Joni Mitchell Talks ‘Archives’ Release, Brain Aneurysm Recovery in Chat with Cameron Crowe (‘The Walking I’m Still Struggling With’)

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Rock Cellar Magazine

It’s a long, tough road back from a brain aneurysm — and that’s exactly the challenge that Joni Mitchell faced after the legendary singer/songwriter sustained an aneurysm back in 2015.

The injury forced Mitchell to undergo extensive physical therapy and rehabilitation and, as she revealed in a new piece from The Guardian conducted by Cameron Crowe, her recovery journey is still ongoing.

“… once again I couldn’t walk. I had to learn how again. I couldn’t talk. Polio didn’t grab me like that, but the aneurysm took away a lot more, really. Took away my speech and my ability to walk. And, you know, I got my speech back quickly, but the walking I’m still struggling with. But I mean, I’m a fighter. I’ve got Irish blood! [long laugh]

This conversation with Joni Mitchell is geared around both her ongoing health situation and the imminent release of Joni Mitchell Archives Vol. 1: The Early Years 1963-1967, which will be released this Friday, Oct. 3o.

(Click here to pre-order Joni Mitchell Archives Vol. 1: The Early Years 1963-67 from our Rock Cellar Store).

A robust deep dive into her early material, this first release in the Archives series presents some of the earliest recorded output from Mitchell, and it looks to be a treat for dedicated fans.

However, the health hurdles faced by Mitchell, 76, have prevented her from trying any songwriting or music-making these past few years.

As she told Crowe and the Guardian to that effect when asked if “the muse still speaks to you”:

“It hasn’t for a while. I haven’t been writing recently. I haven’t been playing my guitar or the piano or anything. No, I’m just concentrating on getting my health back [from a 2015 aneurysm]. You know what? I came back from polio, so here I am again, and struggling back.”

Despite these significant setbacks, Joni Mitchell remains a vibrant musical source of massive influence and an untouchable legacy — so best wishes to her on her continued recovery. Be sure to read the Guardian piece in its entirety, as it’s a rare opportunity to hear from Mitchell herself.


  • mark porter says:

    I wish her the best. I lost my mom over 45 years ago to a hemorrhage. She was all of 46, in the prime of life. It completely altered my life as well and not in a good way. I turned to heavy drugging and drinking to dull the pain, but the pain has never gone away or dissipated. I think of her every day of my life. I hope Ms. Mitchell eventually has a full recovery.

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