The 43rd Annual Kennedy Center Honors have just been announced, and Joan is grateful to be recognized as one of this year's Honorees.
It has been my life’s joy to make art. It’s also been my life’s joy to make, as the late Congressman John Lewis called it, “good trouble.”
What luck to have been born with the ability to do both; each one giving strength and credibility to the other.
I am indebted to many for a privileged life here. I’ve tried to share my good fortune with others anywhere and everywhere in the world. Sometimes there have been risks, but they are only a part of the meaning of it all.
I extend my deepest thanks to the Kennedy Center for recognizing me, my art, and the good trouble I’ve made.
Meet all of this year's Honorees and learn more about how the arts will be celebrated in 2021 here.
Mischief Makers 2 Exhibition
Mischief Makers 2, Joan’s second solo art show showcasing her portraits of people changing the world opened January 6, 2021 and runs through February 14, 2021 at Seager Gray Gallery in Mill Valley, California.
In celebration of her 80th birthday, a reception was streamed with an interview, a virtual tour of the show and other festivities and “mischief” to mark this milestone occasion. You can still watch this stream through February 14th at Seated.com
The follow up to Joan’s sold out solo show in 2017, her debut as a visual artist, Mischief Makers 2 features a whole new cast of luminaries and activists in a range of fields -- from politics and public health to literature, sports, music and entertainment, environmentalism, spirituality and the counterculture.
As part of her get-out-the-vote campaign for the 2020 presidential election, Joan’s portrait of Vice President-elect Kamala Harris went viral when she posted it with the word “badass.” Her portrait of Dr. Anthony Fauci also ignited the Internet when she added the word “Trust” alongside his image, a rebuke of right-wing attacks on the country’s foremost infectious disease expert.
The new show also features portraits of singer-songwriter Patti Smith, teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg, filmmaker Michael Moore, former NFL quarterback and activist Colin Kaepernick, gun control activist Emma Gonzalez, counterculture icon Wavy Gravy and Pulitzer Prize-winning author and activist Alice Walker. As she did in the first Mischief Makers, Joan includes a self-portrait, this one titled “Black is the Color.” Limited edition prints of the self-portrait as well as those of Bob Dylan, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Anthony Fauci, and Emma Gonzalez will also be made available and on display in the gallery.
SOLD OUT! We are now sold out of the limited edition (250) archival pigment prints of the Stacey Abrams portrait painted by Joan Baez titled "Georgia on my Mind."
Proceeds from the sales of these prints went to Fair Fight, the organization founded by Stacey Abrams to promote fair elections, encourage voter participation in elections, and educate voters about elections and their voting rights.
If you are unable to purchase a print but still wish to help support the work of Stacey Abrams and Fair Fight, go to Fair Fight and make whatever size donation you can.
Since I first shared my painting, Dr. Anthony Fauci has continued to be disrespected and marginalized by the Trump administration's lack of commitment to science. So I have now added a word to the art, hoping to convey the message to TRUST FAUCI. In doing so, we put our faith in medical science and truth rather than lies, smoke screens, and snake oil.
TO DR. ANTHONY FAUCI:
Dear Dr. Fauci,
I’ve painted your portrait to honor you and all you are doing for us and for the world. It will be a part of my second art exhibit of “Mischief Makers,” paintings of people who have made meaningful social change without the use of violence.
I don’t imagine you’ve ever thought of it this way, but you are engaging in nonviolent resistance every time you stand in front of the cameras and attempt to educate the public on how to survive the Covid-19 pandemic. You cheerfully continue your task, surrounded by people who are dreaming up every way possible to discredit you and what you bring to us: common sense, scientific facts, some warmth, a bit of humor, and towering moral fortitude. Telling the truth is out of favor with the rich and powerful, particularly these days. You speak truth to their dominion. You take a big risk in doing so.
Corragio, Dr. Anthony Fauci!
If my friends and I can ever be of help to you, you need only let us know. We’ve got your back.
Sincerely, Joan Baez
STILL AVAILABLE! Archival pigment prints, 27" x 21.875", limited edition of 100, each personally signed and numbered by Joan.
Joan's portrait painting of her sister Mimi Farina is now available as a limited edition print and can be yours with a donation to Bread & Roses Presents. Bread & Roses was founded by Mimi in 1974, following her experience performing with Joan at New York's Sing Sing Prison. Bread & Roses provides free, live entertainment to society's shut-ins in hospitals, prisons, care facilities, etc. Over 45 years on, they continue to fulfill Mimi's dream of bringing the joy and healing power of music to all.
