September 26, 2012 – 2:47 pm

Click on the panels for a better view or to download artwork.

The Fez, New York 1995 [no label, 2CD]

Live at The Fez, New York, NY; November 6, 1995. Excellent soundboard.

According to Jim Bessman in Billboard (November 18, 1995) Joni Mitchell’s surprise November 6 performance at Greenwich Village club the Fez - her first gig before a paying audience in New York in well over a decade - proved as memorable as it was historic. Particularly because she’d been privately contemplating bowing out of live music altogether…

Bessman wrote that one likely reason for her absence, as she pointed out during the Fez set, is that she employs 30-50 guitar tunings for her complex repertoire, necessitating “endless retunings plus an army of extra guitars I had to bring on the road in what had become a truly exhausting process.”

However, the gig is also noted for the cat fight between Chrissie Hynde and Carly Simon. According to a report at Addicted To Noise, midway through the hour and a half set, Hynde roared her approval - gushing very audibly “I love you, I love you” as well as occasionally bellowing, hooting and clapping her hands from her center rear booth. Carly Simon, glaring at the rather tipsy Hynde, finally got fed up and suggested that Hynde sit down and, if you’ll excuse the expression, “shut up.” That’s all it took. According to eye witnesses, Hynde leaped up, grabbed Simon around the neck, and shoved her to the ground, where she began to pummel her - not once but twice. In another account of the incident, Hynde came over to Simon’s booth and said, “That’s a real singer up there,” as she put her hands around Simon’s neck. Hynde then went back to her seat and Simon left the club in a huff. According to an internet report, when Hynde’s American publicist was asked about the incident, she claimed: “Yeah, she grabbed her around the neck, but she was just hugging her.”

Joni Mitchell, ever the ice princess, never missed a beat. She continued to regale the crowd with three songs from Hejira, some vintage material, as well as three new, untitled songs that she’s working on. If it weren’t for the Simon/Hynde conflagration, the high point of the night would have been when Katell Keineg led the audience in singing “Happy Birthday” to Mitchell, who turned 52 the following day. Mitchell ended the night gracefully thanking the audience: “What a nice experience, I thank you for this.”

Click here and here to read more.

Thanks to davmar77 for sharing the tracks at Dime. Thanks also to ethiessen1 for the artwork.

Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (224 kbps). As far as we can ascertain, these tracks have never been officially released on CD.

Please Do Not Hammer The Links. Due to the size of some of the files, please be very patient when downloading the tracks. It could be that the server was very busy. The tracks should still be around. Please try again later. Kindly email us at [email protected] if you encounter persistent problems downloading the files.

Disc 1
Track 101. Introduction (3.8MB)
Track 102. Refuge of the Roads (11.1MB)
Track 103. Hejira (10.0MB)
Track 104. Sunny Sunday (5.9MB)
Track 105. Happy Birthday, Joni (1.8MB)
Track 106. Just Like This Train (7.1MB)
Track 107. Moon at the Window (6.1MB)
Track 108. Magdelene Laundries (12.5MB)
Track 109. Lead Balloon (instrumental - in progress) (1.3MB)
Track 110. Crazy Cries of Loves (9.2MB)
Track 111. The Three Great Stimulants (8.7MB)
Track 112. Cherokee Louise (7.9MB)
Track 113. Happiness is the Best Facelift (11.3MB)

Disc 2
Track 201. Song For Sharon (11.5MB)
Track 202. Turbulent Indigo (9.1MB)
Track 203. Love Puts on a New Face (7.2MB)
Track 204. Night Ride Home (9.0MB)
Track 205. Amelia (16.7MB)

Joni Mitchell - Guitar (VG-8), vocals
Brian Blade - Drums

Click here to order Joni Mitchell releases.

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  1. 31 Responses to “JONI MITCHELL - THE FEZ, NY 1995”

  2. not familiar with many of these tunes and looking forward to a good listen , after all any song cleverly titled Cherokee Louise and Happiness is the Best Face Lift deserve a listen.
    Just finished reading the Neil young bio by Jimmy Mcdonough “Shakey” and Joni gets a number of good mentions .

    By sluggo on Sep 26, 2012

  3. Awesome Big-O, you guys absolutely RULE!

    By elvislives on Sep 26, 2012

  4. wow..wish every show sounded this good !

    By sluggo on Sep 26, 2012

  5. wow-wee! i will get these jonis tomorrow!


    By I-) on Sep 27, 2012

  6. that story about hynde and simon is incredible. and i was sure that i had seen joni do a set or two in those 10 yrs between 85 and 95 til i realized that it said paying audience. then i thought about it for a few moments and considered that maybe the things she did were invited audiences. i know she toured and did shows around the country in general. could she have avoided ny? i guess ppl who keep track of such things would know this sort of thing better than i. i know i saw her perform a few songs here and there at various artist type events but again non paying type gigs. im very glad this one is being offered here. thank u.

    By darth on Sep 27, 2012

  7. Sluggo..Neil’s autobiography “Waging Heavy Peace” just came out.

    Also for fun get the book “Year Zero” by Rob Reid (the guy who created Rhapsody music service). The plot is space aliens discover Earth music after hearing the Welcome Back Kotter theme song and after all these years of downloading our music must now hire a lawyer to defend them for violating Earths copy write laws. It could bankrupt the universe! Douglas Adams type humor.

    That ends our book review for this week.
    Now back to Joni.
    thanx bigo

    By sking on Sep 27, 2012

  8. Thanks for this BigO. Haven’t listened to it all yet but it sounds great so far. Do we get to hear the cat fight? Hope so!

    By Big Trev on Sep 27, 2012

  9. Sking I`ll probably read Neil`s bio , my only concern is how partisan one can be writing about their self.
    Jimmy Mcdonough`s “Shakey” book revealed plenty of warts in Neil`s character especially how he would just desert friends and fellow musicians constantly leaving them to wonder what the promises were about. I actually think authorized bios are a better reveal.

    By sluggo on Sep 27, 2012

  10. The bad news: I already have this. The good news: it sounds very good. Damn - wish for a Joni show I don’t already have….

    By Henning2804 on Sep 27, 2012

  11. Henning 2804..sugarmegs lists at least 50 joni shows.

    By sluggo on Sep 28, 2012

  12. authorized bio’s are rarely very revealing. they normally reveal only what the celeb wants the public to know. if it tells stories that put them in a really bad light u wont hear about them in an authorized bio. course there are small exceptions that they couldnt possibly get away with leaving out but theyll gloss over them and avoid making a big deal and tell u the juicy details about them. theyll totally omit the real dirt that u wanna know completely and spend much more time on stuff that has been told ad nauseum. no one will ever admit that an unauthorized bio was accurate about them. at least ive never seen that. now an autobio might tell us things that are revealing cuz we get to see things about the persons inner workings that we might not see thru the way they think and talk etc. but i think thats ruined when a ghost writer is used. there may be some snippets and peaks into claptons mind and world in his auto bio but i much prefer the unauthorized bios out there. luckily we have both and we can take the best of both. just as an example.

    By darth on Sep 29, 2012

  13. authorized bio’s are rarely very revealing
    Disagree. I have read many and find them generally to be the most truthful.
    The unauthorized bios , well , you might as well read the enquirer because that is usually the audience they aim for. Mostly filled with trash and tawdry reporting. Autobios can be good only if the artist is truthful .
    The Shakey book i just finished was very revealy. The author went to great pains to interview people in Neils life that hadn`t spoke to him in years because of the treatment Neil gave them . You don`t expect material like that but this author is good. He did a Tammy Wynette bio that completely blew me away. Before you dismiss it as being merely country , think again, it was a very well researched piece revealing a very strong willed woman , her music and her tumultuous relationship with the one and only George Jones. excellent read.

