The Hissing of Summer Lawns
|The Hissing of Summer Lawns|
|Studio album by Joni Mitchell|
|Genre||Folk jazz, experimental|
|Joni Mitchell chronology|
|Rolling Stone Album Guide|||
|Martin C. Strong||(8/10)|
|Virgin Encyclopedia of Popular Music|||
|Le Guide du CD|||
The Hissing of Summer Lawns is a studio album by Canadian songwriter Joni Mitchell.
At the 19th Grammy Awards, Mitchell was nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for The Hissing of Summer Lawns.
The first track, "In France They Kiss on Main Street", is a jazz-rock song about coming of age in a small town in the 1950s rock & roll era. (The song was released as the single from the album and reached number 66 on the Billboard charts.) "The Jungle Line" uses a field recording from Africa of the Drummers of Burundi (mistakenly called 'warrior drums' in the credits), onto which Mitchell dubs guitar, Moog synthesizer and her vocal line. The lyrics pay homage to the works of the French Post-Impressionist painter Henri Rousseau. Mitchell blends details of his works with imagery of modern city life, the music industry and the underground drug culture.
"Edith and the Kingpin" marks a return to jazz in a story of a gangster's new moll arriving in his home town. "Don't Interrupt The Sorrow" is an acoustic guitar-based song with stream-of-consciousness lyrics, focused on women standing up to male dominance and proclaiming their own existence as individuals. "Shades of Scarlett Conquering" is an orchestral based piece about a southern belle. The title track, "The Hissing of Summer Lawns", is about a woman who is treated as part of her husband's portfolio, with the central image an imagining that the lawn sprinklers hiss their disapproval of the materialistic culture of the houses.
"The Boho Dance" comments on people who feel that artists betray their artistic integrity for commercial success, with an ironic glance at those who said this of Mitchell herself. "Harry's House/Centerpiece" concerns a failing marriage and is based on the jazz standard, "Centerpiece", by Sweets Edison and Jon Hendricks. "Sweet Bird" is a sparser acoustic track that is a slight return to Mitchell's more confessional singer-songwriter style. The final track is "Shadows and Light", consisting of many overdubs of her voice and an ARP String Machine (credited as an ARP-Farfisa on the album sleeve).
The African theme of "The Jungle Line" also features on the album sleeve, with an image of natives carrying a large snake (both were embossed on the original vinyl album cover). Both men and snake are superimposed on the Beverly Hills suburbs, with Mitchell's own house marked in blue or green (uk pressing) on the back cover.
All tracks composed by Joni Mitchell; except where indicated
- "In France They Kiss on Main Street" – 3:19
- "The Jungle Line" – 4:25
- "Edith and the Kingpin" – 3:38
- "Don't Interrupt the Sorrow" – 4:05
- "Shades of Scarlett Conquering" – 4:59
- "The Hissing of Summer Lawns" – 3:01 (Joni Mitchell, John Guerin)
- "The Boho Dance" – 3:48
- "Harry's House/Centerpiece" – 6:48 (Joni Mitchell/Jon Hendricks, Harry Edison)
- "Sweet Bird" – 4:12
- "Shadows and Light" – 4:19
- Joni Mitchell : vocals, acoustic guitar (01, 02, 03, 04, 09), Moog (02), piano (05, 09), keyboards (07), Arp (10), Farfisa (10)
- Graham Nash : background vocals (01)
- David Crosby : background vocals (01)
- James Taylor : background vocals (01), guitar (06)
- Robben Ford : electric guitar (01), dobro (04), guitar (08)
- Jeff Baxter : electric guitar (01)
- Larry Carlton : electric guitar (03, 04, 05, 09)
- Victor Feldman : electric piano (01, 05), congas (04), vibes (05), keyboards (06), percussion (06)
- Joe Sample : electric piano (03), keyboards (08)
- John Guerin : drums (01, 03, 04, 05, 06, 07, 08), arrangement (06), Moog (06)
- Max Bennett : bass (01, 05, 06, 07, 08)
- Wilton Felder : bass (03, 04)
- The Warrior Drums of Burundi (02)
- Chuck Findley : horn (03), trumpet (06, 08), flugelhorn (07)
- Bud Shank : saxophone and flute (03, 06), bass flute (07)
- Dale Oehler : string arrangement (05)
- Henry Lewy : engineer
- Ellis Sorkin : engineer and assistant engineer
- Ankeny, Jason (2011 [last update]). "The Hissing of Summer Lawns - Joni Mitchell | AllMusic". allmusic.com. Retrieved 19 July 2011.
- "Joni Mitchell: The Studio Albums 1968-1979 | Album Reviews". Pitchfork. Retrieved Friday, 24 May 2013.
- Christgau, Robert (2011 [last update]). "Robert Christgau: CG: joni mitchell". robertchristgau.com. Retrieved 19 July 2011.
- Holden, Stephen (2011 [last update]). "Joni Mitchell: The Hissing Of Summer Lawns : Music Reviews : Rolling Stone". web.archive.org. Retrieved 19 July 2011.