March 8, 2013

A Tribute to Joni Mitchell's Blue

Chicks with Dip

We present a special tribute concert — Joni Mitchell’s Blue: A 40th Anniversary. This concert will feature a stellar cast of some of the New York City area’s finest female singer-songwriters, performing all the songs from Blue plus original songs inspired by Joni Mitchell.

Women know about the power of girlfriends — but how about an entire posse of female empowerment? For the past decade, nearly a dozen NYC and NJ-based women have been part of an informal NYC-based musical girlfriend posse called the Chicks with Dip — singers and songwriters all, who convene regularly for afternoons filled with songs, wine, chips and dip, and lots of girl talk that ranges from the silly to the sexually explicit and from the emotionally raw to the political.

The Chicks are: Honor Finnegan, Meg Braun, Sharon Goldman, Victoria Lavington, Catherine Miles, Karyn Oliver, Elisa Peimer, Allison Scola, Anna Dagmar, Carolann Solebello, and Allison Tartalia. Over the years, they have laughed, cried, gossiped and performed together — and supported each other through ten years of ups and downs: the birth of Carolann’s son; Meg’s marathon success; Allison S’s wedding; Allison T’s dating dilemmas; Elisa’s husband’s brain tumor; and Sharon’s divorce — not to mention moves, job changes, unemployment, band breakups and writer’s block.

Their most serious struggle was when Victoria was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008. The gals swooped in to provide food, transportation, babysitting, and emotional support, as well as a fundraising performance in 2009 that raised over $5,000 towards Victoria’s treatment. “The idea for the Blue show sprang up organically at a meeting in the summer of 2011,” says Carolann Solebello, longtime Chick and former member of female Americana trio Red Molly. “We were discussing Joni Mitchell and what her songwriting has meant to each of us, and since we’re always on the lookout for ways to collaborate, the 40th anniversary of Joni’s masterpiece seemed the perfect opportunity.”

Photo by Jayne Toohey

  • Joni Mitchell’s Blue: A 40th Anniversary Celebration is one of my top 10 album picks for 2012. Some of New York’s finest female folkies, collectively known as Chicks with Dip, do justice to Joni’s deceptively tricky classics. John Platt, WFUV-90.7FM, New York City
  • Basically, it takes guts to sing Joni — especially to a crowd of people who can easily listen to her whole body of work in their heads without actual audio — but the Chicks more than pull it off, and allow Mitchell’s work to have a life beyond her own performances and recordings. Erika Bleiberg, www.baristanet.com