Hejira

( 7 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - David Cleary
Joni Mitchell's Hejira is the last in an astonishingly long run of top-notch studio albums dating back to her debut. Some vestiges of her old style remain here; "Song for Sharon" utilizes the static, pithy vocal harmonies from Ladies of the Canyon's "Woodstock," "Refuge of the Roads" features woodwind touches reminiscent of those in "Barangrill" from For the Roses, and "Coyote" is a fast guitar-strummed number that has precedents as far back as Clouds' "Chelsea Morning." But by and large, this release is the most overtly jazz-oriented of her career up to this point -- hip and cool, but never smug or icy. "Blue Motel Room" in particular is a prototypic slow jazz-club combo ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - David Cleary
Joni Mitchell's Hejira is the last in an astonishingly long run of top-notch studio albums dating back to her debut. Some vestiges of her old style remain here; "Song for Sharon" utilizes the static, pithy vocal harmonies from Ladies of the Canyon's "Woodstock," "Refuge of the Roads" features woodwind touches reminiscent of those in "Barangrill" from For the Roses, and "Coyote" is a fast guitar-strummed number that has precedents as far back as Clouds' "Chelsea Morning." But by and large, this release is the most overtly jazz-oriented of her career up to this point -- hip and cool, but never smug or icy. "Blue Motel Room" in particular is a prototypic slow jazz-club combo number, appropriately smooth, smoky, and languorous. "Coyote," "Black Crow," and the title track are by contrast energetically restless fast-tempo selections. The rest of the songs here cleverly explore variants on mid- to slow-tempo approaches. None of these cuts are traditionally tuneful in the manner of Mitchell's older folk efforts; the effect here is one of subtle rolls and ridges on a green meadow rather than the outgoing beauty of a flower garden. Mitchell's verses, many concerned with character portraits, are among the most polished of her career; the most striking of these studies are that of the decrepit Delta crooner of "Furry Sings the Blues" and the ambivalent speaker of "Song to Sharon," who has difficulty choosing between commitment and freedom. Arrangements are sparse, yet surprisingly varied, the most striking of which is the kaleidoscopically pointillistic one used on "Amelia." Performances are excellent, with special kudos reserved for Jaco Pastorius' melodic bass playing on "Refuge of the Roads" and the title cut. This excellent album is a rewarding listen.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/25/1990
  • Label: Elektra / Wea
  • UPC: 075596061421
  • Catalog Number: 1087
  • Sales rank: 8,002

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Coyote (5:00)
  2. 2 Amelia (6:00)
  3. 3 Furry Sings the Blues (5:03)
  4. 4 A Strange Boy (4:15)
  5. 5 Hejira (6:35)
  6. 6 Song for Sharon (8:30)
  7. 7 Black Crow (4:20)
  8. 8 Blue Motel Room (5:03)
  9. 9 Refuge of the Roads (6:37)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Joni Mitchell Primary Artist, Acoustic Guitar, Guitar, Electric Guitar, Rhythm Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals
Neil Young Harmonica
Larry Carlton Acoustic Guitar, Guitar
Victor Feldman Percussion, Keyboards, Vibes
Jaco Pastorius Bass
Tom Scott Horn, Wind
Abe Most Clarinet
Bobbye Hall Percussion
Max Bennett Bass
Chuck Domanico Bass
Chuck Findley Trumpet, Horn
John Guerin Drums
Technical Credits
Joni Mitchell Director
Bernie Grundman Mastering
Henry Lewy Engineer
Glen Christensen Art Direction
Keith Williamson Prints
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 7 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Classic album with signs of drifting from the mainstream

    Joni Mitchell never made a bad album but this was her last essential studio album. Very much worth owning.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    AMELIA IT WAS A FALSE ALARM

    TO ME THIS JONI MITCHELL'S THIRD BEST ALBUM BEHIND BLUE AND COURT AND SPARK. JACO PASTOROUS MAKES THIS ALBUM ENCHANTING. COYOTE AND BLACK COW BRING THE GUITAR WITH GREAT ENCHANCEMENT. AMELIA AND REFUGE OF THE ROADS ARE FAVORITE SONGS. I THINK JONI MITCHELL KNEW ME WITH SONG " A STRANGE BOY. SONG FOR SHARON ,FURRY SINGS THE BLUES AND HEJIRA BRING OUT THE MYSTERY OF THE ALBUM. THE BLUE MOTEL ROOM BRING A TASTE OF JAZZ TO ALBUM ALMOST LIKE COURT AND SPARK WITH " TWISTED'.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Hejira - Timeless and Captivating

    This is my favorite of the Joni Mitchell-Jaco Pastorius collaborative cd's. That Joni has the confidence to hire such strong musicians is impressive at minimum, but to feature "the world's greatest bass player" as a co-conspirator of equal value is another thing altogether. Throughout 'Hejira' Ms. Mitchell reveals her ability to communicate great insight via the lyrical content residing in each song. Just as noteworthy is the care with which she selects the musicians who weave a rich tapestry of melody and orchestral grandeur, placing their own signatures on the portrait that is 'Hejira'. To note a few highlights from so many on this cd: the title track 'Hejira' contains one of the finest examples of Mr. Pastorius in a support role. Never far from the main theme nor the meaning of the lyrics, the bass parts (yes there are as many as 5 overlays of Jaco creating a mini-cello like quintet) respond to Joni's lead vocal as if in conversation expressing sympathy and understanding of the plight about which she sings. A very emotional performance (not to mention one of the greatest melodies of all time - my opinion). Refuge of the Road: Again, the bond between Joni and her bassist is strong, revealing a mutual respect for one another-a respect that never overshadows but enables the two to accomplish the more important task of getting the message across. And that they do! You will love this cd if you prefer music that touches the very soul of you. Warning: this cd is timeless and may dominate your listening. It could be habit forming but IS NOT HAZARDOUS TO YOUR HEALTH!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Spare, minimal, beautiful

    This album (or CD if you wish)is basically Joni, her piano and/or guitar, defying convention, pop rituals, and the production standards of its time, making a timeless, genre-less statement. Like her Blue, in its beautiful but haunting melodies, but with more complex jazz chording on many numbers. The arrangements are quite spare and minimal, but Joni's singing is strong and melodic. The overdubbed bass of the young Jaco Pastorius, Joni's last minute idea, was a brilliant touch that just happened to deliver the most startling, dramatic "lead" bass line perhaps ever recorded, on "Refuge of the Road." His overdub on the title cut is nearly as good. And "Amelia (Erhardt)", nearly a Joni solo, is so haunting. Buy it for your grandkids.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Timeless

    A friend introduced me to Joni Mitchell only a year ago. I was enchanted by the ethereal qualities of ''Hejira''. Having since explored some of her older works I was amazed at the timeless aspect of this work; it is inspiring and if anything she has even improved with age; who says talent is wasted on the young!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 25, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 29, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews