here phrasing and enunciation are flawless.

Gorgeous! 

"And the moon swept down black water like an empty spotlight" 

Thanks, Bill. 
Nice song but seems to me rather boring after this very last hour three gems broadcasted
an obvious 10
For John.  With the undying love of a baby sister.  I hope you are at peace.
Dead boring.Would have to be stoned out of my brain to get off on that .Sorry Bill.
 zubeneschamli wrote:
Great artist, great album, great voice, great song, great lyrics, great playing. This is what a rating of 10 is for. 

 
....... totally agree with the above so for me it's G O D L I K E
Great artist, great album, great voice, great song, great lyrics, great playing. This is what a rating of 10 is for. 
 Rick_V wrote:

Folk Joni.

Love me some Folk Joni or Fusion Joni or Jazz Joni or Pop Joni etc......


All good.  



I agree. Folk Joni.

Folk Joni.

Love me some Folk Joni or Fusion Joni or Jazz Joni or Pop Joni etc......


All good.  


I don't think I'm exaggerating when I say that she has one of the few voices I could happily listen to singing the phone book.
 dig wrote:
This is good... Right?
 
Yes, it is; VERY good, to be more precise.
So many years, so many times I've heard this song ... great song, great album, great singer.
 KevinM wrote:

She's annoying, Like fingernails on a chalkboard. That's all I have to say...

 
I disagree but respect your opinion. We all like what we like and dislike what we don't.
This album is where Joni starts to come into her greatness. All uphill for the next 8 years. 
Joni was sublime as she descended into her narcissism.
This is good... Right?
 coding_to_music wrote:

Yuppers
 
Double Yuppers!!     {#Daisy}
I agree wholeheartedly with post below {#Arrowd}
After all the years and her body of work, this remains my favorite song and album.  Chills.
 shelt wrote:
She's an angel.  Mesmerizing.  That's all I have to say...
 
She's annoying, Like fingernails on a chalkboard. That's all I have to say...
i am not familiar with this one. i really like it. a lot. it's lovely. i wonder if she wrote it (after reading the lyrics, i wonder this) for that man that she wrote  "free man in paris" for. record exec, right?
 shelt wrote:
She's an angel.  Mesmerizing.  That's all I have to say...
 
Yuppers
 Rooney wrote:
She's one of those singer-songwriters that have improved with age (if that's possible).  Listen to her cut "Dreamland" from Don Juan's Reckless Daughter.  Her versatility is amazing. 
 
That album is about 35-years-old - only about 5 years after this one.  She did continue to grow musically, though.



Not my favorite Joni song..I think she was giving James Taylor the boot at the time, but admire her courage to write the lyrics & then perform them.  Love her voice.
{#Heartkiss}
She's one of those singer-songwriters that have improved with age (if that's possible).  Listen to her cut "Dreamland" from Don Juan's Reckless Daughter.  Her versatility is amazing. 
Joni Mitchell always makes me feel like Bill the Cat from Bloom County. Ackpfft. Never liked her in the 70s and not now.
Desert island album for me...mesmerizing.
She's an angel.  Mesmerizing.  That's all I have to say...
Not one of my favourite Joni songs, but almost all the tracks from her first six studio albums score 8 to 10 in my book, though I'm not a great fan of her later work. Her songwriting skills seem unquestionable to me, though I can understand that some might not appreciate her voice (as for almost any songstress) , but I can't understand some of the hate comments below.
I cannot hear what many find so good with this lady, especially her later work.
Beautiful song, beautiful voice. This album will always be in my collection
as few women have the writing abilities, voice or the panache that Joni does.

It's a sad day when I read that there is someone that can't appreciate Joni's music, especially her early years. Songs to Aging Children Come, I am one.
so so true, this one is just so true
 
Randomax wrote:
just when you get a taste of worship they start bringing out the hammer and the boards and the nails.........my god, that woman can write
 


ah to hear that again, thank you bill and rebecca for this place
Wonderful
Don't like
Awesome
 dwlangham wrote:
I'm told that this song is better than it sounds.
 

