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Chinese Portrait
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Chinese Portrait






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genres: Documentary

countries: China

Chinese portrait free watch list. เราได้เพิ่มคำบรรยายปิดของ 16 ภาษา โปรดคลิก cc ใน Google Chrome Explorer เพื่อแสดง ยินดีต้อนรับสู่ สมัครสมาชิก กดไลค์ และ แชร์. Chinese Portrait Watch For Free Streaming Online HD no login Chinese Portrait Download Full Part 1 Watch Free Chinese Portrait kickass Watch Full Length Chinese Portrait 123movies Chinese Portrait Full Movie no login Solar Movies ↓↓↓↓↓↓↓↓ DOWNLOAD@STREAM Alternative Link ⬆⬆⬆⬆⬆⬆⬆⬆ Synopsis - Factory and construction workers, farmers, commuters, miners, students. The director captures the state of his nation, by static filming one or more people in more or less motionless poses. No narrative, just portraits Release date - 2018 directed by - Xiaoshuai Wang Genre - Documentary You must be logged in to watch films on Festival Scope - this film may not be available for all users. A film portraying Chinese people and spaces during a period of upheaval. Mods are furries. Did You Know Dr. Brant Is My Cousin? I Wish I Could Have Met Him, But I Only Found Out About Him In 2018, And He Was Dead By Then. But I Can't Say I'm Suprised, Mental Illness Runs In Our Family. I Don't Know If He Cut Off From My Family Or Not. Maybe He Had Better Things To Do Outside Of New Jersey. I Don't Expect You Guys To Believe That He Is My Cousin, When I Told People In My School And They Did Not Believe Me, So I Assume You Guys Would Not Either. I Just Wanted To Vent. This cinematography looks incredible. /story/watch-free-retrato-chins-1280p-at-dailymotion-tamil-countries-china.


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Chinese portrait free watch images. Ils vont se pecho ou quoi. Chinese Portrait Free watch the trailer. Hotels personnel should be oblige to wear mask. Then tourist spots. Scout Tafoya December 13, 2019 Wang Xiaoshuai s latest movie works so splendidly on its own self-contained and easily divined terms you could watch it without knowing anything about the Shanghai-born director and still walk out stunned. Of course, the payoff of this work is all the richer if you know the course the director took from studio misfit beleaguered by distribution and self-esteem problems to well-liked and promising director of "Beijing Bicycle"—the kind of neo-Neo-realism international film festivals still love—to wave-riding miserablist director of scoring studies of casualties of Chinas cultural revolution. He leaned more heavily on a depressive longing and woozy inevitability than did, say Jia Zhangke, to name one of the better known directors from the period known as Chinas Sixth Generation. Life haunts the characters in his movies, who only realize what theyve had to live with when looking back at who they were. His characters watch from the outside as tides wash over their existences, precious things are stolen, glories forgotten, potentials smothered. His two latest seem to share nothing but Wangs sharp eye and melancholy form, but theyre instructive about the kind of cinema with which hes wrestled all his life. Advertisement Wangs latest is the gargantuan Golden Bear-winning family drama "So Long, My Son, which follows two families for 30 years, charting the aftermath of the cultural revolution and the period in which Wang began making his own art. "Chinese Portrait" is like the minimalist B-side to that monumental work and its disarmingly simple in its methodology, one suspects because to film people simply, one must have been quite the reprieve for the dogged social realist. To spill the blood and mine the tears of forgotten men in a country grey with industry, where no life matters beyond the labor it can provide, is a burden even as it gives an artist the world. "Chinese Portrait" spends time with the real people his movies were based on in the places theyre rarely seen. He pulls out the incident and characters that color his cinema and places them back in the context from which he plucked them, deconstructing his world like he were spreading the parts of a car on a garage floor. "Chinese Portrait" is comprised of about 60 non-fiction vignettes. In many of them there are groups of people who remain stationary and some who look directly to camera, letting the audience know that the scene isnt exactly purely objective. In other words Wang had to pose them, at least to an extent. The business that goes on around the lone "subjects" still feels spontaneous, like he had an agreement with just a couple of people and assured the rest of the people in frame that they could ignore the camera. Some of them do feel like traditional portraits brought to life, like the group of children standing with their minder in front of a remote village, neither moving nor smiling, as if waiting for a single picture to be taken. Theyre all rewarding, in compositional terms, as the errant components flutter past the steadiness of his fixed figures and the somber backdrops. Critic Michael Sicinski has already pointed out Wangs debt to documentarians James Benning, Peter Hutton and Nikolaus Geyrhalter, building on his pronounced affection for Andrei Tarkovsky to an anxious study of momentum and stasis as the essential tension of the people hes filming. The new reference points help him suggest in blocking and framing what it costs us to stop being productive. In essence its the refusal of the action around the people staring at the camera that is the one constant. Everything else changes, from the cameras he uses to the year (it was shot over a decade. Even the most desolate of villages and workplaces display progress, whether in the form of men tending great yawning furnaces in factories or men dotting the corners of the frame like ants going about their business. One of the few compositions with no active participants shows people walking in the bottom third of the screen on a muddy path. Behind them in the middle third are old cars, a crumbling series of houses, and an excavator digging up the earth to make room for new developments, represented by the stark and unappealing apartment complexes in the top third. The film can, in just a few seconds, tell you everything you need to know about the China Wang sees; a mud-slicked construction site where promise is perpetual and no one ever just gets to live. This documentary is in many ways a self-portrait as well as a look outward. Wang himself appears on camera a few times, including on a train looking at the camera, a cigarette in his hand, his homeland flying by out the open window behind him. His movies have always been about the way progress and constant "revolution" makes his characters feel small and out of place. Here he shows himself in their stead, trying to pay tribute to the place and the people who, like him, are dwarfed by the towering currents and endless drive. Even when he sets foot outside the populous towns and cities and finds horses in a field, theyre biting each others fur in a funny embrace, scratching an itch they cant get to. The few minutes Wang captured are of people ignoring the motion all around them seem radical in the face of the dehumanizing effect of progress, the bane of his cinemas existence. Staring at a camera, confronting us in the audience, asking us wonder what if anything is normal about life in a modern civilization constantly dredging up and rebuilding itself. Where does the self fit into the endless momentum? Wang asks us to construct the inner lives of the students staring at us while their classmates do their work, the men stitching fishing nets on the dock, the man in the hardhat with his back to the construction vehicle making more buildings to accommodate more people. As Wangs China grows past predictions about its growth and government, as each corner of the country becomes impossible to film without the drapery of moving bodies and their shadows, what becomes of everyones identity? My personal favorite of all of the many compositions here is the first, in which nine men in drab uniforms and miners helmets lean and crouch around a length of track bisecting the frame. Some of their faces are hard to make out thanks to the shadow of the mine itself or because theyre a little too far from the camera, but the way they stand is telling about their outlooks, the way theyre used to their jobs. Suddenly a length of cable starts moving and it becomes clear theyre watching as something is being pulled up from the mine out into the light. Theres no little suspense generated by the anticipation. Whats coming up from inside the earth? Probably nothing exciting, but the speed increases and these men just stand there watching. Just when it feels like the payload has to enter the frame, theres a few small light leaks in the film and then it cuts. The reward for their efforts is unknowable to us, and suddenly their nonchalant stances seem political. Their rewards for their efforts are unknown to them, too, as this work will manifest nothing else but more work. "Chinese Portrait" is a stunning work of photography and a simple work of empathy that asks, How much goes into making sure we all get to just live. The world, our lives, will get away from us, this is almost certain. Stopping and simply staring at your surroundings, dreaming the interior lives of the people we pass, imagining the hard labor that went into sculpting every place we stand, it may seem like a small thing. But today its one of the only things that seems truly revolutionary. Reveal Comments comments powered by.

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But I loved Sara, so I would trust her. “If you know of a way to order Thai food, then by all means, order Thai food. ” Sara turned to me. “Sean, whats with the attitude? ” “Nothing. I get it, youre in charge. ” “Yeah, Im in charge unless you want to get sent back to North Dakota or end up living on the streets. ” Sara pulled out her phone and took a selfie. “Are you sending that to Mom, to let her know we arrived in one piece? ” “Mom can worry all she wants. Im sending this to Diego. After moving in, we headed to the campus with a list of necessary tasks. The first stop of the day would be to go to my appointment at the UCLA medical center to re-establish a treatment plan. I met with Dr. Elise Chan, a woman who looked to be in her early twenties but who was actually a leader in the field of advanced cystic fibrosis treatments. The appointment was two hours long. Even with my medical records in hand, I had to endure a CAT scan and chest x-ray, along with a lung function test. Dr. Chan looked at the results with concern. “You use an emergency inhaler? ” I tried to make it sound like not a big deal. “Yeah, ever since I was a kid there have been times when I try to cough, but Im not coughing anything up. ” “So, your lungs just kind of pause? ” My lungs seize up and for a brief moment, I truly believe Im going to die. I shrugged. “Its more of an issue with my throat, I think. ” “How many dosages does it usually take to regain control? ” “Two, maybe, ” I replied, brushing pieces of hair from my face. “And how frequently does this occur? ” “I dont really keep track, ” I answered honestly. She made a few more notes and scheduled a follow-up appointment. Then I was finally free to go. I quickly put my clothes back on. “I hate hospitals, ” I muttered as I walked as fast as I could to the elevator. I felt Sara grab my hand. “Yeah, I hate them too. ” Next on the list was to get Sara registered for classes, despite her missing the first semester. I waited quietly at the back of the office while Sara and her counselor created an academic plan. She thought Sara was more than a little ambitious, taking full advantage of every semester, even the smaller winter semester that still contained classes starting immediately after the fall finals. Sara would have no time off for the next three years. On her way out, Sara asked Mrs. Diaz if she knew of a way to get me a job on campus. The counselor said she thought both the cafeteria and janitorial unit had openings. Sara smiled. “Perfect, where do we go for that? ” “For which? ” I asked. Mrs. Diaz had a similarly puzzled look. Sara shrugged. “Which one do you want, Sean? ” Cafeteria sounded like a lot less physical labor and I could take breaks for my medications. But I would be in one place all day. And the idea of having to deal with customers or the possibility of going into a coughing fit in front of customers did not appeal to me. “I guess janitorial. I could use the exercise, to help with my leg strength. ” How hard could it be? I filled took the job application Mrs. Diaz fetched from the front office, filled it out right in front of her, and waited while she scanned and emailed it. The next day, Sara dropped me off for my first day of work and then went off to her first class. I wasnt allowed to keep my phone on during work, which worked out fine since I was constantly going over my data limit, anyway. We made plans to meet up at Starbucks during Saras lunch break. I arrived first and ordered a hot chocolate and a cookie for lunch. Sara burst through the door and flew right past me. I approached her with caution as she picked through several sandwiches in the grab-and-go section. “Sara, you okay? ” She tossed me her phone. “You would not believe what our mother just texted me. ” I looked to see what she was talking about. In answer to Saras cheerful text about things going well and me getting a job so fast, Mother had messaged back, “How is Sean working as a janitor going to afford you enough to keep the apartment? ” While Sara paid for her food, I hung back to give her space. We found a table, but she could barely pick at her sandwich, she was so mad. “Shes set us up to fail, hasnt she? ” Sara said. “Theres no job an eighteen-year-old with a GED could get that would allow us to keep the apartment once the lease was up! ” I grabbed her shoulder. “Sara, well be fine. ” Sara took a deep breath. “We need to focus on my plan to stay here. First, we need to find a renter and collect enough to get a much cheaper apartment. I already have a few picked out. The neighborhoods are sketchy, but its not like we would be home all that often or own anything worth stealing. Hell, I dont actually know how were going to make this work. ” I put my arm around her. “Sara, were traveling light. I left behind all my exercise equipment, and you backed your files to a hard drive. If and when we find a tenant, we could be out in less than a day. ” “Youre right, ” she said, giving me a brave smile. “Everythings going to be fine. ” I couldnt stop smiling through the rest of lunch. If she was that upset that Mom was making it difficult for me to stay, then maybe she wasnt planning to run off with Johnny that soon after all. Over the next few days I thought about something I could do for Sara. Something special, a way to take her mind off her stress and even repay her for the fact that she was the reason I made it out of North Dakota. The evening before my first day off, I set my phone alarm for six, an hour before our usual wake-up time. I got up, got dressed and heated water for instant oatmeal. I went down to the coffee shop so she could have coffee before class. On seeing the prices, I made a mental note to buy instant coffee for the kettle that came with the apartment. When Sara emerged from her room, her smile was everything I expected. “Did you do all this for me? ” “Of course, and can I have the debit card? I want to try to cook dinner. ” “Sure. ” Sara fished the card from her purse. “Unless you want cash, I have about a hundred dollars. ” “Ill take cash. ” I thought that was the smart thing to do. Sara would be at school all day. She would need to pay for food, school supplies, and even gas to get home. If she ran out of cash, for whatever reason, I would have never forgiven myself. Sara handed me a stack of twenties. “Thanks, sis, I will not disappoint. ” I waited until Sara left before heading out on foot to the nearest grocery store, Whole Foods. I knew Whole Foods had a reputation for being expensive, but since I was only shopping for only two, I figured I could make things work. I headed for the pasta first. Anyone can make pasta—the instructions are right on the box. “Now, what to top it with…? ” I grabbed marinara, but also pesto. I could make a final decision later. Next, I headed to the meat section and had a shock. Even the cheapest ground beef was seven dollars. Then I saw it—imitation crab! As a kid, Sara and I loved imitation crab. To me, it had the texture of chicken with the flavor of fish. I discreetly abandoned the marinara sauce and grabbed a few more items, including bread, butter, and cheese before heading to the register. My total was 57. 93. Fuck my life. Not wanting to completely blow our budget on one meal, I opted out of a few ingredients, taking the total down to 49. 35. When I finally made it home, I started cooking, beginning with my dessert: a cake mix brownie using a technique I found online. I would not be able to make frosting, but that was ok. Next, for the mains, I boiled water and added a crap ton of salt but not oil because, according to the internet, oil actually does nothing. I was now staring at the pesto and imitation crab. Should I mix them together? Yeah, why not. I really wished I hadnt put back the cheese. “Your water is over-boiling. ” My heart nearly shot a hole up through the top of my head. “Dont sneak up on me like that! ” “Im a ghost, its what I do. I think Im going to like California. ” A week later, I was at work mopping a floor when Sara approached with a tall brunette girl, I presumed to be a new friend. As they approached, Sara spotted me and ran into my arms, nearly slipping on the freshly mopped floor. I caught her, sweeping her up. I could not help but smile; my lungs hurt from the ammonia water, my legs hurt, and in that moment my head hurt, but that didnt matter—Sara had a friend, and I was dealing with the job. Saras friend caught up to her. “Nice catch, ” the tall girl said. “Sean, this is Marci. Marci is the triplet we never had. On the first day of biological chemistry, we had to pick lab partners. And I was freaking out—” “Because there were no men in their forties for you to befriend? ” Marci giggled. “Sara told me about her mentor. ” “You two…” Sara rolled her eyes. “Anyway, I suddenly noticed that she was doodling a space marine from ‘Warrior States, and we got talking. ” Growing up, ‘Warrior States was our favorite show, featuring “honorable” warriors and thieves named after states. Among them was a pair of twins—agents North and South Dakota. “I love that show, ” Marci said, matching Saras level of enthusiasm. “Ive watched it with my dad ever since I was four. My dad introduced me to it, hes so cool—the kind of dad who finds it adorable that his little girl knows the word ‘fucking but only uses it as an adjective. ” Sara chimed in, “after our dad, Agent California is my personal hero. ” I blinked at their babbling, wondering if theyd both been mainlining espresso while talking about their assignment. “What does he do for a living? ” I asked Marci, “Your dad, of course, not Agent California. ” “He works at Target. Hes a night manager, but his crew is like family. ” “He sounds awesome. Nice to meet you, Im Sean Foster. ” I held out my hand. “Marceline Rose Chapman, or Marci, of course, but I always love saying my full name. It makes me sound like a medieval princess. ” “Do you live on campus? ” I asked. “Yeah. I wish I could live with my boyfriend, but alas the man I love is miles away in San Francisco. Still, hes graduating later this year, so hopefully we could maybe make a life in Los Angeles. ” Sara clapped her hands like a kid. “This is too perfect! ” “Jesus Sara, ” I said, covering my ears. “I think you just summoned every dog in Los Angeles. ” “Whats perfect? ” Marci asked. “I need to find someone to rent a two-bedroom apartment. ” Marci nodded. “How much would you be willing to take for it? ” “I could do a thousand. ” “Why so cheap? ” Marci asked. I left it to Sara to fully explain the situation. “Our Mom is prepaying the rent so what you pay us will go towards—” “Towards your pocket? ” Marci giggled. I wasnt sure how to read her reaction. “I know what were doing is not entirely moral or legal…” “No, its fine. This is Los Angeles we have to hustle to survive, right? I have savings thatll cover the rent until my boyfriend moves down for his job. ” “What does he do? ” “Brandons a lawyer. He landed a job at one of the top firms in California. They actually gifted him a BMW. ” Her voice was filled with child-like wonder, like a kid on her first trip to Disneyland. “Interesting, ” I said. I had to agree with Sara. Marci might just be the answer to our financial prayers. “Yes, its all going to be very exciting. ” Marci turned to Sara. “So, when can I come over to check the place out? ” Later that day, Sara and I went shopping in preparation for Marcis visit. I bought spaghetti, marinara sauce, and turkey kielbasa sausage, a childhood favorite of mine. (I was not ready to take on any protein that did not come pre-cooked. As the contents of the pot simmered, I made garlic bread by cutting a loaf of French bread in half the long way and smearing everything with butter and powdered garlic. I could hear Sara opening the door to greet Marci. “That smells amazing, ” Marci gushed, and then added in a loud, mock-whisper, “hes beautiful, sexy, and he can cook too. ” I grinned, hoping I wouldnt disappoint. “Take a seat, everythings almost ready. ” When I served up my dish, Marci looked hesitant. “Im actually a vegan. ” Cam appeared behind her. “Tonight, on Jeopardy, its your turn to choose a category! How about ‘things that your sister should have told you so you dont look like a jackass! ” I chuckled slightly as I wiped my brow. “Sorry. ” Marci reached for the garlic bread. “Seriously, its not a big deal. Ill have some of this—butter doesnt affect my stomach too badly. ” “And dairy-intolerant, too. Awesome research there, Fosters! ” While they chatted about their favorite ‘Warrior States characters, I sat backward on a chair with my arms crossed. After my hosting failure, Id lost my appetite. Id drifted off into a world of my own when Marci asked me my views on Agent California. “I like him, ” I admitted. “Hes funny. I know the jokes meant to be that hes mentally disabled since losing oxygen in one of the earlier seasons, but to me hes fearless. Hell befriend a giant robot or run head first into a bad situation, all because why-not? ” The atmosphere was good for the rest of dinner. Marci agreed to rent the apartment and move in as soon as Sara secured a cheaper place to live. She was made aware of our situation, in that shed have to negotiate the lease with the landlord if she wanted to stay on past the first year. The place Sara found was just nine-hundred a month: a one bedroom apartment above a Chinese restaurant. Shed taken it upon herself to meet with the owner and put down a deposit all while I was at work. I was grateful she didnt pick the other half of the property, which was a studio apartment, but wholly fuck was this place a shit-hole. It felt smaller than a hotel room. “Sara, what have you done? ” “This is awesome! ” Sara declared, already unpacking our luggage. “We dont even need furniture! ” “Its not awesome. ” I felt myself hyperventilating. “This is not an apartment, this is a closet. ” “Think of the savings, Sean. ” Screw the savings. I looked around, wondering how the hell wed make this work. Two months into the semester came the day that was solar hot, even by Los Angeles standards. That morning I could barely breathe and my head was pounding. The tiny apartment didnt have air conditioning, so we relied on a single box fan. I was tired a lot, but this made me feel sickly-tired. I made it into work, deciding that so long as I could stay indoors, I might survive. Less than twenty minutes into my shift, my supervisor called over the walkie. Someone had knocked over a trash can outside of the dorms, and all the crap was blowing everywhere. I could have tried to argue, but I was lucky to even still have a job. I was exhausted by the time I got to the dorms, and needed water badly. I checked my pockets for cash for a Gatorade from the vending machine. No cash. I decided the best thing to do was to get the job done as quickly as possible, and then get indoors. It took nearly half an hour, and I was light-headed by the time I got back to the Modern Arts building. I slumped against a wall, giving into exhaustion, and woke up to the sensation of someone lightly patting my face. I focused my eyes. “Marci? ” “Try to stay awake, Sean. Im just calling your sister. ” I managed to stay conscious as she first left a message with Sara, and then called 911. She got me a drink and helped me swallow, then even rode with me to the ER. Soon I was in a nice cold room with a nice refreshing saline IV, cracking jokes with Marci until Sara arrived. Marcis calmness and kindness made me feel good enough to not get mad when I was told Id need to stay overnight for observation. Things were looking up. About an hour after shed left, Marci rang Saras mobile. Sara took the call on speakerphone while setting out our dinner on the tray table. “Do you know a Johnny? Average height, dark brown hair… kind of homeless-looking, but like a hot drifter that you wouldnt mind hooking up with at a music festival? ” “Where is he? ” Sara asked. “Is he at the apartment? ” “Are you alright? If hes someone you dont want to see, Ill make him go away. ” “Its fine, I need to see him. Ill call him myself and ask him to come straight here. ” Sara hung up her phone and turned to me. “Well, it looks like he made it here, already. Im going to go outside and call him, okay? ” Sara kissed my cheek, my rough facial hair brushing against her lips. “Oh, I forgot, I have your phone. I was going to hand it off to you during your lunch break. If you switch over to the hospital wifi, youll be able to play games without going over your data. ” “Yep. Thanks. ” “Will you be alright, Sean? ” “Just come back soon. ” Johnny made it California. I turned on the television. There was an infomercial on. “This revolutionary pan will be the only pan you will ever need! ” Hes going to marry Sara. Theyre probably making plans to send me to an assisted living facility. I turned off the television. Go to sleep, just go to sleep. Its all in Gods hands. I closed my eyes and drifted off. I had no dreams, only darkness. I awoke to the sound of the door opening. Sara poked her head in. “Hi Sean, you awake? ” “Yeah, ” I said, looking towards the doorway. Johnny entered the room. His hair was long, down to his shoulders. The Dakota cowboy was sporting hipster facial hair, and he looked like hed been working out. But his most noticeable feature came in the form of a fitted black t-shirt with the Superman logo. Congratulations Sara, your hero has arrived. I managed to crank up a smile and held my arms out for a hug. “Johnny! Hey, man! Its been a while! ” “Hey Sean, ” Johnny said, giving a half-hug before taking a seat. “How are you here? ” I asked. “A friend of a friend landed me an apprenticeship at Sky Flower tattoos. ” “Woah, thats some good luck. ” Sky Flower was one of the most famous tattoo shops in all of Los Angeles. Sara held Johnnys hand. “His cousin Ginas boyfriends sister was best friends with the shop manager. She messaged her Johnnys portfolio and the story of why he needed to make it to Los Angeles. The rest is history. ” She was looking at Johnny with such love in her eyes, I felt sick to my stomach. “Well, congrats man, ” I said through gritted teeth. “You still keep in touch with Remy and Diego? ” “Remys doing well. His clinics really thriving, ” Johnny said. “Diego, not so much. Sadly, theres not much you can do for someone who doesnt return your calls. I dont even know if hes in North Dakota. ” “Hes in North Dakota, ” Sara said. She was looking at her phone. Johnny paused, as if he was waiting for her to elaborate. “Anyway, we have something we need to discuss. ” “You mean the real reason why youre in California? ” “Sara, phone, ” Johnny ordered. Sara handed the phone to me rather than Johnny. I looked down and saw the single most beautiful image Id ever seen. Jen was in a hospital bed, holding a newborn in her arms, wrapped in a pink blanket. “She had a kid. I could only stare at the babys light blue eyes. She had to be mine. This was a miracle. Id been resigned to never having children. There, in Jens hands, was my future. Then there was the message itself from Jen to Sara, “My blessing from God—Shauna Campbell Foster. ” “The baby has my name! ” I looked at the date on the message. Sara had kept that news to herself for… well, forever. “Im so sorry, Sean. She made me promise to not tell you until we made it to the west coast. ” “Are you telling me that if Id never made it out of North Dakota, I would have never known I was a father? ” “Im really sorry. Jen thought you would hurt less. I dont know why I went along with it. I should have told you! I should have at least showed you the messages. I nearly did, so many times. But you were in such a bad place. ” I swiped my finger across the screen. There were over a dozen images of Jen pregnant, taking photos all over Seattle, then the last one of her in her bra and underwear, looking as radiant as the night we made love under the stars. Then I saw the date: the same day Id collided with the semi. “Please dont be upset at me, ” Sara pleaded. I wiped my eyes, not ready to let her off the hook just yet. I kept calm, though. “Shes coming here, right? ” “That issue has yet to be addressed, ” Johnny answered, looking towards Sara. Sara took a few quick breaths. “I want to ask her to be your full-time care-taker. ” “Right. ” I kinda saw that coming. “She can live here in California, or you can go with her to Seattle. ” She looked away from me. “I dont want you to leave. It would break my heart. But you deserve the chance to meet your daughter. You deserve to be happy. ” “We only have our place for another ten months, at most, ” I pointed out. Even with Saras plan, any extra income would have to go towards an increase in groceries and utilities. Plus, the apartment was beyond stupidly tiny. How would we fit a little kid in there? “In a few months, Ill be able to pay rent, ” Johnny suggested. He needed a follow-up idea, because whatever he would make as a full-time tattoo artist fresh off an apprenticeship would not cover rent. “Or we can cross that bridge when we get there. ” “Ill just email her, ” Sara offered. “No. I need to speak to her. ” I looked to both of them, and Johnny handed me my cell from the bedside cabinet. I had a hard job finding her number in the contacts with my hand shaking so much. It was still there; Id mainly kept it as a memento. It was probably the number for a pizza restaurant, now. What if shed kept my number but rejected the call because she wasnt ready to speak to me? I was about to hit the call button when the effects of holding my breath took their inevitable course. I started coughing. “F-fuck, no! ” Johnny reached for the water pitcher and cup. “Here… for water, ” he pointed the straw in my direction, “or for mucus, ” he added, motioning at the cup. I nodded, despite the pain in my chest. “Just take your time, Sean. ” Easy for you to say, Cowboy, you have your girl. I couldnt call. After all this time, what would I say? I didnt even know which question to ask first. I handed my cell to Sara so she could take down the number, if she didnt have it already. They might just be buddies on Facebook, or whatever. “Dial from your phone, for the caller ID. ” Sara tapped in the number, put her phone on speaker mode, and dialed. Jen picked up on the first ring. “Sara, is that you? ” “Hi Jen, ” Sara said. Her eyes looked to Johnny. “Im sorry it took so long for me to touch base with you. Um. ” “Its all good, I just figured you needed a few months to get settled, ” Jen replied. “Is Sean there? Or are you just touching base with me to let me know youll be speaking to him? ” “Hes here. ” Sara looked to me this time, shoving the phone into my hand. “Sara? ” Jen asked. Shaunas voice started to squeak into the phone. Thats my daughter! I didnt know whether to holler for joy, or faint with fear. I just wanted to meet my little girl. “Sean? Are you there? ” Jen asked. “Ive waited so long to hear your voice. Every time I look at our daughters face, all can see is the man I left behind. ” “Dada, ” said a tiny voice. Jen started sobbing. “Yes hon, Im talking to your daddy. Your beautiful, wonderful daddy, all the way out in California. ” Still so stunned by this surreal turn of events, I started with the really small catch-up questions. “So, Jen, what do you do for a living out in Seattle? ” “Im a part-time photographer and full-time cashier at Target. ” “Whens the earliest you can make it down here? ” “I dont know, maybe next month? The managers have been kind of stingy with time off requests as of late. ” “What if you quit your job? We have an apartment. We can figure things out. You can get a job here. ” There was silence on the line, followed by Shaunas insistent, “Dada! ” I could imagine her little hand reaching for the phone, and trying to grab it. I cleared my throat. “Jen? You guys okay? ” “Sorry… you just took me by surprise. Look, Ill talk to grandma. Figure out what to do with my job, see if she can help out with the flights, and all that. Ill call you back. Theres a lot for us both to take in. ” “And little lady needs a bathroom visit. ” “Poop! ” Shauna confirmed, making me crack up laughing and cry all at the same time. “You go poop. Talk to you later, little lady. ” I waited for Jen to hang up and then slumped back on my pillows, giddy with shock. I glanced over at Sara and Johnny, who didnt seem to know whether to be frightened or ecstatic. Id get mad later, but right now, there was only one thing on my mind. “Im going to be a dad! ” Johnny laughed. “Technically youre already a dad. Now, let me see how soon I can get you discharged. ” Three weeks later at LAX, I held my hot cup of coffee in my hands. The nerves had evolved into nausea, so I was hoping against hope that come coffee might calm my stomach. After three anxious weeks, and two painful years, Jenessa Quinto was going to reappear in my life like the worlds greatest magic trick. Jen arrived with Shauna in a stroller. She wore a loose knee-length sundress with a paint splatter print. Her hair was longer, pulled back into a braid. Our eyes met at about ten feet away. Jen abandoned the stroller at the sight of me, running towards me, leaping into my arms. I lifted Jen off the ground. I held her close, kissing her. This was the kiss Id dreamed of since the day she left. As we held each other, my legs were becoming unsteady. We took the stroller over to a bench, where Jen straddled my lap. Shauna had been visited by the sleep fairy and was lolling against the back of her seat. I chuckled. “Did you have to carry her off the plane like that? ” “No. She walked off, thank God, but dropped back into a coma while we were going through security. ” Jen sighed. “I love you, Sean, and I never meant to leave you. I didnt want to. ” “I know. ” I could see in her eyes that she meant it. I wanted to say more, but Johnny approached across the concourse, swinging his van keys on his finger. “Heres our ride. ” “Hi, ” he said, as he reached the bench. Shauna woke and peered up at him. He bent over her and ruffled her hair. “Hi there, Im Johnny. ” “Hi! ” my little daughter said. “I want up! ” Jen, she has your personality. “Up you come, honey. ” Johnny unbuckled the seat belt, lifted out the little girl with one arm while folding up the stroller with his other hand. That was a skill I planned to acquire. Shauna giggled. “Johnny has pretty hair! ” Johnny laughed. “Wait until you see your daddys hair. ” Shauna looked up at me as he passed her over. “Dada! ” Shauna had my light eyes, Jens dark hair—but wavy, like mine—and skin that was just tan enough to look like she came from the beach. Her little mouth looked like a heart. There was a lump in my throat. Jen sniffed. “I showed her your picture every day. I wanted her to know your face. ” I touched the babys soft cheek. She giggled. “You are my perfect little angel. ” When I heard mothers stories of how she felt when she first held me, I never knew what she meant until that moment. Then she coughed. Johnny patted the babys back. “Aw, does the little cutie have a cold? ” “Is she sick? ” I frantically handed the baby to Johnny. “Please tell me—is she sick like me? ” Jen huffed a sigh. “Sean, think about this. Cystic fibrosis patients cannot be in the same room without wearing surgical masks. I grew up in a hospital. Cam and I had plenty of friends with CF. Do you really think Id actually put your lives in danger? More to the point Im not a carrier, so your question makes absolutely no sense. ” I chuckled nervously under her steely gaze, feeling embarrassed. “Sorry, in the moment that kind of slipped my mind. ” “Majorly, ” Johnny laughed. Shauna looked at me, her light blue eyes meeting mine. “Youre my dada. ” “And youre my baby, youre my daughter. I want your life to be filled with nothing but happiness and joy. I want to be your hero. ” Shauna smiled with Jens smile. “Dada my hero. ” My heart was filled with happiness, then suddenly with fear. What if she got sick? What if she hurt herself? Or God forbid someone hurt her. And what about when my illness got worse—would I live to see her graduate high school? I definitely wouldnt live to walk her down the aisle. I held my baby close, making sure to keep my smile in place as my mind went to one final horrific place—I might not make it to her wedding, but the innocent child I held in my arms would be at my funeral. Shauna clapped her hands as she sang a little song. “Hero! My dada is my hero! ” Johnny bent down and kissed her cheek. “Your daddy is a hero to all of us. ” Jen stood and shook Johnnys hand. “Im sorry, how rude of me. Im Jen. Nice to meet you. ” “Right back at you. He shook her hand. "Did you want me to pull the van around or are you all okay to walk? ” “Probably better to pull the van around, ” I answered, for my legs, the stroller, and the fact I wanted a little more time alone with my family. “Okay. Ill text you from the pick-up zone. ” As I sat with Jen, holding my daughter, part of me wanted to confront her. Had I known about my little angel, I would have hitch-hiked to Seattle to be with her. So, I asked the next most awkward question. “Have you talked to your dad? ” “Yeah, hes staying with someone named Remy Desilva. Hes a physical therapist and holistic healer. ” “Your dad told you that? ” “Not exactly, Remy reached out to me. “At first, I didnt know who he was or if I could trust him, but then he told me why my dad gave him my email address. Hes one of the few friends my dad has. ” “Hes a good guy. ” “What do you know about him? ” “Remy is Johnnys cousin. “Wow, small world. ” Once I received Johnnys text, we made our way over to his van. On the retro wood paneling, hed painted a series of cartoon characters walking through flowers. Shauna squealed with delight. Johnny opened the sliding door to reveal a row of two seats with a car seat attached to one of them. When we arrived at the apartment, Sara squealed as she ran to the door. “Jen! ” “Auntie Sara! ” Shauna squealed at nearly the same volume. I took Shauna from Jen. “Ill take her while you girls catch up. ” Sara went to the kitchen while Jen took a seat on the sofa. “This place is certainly something…” Jen muttered, looking around, clearly concerned. “So, Sean, whats the sleeping situation? ” I shrugged, watching Shauna toddle around the room, taking particular interest in the wireless video game controller. “Sara will likely make a public address on the issue at dinner. ” Jen moved up on the couch, making room for Sara. “So, Johnny is Remys cousin? ” Jen asked. “Im surprised Remy never brought that up. ” “You talk to Remy a lot? ” Sara asked. Like I told Sean, Remy reached out to me. I guess it doesnt come as a surprise, really. Remy and Johnny are both sweet, kind caretakers. And theyre both rocking the sexy Jesus look. ” She pulled up a photo on her phone. “Picture! ” Shauna shrieked. She toddled over to Jen, so I figured I would follow. I looked at the image. It was a selfie of Remy and Diego, judging by the position of Remys hair, both men were laying down. Remys eyes were open and his hand was stroking Diegos cheek. Jens fathers eyes were closed, but judging by his smile he was clearly awake. I was waiting for Cam to appear, to try to make sense of it all. I was surprised but a little relieved that he hadnt shown up yet. It was difficult talking to him without other people thinking Id gone nuts. The photograph reclaimed my attention. Remy and Diego looked very… close. “I see one hand, wheres the other? ” Jen smacked me in the back of the head. “Remy has been nothing but a true friend. ” Shauna touched the screen. “Papa. ” “Yeah, ” Jen said. She took Shauna back into her arms. “Thats your grandpa. I hope you get to meet him someday. ” Cam finally appeared. He placed a finger to his lips. “Shhh. ” Shauna mimicked his hand motion. Cam laughed. “Shes so beautiful. Just like my sister. ” He passed his hand through Jens. “I wish I could say hello. ” The sight of my daughter and Cam was too precious. “So, let me see if I have this straight, ” I said, in my head, “you can communicate with people who had near-death experiences, gypsy cowboys, and small children? ” “I could always communicate with little kids, even at the hospital. But Jen was eleven when I died. I just assumed that she was past the cutoff age for seeing spirits. ” Cam passed his hand through Shaunas cheek, making her giggle. “Im not entirely certain about how things work. I mean, being a ghost doesnt exactly come with a handbook. ” I walked to the bathroom, hoping Cam would follow. Luckily, he did. “That picture of Remy and your dad—you hardly batted an eyelid. “My father has been experiencing really severe episodes. Hes just been getting sick out of nowhere. If theres anything Remy can do to help, they have my support. ” “You can see them? ” “Sometimes, its what Ive been working on. When I focus hard enough, I can traverse between California and North Dakota. ” I could see the pain in Cams eyes. “But you can only see. ” Cam nodded. “It sucks to have to stand back and watch someone you care about suffer. Remy had been the one taking Diego to his medical appointments. I knew that from snooping at Saras phone. ” “But…” “A week ago, my father called Remy before going into a blackout. I could tell by the tone of his voice he was scared to death. When the episode started, my father left the house and just started walking. He was staring straight ahead, mumbling to himself. Remy arrived with a few of his roommates to help get my father into their truck. Dad had been walking on his bare feet through triple-digit heat for almost an hour. ” “And you were following him the entire time? ” “When Remy caught up to him, he held my father the way Sara did—to calm him down, root his mind back to reality. Then Remy and his roommates brought him back to their place for some food and water. ” “Wow, thats a lot to take in. Do