To purchase your print, go to Bread & Roses Presents
LIMITED NUMBER STILL AVAILABLE! "Black is the Color" - archival pigment print, 23" x 23", limited edition of 100 prints, each personally signed and numbered.
As inspiration for this self-portrait, Joan chose a photograph by famed rock photographer Jim Marshall that graced the cover of her 1970 album “The First 10 Years,” a two-record compilation celebrating her first decade with the Vanguard label. The original painting the print is based on will be in Joan's second "Mischief Makers" exhibition, rescheduled for 2021.
Visit Joan's art website to purchase one of these extraordinary prints (click "inquire" at the bottom of the page).
Joan created a limited edition of 100 archival pigment prints from a painting she did of her friend, singer/songwriter John Prine, whose recent death from complications of Covid-19 stunned so many. His song, “Hello In There” – a track on his 1971 eponymous debut and covered by Joan for many years -- laments the isolation of many senior citizens, an issue that has been especially critical during the global coronavirus pandemic. Each print was personally signed and numbered by Joan with 100% of the net proceeds donated to the Pandemic Resource & Response Initiative at Columbia University, a nonprofit directed by Joan’s longtime friend Dr. Irwin Redlener, a pediatrician and public health activist.
As the Coronavirus pandemic took hold in Europe, Joan did this painting inspired by the viral videos of Italian citizens singing from their home balconies and doorways, united in song and spirit. A limited edition of 100 archival pigment prints of the “Viva Italia!” painting were sold. Each print was personally signed and numbered by Joan. Net proceeds from the sale of this print were donated via Global Giving to Foundation Specchio Dei Tempi, an organization providing relief, support and supplies to Italians suffering from the impact of COVID-19.
A Buddhist monk I know has on his screen saver the names and photographs of people to whom he is grateful: Gandhi, Malala, Greta Thunberg, Vaclav Havel, Martin Luther King, Jr.
In the lower right hand corner is a picture of Senator Mitch McConnell. When I registered shock and unmasked disgust the monk said, “Each day he teaches me to have compassion for everyone.”
Trolling a flea market somewhere in the States, I saw a little sticker which read “Be careful who you hate. It might be someone you love.”
In a church in Birmingham, Alabama during the civil rights movement, preparing for the arrests of hundreds of schoolchildren, outside members of the Ku Klux Klan began picketing, carrying menacing signs, shouting their slogans. Dr. King took the podium and said, “If we can’t love the Ku Klux Klan, we don’t have a movement.”
Gandhi said, about the movement to nonviolently take India back from the British, we want to free the Indians from being in front of the guns and free the British from being behind them.
Yesterday, friend of mine was standing in a line at Safeway, only half registering that the woman in front of him was putting food back into the cart because she had run out of money. The man behind him jumped forward and paid the extra amount, so the woman would not go hungry. My friend was astonished at his own slow reaction to have done the same. He turned to the other man and said, “Thank you. You just changed my life.”
I saw the Italian people singing from their flowered balconies as the victims of Covid-19 piled up in heaps, and quarantined relatives mourned from a distance.
And while the health care workers were sacrificing themselves to do God’s work, I felt there was hope for the human race.
Keeping these images in the forefront of my mind helps dissipate the tiresome rage and frustration which consume me each time I witness another lie, another patronizing wisecrack about women, another degrading accusation of journalists, another racist slogan, coming out of the President and all the President’s men. And women.
Today their lying has leapt ever more rapidly from misinformation to irresponsibility to flagrant disregard for human life to what must be called for what it is: murder.
Will I put a picture of Mitch McConnell on my screen saver? I may not have evolved as far as my monk friend. I’ll probably just keep the photograph of my granddaughter standing on her head in the field. But it’s clear to me that I too need to keep my eyes on the path to kindness and mercy, empathy and compassion, courage and humor, and all the related things that we will need to reveal, confront, combat, and overcome tyranny.
On November 13, 2019, Joan was honored by the Latin Recording Academy with a Lifetime Achievement Award during a presentation at the Waldorf Astoria Las Vegas.
Photos: Official portrait (b&w) by Omar Cruz. All others by Getty Images for LARAS.
"Whistle Down The Wind" (words and music by Tom Waits and Kathleen Brennan) is the sixth in the series of evocative and distinctive short films interpreting each of the ten songs on Joan's acclaimed Grammy-nominated album, Whistle Down The Wind. All of the featured videos have been produced in collaboration with New York University's Tisch School of the Arts and produced by Associate Arts Professor Rick Litvin.