{#Lol}Joni brings out my inner John Belushi, I just want to smash her guitar!!
I'm told that this song is better than it sounds.
Been a long time since I've heard this song....still excellent!
Yup!  Another one hits the OUTSTANDING rating.  Thanks
 Marley wrote:
Anyone know who she's singing about in the song?
 

James Taylor. Several of the songs from this album are. Reference the "pack your suspenders" line in See You Sometime. Blonde In The Bleachers is another one.
 unclehud wrote:
Has there ever been a voice as clear and strong?
 
I love it that Bill followed this with a Steeleye Span song - another clear, strong voice.  Not as good as Joni's, but up there in the top five of my favorites. {#Sunny}
Has there ever been a voice as clear and strong?
The image on the inside of this LP is classic.
 Pharlap wrote:
arguably the greatest female "singer-songwriter". And at the very top of her game.
 
No argument here.

 michaelgmitchell wrote:
 Also, that discovery in '97 of the reunion with her daughter that she gave up for adoption in the 60's.  I always wondered about that line in "Chinese Cafe", and knew it had to be personal.
 
"Little Green" on Blue is about her giving her daughter up.

 Pharlap wrote:
arguably the greatest female "singer-songwriter". And at the very top of her game.
 

Amen to that, old mate!
She is a good songwriter and everything, it is just her voice makes me feel like I am a renaissance fair and I just cannot get over that!{#Lol}
Sublime, poignant, brilliant songwriting and performance from a superb artist.  Brava, Joni!  Thank you, BillG!
slartibart_O wrote:
anyone else hearing Alice Cooper singing Only Women Bleed?

Good call!!! {#Lol}
Whenever I hear JM, it reminds me of summer
just when you get a taste of worship they start bringing out the hammer and the boards and the nails.........my god, that woman can write
Hey, it's JONI !!!  Thx, Bill!  {#Smile}
anyone else hearing Alice Cooper singing Only Women Bleed?
...a thousand tiny shards of eeeek penetrate my brain...
Monday morning it's freezing outside and Joni Mitchell? Agony agony agony.
Good stuff!!
holborne wrote:
EW EW EW HATE HATE HATE JONI MITCHELL!!!!!!! HAAAAAAAAAAAATE HERRRRRRRRR! EW EW EW EW EW!!!


And yet he rates Neko Case a 10. The world sure is a weird place !

Reminds my of my older sister (only sibling) .........she played Joni endlessly in her room..............Today I can very seldom fault her on her musical taste during that time....
 michaelgmitchell wrote:
Thought I knew a lot about Joni's history, until I learned only recently that the reason her songs are so bloody hard to play (chord structure) is because of the myriads of open tunings; she contracted polio at age 9, thus, couldn't play the frets as one normally does.  I've seen some video since and can actually see how she uses her fingers to play such amazing open chords.  Also, that discovery in '97 of the reunion with her daughter that she gave up for adoption in the 60's.  I always wondered about that line in "Chinese Cafe", and knew it had to be personal.  Anyway, sorry for the blithering.  Just amazes me, her history.
 
This is not blithering, this is interesting info and a thoughtful comment. Cheers!

 Leslie wrote:

I never knew this, so thanks for blithering.

 
Well,  and I just recently learned that she and husband Chuck (from whence she draws the Mitchell surname) used to play the coffeehouses in the greater Detroit area back when Terrible Ted was fronting an up-and-coming band named Amboy Dukes and Iggy hadn't yet taken the stage at the Grande Ballroom.

(Playing off of the Canada connection, I think she kinda looks like Neil Young in this blurry, low-res photo).

arguably the greatest female "singer-songwriter". And at the very top of her game.
 holborne wrote:
EW EW EW HATE HATE HATE JONI MITCHELL!!!!!!!   HAAAAAAAAAAAATE HERRRRRRRRR!  EW EW EW EW EW!!!

 

I don't wish to seem like a silly person that sends out hate mail willy-nilly, but holborne has expressed my feelings exactly.
don't like the way she sings, at least not on this one.

