Joni Mitchell

“I remember that time you told me, you said,
“love is touching souls”,
surely you touched mine, 
’cause part of you pours out of me,
in these lines from time to time.”

History: Recorded in 1971, A Case of You was first released on the 1971 album Blue with Mitchell playing Appalachian dulcimer, accompanied by James Taylor on acoustic guitar.

The line “I am as constant as a northern star” is a quotation from Shakespeare’s play, Julius Caesar.

The song has been covered by a copious list of artists, including Sloan, Tori Amos, Allison Crowe, Brian Kennedy, Michelle Branch, Keller Williams, k.d. lang, Lyn Paul, Caroline Lavelle, Kate Earl,Cristina Branco, Diana Krall, Jane Monheit, Julia Murney, Javier, Philip Morrow, Colin Meloy, Frank Ocean, Dawn Langstroth, Prince, and James Blake.

It is rumored that Joni wrote A Case of You about her short-lived, but passionate relationship with Leonard Cohen.


Personal Reflection:  As children, my two closest friends and I would build those kind of forts you make with blankets and chairs backed up into each other, tunnels added with use of the TV tray tables that my Grandmother gave us one Christmas holiday. We shared one flashlight between us, and we would pass it off to each other when it was our turn to tell our version of the “scariest story“.

Sometimes we would lie on our backs, our feet outstretched and poking a little outside of our “suburban campsite”. These light and shadow casts would play in-between the crinkles and bends in the blankets, and we would point out shapes as if they were a ghostly set of clouds for us to name, and make into our story shadow characters.

Our parents were all in the front room, music playing loudly, their drunken laughter competing with the sound. Sometimes I would try to incorporate the songs into my story, ghosts carved out of Joni Mitchell lyrics overheard. A Case of You was my favorite for such a telling.

Sometimes I wish we had written all our stories down.

A Case of You :: Joni Mitchell


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