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This was Joni Mitchell's special place in the '80s



It's not a rule that every year we have to feature Peter Gabriel on Lost and Found, it's just more like a good idea. Gabriel loved to collaborate in the '80s and perhaps this is one pairing that you have missed - it's Gabriel with Joni Mitchell and the song Secret Place.

While everybody know the name Joni Mitchell, I think most of '80s Nations is pretty unfamiliar with her work except for the big hits like Help Me and Big Yellow Taxi from the first half of the '70s. Born in Canada, Mitchell moved to New York City in her early twenties in the late '60s and was a successful songwriter first penning big hits like Judy Collins' Both Sides Now (1968) and Woodstock made famous by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young in 1970. While respected and critically acclaimed, Mitchell was rarely spotted on the charts in the '80s.

In 1988, Mitchell released her third album in the '80s entitled Chalk Mark In A Rain Storm that included a roll call of popular musicians such as Tom Petty, Don Henley, Billy Idol and Wendy and Lisa who were more than glad to team up with Mitchell. The lead single was a duet with Gabriel called Secret Place that did not chart in the U.S. and peaked just outside the Top 40 on the Canadian singles chart.

Secret Place is a song about a big city girl who moves to rural Colorado for love and whimsically wonders if the parks in Colorado have pigeons and muggers. Another black and white video from director Anton Corbjin, Secret Place looks chilly as after a nice sit down meal, Mitchell and Gabriel wrap up in their Indian blankets and walk a path to the cold beach and their secret place (spoiler alert - it's a teepee).

Now 73 years old, Mitchell suffered an brain aneurysm in 2015 and hasn't really been the same since, pretty much ending her performing career.

[Last modified: Friday, September 1, 2017 3:31pm]


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