One of the greatest singer/songwriters of all time.
Throughout all my years, single and married, there still is no one for me who expresses the hope, longing, and mystery of love better than Joni Mitchell.

 holborne wrote:
EW EW EW HATE HATE HATE JONI MITCHELL!!!!!!!   HAAAAAAAAAAAATE HERRRRRRRRR!  EW EW EW EW EW!!!

 

DITTO!
EW EW EW HATE HATE HATE JONI MITCHELL!!!!!!!   HAAAAAAAAAAAATE HERRRRRRRRR!  EW EW EW EW EW!!!

Nice to hear this album again, used to play this when I was young and lived over the Jewish Deli.
The best Joni CD ever, which is just saying the best whatever...and this song is delicate and purely bittersweet, as is her voice.
 michaelgmitchell wrote:
Thought I knew a lot about Joni's history, until I learned only recently that the reason her songs are so bloody hard to play (chord structure) is because of the myriads of open tunings; she contracted polio at age 9, thus, couldn't play the frets as one normally does.  I've seen some video since and can actually see how she uses her fingers to play such amazing open chords.  Also, that discovery in '97 of the reunion with her daughter that she gave up for adoption in the 60's.  I always wondered about that line in "Chinese Cafe", and knew it had to be personal.  Anyway, sorry for the blithering.  Just amazes me, her history.
 
I never knew this, so thanks for blithering.

Gorgeous... I've come to love the lush, orchestrated version from Dreamland, too...
Thought I knew a lot about Joni's history, until I learned only recently that the reason her songs are so bloody hard to play (chord structure) is because of the myriads of open tunings; she contracted polio at age 9, thus, couldn't play the frets as one normally does.  I've seen some video since and can actually see how she uses her fingers to play such amazing open chords.  Also, that discovery in '97 of the reunion with her daughter that she gave up for adoption in the 60's.  I always wondered about that line in "Chinese Cafe", and knew it had to be personal.  Anyway, sorry for the blithering.  Just amazes me, her history.
tomkoshiol wrote:
I saw her a few years back opening for Bob Dylan in Mpls. It was hard seeing her chain smoking and looking so unhappy after loving her music for so many years. It just didn't fit my vision, and I always hoped I just saw things wrong that night (from the fifteenth row on the floor, center stage). I wonder how she is doing these days. Still love her music.
You didn't "see things wrong" I don't think. She's having it rough, growing older. But we still love her, don't we?
now this is the Joni stuff which works. lovely.
Anyone know who she's singing about in the song?
Yay Joni! :sunny:
I saw her a few years back opening for Bob Dylan in Mpls. It was hard seeing her chain smoking and looking so unhappy after loving her music for so many years. It just didn't fit my vision, and I always hoped I just saw things wrong that night (from the fifteenth row on the floor, center stage). I wonder how she is doing these days. Still love her music.
after all these years, her voice still gives me the hots. :hearteyes:
Can't believe I missed this one. A definite "1" (I'd give it a negative rating if I could)
ThePoose wrote:
Main refrain reminds me of Alice Cooper's Only Women Bleed.
Indeed.
freeone1 wrote:
hooray for joni...always a good choice bill!
I second that!
Beautiful as all Joni songs are.
Such a lovely voice, beautiful lyrics, and great guitar! It can only be Joni! :clap:
Main refrain reminds me of Alice Cooper's Only Women Bleed.
Wonderful, original and superbly executed.
hooray for joni...always a good choice bill!
ronniegirl wrote:
What an amazing voice. Wow.
Ditto! and nice playing as well. Beautiful.
Ahhhh sweet! So good to hear Joni again. Wonderful song. It's enough to make me want to go to California with an achin' in my heart ...
I like the guitar work. Still don't care at all for her singing though.
Perfection! :meditate:
Goddesslike.
Tasty stuff, but still prefer her "Jazz" every time.
nah
What an amazing voice. Wow.
Haven't really listened to much Joni, but dang if she doesn't have a sweet voice.