Grace Slick’s Disagreement With Joni Mitchell
Grace Slick doesn’t mind hurting a person or two when expressing her feelings and thoughts. For instance, she had a bit of a rightful prejudice against Mick Jagger when they first met in the ’70s. Slick and bandmate Paul Kantner had to visit Jagger’s house to plan a show, and Grace thought there would be drug and alcohol-infused rock n’ roll parties in Mick’s apartment.
However, Jagger surprised her when he invited them into his apartment wearing a three-piece suit and a professional attitude. Still, her opinion of Mick didn’t get any better later as she didn’t mind her words when she said she was embarrassed for Mick as he still would go on tours, aged 73.
Obviously, Slick has no problem sharing her thoughts no matter how sharp or bitter they might be, and she also didn’t spare Joni Mitchell when the pair had a disagreement. Grace hated how Mitchell gilded Woodstock and criticized Mithcell’s one particular track as she disclosed why Woodstock wasn’t that good.
When Grace Slick was first invited for a show in Woodstock, she thought the festival would be the East Coast version of Monterey. However, soon enough, she was disappointed with the sloppy schedules and the large crowds and criticized how the only thing that mattered at Woodstock was its size since people admired the festival’s size. Slick recalled how disappointing Woodstock was while speaking to Rolling Stone in 2014.
“Oh, yeah. We were all excited about Woodstock,” Slick said as she recalled the festival. “We thought it would be an East Coast version of Monterey. In this country, there’s a tendency to admire big. Half a million people, ooh! Then Joni wrote, ‘We are stardust/we are golden’ and all that sh*t. I love Joni, but I didn’t have quite the same take on it. I thought, ‘This is big, but it’s real sloppy.’”
The musician criticized Joni for gilding Woodstock because the festival wasn’t that great, according to her. Her opinion of Mitchell, like her criticism of Jagger, didn’t change much over the years as she once again criticized Joni for showing off the festival in her song, ‘Woodstock.’ In 2019, Grace Slick chatted with CBC Radio, and while discussing Woodstock, she had a chance to address Mitchell’s lyrics once again.
Slick said, “I mean, Joni Mitchell got all, you know, sugary about it and said we got to get ourselves back to the garden, and we’re stardust, and we’re golden and all that kind of stuff, which is a little bit over the top. But she was remarking on the fact that it was kind of amazing in its size.”
The frontwoman continued, “But Americans are always blown away by the size. We like big, you know. Bread used to be about four inches by four inches square. Now, it’s about eight inches by three. You can’t make a normal sandwich. It’s just huge. So you figure, ‘Oh well, I’ll eat that anyway.’ I mean, because that’s all you can get unless you make your sandwiches out of an English muffin. Those are fairly small.”
Grace has never spared her words while criticizing any particular subject, from Joni Mitchell and Woodstock to American sandwiches. She felt that Woodstock wasn’t as great as Mitchell made it out to be, and argued that the great size of the festival shaped her lyrics.