This video for "Whistle Down The Wind" is by writer-director Barak Barkan. He is a graduate of NYU's Tisch School of the Arts. His debut feature film, Touched, was the Best Feature Winner at the DC Independent Film Festival 2019.
See below for more videos.
The Seager Gray Gallery is now selling limited edition prints of the Joan Baez paintings shown here - "The Glorious Notorious RGB," "Baby Blue," "Martin Luther King, Jr.," and "The White Flower of Bach Mai." Visit Joan's art website for all the information and options for the purchasing of these limited edition prints.
"The Great Correction" (words and music by Eliza Gilkyson) is the fifth in the series of evocative and distinctive short films interpreting each of the ten songs on Joan's acclaimed Grammy-nominated album, Whistle Down The Wind. All of the featured videos have been produced in collaboration with New York University's Tisch School of the Arts and produced by Associate Arts Professor Rick Litvin.
This video for "The Great Correction" is by still photographer Karl Peterson. He holds a BFA in Photography from New York University.
On December 4, 2018, Joan Baez was inducted into the California Hall of Fame. In an official state ceremony at the California Museum in Sacramento she and 7 other inductees in the class of 2018 received the Spirit of California medallion from Governor Edmund G. Brown, Jr. and First Lady Anne Gust Brown. You may watch the archived awards ceremony here
Photos above: Receiving award from Governor Brown (Robert Durell), the medallion (Joan Baez), and with fellow inductee Robert Redford (Robert Durell).
Photos below by Steve Helton and Robert Durell.
"Silver Blade" (words and music by Josh Ritter) is the fourth in the series of evocative and distinctive short films interpreting each of the ten songs on Joan's acclaimed new album, Whistle Down The Wind. All of the featured videos have been done in collaboration with New York University's Tisch School of the Arts and produced by Associate Arts Professor Rick Litvin. This video for "Silver Blade" is directed by Laura Hilliard, a Brooklyn based cinematographer, photographer, lighting designer, event and installation artist. She holds a BFA in Film and Television from New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, and is the proud recipient of the 2017 Bahoric Meisel Award for Women Cinematographers.
The third official video in the series, "I Wish The Wars Were All Over," was directed by award-winning video artist Max Nova, a graduate of New York University's Film and Television program. Nova currently teaches at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, and as co-founder of the creative agency Dawn of Man has presented projection art around the world, and has created commissioned work for the Museum of Modern Art, The New World Symphony, HBO, and The New York Times, among many others.
The second video in the series, created in collaboration with NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, is for the song "Civil War," and was directed by New York University professor Deborah Willis. The video features dancers Djassi Johnson and Kevin Bozeman.
The first video, for the song "The President Sang Amazing Grace," was created and animated by Jeff Scher (whose work is in the permanent collection at MoMA and who has created work for HBO, PBS and The New York Times) and produced by Rick Litvin (Associate Arts Professor, New York University.)
Grammy nominated Whistle Down The Wind, Joan's first original album in a decade, was released on March 2, 2018.
Get your copy - CD, LP or digital download - via one of the following links:
On April 7, 2017 Joan was inducted into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame by her good friend and fellow musician Jackson Browne.
CONGRATULATIONS TO JOAN!
A note from Joan:
I recently had the honor and privilege to spend a few days with my dear friend Marilyn Youngbird at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation in North Dakota, where at least two hundred tribes have gathered to oppose the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline. It would traverse the Missouri River, tunneling beneath it, threatening Standing Rock's only water source and, in the event of a mishap, poison the water for hundreds of miles downstream.
While I was there, I saw singers from tribes as far away as New Zealand, Canada, and Hawaii take the microphone to perform in their tribal languages and young people ride bareback through the tall grass under hundreds of bright colored flags, past tents and teepees. At the same time, the faces of the elders reflect the decades of suffering and resignation they have endured. Mistrust comes from five hundred years of dealing with deceit, broken treaties, marginalization, and extermination. Yet many are settling in here for the long haul. If they have a chance of winning this fight it will be in good part because they know how to suffer, and will keep their will strong and their tents pitched when the snows come and the earth freezes over.
The recent temporary halt on the pipeline construction by the Department of Justice, the Department of the Interior and the Department of the Army does not mean the end of the fight. The damned up Missouri is being rapidly drained on a predetermined schedule by the Army Corps of Engineers, in preparation for the day the demonstrators leave, the prairie dust settles, the injunction lifts, and the bulldozers can resume their rape of the land.
But there is reason to hope for a victorious outcome. National recognition and support of the Tribes is growing. Senator Bernie Sanders, as well as others, has spoken out strongly against fossil fuels in general and mentioned Standing Rock in particular.
