Cyndi Lauper, Annie Lennox & Angélique Kidjo’s Riotous Take On “Big Yellow Taxi” Is A Mood

Cyndi Lauper, Annie Lennox, Angélique Kidjo, and Brandi Carlile led a star-studded performance of the Joni Mitchell classic “Big Yellow Taxi” that had a real loose, feel-good vibe. The fabulous lineup performed the 1970 hit right in front of Mitchell herself, and everybody was clearly stoked to be there doing it. The best part came when Carlile went down into the audience at the end, put the mic in front of Mitchell, and the legendary singer-songwriter finished off the last line!

Annie Lennox sang the opening verse and put a whole lot of soul into it. The lineup of seven vocalists then sang the chorus together, before Cyndi Lauper took centre stage and sang a sassy second verse. Brandi Carlile sang a low-key and melodic verse soon after, before Angélique Kidjo really stole the show with a fiery solo chorus. You know it hit the spot because Kidjo’s voice put a big smile on Mitchell’s face in the audience.

Mitchell was the recipient of the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song in 2023, and the performance took place at the ceremony on March 1 in Constitution Hall, Washington, DC. The Lauper and Lennox collaboration was a big hit online, attracting 1.4 million views, making it the most popular performance from the event.

At age 79, Mitchell herself also gave a hit performance at the ceremony, singing her timeless classic “Blue.” After she sang the opening line as smooth as silk, the audience put up a cheer, which made the septuagenarian smile like she was a kid again. The vibe of the whole show was really special, as you could just tell everybody, including Mitchell, was just loving being there together to celebrate her tremendous career.

Fans online were particularly enamoured with the “Big Yellow Taxi” performance, and added comments such as “Oh my God. Joni finishing off the last line of that performance was everything!” and “When you stumble on something you didn’t know you needed. A joyful celebration of an icon and all wonderful female performers in their own right.”

Mitchell’s Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song ceremony was filmed and made into an official release directed by Sandra Restrepo. Several of the performances made it onto YouTube, while the full concert was made available via streaming services. If you want to hear more from the incredible Joni Mitchell, consider subscribing to her YouTube Channel or follow her on Instagram.

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