Hear “You Can Close Your Eyes,” a 1970 Live Duet from Joni Mitchell + James Taylor (‘Archives Vol. 2’ Out 11/12)

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On Nov. 12, the ongoing Joni Mitchell Archives project will continue with Joni Mitchell Archives Vol. 2: The Reprise Years (1968-1971), the latest installment in a series promising a wealth of material celebrating the robust recorded output of the legendary singer/songwriter.

As a preview of the new collection, a previously unreleased live recording of “You Can Close Your Eyes” from Mitchell and James Taylor was premiered digitally on Friday. Take a listen:

Some back story for the recording:

In August of 1970, Mitchell traveled to the Four Corners region of the American Southwest to visit Taylor on the set of Two-Lane Blacktop, his first and only starring acting role. While filming on location in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Taylor wrote “You Can Close Your Eyes” for Mitchell and performed the song live in October 1970 when they were in Vancouver to play at Amchitka, a benefit concert supporting Greenpeace’s protest against nuclear weapons tests at Amchitka, Alaska.

Taylor played the song again a few days later at the Paris Theatre in London on October 29, 1970, where he and Mitchell sang it together. Their performance was recorded (and later broadcast on December 27) for “In Concert,” a weekly show on BBC Radio hosted by famed British DJ John Peel. 

The entire BBC performance is included in the new Archives release.

Click here to pre-order Joni Mitchell Archives Vol. 2: The Reprise Years (1968-1971) from our Rock Cellar Store

Some additional details on the Vol. 2 collection:

The tracks on ARCHIVES VOL. 2 have been sequenced chronologically to follow Mitchell in real time through one of the most creative periods of her career. The collection uncovers several unreleased Mitchell originals, including “Jesus” recorded in 1969 at her friend Jane Lurie’s New York apartment in Chelsea, which also served as the setting for the song “Chelsea Morning.”

Other highlights include five Blue outtakes that were released digitally earlier this year as Blue 50 (Demos & Outtakes) including early demos of “A Case Of You” and California,” a version of “River” that adds French horns, an alternate version of “Urge For Going,” and the unreleased song “Hunter.” Also included is Mitchell’s performance at Le Hibou Coffee House in Ottawa on March 19, 1968 that was recorded by Jimi Hendrix and as well as her complete Carnegie Hall debut, recorded on February 1, 1969.

ARCHIVES VOL. 2 serves as a companion to the boxed set The Reprise Albums (1968-1971), which is available now in 4-CD, 4-LP, and digital versions. It includes newly remastered versions of Song To A Seagull (1968), Clouds (1969), Ladies Of The Canyon (1970), and Blue (1971).

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