The injunction buys the time needed to plan actions for the winter of struggles ahead. With the determination exhibited to date, first-rate lawyers, native and non-native, working pro bono to usher in justice, and with new people continuing to flow into this remote community to offer solidarity, there is hope.
75th BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION
Joan celebrated her 75th birthday with a concert among friends on Saturday, January 27, 2016 at New York’s historic Beacon Theatre. The special event honored her legendary 50 plus years in music with an intimate, career-spanning live performance. She performed alongside a remarkable array of superstar artists including: David Bromberg, Jackson Browne, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Judy Collins, David Crosby, Emmylou Harris, Indigo Girls, Damien Rice, Paul Simon, Mavis Staples, Nano Stern, and Richard Thompson.
Prior to the gala celebratory event, Mary Chapin Carpenter observed, "She has been a mentor, an inspiration and a role model for anyone who ever picked up a guitar and wanted to believe they could do more than just sing pretty songs. She has showed multiple generations that music can move and inspire as well as be a force for courage, solidarity, fellowship and justice. To be able to celebrate her 75th birthday with her in New York City is a dream evening, and I think I will feel 17 again for much of it." Indeed, their duet of "Catch the Wind" – movingly dedicated to Joan’s late sister Mimi – is a highpoint. But all the duets reveal a strong mutual affection between Joan and her guests, close friends as much as professional colleagues. Hugs and kisses are much in evidence.
The full program airing is as follows:
- God Is God (Steve Earle)
- There But for Fortune (Phil Ochs)
- Freight Train (Elizabeth Cotten) w/David Bromberg
- Blackbird (Lennon-McCartney) w/David Crosby
- She Moved Through the Fair (Traditional) w/Damien Rice
- Catch the Wind (Donovan Leitch) w/Mary Chapin Carpenter
- Hard Times Come Again No More (Stephen Foster) w/Emmylou Harris
- Swing Low, Sweet Chariot (Traditional)
- Oh, Freedom / Ain’t Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around (Traditional) w/Mavis Staples
- The Water Is Wide (Traditional) w/Indigo Girls, Mary Chapin Carpenter
- Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right (Bob Dylan) w/Indigo Girls
- She Never Could Resist A Winding Road (Richard Thompson) w/Richard Thompson
- Before The Deluge (Jackson Browne) w/Jackson Browne
- Diamonds & Rust (Joan Baez) w/Judy Collins
- Gracias a la Vida (Violeta Parra) w/Nano Stern
- The Boxer (Paul Simon) w/Paul Simon, Richard Thompson
- Forever Young (Bob Dylan)
The entire performance, including additional content, can be purchased on CD and DVD via the following links:
Watch Joan Baez: Rebel Icon from MTV and Rebel Music!
The Library of Congress announced the inductees for the 2014 entries into the National Recording Registry. Each year 25 recordings that are "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant" are selected. We are happy to say that Joan's debut album, JOAN BAEZ (1960), is one of the inductees.
Of this album, the Library states: The first solo album by the woman "Time" magazine would soon crown "Queen of the Folk Singers," Joan Baez preserves for posterity powerful performances from the Harvard Square coffeehouse repertoire that brought Baez to prominence as the folk-revival movement was arriving on the national stage. Baez's haunting arrangements of traditional English and Scottish ballads of longing and regret, mixed with an eclectic blend of Bahamian, Yiddish, Mexican and Carter Family favorite tunes, sent critic Robert Shelton "scurrying to the thesaurus for superlatives." The album's opening line, "Don't sing love songs," sets the tone for many of the first-person narratives and dialogues Baez selected that valorize authenticity over sentimentality and occasionally hint at the freedom struggles she later would join. Baez chose Vanguard Records over the more commercially oriented Columbia for this debut, and the album's success was especially important for women in folk music. According to Fred Hellerman, her accompanist on several of the album's songs, "she was tapping something in the air that wasn't just musical." In the words of fellow folksinger Barbara Dane, she and others had finally found a role model "absolutely free and in charge of herself."
Congratulations to Joan on another well-deserved honor!
On May 21, 2015, in Berlin, Joan - along with world-renowned artist Ai Weiwei - received Amnesty International's Ambassador of Conscience Award. The Ambassador of Conscience Award is the organization's top honor, recognizing those who have shown exceptional leadership in the fight for human rights, through their life and work. Joan, whose work with Amnesty International began over 40 years ago, says, "Amnesty International attracted me because of its founding principle that all human rights abuses and the suffering they create are unacceptable. The process of eliminating those abuses, even one step at a time, has created a compassionate, non-partisan, powerfully effective movement. I'm lucky to be a part of it and proud to be honored with this Award." Congratulations to Joan on this well-deserved recognition!
