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The Year in Rock 2022: Joni Mitchell makes triumphant return


When Joni Mitchell suffered a brain aneurysm in 2015, few people thought she’d ever return to the public eye, let alone perform again. But that all changed in 2022.

–The singer’s good year started in April, when she was honored as MusiCares Person of the Year, with artists like Brandi Carlile, Jon Batiste, John Legend, Herbie Hancock and Stephen Stills celebrating her at a gala in Las Vegas.

–In July, Joni shocked everyone when she turned up at Rhode Island’s Newport Folk Festival to join Carlile for a “Joni Jam,” featuring special guests like Marcus Mumford, LuciusTaylor Goldsmith and Wynonna. With help, Joni, who hadn’t performed live since 2000, treated the crowd to such songs as “Big Yellow Taxi” and “Both Sides Now.”

–In August, she received an honorary doctorate from Boston’s prestigious Berklee College of Music during an event held at a private residence in Santa Monica, California. Mitchell was bestowed with the honor by Berklee’s Office of the President and Institute of Jazz and Gender Justice.

–Joni isn’t done performing. In fact, in October, Carlile announced a new three-day festival, Echoes in the Canyon, at the Gorge Amphitheatre in Washington, with one of the nights featuring another “Joni Jam.” The festival goes down June 9 to June 11, with Joni’s night, June 10, already sold out.

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