    By sluggo on Sep 29, 2012

  14. well we dont know how truthful they are. do we? we only know that its what the celeb wants us to believe or think is true. the subject of the book gets final say about what stays in and what gets edited out of said book. thats kinda what makes it authorized or unauthorized isnt it.

    i once asked page about some of the stuff i heard about before hammer of the gods was released and then after it came out i asked him about the book and reminded him about when i had asked him previously etc. his answer the 2nd time was ‘they dont live our lives do they?’ he is kinda known for ducking questions of course and avoiding answering things directly as wek know. just check out that recent press conference they did last week for the new dvd / cd coming out in nov.
    but the juicy stories are the ones i am curious about i guess. the dirt we read about in bios like the ones of lennon and zep and maybe the crazy ppl from the 60s and 70s that u and i would be most interested in. not sure if tammy wynette is in the group i am talking about here but u get my point i hope.

    i dont dismiss the book u read because it was about a country artist. it doesnt interest me tho because it is about her mind u. but if u are interested in that topic (her and country music) thats fine. that he would write about neil interests me. i may get around to reading that book one day. not likely any time soon of course but perhaps one day. isnt neil writing his memoirs? i was sure i read something recently where it said he was in the process. if he would be nice to have him read it into a recorder and have that become an audio book. i had hoped for that with the ec autobio but damnit ec didnt read his own book into the recorder. his ghostwriter did.
    when i do bother with audio books which is extremely rarely..i judge whether or not ill bother with them based on who reads them. there are exceptions of course. especially when theyre free. heh.
    but i still dont think that just because a bio is unauthorized it means its bullshit or akin to enquirer type journalism. i knew lennon pretty well. not very very well but reasonably well cept for the time i was in school away from the city. and in the last year of his life i spent a bit of time with him and talked to him quite a bit. i read several books that were unauthorized about lennons life and there wasnt as much bullshit as u would think there would be in them. ray colemans book was closer to the truth than most others i admit but u wont find much variation in the unauthorized ones that came out before colemans book.

    why isnt there a book on roy buchanan? or is there? still waiting for roger waters to do his own book. he didnt do one yet so he must be in the process. thank god zappa did.
    btw.. i know some ppl here hate that id mention this here but i got 66 fz pando’s today and only one person to share em with. sigh.

    By darth on Sep 29, 2012

  15. There is an excellent book about Roy Buchanan by Phil Carson.
    It`s called “American Axe” [similar to the also excellent bootleg “American Axe “series,16 wondrous discs !]
    This book came out in 2001, it sits right beside my Danny Gatton bio.

    By sluggo on Sep 29, 2012

  16. ok i know about the axe discs. i didnt know about the book. or the gatton book.
    i was supposed to meet gatton backstage at the irving plaza gig he was supposed to do in nyc a few months after he played the philadelphia river blues festival in 94. i guess the phila show would be in late june early july and his next nyc date was like the end of that first week of october. he didnt live long enough to show up and play it. we had gone from the river blues performance where we talked for 90mins after the performance he did to a restaurant later that nite. i told him i had to wait and see a few more performances. so i hooked up with him later that nite just in time before the restaurant closed because they would stay open for us. i had it like that with this place. needless to say this was the last time i talked to danny. i fully expected to see him at irving plaza 3 months later. he liked my photography. he had seen it before and said he wanted me to shoot shots that nite. his road manager was there too. i had hopes of getting a pic or two in the next cd or something. a little over a year later i left nyc forever and gave up my photography for personal reasons. i had no way to get in touch with anyone connected with danny and it was really danny who i felt would have helped me get my pics into something of his.. be it a cd or whatever. the pics i took of him at river blues in phila are some of my fave pics i ever got of him.
    one of my fave videos of him i ever watched is his half show of austin city limits where the other half is albert collins. if u havent seen that.. look it up on the acl site. it might even be on youtube where u can dl. altho i can dl the audio from any site online. thanks for reminding me about these books.

    By darth on Sep 29, 2012

  17. hmmm 45 minutes into the set was “The 3 Great Stimulants” but I didn’t hear any fight. Also, I never realized that was Joni playing all those guitar parts, playing live she really nailed them!

    By FrankD on Sep 30, 2012

  18. ” i had no way to get in touch with anyone connected with danny and it was really danny who i felt would have helped me get my pics into something of his..”

    Try his management, record label, or booking agent. Duh.