Proper Records announced the general release of Diamantes in the European markets on March 9, 2015. Diamantes was originally created for Joan's tour of South America in 2014. This special CD combines Spanish language songs culled from the 1988 recording of Diamonds and Rust in the Bullring with some in concert favorites and two newly recorded versions of the Portuguese songs "O'Cangaceiro" and "Ate Amanha/Te Ador." You can order yours at Amazon UK, iTunes UK, and Proper Music.
Analogue Productions has released a 200 gram vinyl reissue of Joan's Diamonds and Rust in the Bullring album, via Acoustic Sounds. (It is also available on hybrid stereo SACD.) The album, originally released in 1988, was recorded live during a concert in a bullring in Bilbao, Spain, and features 12 tracks (6 of which are sung in Spanish). This special release was mastered from the original analog tape by Kevin Gray at Cohearent Audio. Get your copy now!
On November 17th Joan was honored - along with Garth Brooks, Billy Joel, Stephen Sondheim, and Stevie Wonder - with an ASCAP Centennial Award. This singular, once-in-a-century award is given to a select group of American music icons in recognition of their incomparable accomplishments in their respective genres and beyond. Congratulations to Joan on this well-deserved honor!
On Saturday, July 27, 2013, Joan performed with her friends Emmylou Harris and Jackson Browne in a very special concert to benefit Downtown Streets Team.
Downtown Streets Team is an organization striving to end homelessness through a "work-first" program.
The benefit concert was held at the San Jose Civic Auditorium in San Jose, California. All proceeds go directly to support the Downtown Streets Team and their team members as they work to rebuild their lives out of homelessness.
(photo by Frank Anzalone)
Wear Your Music!
Now in two different styles/prices! Wear Your Music is recycling Joan's used guitar strings into beautiful bracelets. Get one for yourself, and one or more for gifts for those special Joan Baez fans in your life. Net proceeds are donated to The Resource Center for Noviolence.
Visit the Wear Your Music website to get your bracelet today.
Occupy This Album
Music for Occupy's new 4 CD collection, Occupy This Album was released on May 15, 2012. You can get it now at Amazon. Joan's contribution to this collection is vocals on "We Can't Make It Here" with Steve Earle and the song's composer, James McMurtry. Other artists featured are Jackson Browne, Patti Smith, Ani DiFranco, Yoko Ono, Willie Nelson, Loudon Wainwright III, Nanci Griffith, Crosby & Nash, and Dar Williams, among others.
The mission of Music for Occupy is to inspire and celebrate through music the Occupy Wall Street movement. Music For Occupy is in solidarity with Occupy Wall Street, and all proceeds above board attained through the production and distribution of Occupy This Album will go directly towards the needs of sustaining this growing movement.
Joan is pleased and honored to be a participant in
Chimes of Freedom: The Songs of Bob Dylan Honoring 50 Years of Amnesty International.
This special 4-disc collection features 70+ songs by 80 artists paying tribute to Bob Dylan and to Amnesty International in its 50th year.
Joan's contribution to the package is a demo version (recorded in 1992) of Dylan's "Seven Curses."
On Friday, November 11, 2011, Joan participated in Occupy Wall Street's Veterans Day rally at Foley Square in New York City. Read all about it from the viewpoint of Joan's accompanist Dirk Powell here Joan sang "Joe Hill," as well as two songs she hasn't performed in many years but were suitable for the occasion, "Salt Of The Earth" and "Where's My Apple Pie?"
Joan has recorded a duet of her composition "Here's To You" with acclaimed Greek artist Nana Mouskouri. The duet is featured on Mouskouri's newest album Rendez Vous on the Mercury/Universal label, released on November 21, 2011.
On October 11, 2011, backstage after her performance at Le Grand Rex in Paris, France, in a private but festive ceremony, Joan received the Ordre national de la Legion d'honneur (National Order of the Legion of Honour) medal from the French Minister of Culture and Communication, Frederic Mitterand.
Joan was granted this honor back in 1983, but had never officially accepted the lovely medal, which, by its solid red ribbon, represents her status as a Chevalier (Knight) in the Order that is the highest decoration in France.
On March 14, 2011. Proper Records released the newly re-mastered and expanded edition of Joan's 1992 album Play Me Backwards. The CD version (with new cover art) will be released only in the United Kingdom and European territories. The vinyl version, on the Diverse Records label, will be available worldwide. The reissue includes TEN previously unreleased demo songs, as well as new liner notes penned by Arthur Levy.
