Joni Mitchell

When I was 13, though, I got into Joni Mitchell with my dad, and played it to pieces. I loved Don Juan’s Reckless Daughter but Hejira was the one. It was more acoustic. I’ve always found guitars a bit difficult because my dad played since I was very little, and he was a bit of a Clapton and Hendrix kind of guitarist, and I’ve always been critical of that, but I loved her guitar sound very much, although it’s very hard to say why.

With hindsight, she was one of the first women I heard who weren’t completely stupid. She had her own air of style and independence, whereas a lot of women just wanted to play men’s music. I wasn’t so much into her voice, more that she had her own world, with her own elements. You definitely knew that it was Joni the second you heard her. It was very strong, but very feminine, you know ? It was natural and earthy but modern as well.

She was never my role model, though : I don’t think any singer was, to be honest. Instruments influenced me more than singers, like brass and stuff. You might start puking when I say it but I never had the ambition to be a singer, I always wanted to make good music. It’s like learning shorthand writing. It’s not so much that you’re into it, but it makes it easier to write anything. That’s why I sing.

Q magazine, october 1993