Night Ride Home is the fourteenth album by Canadian singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell, released in 1991. It was the last of four albums she recorded for Geffen Records.
Songs on the album include “Cherokee Louise” about a childhood friend who suffered sexual abuse, “The Windfall (Everything For Nothing)” about a maid who tried to sue Mitchell, and the retrospective single release “Come in from the Cold” about childhood and middle age. The title song “Night Ride Home” (originally titled “Fourth of July” and first performed during promotion for her previous album in 1988) was inspired by a moonlit night in Hawaii. Though the album contained no charting singles, the track “Come in From the Cold” received airplay on AOR stations.
This was Mitchell’s first album not to be distributed by the WEA family of labels. She had been signed to WEA’s Asylum and Reprise labels in the past, and Warner Bros. Records had been the distributor for Geffen Records from 1980 to 1990. That year, Geffen was sold to MCA Music (now Universal Music Group), as a result, the album was distributed by Uni Distribution Corp. (the distribution arm of MCA Music), which also took over the rest of the Geffen catalogue.
A home video release, Come In From The Cold, was released the same year and features promo videos for five tracks from the album along with an interview with Mitchell discussing the inspiration behind them.
As of December 2007, the album has sold 238,000 copies in the US to date. (by wikipedia)
Cutting back on the guest musicians of her previous effort and paring down to a basic small group of musicians helps add immediacy to Night Ride Home. While this release features several of Joni Mitchell’s favorites, nothing here would become a hit, as Joni tended to buck trends and follow her own beat. Very involved and a rather tough listen, but well worth the attention, this would be her last for Geffen, where she languished unnoticed while the label went heavy metal crazy. (by James Chrispell)
Alex Acuña – percussion on 01., 02., 05. 06 – 08.)
David Baerwald (background vocals on 07.)
Vinnie Colaiuta (drums on 03. – 06.+ 10.)
Bill Dillon -(guitar on 02. + 07, pedal steel guitar on 01,)
Larry Klein (bass, percussion on 01 – 03., 05. – 06., keyboards on 07., guitar on 06.)
Michael Landau (guitar on 10.)
Joni Mitchell (vocals, guitar, keyboards, percussion, billatron on 06., oboe on 08., omnichord on 08.)
Karen Peris (background vocals on 03.)
Brenda Russell (background vocals on 09.)
Wayne Shorter (saxophone on 03. + 09.)
01. Night Ride Home (Mitchell) 3.22
02. Passion Play (When All The Slaves Are Free) (Mitchell) 5.25
03. Cherokee Louise (Mitchell) 4.32
04. The Windfall (Everything for Nothing) (Mitchell) 4.16
05. Slouching Towards Bethlehem (Mitchell/Yeats) 6.55
06. Come In from The Cold (Mitchell) 7.31
07. Nothing Can Be Done (Mitchell/Klein) 4.55
08. The Only Joy In Town (Mitchell) 5.12
09. Ray’s Dad’s Cadillac (Mitchell) 4.34
10. Two Grey Rooms (Mitchell) 3.59