    By Stating The Obvious on Sep 30, 2012

  19. ” i had no way to get in touch with anyone connected with danny and it was really danny who i felt would have helped me get my pics into something of his..”

    Try his management, record label, or booking agent. Duh.
    Stating the obvious, surely you don`t believe his posts do you? According to him he`s knows every musician who is talked about on this site. It does get a little far fetched. He talks about them like they are all close friends. weird.

    By wurm on Sep 30, 2012

  20. Regarding authorized bios: A lot of people love the Scorsese bio of Dylan “No Direction Home,” but it is authorized and boring because of it - Dylan’s management conducted all the interviews shown in the film. Artists like Dylan (and his management) are notoriously blinded by their proximity to their own history. I like reading musician autobiographies, but the good versus the bad aren’t defined by how factual they are, but rather by how good a writer (or ghost writer) they are, or they used.

    By Soldout in SF on Oct 1, 2012

  21. omg.. with dylan u absolutely wont get the truth from him or anyone he or his camp authorizes to write about him. to expect anything truthful or honest would be to fool ones self for sure. he is supposedly coming out with his own book (yeah right). if he lives long enough. even then i wont believe half of it unless there is some obvious juicy dirt that shows that he is opening up his inner self to ridicule. lets assume the public is mature enough to not jump on an obvious bandwagon of course and he isnt afraid to let us in.. we already know a few bits so if he tells us anything we dont know and fills in some crap that we know tidbits of already and its stuff that we really wanna know.. i guess we can assume theres some value in an authorized bio or in his case an autobio. ha.

    ty soldout.. i think u agreed with my point. i too hate boring bios. give me the internal angst and turmoils of what makes u write those songs and ill be interested in buying those albums and then those biographies. right?

    By darth on Oct 1, 2012

  22. volume 1 of dylans memoirs:

    By barth on Oct 1, 2012

  23. yeah barth, you`d think someone as good a friend to the stars as mirth would be aware that dylan put this out a few years ago.
    then again it probably isn`t being read to him by zimmy and he can`t find it free anywhere, heaven forbid he actually buy a copy.

    By wurm on Oct 1, 2012

  24. “ill be interested in buying those albums and then those biographies.”

    you? buy? when?

    By barth on Oct 2, 2012

  25. Neil’s new autobiography

    comes in epub & mobi files.

    By sking on Oct 3, 2012

  26. theres actually a fan made audio book of the neil bio. 29 cds or one dvd or 2 dvds in flac. i think 13 ppl worked on recording it. hell of a job they did too. music included painstakingly for each era of the period in discussion. thats amazing.
    if youre not set up for reading epub or mobi files and u enjoy listening to audio books this type of item would be wonderful for u.

    btw.. the neil central park show is on youtube complete. and its also on tube as an easy download in flac for anyone who needs it. i still havent found the farm aid performance anywhere.

    By darth on Oct 3, 2012

  27. i still havent found the farm aid performance anywhere.

    you must live in front of the pc.time to go outside for a walk

    By wurm on Oct 3, 2012

  28. Chrissie vs. Carly - must have been one sexy catfight. MEOW! Thanks, BigO!

    By TDC on Oct 8, 2012

  29. There was no cat fight between Chrissie Hynde and Carly. Carly was annoyed by how drunk Chrissie was and how noisy. When Chrissie hugged her she had enough. She didn’t know who she was. So she left. But as I walked outside with her I had to tell her that it was Chrissie Hynde. She was even less amused then.

    By ECP on May 17, 2013

  30. I mixed this show at Fez! I was the sound man/production manager there for many years and wonder how you got a hold of the soundboard tape?

    I had a great time working with Joni, was nervous as hell when I first met her but she loved the sound and the vibe of the room…. Johnny Cash played there too…. Jeff Buckley, Patty Griffin, so many great musicians knew it was a good place to play and I miss working there…

    By FREDERICK REED on May 17, 2013

  31. Hello Fred

    Thanks for your note, and nice to hear from you. Regards.

    By bigozine2 on May 17, 2013

  32. Chrissie Hynde was a flash in the pan who has thankfully faded.

    By steven nash on Aug 23, 2015

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