Songs of a Prairie Girl

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Mark Deming
The third in Joni Mitchell's ongoing series of thematic compilations drawn from her stellar back catalog, Songs of a Prairie Girl is described by Mitchell in her liner notes as "my contribution to Saskatchewan's Centennial celebrations," an appropriate gesture since she spent most of her childhood in Saskatoon, a city in that Canadian province. Most of the songs on Songs of a Prairie Girl deal in one way or another with childhood or adolescence, often with a bittersweet edge; there's little in the way of unbridled nostalgia, with "Let the Wind Carry Me" and "Urge for Going" expressing the desire to escape the boundaries of small-town life, and "Ray's Dad's Cadillac" and ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Mark Deming
The third in Joni Mitchell's ongoing series of thematic compilations drawn from her stellar back catalog, Songs of a Prairie Girl is described by Mitchell in her liner notes as "my contribution to Saskatchewan's Centennial celebrations," an appropriate gesture since she spent most of her childhood in Saskatoon, a city in that Canadian province. Most of the songs on Songs of a Prairie Girl deal in one way or another with childhood or adolescence, often with a bittersweet edge; there's little in the way of unbridled nostalgia, with "Let the Wind Carry Me" and "Urge for Going" expressing the desire to escape the boundaries of small-town life, and "Ray's Dad's Cadillac" and "Song for Sharon" recalling equal measures of joy and remorse in the misadventures of her teen years. Mitchell's music also splendidly conjures up the wintry space of the Canadian plains, especially on the epic "Paprika Plains" from Don Juan's Reckless Daughter appearing here in a new mix that reduces the emphasis on the orchestra in favor of Joni's piano and the symphonic version of "Cherokee Louise." And while there are moments of remembered joy particularly on "Harlem in Havana", for the most part Songs of a Prairie Girl is, by design, a meditation on the broad and snowy spaces of Saskatchewan, and Mitchell herself advises with tongue in cheek that the listeners should "get yourself a hot beverage and stand by the heater as you listen." As a collection of lesser-known material "Raised on Robbery" is the only "hit" here, Songs of a Prairie Girl once again casts a well-considered glance on a less-explored aspect of Mitchell's work, and these songs convey the mingled pleasure and sadness of growing up with the careful eye of a true artist, as well as the crisp if faded memories of the home she left so many years ago. Beautiful stuff, and richly rewarding.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/26/2005
  • Label: Elektra / Wea
  • UPC: 081227463427
  • Catalog Number: 74634
  • Sales rank: 18,046

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Joni Mitchell Primary Artist, Acoustic Guitar, Guitar, Piano, Keyboards, Vocals, Background Vocals, Billatron
Billy Preston Hammond Organ
Robbie Robertson Electric Guitar
Brenda Russell Background Vocals
Herbie Hancock Piano
Plas Johnson Tenor Saxophone
Vince Mendoza Conductor
Jaco Pastorius Bass
Tom Scott Horn, Woodwind
Wayne Shorter Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone
Derek Watkins Trumpet
Kenny Wheeler Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Richard Berry Horn
Tony Lewis Celli
Don Alias Shaker
Alex Acuña Percussion, Bells
Paul Archibald Trumpet
John Barclay Trumpet
Pete Beachill Trombone
Max Bennett Bass
Chuck Berghofer Acoustic Bass
Mark Berrow Violin
Brian Blade Drums
Leon Bosch Bass
Stuart Brooks Trumpet
Vinnie Colaiuta Drums
Lisa Coleman Background Vocals
Paulinho Da Costa Percussion
Ben Cruft Violin
Liz Edwards Violin
Richard Edwards Trombone
David Emanuel Violin
Andy Findon Flute
Robin Firman Celli
Simon Gardner Trumpet
Mike Gibbs Conductor
John Guerin Percussion, Drums
Steve Henderson Percussion
Garfield Jackson Viola
Skaila Kanga Harp
Manu Katché Percussion, Drums
Paul Kegg Celli
Larry Klein Bass, Guitar, Percussion, Electric Bass, Keyboards
Michael Landau Guitar
Chris Laurence Bass
Helen Liebmann Celli
John Lenehan Piano
Martin Loveday Celli
Steve Lukather Electric Guitar
Rita Manning Violin
Jim McLeod Violin
Wendy Melvoin Background Vocals
Anthony Pleeth Celli
Simon Rayner Horn
Johnathan Rees Violin
Frank Ricotti Percussion
Jonathan Strange Violin
Cathy Thompson Violin
Philip Todd Soprano Saxophone
Justin Ward Viola
Hugh Webb Harp
Dave Woodcock Violin
Philip Eastop Horn
Dermot Crehan Violin
Femi Jiya Barking
Steven Orton Celli
Mary Scully Bass
Katherine Shave Violin
Helen Tunstall Harp
Peter Lale Viola
Paul Willey Violin
Richard Bissell Horn
Patrick Kiernan Violin
Boguslaw Kostecki Violin
Frank Schaefer Celli
Jackie Shave Violin
Bruce White Viola
Peter Hansen Violin
David Fuest Clarinet
Andrew Crowley Trumpet
John Anderson Oboe
Peter Davies Trombone
Susan Bohling Cornet, Oboe
Jacob Heringman Lute
Mike Hext Trombone
Helen Keen Flute
Julian Leaper Violin
Gavin McNaughton Bassoon
Donald McVay Viola
John Pigneguy Horn
Bob Smissen Viola
Michael McMenemy Violin
Richard Skinner Contrabassoon
Richard Watkins Horn
Tim Grant Viola
Everton Nelson Violin
Perry Mason Violin
Rebecca Hirsch Violin
Mike Thompson Horn
Simon Benson Bass
Rachel Bolt Viola
Jonathan Tunnell Celli
Anna Noakes Flute
Dave Stewart Bass Trombone
David Bucknall Celli
Warren Zielinski Violin
David Pyatt Horn
Jonathan Evans Jones Violin
David Ayre Bass
Nick Bucknall Clarinet
Chris Cowie Oboe
Antonia Fuchs Violin
Paddy Lannigan Bass
Christopher Baron Percussion
Simon Fischer Violin
Robin O' Neill Bassoon
Roger Harvey Trombone
Helen Hathorn Violin
Catherine Bradshaw Viola
Gustav Clarkson Viola
Owen Slade Tuba
Larry E. Williams Prophet Synthesizer
Zoe Lake Viola
Julie Andrews Bassoon
Bill Lockhart Percussion
Douglas Mackie Violin
Glyn Matthews Percussion
Heather Nicholl Clarinet
Ohil Dukes Viola
Dave Tombling Violin
David Daniels [cello] Cello
Technical Credits
Joni Mitchell Arranger, Producer, Liner Notes, Art Direction
Vince Mendoza Arranger
Mike Gibbs Orchestration
Bernie Grundman Mastering
Larry Klein Producer
Al Schmitt Remixing
Gavyn Wright Orchestra Leader
Reggie Collins Discographical Annotation
Mike Engstrom Executive Producer
Robin Hurley Executive Producer
Masaki Koike Art Direction
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