Seventies songbird Joni Mitchell had the birthday party of a lifetime at the Dorothy Chandler Pavillion in Los Angeles. Mitchell, who suffered a life-threatening neurological event three years ago, looked frail but thrilled as celebrity fans toasted her big birthday and performed her songs.
Page Six says that rock and roll all-stars Graham Nash, James Taylor, and Kris Kristofferson hosted the bash at the venue usually reserved for awards ceremonies. Some of Mitchell’s most recognizable songs were covered by Chaka Khan, Norah Jones, Diana Krall, Emmylou Harris, Rufus Wainwright, and Seal, just to name a few.
Guests said that at the end of the celebration, Mitchell took the stage in a wheelchair to blow the candles out on her cake.
“Mitchell came onstage at the end. She’s frail but looks fantastic.”
Musicians Peter Gabriel and Elton John sent video messages to make Mitchell’s day even more special.
Joni Mitchell had a stroke three years ago, which left her in a coma and unable to talk. Friends like Judy Collins remained hopeful that Mitchell would recover, but they knew it would be slow going. Last year writer and director Cameron Crowe escorted Mitchell to a Grammy pre-party hosted by music legend Clive Davis where the Canadian songstress was recognized “as one of the greatest songwriters whose work has touched everyone in the music industry.”
In introducing her to the party, Clive Davis said that Mitchell has had a profound effect on modern music.
“She really is the quintessential true artist with a creative mind. She communicates not only through her music but through her expressive artwork and photography. She’s a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. She’s been presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Academy in 2002. Because she’s truly one of a kind, she holds a special place in the heart of everyone in this room. To have her in this ballroom tonight, this has been her favorite night for the last several years, is just so very special to me,” Davis said.
Joni Mitchell has had such a broad audience because her music does more than entertain. Close friend and fellow singer Judy Collins said that Michell’s music has touched people over generations often providing a voice for the voiceless.
“Joni’s music lifted us in the ’60s. And it has and will continue to do so as we continue being active and aware and doing everything we can to bring us back to our senses, and to never let tyrants and bullies anywhere in or out of the government,” she said.