Joni Mitchell Holds Onto Joy & Leaves Sorrow Behind

I don’t really want to paint sorrowful stuff, you know? Like, I get that out of my system. I guess what I was trying to say in the writing. You know, like “For The Roses” is really, you know, writing my sorrows. That’s probably the one. “Court and Spark” has got some of it. “Blue” has got some of it. That pocket. And then it kind of pulls out of there. But that’s when I really kind of addressed hurt. Those three projects…I’ve been through so much in the last five years, really hard stuff. And I’ve come through it kind of, oddly enough, still kind of in a good mood. I can’t explain it. [Laughs.] Maybe it’s just got so rotten, you know, like that there was no place else to go. So, no. I’m in a good space. I’m still in the middle of a bunch of really kind of sickening little wars, but generally I feel pretty happy, you know? It’s not that bad, you know. Things have been worse. I’ve been through so much in my life, you know…I’m a tough old cookie.

Music goddess Joni Mitchell, self-proclaimed “painter who happens to write songs,” once told a Toronto newspaper, “I sing my sorrow and paint my joy.” In an interview with NPR’s “Morning Edition” this week, Mitchell told co-host Renee Montagne that she likes to paint happy scenes and fill her home with joyful images, and Montagne asked whether Mitchell had given up sorrow and perhaps songwriting. Considering the melancholy lyrics that made her famous, I wouldn’t have expected this response. What an amazing spirit. She’s not a legend for nothing! [NPR] [Image via Getty]