you mind if I ask a question? ” “Sure. ” “In Jen's photo, where was Remys other hand? ” “Sean, youre a real asshole, ” Cam said as he vanished. My line of questioning was all in fun—I would have said the same thing about an image of Johnny and Sara. “Oh, come on, Im kidding, ” I said to the now empty room. Sara ordered a pizza for dinner; a large plain cheese was all we could afford. Sara and Johnny sat on the sofa while I sat on the floor next to Jen. “First order of business: no one can find out that this apartment now has over twice the number of occupants than allowed on our lease. ” “What about Mom? I want her to meet Shauna. ” Sara nodded. “I agree. Once she sees this little angel, her heart will melt. Well just ask Marci if we can borrow the apartment back for an evening. That brings me to the second issue. Mom sends us two hundred dollars a month for food, which we just about cope with now that Sean has learned to cook. Kind of. ” “Im a pretty decent cook too, ” Jen said. “It was one of the few things my mother was good about. Mom wanted to make sure I was as superior of a cook as she was, for when I found a husband. ” Shauna looked up at me with her big blue eyes, “Mama bakes cookies. ” “Daddy can cook, too, ” I grumbled. “Last but not least, sleeping arrangements, ” Sara said as she kicked her legs on to Johnnys lap, narrowly missing his slice of pizza. “Sean, Jen, and the baby can have the big bed. Johnny and I will sleep on the sofa. ” After the pizza was eaten, Sara and Johnny decided to teach Shauna how to play inappropriate video games, giving Jen and me a chance to talk. We sat on the fire escape, looking up at the stars. “Why did you wait so long to tell me about Shauna? ” “When Sara dropped out of touch after getting her UCLA acceptance, I assumed something was wrong—some sort of health scare. Then after graduation, I assumed you two were on your way to California and needed some time to get settled. ” She rested her hand on my knee. “I broke up with you. I didnt want to push back in. And I was the one who made Sara keep the baby a secret. ” “Yeah, about that. What if I never made it to California? ” “I always had faith that you would. ” I moved her hand further up under my board shorts, all the way to my fractured hips. “I was in a car accident. I was in a coma for two months. When I came out of it, I felt like I had nothing to live for. ” Jen hung her head. “Im sorry, Im so sorry. The more time passed, the harder it was to reach out to you again. The more I thought about it, the more I realized that no one told me to break up with you. I could have written to you, we could have called each other. I thought I was doing you a favor—after seeing you at the dance school, I knew you wanted a child so badly. But then Sara went silent, and I thought that if you were too sick to find me, I didnt want to break your heart with this stupid secret… Please, Sean, please forgive me. ” “You know what? I dont even care. The past is the past. I have you, and I have my daughter. Thats all that matters. ” We sat for ages holding each other until Sara knocked on the glass door. It was after ten and little Shauna had fallen asleep. I knew how I wanted this perfect day to end: lying on the bed with my Shauna and my Jen. I lifted my phone, taking a family portrait. I emailed it to Mom, kissed Jen goodnight, and then we both kissed our little angel and drifted off, exhausted. As usual, I wore my bipap but that did not stop my weak lungs from coughing in my sleep. Jolted awake by my own fucked up body, I looked toward the glow of my phone: 01:03 A. M. I was about to go back to sleep when I felt Jen leave the bed. She took Shauna and sat on the fire escape right outside our room. “Your daddy is very sick. When hes coughing, or when hes shivering, you need to show him how much you love him, ” Jen said, stroking her daughters back. “Love makes him so much better. ” I stood in the doorway, attempting to stay quiet. “Hey, you okay? ” Jen sighed. “Im sorry, I didnt mean to be so loud. ” “Youre worried about something. I can tell. ” “I texted Remy. He cant get a hold of my dad. He was staying with Remy and his roommates, but he left the house this morning, just after Remy left for work. ” Jen gave a weak smile as she got up. “Im going back to bed. Ill try calling Remy again in the morning. ”.

I want to see this soo much, it looks amazing. Chinese portrait free watch online. The Canadian Indie Rock Canon #61 and #62: Joni Mitchell – Blue / The Hissing of Summer Lawns Blue Apple Music Spotify Google Play Youtube The Hissing of Summer Lawns Apple Music Spotify Google Play Youtube. Back in 2017 NPR released their list of the 150 greatest albums released by women and at the top of that list was Joni Mitchells Blue. While an amazing gesture, made only greater by seeing some of the women placed bellow her (which includes the likes of Nina Simone, Patti Smith, Aretha Franklin, Janis Joplin, Carole King, Beyoncé and Lauryn Hill among others) its an odd choice to put her at the top of this list. Not because Blue is an unworthy album but being the top of a gender focused list seems so very un-Mitchell. During her 1979 interview with Rolling Stones Cameron Crowe where he asks if Mitchell had any close female friends she declares “I believe I am male and I am female, ” a strange dichotomy brought on by the very male world of folk songwriting of the late 60s and her own natural distrust of other women she regarded to earlier in that same question. Part of the charm of Mitchells music is that she is able to write songs and lyrics that exist in this complete vacuum devoid of our notions of class, race and sex. Yet in a lot of ways Mitchells removal of gender, of writing without an atypical “female voice, ” may make her music some of the most important for women. Her refusal to fall into tropes, into cliché, into the things we as a society equate to as “feminine elements” in music only strengthens it when people reflect themselves in her words, particularly the struggles she had faced growing up and growing up fast. The plights, pratfalls and joys in her music have a universal appeal, it makes it easier to see ourselves in her songs. Mitchells as influence on Rock in Canada looms large, as a nation that prizes its poets and its storytellers few artist match Mitchell in these regards. There are few songwriters who illustrate their world as vividly as she does, her other artistic pursuits such as painting which she had since she was a child and poetry a discipline brought on by a school teacher in middle school, are very apparent. Even if you only know “the hits” you should already be familiar with Mitchells propensity for lush and vivid songs that have a visual quality to them. “They paved paradise, to put up a parking lot” she sings on “Big Yellow Taxi, ” arguably Mitchells most recognizable song, the lyrics imagery smacks you in the face both by the extremes it presents and the fact that in our lives we see this all the time. In a response to contemporary and fellow Canadian music titan Neil Young, Mitchell responded to his ode to lost youth “Sugar Mountain” with her own take on “Circle Game” which presents the childrens carousel ride as metaphor for the one way nature of time, of how you can never go back. With this very forward thinking view of life and art you forget that Mitchell growing up spent most of her time in the small towns of Western Canada and the Prairies. Mitchell was born on November 7 1943 in Fort Macleod, Alberta. Her mother was a school teacher and her father was a Royal Canadian Airforce Flight Lieutenant, spending the early part of her life moving from base to base in Western Canada while her father trained new pilots. At age 9 Mitchell contracted Polio and was hospitalized for weeks, the ordeal causing her to begin renewed focus on her artistic pursuits and planned or either being a painter or a dancer. By age 11, her family now settling in Saskatoon and her father starting post World War 2 life as a grocer, Mitchell struggled in the confines of structured Academia, briefly dropping out at age 12. Her only solace was one of her teachers who pushed poetry as a form of expression for her and whom she tanks on her album first album. At this time Mitchells interest in Country music was growing, eventually leading to her learning the ukulele and eventually the guitar. Due to her bout of polio weakening her left hand Mitchell had to adapt by using alternative tunings