Album: River: The Joni Letters

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River: The Joni Letters

River The Joni Letters (Front Cover)

Album details


Released: 25 September 2007
Length: 67:49
Label(s): Verve Records
Studio(s): Avatar Studio, New York, NY, USA
Ocean Way Recording, Hollywood, CA, USA
Paramount Recording Studios, Los Angeles, CA, USA
600Feet (location unknown)
NJP Studios AG, Zürich, Switzerland.

Charts, Certifications & Awards


Charts
America
Country: Chart Entry Date Peak Position Weeks in Chart
USA: Billboard 200 09 Feb. 2008 5 14
USA: Billboard Jazz Albums 06 Oct. 2007 1 78
Certifications
Institution, Country Date Certification
Information needed
Awards
Institution, Country Date Award
Grammy Award, USA 28 Feb. 2008 Best Album Of The Year
Grammy Award, USA 28 Feb. 2008 Best Contemporary Jazz Album

Singles released


  • None

See also


A Tribute To Joni Mitchell
(Compilation)
 
Atributetojonimitchell album.jpg
River: The Joni Letters is the forty-seventh studio album by Herbie Hancock. The album is a tribute to his long time friend and collaborator Joni Mitchell (whose nineteenth studio Shine, her first since 1998, was released simultaneously) and includes cover of her songs as well as two instrumentals (Duke Ellington's Solitude and Nefertiti by Miles Davis) that influenced her work.

River: The Joni Letters features vocal contributions by Tina Turner, Leonard Cohen, Norah Jones among other as well as Joni Mitchell herself. As a long-time admirer of Mitchell, Prince accepted to play guitar on the cover of Edith And The Kingpin (featuring Tina Turner on vocals). His contribution is uncredited and was unknown until after his passing. The album also contains instrumental covers of Both Sides Now and A Case Of You (the latter as a bonus track on some editions of the album) that Prince also covered live occasionally or regularly on tours. His own studio version of A Case Of You was released on his 25th album One Nite Alone... in 2002 and on a compilation (A Tribute To Joni Mitchell) released five months before Herbie Hancock's album.


Recording process

It is not clear where and when Prince contributed his part to Edith And The Kingpin. In 2016, Kat Dyson said that Herbie Hancock and Prince met on 20 March 2005 during the 36th NAACP Image Awards ceremony afterparty thrown by Prince at his 3121 Antelo Rd. rented house in Los Angeles, California to discuss this idea. It is likely that the recording took place shortly afterwards. It is not known if Prince's guitar part was recorded before of after Tina Turner's vocals which were recorded at the NJP Studios AG, in Zürich, Switzerland

His contribution to Edith And The Kingpin marks the first known studio track to feature both Hancock and Prince, before Ana Moura's Dream Of Fire released in 2012 (Herbie Hancock had appeared on stage with Prince in 2005, however, as well as on George Clinton's Paisley Park Records album Hey Man... Smell My Finger).


Promotion

Bonus tracks were added to the digital version on iTunes (Harlem In Havana and I Had A King) and Amazon (A Case Of You and All I Want ) but no single was issued to promote the album.
On 10 February 2008, (Herbie Hancock won the Grammy Award for the Album Of The Year and for the Best Contemporary Jazz Album. The album met with great success and reached number 5 on the US Billboard 200, and number 1 on the Billboard Jazz Albums Chart.

An expanded edition with the four bonus tracks issued only on digital platforms previously was issued in 2017 to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the album.



Track listing
CD LP

Details given for the Prince-related track only:

  1. Court And Spark - featuring Norah Jones
  2. Edith And The Kingpin - featuring Tina Turner (6:32) 1
  3. Both Sides Now (Instrumental)
  4. River - featuring Corinne Bailey Rae
  5. Sweet Bird (Instrumental)
  6. Tea Leaf Prophecy - featuring Joni Mitchell
  7. Solitude (Instrumental)
  8. Amelia - featuring Luciana Souza
  9. Nefertiti (Instrumental)
  10. The Jungle Line - featuring Leonard Cohen
  • Side 1:
  1. Court And Spark - featuring Norah Jones
  2. Edith And The Kingpin - featuring Tina Turner (6:32) 1
  • Side 2:
  1. Both Sides Now (Instrumental)
  2. River - featuring Corinne Bailey Rae
  • Side 3:
  1. Sweet Bird (Instrumental)
  2. Tea Leaf Prophecy - featuring Joni Mitchell
  3. Solitude (Instrumental)
  • Side 4:
  1. Amelia - featuring Luciana Souza
  2. Nefertiti (Instrumental)
  3. The Jungle Line - featuring Leonard Cohen


1 Written by Joni Mitchell


CD (10th anniversary Expanded Edition)

  • CD 1:
  1. Court And Spark - featuring Norah Jones
  2. Edith And The Kingpin - featuring Tina Turner (6:32) 1
  3. Both Sides Now (Instrumental)
  4. River - featuring Corinne Bailey Rae
  5. Sweet Bird (Instrumental)
  6. Tea Leaf Prophecy - featuring Joni Mitchell
  7. Solitude (Instrumental)
  8. Amelia - featuring Luciana Souza
  9. Nefertiti (Instrumental)
  10. The Jungle Line - featuring Leonard Cohen
  • CD 2:
  1. A Case Of You
  2. All I Want - featuring Sonya Kitchell
  3. Harlem In Havana
  4. I Had A King



Personnel
Musicians


Production


Thanks
  • Herbie Hancock and Larry Klein would like to thank Joni for her poetic songs and for showing us what artistic commitment means, Tina for her incomparable voice and generosity, Leonard for his gravitas and generosity, Luciana for her skilful and deft navigation, Norah for her courageous honesty & humility, and Corrine for her fresh spirit and grace, Dahlia Ambach Caplin for help and trust and Wayne, Dave, Vinnie and Lionel for their patience and commitment to going deep beneath the words.
  • Larry Klein would like to thank Sandy Robertson for his help and tireless tenacity, and Herbie for giving me the chance to weave together many threads of my life.
  • Herbie Hancock would like to thank Larry Klein, Gigi Hancock, Jessica Hancock, Melinda Murphy, Barry Marshall, Brian McCullough, Cesar Mejia, Caroline Shorter, Phil Daniels, Ken Hertz and everyone at Goldring, Hertz & Lichtenstein, Ken Soden & Frank Randazzo for VIP Travelers, David Jackel, Adriane Hibbert, Allan Catalasan and everyone at Gelfand, Rennert & Feldman, Jerry Kovarsky, Jack Hotop and everyone at Korg, Sujatry Reisinger, Gabor Resinger & Jim Luce at Klavierhaus NY, Louise Holland, Toni Hoard & Megumi Homma at Yohji Yamamoto NY, and everyone at Fazioli Pianoforti (Paolo Fazioli, Rick Baldassin, John Barrus & Steve Witowski)
  • Special thanks: Kate Markowitz, Lauren Kinhan, Tino Passante at Avatar, Kelly Erwin at Ocean Way, Roland Frei at NJP, Candi Peters & Pierre Julia at Pierre's Fine Pianos for allowing all of us to invade your store for the entire day!



Releases
LP, CD, Cassettes and Other versions
Country Format Cat. Number Comments Front Back Label 1 Label 2

This section is under construction

Variants, Special Editions and Reissues
Country Format Cat. Number Comments Front Back Label 1 Label 2

This section is under construction

 
Additional Information

Promotion (at time of release) Trivia


References
Neverforget album.jpg 2007
Never Forget: A Journey Of Revelations
All Albums All Related Artists Albums 2009
Elixer
Elixer album.jpg