April 7, 2008

Big Yellow Taxi

Milady needed some material to write one of her tests, and she asked me to look up the lyrics and information to the song Big Yellow Taxi. While I'm familiar with the song (who isn't?), I had no idea that it was originally written by Joni Mitchell. The inspiration to write the song came from a bad experience Joni had in Hawaii:

Living in Los Angeles, smog-choked L.A. is bad enough but the last straw came when I visited Hawaii for the first time. It was night time when we got there, so I didn't get my first view of the scenery until I got up the next morning. The hotel room was quite high up so in the distance I could see the blue Pacific Ocean. I walked over to the balcony and there was the picture book scenery, palm tree swaying in the breeze and all. Then I looked down and there was this ugly concrete car park in the hotel grounds. I thought "They paved paradise and put up a parking lot," and that's how the song "Big Yellow Taxi" was born.

The first video is of Joni singing live in front of a small audience in 1970; the second video is of the Counting Crows cover.


Sairah said...

Hey, this is Sairah! I just received your comment on my post about Islamically arranged marriages, and you had some excellent posts. In a later post, I noted that that conversation will be continued via e-mail because well, it's kinda complex, and if I answer every comment in a new post, it's kinda unfair to everyone else. =P

But yea, the bulk of what I told John was that Islam > Culture, and the two get severely mixed up, to bad effect (particularly in the west!).

But I appreciate your comment, it was very well received. =) Just curious, but how did you find my blog?

JDsg said...


Salaam 'alaikum. I'm glad you liked my comment. I knew you had continued your conversation with John from the more recent blog post, and had even noticed after I made my comment that I was adding to a conversation that was several weeks old. It *is* amazing how many people confuse Islam with culture (and not just non-Muslims).

A couple of random comments for you:
* As to how I found your blog, through the two comments that you left on one of my other blogs (I have several) yesterday! ;) And you had asked me to come visit and comment. ;)
* Speaking of your blog, could you do a small favor and lighten up the color of your text? Perhaps more of a yellowish color? I can barely read your blog (even on my monitor's highest brightness), and have to highlight the text with my cursor to be able to read it.
* I enjoyed your post about the woman at the dawah table. Some people aren't interested in learning and just want to vent. Good luck in the future! ;)
* And last, if this question isn't out of bounds, I was just curious what college you're going to.

Rob Wagner said...

Oh, come on JD! You're old enough to remember Joni Mitchell back in the day, aren't you? I know you're a bit younger than me, but DJs played this song every five minutes while I was in high school.

JDsg said...

Rob: You crack me up. Seriously, I was laughing for a few minutes straight. Sorry to say, but Joni Mitchell was still before my time. :) That first video of Joni playing in concert back in '70? I turned nine late in the year that year. :) That Woodstock video you put on your blog? I was six years old that summer. And I didn't really discover the radio until '74. Heck, the first 45 I ever bought with my own money was of Bohemian Rhapsody. So, no, I'm still a little bit younger than you. ;)