David Yaffe is a songwriter and a professor of humanities at Syracuse University. His book about Joni Mitchell, Reckless Daughter: A Portrait of Joni Mitchell , was recently published by Farrar, Straus & Giroux.
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Life Lessons From Joni Mitchell

What one writer learned spending decades listening, and talking to, the legendary singer

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Hello Darkness, My Old Friend

It has never been easy, even with all the accolades, to be Paul Simon. A new album, ‘Stranger to Stranger,’ shows the popular bridge-builder is still crazy after 74 years.

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Another Window on Joni Mitchell From Her Jewish BFF, Malka Marom

Why the Israeli child of Holocaust survivors was the right person to hear the reclusive artist out and tell her tale

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New York Jewish Jazz Genius Bill Charlap Channels Beauty and Truth in 88 Keys

Starting a two-week stand at the Village Vanguard, the lyrical master interprets song for his own purposes

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How Much of This Author’s Weirdness Is Our Weirdness, Too?

In an interview, Rivka Galchen—who has a new collection out this week—channels Kafka, posing complex questions to herself, and us

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It Takes a Lot To Laugh: The Parody and Pain of Beck

New ‘Morning Phase’—six years after his last album and 21 since becoming a loser, baby—shows the Gen-Xer just getting started

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Lou’s Gift: The Magic of a Rock ’n’ Roll Poet

An encounter with legendary rock star Lou Reed, who died this weekend at 71

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Paul McCartney’s ‘NEW’: The Jew-ish Beatle’s Bar Mitzvah Album

He can still give you earworms and warm fuzzy retro feelings. But at 71, is Macca now finally a man?

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Shanah Tova From Donald Fagen

The genius of Steely Dan talks blacks, Jews, and Lenny Bruce—and his new record, Sunken Condos

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