Joni Mitchell - Big Yellow Taxi
Sign in to YouTube
Sign in to YouTube
Sign in to YouTube
Uploaded on Sep 24, 2010
September 3, 1970 http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.htm... Watch the full show: http://thesixtiesarchive.blogspot.com...
"Big Yellow Taxi" is a song written and originally performed by Joni Mitchell. It reached #67 in 1970 (U.S., Billboard)
Mitchell got the idea for the song during a visit to Hawaii. She looked out of her hotel window at the spectacular Pacific mountain scenery, and then down to a parking lot.
Joni said this about writing the song to journalist Alan McDougall in the early 1970s:
" I wrote 'Big Yellow Taxi' on my first trip to Hawaii. I took a taxi to the hotel and when I woke up the next morning, I threw back the curtains and saw these beautiful green mountains in the distance. Then, I looked down and there was a parking lot as far as the eye could see, and it broke my heart... this blight on paradise. That's when I sat down and wrote the song. "
The song is known for its environmental statement (from the lyrics "Paved paradise to put up a parking lot", "Hey farmer, farmer, put away that DDT now") and sentimental sound. The line, "Took all the trees, put 'em in a tree museum/And charged the people a dollar and a half just to see 'em" refers to Foster Botanical Garden in downtown Honolulu, which is a living museum of tropical plants, some rare and endangered.
In the song's final verse, the political gives way to the personal. Mitchell recounts the departure of her "old man" in the titular "big yellow taxi", referring to the old Metro Toronto Police patrol cars that until 1986 were painted yellow. In many covers the departed one may be interpreted as variously a boyfriend, a husband, or a father. The literal interpretation is that he is walking out on the singer by taking a taxi; otherwise it is assumed he is being taken away by the authorities.
The song was first put out as a single and then was put on the album Ladies of the Canyon in 1970; a later live version was released in 1975 and reached #24 on the U.S. charts. Mitchell's playful closing lyrics have made the song the most identifiable in her repertoire, still receiving significant airplay in Canada. In 2005, it was voted #9 on CBC's list of the top 50 essential Canadian tracks.
In 2007, Joni Mitchell released the album Shine that includes a re-work of the song.
Many other artists have covered the song, including Amy Grant, Melanie (Melanie Safka), Counting Crows with and without Vanessa Carlton, Sandi Thom, Kaya, Pinhead Gunpowder, Paul Tillotson, Moya Brennan, Keb Mo, Chris Thomas King, Keren Ann, the a cappella quintet Toxic Audio, Bob Dylan, Green Day, The Tragically Hip, and Jack Johnson. Tracy Chapman has performed a version of her own during her live shows.
Standard YouTube License
- 32 videos Play all YouTube Mix
- 2:16 Joni Mitchell - Big Yellow Taxi (Original) 1970by RetroPOPTVFeatured 18,538
- 4:36 Joni Mitchell ~ Woodstockby BenevolentVideos 642,557 views
- 4:11 Joni Mitchell - Both Sides, Nowby thesixtiesarchive 170,743 views
- 5:36 Fast car -Tracy Chapmanby cristian orrego 39,659,302 views
- 3:23 Joni Mitchell - Help Me (1974)by jmms429 463,755 views
- 18:57 Joni Mitchell with Rosie O'Donnellby Siquomb1 71,860 views
- 2:42 Joni Mitchell Speaks About Jimi Hendrixby SWandEXPtestchannel 182,624 views
- 5:05 Joni Mitchell - Californiaby thesixtiesarchive 92,041 views
- 3:46 Joni Mitchell-California (The Johnny Cash Show)by henhenstoll 503,102 views
- 2:55 Mama Cass, Mary Travers & Joni Mitchell - I Shall Be Releasedby ppmcsk 909,382 views
- 2:41 Joni Mitchell-Me and My Uncle (1965)by henhenstoll 301,082 views
- 6:09 Joni Mitchell - Woodstockby thesixtiesarchive 78,670 views
- 2:20 Joni Mitchell Interview about her early lifeby KGuy4U2Hugg 417,642 views
- 5:46 Joni Mitchel - Both sides nowby maymariana1 322,914 views
- 4:00 Neil Young - Old Manby thesixtiesarchive 8,140,959 views
- 6:13 Bella Ferraro - 'Big Yellow Taxi' - The X Factor Australia 2012 - Episode 17, Live Show 3, TOP 10by FarmAnimals4FarmGal1 115,862 views
- 4:43 Joni Mitchell - A Case of You (live 1974)by menju56 230,220 views
- 4:08 Joni Mitchell-Both Sides Now (The Johnny Cash Show)by henhenstoll 918,981 views
- 5:30 Joni Mitchell - Unchained Melody - Chinese Cafeby flautista1984 84,955 views
- 2:40 Joni Mitchell Big Yellow Taxi 1970.mp4by MBSCompFix 6,229 views
- Loading more suggestions...