Original track listing: • Play Me Backwards • Amsterdam • Isaac & Abraham • Stones In The Road • Steal Across The Border • I'm With You • I'm With You (Reprise) • Strange Rivers • Through Your Hands • The Dream Song • Edge of Glory
Bonus demo track listing: • Medicine Wheel • Rise From The Ruins • Trouble With The Truth • Much Better View Of The Moon • Seven Curses • In My Day • Dark Eyed Man • We Endure • The Last Day • Lonely Moon
On Friday, March 18, 2011, Joan was honored by Amnesty International at their 50th Anniversary Annual General Meeting in San Francisco. The tribute to Joan was the inaugural event for the Amnesty International Joan Baez Award for Outstanding Inspirational Service in the Global Fight for Human Rights. Joan was presented with the first award in recognition of her historic, ground-breaking and courageous human rights work with Amnesty International and beyond, and the inspiration she has given activists around the world. Joining her onstage in performance were Chad Stokes, Saul Hernandez, and Steve Earle. In future years, the award is to be presented to an artist - music, film, sculpture, paint or other medium - who has similarly helped advance human rights. Congratulations to Joan!
On February 15, 2011, Joan was awarded the 2011 Folk Alliance International Elaine Weissman Lifetime Achievement Award. Folk Alliance International is a 21-year-old organization based in Memphis, Tennessee. Folk Alliance International exists to foster and promote traditional, contemporary, and multicultural folk music and dance and related performing arts. The Folk Alliance seeks to strengthen and advance organizational and individual initiatives in folk music and dance through education, networking, advocacy, and professional and field development. Joan was not able to be in Memphis to accept her award in person, but she is very grateful for this special honor.
CONGRATULATIONS to Joan on the inclusion of Joan Baez (Vanguard, 1960) on the list of 2011 inductees to the GRAMMY Hall of Fame!
Established in 1973, the GRAMMY Hall of Fame was created to honor recordings of lasting qualitative or historical significance that are at least 25 years old. Recordings are reviewed annually by a special member committee of eminent and knowledgeable professionals from all branches of the recording arts, and final approval is made by The Recording Academy Trustees. Neil Portnow, President/CEO of The Recording Academy, said, "These musical treasures have brought us timeless recordings, and each of them deserves to be memorialized. These recordings are living evidence that music remains an indelible part of our culture." The entire GRAMMY Hall of Fame collection is on display at the GRAMMY Museum in Los Angeles, California.
On June 24, 2010, Joan made a special appearance at the Josh Ritter concert at the Fillmore in San Francisco. Here's a lovely video from that show:
On June 16, 2010, Joan stopped by the Mountain Winery in Saratoga, California, to visit with a few old friends. Kris Kristofferson and Merle Haggard were doing a joint show at the venue, and John Prine just happened to be there as well. Joan joined them to harmonize on Prine's "Hello In There" and (believe it or not) Haggard's "Okie From Muskogee." Needless to say, a good time was had by all!
Photo (left to right): Joan, Merle, Kris and John.
Thanks to Lisa Kristofferson for getting this fantastic photo of the four of them.
On Tuesday, May 25, 2010, Joan participated in a very special fundraiser for the Jenkins Penn Haitian Relief Organization (J/P HRO).
J/P HRO is an organization founded by philanthropist Diana Jenkins and actor/humanitarian Sean Penn to provide relief efforts to the Haitian people. Though the organization has accomplished a tremendous amount in the months since the earthquake hit Haiti, there is still much more to be done. This fundraiser helped raise funds to continue their work.
An Evening of Giving and Saving Lives was held at the Teatro ZinZanni spiegeltent in San Francisco at Pier 39, and was hosted by Frank Ferrante ("Caesar" at Teatro ZinZanni).
You can continue to help support the efforts in Haiti by donating to the J/P HRO.
On March 11, 2010 Joan received the Orden de las Artes y las Letras de España (Order of Arts and Letters from Spain) in recognition of "a trajectory governed by the artistic and personal commitment in favor of individual rights and civil and political liberties." The award is the most prestigious award given to foreign artists in Spain. It is bestowed under Royal Decree as proposed by the Minister of Culture, Angeles Gonzalez-Sinde (presenting Joan with the honor at right).
In recommending Joan for this honor, the Culture Ministry said that she "has been a benchmark that transcends the field of music for a generation of Spanish defenders of political freedom and peaceful coexistence."
Congratulations Excelentisima Señora Joan Baez!