to adjust, a technique she would use later to create non-standard song structures to her music. By her teen years Mitchells love of country turned into a love of Jazz. She began to take paid gigs singing at folk clubs and began to incorporate songs by Edith Plaf and Miles Davis into her repertoire. Her free time was spent following jazz musicians and showing up at their gigs to absorb the music. According to Mitchell “my Jazz background began with one of the early Lambert, Hendricks and Ross albums. ” The album was The Hottest New Group In Jazz, an album so rare in Canada Mitchell saved her money to pay a bootleggers price for it. “I consider that album to be my Beatles” recalls Mitchell, “I learned every song off of it, I dont think there is another album anywhere – including my own – on which I know every note and every word. ” Despite Mitchells foray into music visual art still remained her focus and after high school Mitchell and she eventually enrolled at the Alberta College of Art in Calgary. During her time there she became disillusioned by the visual art world and its focus on technical skill, pure abstraction and eventually honing those skills to work in commercial art. She was twenty years old and one year into the program when she finally made the decision to leave and drop out of college. While in college Mitchell continued to perform music as a side gig. On weekends she would play at her college and at a local hotel as well as taking a part time job at “The Depression Coffee House” where Mitchell recalls “singing long tragic songs in a minor key. ” After she had dropped out she informed her mother that she intended to be a folk singer in Toronto and with that she embarked on a three day train ride leaving Western Canada for the first time. During the trip Mitchell stopped at the Mariposa Folk Festival to see Buffy St. Marie, one of hr many folk inspirations. However Toronto would prove to be another blow to Mitchells idea of the world of art. Unable to pay the citys musician union fee of 200 dollars Mitchell was forced to play non union shows in Church basements and YMCAs, eventually resorting to busking on the street when she wasnt working at a department store to pay the bills. Furthermore she found the city showed preferential treatment to the veteran folk singers, some going so far as to claim traditional folk songs only they were allowed to perform leaving Mitchell with few options for songs. Because of this Mitchell vowed to write her own material. In late 1964 Mitchell had found out she was pregnant by her former boyfriend Brad MacMath from a Calgary. On the subject of the pregnancy she wrote “he left me three months pregnant in an attic room with no money and winter coming and only a fireplace for heat. ” At the time abortions were not legal in Canada and there was heavy social stigma against women having children out of wedlock. Mitchell would be forced to give up the baby, a moment referenced on the song “Chinese Cafe” released in 1982. “Your kids are coming up straight, My childs a stranger, I bore her, But I could not raise her” she sings on the song, the lyrics at the time never fully analyzed as Mitchells pregnancy didnt become known until 1993 when a former roommate of hers leaked the pregnancy to tabloid newspapers. While a horrible moment in her life Mitchell often cited losing her daughter as the catalyst to bring her songwriting to the forefront. The two would reunite in 1997 after which Mitchell began to lose a taste for writing new songs. By the April of 1965 Mitchell left Canada to go to New York performing in a duo with Charles Scott “Chuck” Mitchell. Mitchell and Chuck would marry, with Mitchell taking and keeping his surname through the rest of her career. The marriage would only last two years. At this time Mitchell began to move around the united states, spending time in Detroit with Chuck and continuing to perform as a duo and post divorce would tour as a solo act moving up and down the East Coast of the united states. Mitchells big break would come when she was playing in a Folk Club in Florida when David Crosby saw her and was immediately in awe of her ability. She convinced her to go to Los Angeles with him, where he immediately tried to get a record deal and was quickly signed by Reprise. Crosby believed in Mitchell so much he convinced producers to allow Mitchell to record the album as a solo acoustic album without any overdubs, the decision giving Crosby a producer credit on Mitchells debut album Song To A Seagull. Mitchell toured relentlessly for the album and built up anticipation for her second album Clouds which was notable for having renditions of songs she had written for other artists like “Both Sides Now” and “Chelsea Morning” and featured a self portrait painted by herself as the album art. Clouds would go on and win the Grammy for Best Folk Performance. By Mitchells third album Ladies of the Canyon she was already showing signs of outliving the confines of folk music, the album featuring more pop rock production and even some Jazz and world music influences. Despite the risks Ladies of the Canyon would feature some of Mitchells biggest hits such as “Big Yellow Taxi” and “Woodstock”, her version a much more somber and down tempo version of the Crosby, Stills and Nash cover. Still in lieu of the success Mitchell decided to take a year off touring and focus on song writing and painting. Blue was released in 1971 and was immediately a near unanimous commercial and critical success. Much of the album was written during a European trip Mitchell took during her one year hiatus from touring where she settled on the Greek island of Crete. Prior to her leaving Mitchell was at the end of her tumultuous relationship with Graham Nash of Crosby, Still and Nash and was dealing with the effects of having such a public relationship. Blue is a damaging album, full of pain and sadness and deals with the hardships and hear breaks Mitchell had experience up until now of which there were many. In an age where even the saddest and most heartfelt music still kept audiences at an arms length Blue and its candid and confessional nature would pave the way for such albums to exist in the future thanks to its success. On the very revealing nature of Blue Mitchell recanted “Theres hardly a dishonest note in the vocals. At that period of my life, I had no personal defense. I felt like a cellophane wrapper on a pack of cigarettes. I felt like I had absolutely no secrets from the world and I couldnt pretend in my life to be strong. Or to be happy. But the advantage of it in music was that there were no defenses there either. ” After listening to the album fellow folk artist Kris Kristofferson commented “Joni! Keep something of yourself! ” At its core Blue exists musically in the barest of ways to its benefit. The album is mostly Mitchell herself and her acoustic guitar with the piano or the Appalachian dulcimer making occasional appearances. And yet despite her contemporaries trying to branch out like she did on Ladies In The Canyon, Blue illustrates that Mitchells growing sound wasnt because of the number of instruments she featured but how she used them. Even on a traditional folk song like album opener “All I Want” Mitchells left of the center sound made by her unique guitar tuning grabs you right away. Her voice has a world weariness to it that sort of builds on top of the sad and painful lyrics, as if the things shes experiencing arent just negative, theyre slowly eating her away. “All I really, really want our love to do, is to bring out the best In me and you, too” she sings on the opener, the way she says those words feeling sick and tired of not getting what should otherwise be a reasonable and logical goal for a relationship. This theme of being unable to have even jave what would seem to be the simplest things in life permeates the sadness on blue. “Little Green” though thinly veiled lyrics has Mitchell strumming her sad guitar and hoping for the best for her daughter as she bereaves over giving her up. Its almost shocking how many nearly canonized songs are on this album, from “Carey” that features a jaunty pace that masks the pain from a quick tryst during her European trip to the eye opening “California” that not only delves into her own life but the world of singer songwriters in the early 70s and the failure of the free love generation. Blue ends the album on an absolutely striking trio of song, the nearly ubiquitous “River” thanks to its relation to Christmas which contains those famous words “I wish I had a river I could skate away on” and has Mitchell being her boldest vocally over the piano, the absolutely beautiful and devastating “A Case of You” that may or may not be about Leonard Cohen and of course the album ender “The Last Time I Saw Richard” which despite its modest runtime feels like an epic of a song, the lyrics unfolding like a short story of, a back and forth between the titular Richard and an unnamed significant other that illustrates the cynicism of the end love and paralleling that with the current world and the end of the hippies as the US was entering another moment of uncertainty. Still even though Mitchell was growing as one of the premiere songwriters of her generation, even David Crosby had said she had surpassed even himself after Blue, it still seemed that inspite of the critical acclaim she was unable to get the proper respect she deserved. Despite loving the album Rolling Stone would name her “Old Lady of the Year” dismissing her as a great artists still working in a bygone genre and worse of all featured a “special article” declaring her the “Queen of El Lay” and featured a diagram of all her supposed sexual conquests. Mitchell had just released a generational album and all the largest music magazine in the nation was concerned with was her sexual affairs and the idea that Mitchells most important role was that of muse of other male songwriters. The continued distaste for the machismo world of folk music and music journalism would continue in Mitchells next release. For The Roses had Mitchell sounding confident and powerful again and it matched in the production as she began to employ layered harmonies and further delved into her love of jazz. It also just might contain her most feminist tracks shes ever written, with “Barangrill” exploring the roles of women without being anchored to how it relates to men and “Woman of Heart and Mind” where her words satirizes the expectations of gender roles. Court and Spark would follow and would become Mitchells biggest hit commercially, almost completely excising folk from her sound and now employing a full jazz backing band. It is in essence a pop album, featuring her only to 10 hit “Help Me” which has more in common with future late 70s easy rock than anything from her past (its good to note that member of Steely Dan helped on the recording of this album. After the release of Court and Spark Mitchell watched and eventually joined Bob Dylans Rolling Thunder Revue Tour with Joane Baez, Robbie Robertson of the Band and various other artists. It was during this time that she began to see a shift among her peers, most notably how she needed to act more humbly as she was the opener but had a bigger current hit than the headliners. She also saw the paths many of them were taking, going down the path of rock music, pop music or doubling down on reviving their old sounds, all of which Mitchell saw as desperate attempts to retain their youth. Mitchell wanted to be an artists that aged gracefully which is why The Hissing of Summer Lawns was such a departure from what she had done before. At the time it was seen as an absolute betrayal to the institutions of rock and folk that she had built her career on despite the fact that jazzs influence has always been there in Mitchells music. The album starts familiar enough as opener “In France They Kiss On Main Street” seems like a continuation with those mainstream pop flirtations Mitchell was exploring on Court and Spark but as soon as “The Jungle Line” kicks in with its tribal drums and those low humming synths you should already feel that this isnt going to be a radical album, doubly so for someone who just had spent their music career nestled in the musical zeitgeist. While much has been said and written about the radical departures made musically similar strides were taken with Mitchells vocals and lyrics. While her follow ups to Blue remained very confessional and nested themselves in the very solid foundations of love and heart break The Hissing of Summer Lawns features songs of women in a new awakening that is both foreign and refreshing, theres confusion but despair is often replaced by excitement and uneasiness. “Dont Interrupt the Sorrow” crackles with tension, a battle of the sexes the proves that even the most noble of clashes still leaves the scars and wounds behind. Religious symbols are used to symbolize chained obedience, “The good slaves love the good book, A rebel loves a cause” she sings, punctuating her ideas in her final lines with “It takes a heart like Mary these days, When your man gets weak. ” On “Shades of Scarlet Conquering” the religious motif continues over smooth jazz piano, Mitchell is at the same time at her usual moving self but delves in more symbolic and cryptic lyricism and reveals an economy of narrative. Her narrator doesnt reveal more than she needs to but much like how the colour blue served as symbolic device through that albums sign post for everything sad and morose “Shades of Scarlet Conquering” uses the colour red, from blood to flames to auburn hair, symbolizing unabashed freedom and destruction of social norms. And through all this Mitchell is still able to pull off a track like “Harys House/Centerpiece, ” seemingly a culmination of all her strengths up until this point, the first half “Harrys House” feature a subtle folk acoustic guitar that serves as the back bone for every manner of sound; those gentle horns, that pulsing bass line, those tik tak drums perfectly encapsulate the slowly disintegrating marriage and the futile attempt to dive into material goods to try to ease the pain. And just as we think we have the song figured out it dove tails into the classic jazz back half of “Centerpiece” that not only contrasts the first half musically, being much more traditional versus the more free from and forward thinking beginning, but lyrically Mitchells narrator espouses the merits of conforming to society, to trying to “make it all work” and to endure the pain of now in order to fulfill the dreams of tomorrow. After the release of The Hissing of Summer Lawns fans were perplexed and critics were dismayed. Mitchell was at first taken aback from the response, in the same Camero Crowe interview she was surprised by the response when Steely Dans Aja, released a few years later, seemed to be mined from the same jazz bedrock but was critically and comercially lauded. But through that Mitchell soon learned she no longer needed to make music for the masses. While sales declined Mitchell through the 70s and the 80s would continue to explore Jazz, World and Electronic music even going so far as to collaborate with Charles Mingus. In terms of who she had influence it wouldnt be a full two decades after the fact that the seeds of Mitchells work would bear fruit, starting with the likes of Shawn Colvin and Melissa Etheridge and becoming an influence that could no longer be ignored or dismissed with the 90s surge of female folk tinged acts and high lighted by Lilith Fairs end of festival all star jams usually having the artists perform “Big Yellow Taxi. ” However Mitchells bold exploration of sound should not be ignored with artists like Bjork citing Mitchell as a heavy influence, joking how Iceland embraced her “bad” albums and citing an affinity for odd late 70s albums Don Juans Reckless Daughter or Kate Bush who said that Mitchell was the only female song writer whom she felt an affinity too. Even in the context of modern indie rock itd be hard to imagine artists like Joanna Newsom or Julia Holter would sound the same had Mitchell not ushered in an era of strong female songwriters. Joni Mitchells life and story along with her albums are one of the most interesting in all of music. And while it criss crossed the globe and took the once shy lover of Jazz to places she never thought shed been it all started on the prairies of Canada. Its a story that comes up so often from the heroes of this country, simple beginning, people trying to survive and through the hardship comes something wonderful and beautiful. Tentative) Schedule November 11: Mount Eerie featuring Julie Doiron and Fred Squire - Lost Wisdom November 18: Julie Doiron - Loneliest In The Morning November 25: Mary Margaret O'Hara - Miss America December 2: Buffy St. Marie - It's My Way. Illumination Archive Archive Link.

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