Canyon Country Store, ca. 1970. The Laurel Canyon Lizard King, Jim Morrison himself, lived right near the store with his girlfriend Pamela Courson in a cozy 3 bedroom bungalow built in 1922 on Rothdell Trail. Morrison referenced their pad in “Love Street” and the Canyon Country Store as, “the place where the creatures meet.”
In late spring 1970, Joni Mitchell flew off to Europe. Her passionate love affair with Graham Nash had become troubled as she feared marrying a second time and what that might do to her creative life. At the end of May, Nash received a telegram from Joni that said simply “If you hold sand too tightly in your hand, it will run through your fingers. Love, Joan.”
It was over.
Later that year, Joni Mitchell wrote “River”. It says it all.
Over her career, Joni rarely played “River” in concert. Perhaps it was too personal. Perhaps it was just too honest. This is from a concert in London in late 1970.
“Ladies of the Canyon” by Joni Mitchell, Ladies of the Canyon (1970)
Trina takes her paints and her threads And she weaves a pattern all her own Annie bakes her cakes and her breads And she gathers flowers for her home For her home she gathers flowers And Estrella dear companion Colors up the sunshine hours Pouring music down the canyon Coloring the sunshine hours They are the ladies of the canyon