Look for Joan's vocal appearance on Judy Colllins' new CD Paradise, released in April 2010. Joan duets with Judy on one track, Joan's own "Diamonds and Rust," a pairing first seen at the Newport Folk Festival last August.
Congratulations go out to classical guitarist Sharon Isbin whose recording Journey To The New World garnered a Grammy Award in the Best Instrumental Soloist Performance (without orchestra) category. This album includes the "Joan Baez Suite: Opus 144," a piece by John Duarte comprised of songs from Joan's early career: "Once I Had A Sweetheart," "Rambler Gambler," "House of the Rising Sun," "The Lily Of The West," "The Unquiet Grave," "Silkie," "Where Have All The Flowers Gone," "Rake and Rambling Boy," "Wildwood Flower," and "The Trees They Do Grow High." The Sony Classical label CD also features Joan's vocals on "I Am A Poor Wayfaring Stranger" and "Go 'Way From My Window."
Congratulations Sharon (and Joan and Mark O'Connor!)
In the first comprehensive documentary to chronicle the life and public career of Joan Baez, PBS's American Masters examines her history as a recording artist and performer as well as her remarkable journey as the conscience of a generation in Joan Baez: How Sweet The Sound, premiered nationally on Wednesday, October 14, 2009.
The documentary's premiere television airing coincided with the DVD/CD release, featuring bonus content and an audio soundtrack. The documentary features rare performance footage, home videos and candid interviews with artists such as David Crosby, Bob Dylan, David Harris, Steve Earle, Reverend Jesse Jackson and Roger McGuinn. The deluxe edition (DVD/CD combo) includes the complete documentary as well as bonus content featuring Joan's one-on-one conversations with Steve Earle, Vaclav Havel, Dar Williams, Bill Fegan and Bishop Ernest Palmer, as well as interview outtakes on early family life, musical roots, early career choices and more, including a never-before-seen 1958 performance from the legendary Club 47 in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The deluxe version also includes a 15 track soundtrack CD with many previously unreleased performances including: Man Smart Woman Smarter, I Never Will Marry, Barbara Allen, Silver Dagger, Fennario, Oh Freedom, With God On Our Side, A Song For David, The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down, Carry It On, I Pity the Poor Immigrant (duet w/Bob Dylan), Diamonds And Rust, Love Song To A Stranger, Day After Tomorrow, and Jerusalem.
You can also order the DVD/CD deluxe combo online from Barnes & Noble.
Read band member Dirk Powell's account of a meeting between Joan and some Vietnam veterans in Idaho Falls, Idaho, on Tuesday, August 11, 2009.
Barbara Goldsmith of The New York Times Book Review said, "[A] revealing autobiography...[H]er honesty and ideals are appealing, and in her life story one can see the passage of an artistic Everyman." Twenty-two years after its original release, Joan's autobiography And A Voice To Sing With was re-released as a trade paperback on July 21, 2009, by Simon & Schuster.
Joan's is a journey of the spirit, told with intimacy and passion as she shares her introduction to folk music and her baptism as its first female star in the coffee houses of Cambridge, Massachusetts. She recounts her musical and personal entwinement with Bob Dylan; her marriage to David Harris, and their painful breakup; and the joy she found upon the birth of her son, Gabriel. With a new introduction by acclaimed music critic Anthony DeCurtis, this book is the story of an American cultural icon. Marked by the openness and vulnerability that have touched us in her music, and the passion and integrity that have informed her politics, this is a disarmingly frank and stirring memoir of the life and work of one of the most extraordinary performers of our time.
You can get yours at Amazon.
On April 28, 2009 the Collector's Editions of both Gone From Danger and Ring Them Bells were released. Gone From Danger includes a bonus CD of Joan's 1997 performance on public radio's Mountain Stage. Joining Joan on eight of the ten songs from the album are Dar Williams, Sinead Lohan, Betty and Gene Elders, and Richard Shindell. Ring Them Bells (previously released in the UK), features an additional six tracks, including three solo songs, and one additional song with Tish Hinojosa, one additional song with Indigo Girls and one additional song with Mary Chapin Carpenter. (Scroll down for more info on this release.) Both Collector's Edition CDs are on Joan's label, Bobolink, and distributed by Razor & Tie.
In January 2009, following the presidential inauguration of Barack Obama, Joan traveled to the Beacon Sloop Club in Newburgh, New York, where she met up with the late Pete Seeger for a photo shoot for Rolling Stone magazine. We've got some additional photos from the day, taken by Claire Smith. Enjoy!
