Compiled by Simon Montgomery, © 2001

1967.07.16  Newport Folk Festival  Newport, RI

Joni participated in an afternoon Songwriters Workshop
along with Leonard Cohen, Judy Collins, Janis Ian,
David Blue, Mike Settle, Tom Paxton, and Eric Andersen.

Image Gallery   [click to enlarge, then arrow keys to browse]:
Leonard Cohen and Joni at the Newport Folk Festival
Leonard Cohen and Joni at the Newport Folk Festival
Joni on Stage. [Siquomb]
Joni and Joan Baez.
Festival ad in The Broadside July 5, 1967.
Photo by David Gahr.
Joni and Janis Ian.
Leonard Cohen and Joni at the Newport Folk Festival.
Leonard Cohen and Joni at the Newport Folk Festival.

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Related articles from the Library:
» Newport Port of Call for All Music (Billboard, 1967)

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fhp on 2013-Apr-27 at 03:16:09 GMT-5:
I was 14 on that summer afternoon and unaware that when I left the lawn in front of the stage later that afternoon my life would be radically altered. I had heard the song Michael from the recent Judy Collins recording and I loved it. I had no idea, as she wasn't billed for that afternoon's show, that I would be seeing the author sing that beautiful song. Judy Collins introduced her onto the stage and Joni sang a brief set that stunned the audience. It was a magical day. The Incredible String Band had played earlier on and I had no idea that Music could be so bazaar and whimsical. I think Eric Anderson sang that afternoon. Was the Young Tradition also there? Arlo Guthrie sang Alice's Restaurant which he had sung the night before onstage. It is all a bit of a blur between the night before and the "Joni" afternoon but after that day I turned off AM radio forever. Jai Joni. Shanti and Many Thanks  [ed.]

Archival comments

By Lachlan MacLearn

In the summer of 1966 [sic, should be 1967] a relative unknown walked onto the stage at the Newport, Rhode Island Folk Festival, after being introduced by Judy Collins. It was a breezy summer's evening and the crowd was restless. I remember thinking that this newcomer, whoever she was, was stepping into some serious company. I can't recall the exact lineup. Probably Tim Hardin, Fred Neil, Odetta, Phil Ochs, Tom Paxton, and the like. As I said, `serious company...' She appeared to be carrying a tiny Martin Triple-0, but I couldn't be sure. She wore a long dress. I was too far back to decipher the face.

There was a round of light applause when she was introduced. A tentative strum rolled from the huge PA, then another, and she was beginning her opening number.

The song was 'Michael from Mountains'. And by the end of the first verse, the crowd had gone from bordering-rude to pin-drop silence. I was riveted.

When the song ended, the strangest thing occurred. For at least five seconds (look at your watch...try to imagine it) the place was dead-silent - ten or fifteen thousand people - dead silent - and then a huge release of cheers and applause.

The short set included `Chelsea Morning', and I think she played `The Circle Game' before leaving the stage to a tumultuous and prolonged standing ovation.

I remember feeling so grateful for this amazing new talent and feeling equally sorry for anyone unfortunate enough to be going onstage after her.