All photos © Claire Smith, 2009
Joan had the great pleasure of traveling to Washington, DC, for the inauguration of U.S. President Barack Obama. She also performed at the First Inaugural Peace Ball sponsored by Busboys and Poets. Click below to see all the pics!
All photos © Claire Smith, 2009
Be sure to pick up the DVD release of the Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour: The Best of Season 3.
Joan's memorable appearance on this show was on March 30, 1969, and it's included in this collection.
Joan performs "Sweet Sir Galahad" and "Green, Green Grass of Home," as well as joining Tom and Dick Smothers on "I Shall Be Released."
Get yours now!
On September 18, Joan received the Spirit of Americana Free Speech Award at the Americana Music Association's seventh annual awards show on September 18 in Nashville. The honor recognizes and celebrates artist who have ignited discussion and challenged the status quo through their music and actions. Past recipients of this award include Johnny Cash, Kris Kristofferson, Judy Collins, Mavis Staples, and Steve Earle, who presented the award to Joan. Joan also offered a moving performance of "Day After Tomorrow."
On July 22, 2008, Telarc released the new Maria Muldaur CD called Yes We Can!. This release showcases the work of some of the most socially conscious songwriters (i.e. Dylan) of the past half-century, and along with Joan as a special guest, features appearances by Bonnie Raitt, Odetta, Jane Fonda, Holly Near and Phoebe Snow.
Wildflower Records released Born To The Breed: A Tribute to Judy Collins on October 14, 2008. Joan is among the 15 artists contributing a track to the CD, offering a beautiful version of Collins' "Since You've Asked." The tribute record will also include artists such as Dolly Parton, Chrissie Hynde, Rufus Wainwright, Dar Williams and Leonard Cohen.
Here it is, folks! The 2007 Lifetime Achievement Award presented to Joan by the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (NARAS), the organization that bestows the GRAMMY Awards. You can go to their website www.grammy.com to read more about it and see photos and video from the evening. The Lifetime Achievement Award honors lifelong artistic contributions to the recording medium, and the award is decided by vote of The Recording Academy's National Board of Trustees. The award was presented to Joan during a February 10th ceremony at the Wilshire Ebell Theatre in Los Angeles.(Photos above: Joan accepting her award; Joan with her tour merchandise manager Jim Stewart; the Grammy Award)
The ceremony was attended by a group of Joan's friends and associates who were there to share in the excitement. (Photo at left: Joan with her good friend Colleen Creedon)
CONGRATULATIONS, JOAN!!! This honor is so richly deserved!
To top off the weekend, Joan also appeared on the Grammy Award televised event on Sunday, February 11th, introducing a performance by the Dixie Chicks.
Vanguard Records has released the "Original Master Series" of Joan's catalog with Vanguard. These re-issues feature 20-bit remastering and have new graphics, liner notes wonderfully written by Arthur Levy, deluxe slip cover cases, and additional tracks (some previously unreleased) when possible. . Re-issues contain the following bonus tracks:
Joan Baez - "Maid of Constant Sorrow," "Woman Blues," and "John Riley" (with a previously unissued verse).
Joan Baez, Volume 2 - "Once I Loved a Boy," "Longest Train I Ever Saw," and "Poor Boy."
Noel - "The First Noel," "We Three Kings," "Virgin Mary," "Good Christian Kings," "Burgundian Carol," and "Away in a Manger."
In Concert - "Streets of Laredo" and "My Good Old Man" (both retrieved from the vinyl version of Very Early Joan), and "My Lord What A Morning."
In Concert, Part Two - "Rambler Gambler" (from Very Early Joan), "Railroad Bill" (from original vinyl version of this album), and the previously unreleased tracks, "Death of Emmett Till," "Tomorrow Is A Long Time," and "When First Unto This Country A Stranger I Came."
5 - "Tramp on the Street" (early version) and "Long Black Veil" featuring the Charles River Valley Boys.
Farewell Angelina - early versions of "Rock Salt and Nails," "The Water is Wide," and "One Too Many Mornings."
Joan - "Oh, Had I a Golden Thread" and "Autumn Leaves" (sung in French).
Baptism - "Mystic Numbers: 36. Wedding Song," "When The Shy Star Goes Forth In Heaven," and "The Angel."
Any Day Now - "Blowin' in the Wind" and "It Ain't Me Babe" (both from a live performance in Japan)
David's Album - "How Can I Miss You" and "The Last Thing On My Mind" (previously unreleased studio version)
One Day At A Time - "Sing Me Back Home" and "Mama Tried"
Blessed Are... - "Maria Dolores," "Plane Wreck At Los Gatos (Deportee)," and "Warm And Tender Love"