Q

Folk icon Judy Collins on her long career, why 80 is the new 20 and her new album Winter Stories

At age 80, folk icon Judy Collins is still actively releasing new music, touring and shining a light on unsung talent. She joined q's Tom Power to reflect on her nearly six-decade career and her latest record, Winter Stories.
At age 80, singer-songwriter Judy Collins is still actively releasing new music and touring. Her latest record is a collection of seasonally-themed songs called Winter Stories. (The Associated Press)
Listen28:38

Folk singer Judy Collins has been making an impact on popular music for nearly six decades. From her days in the legendary Greenwich Village folk scene of the early '60s, to the string of hit singles she released in the '70s, Collins was one of the most captivating and politically outspoken voices of her generation. 

She's also proven herself to be quite the tastemaker. Before singer-songwriters like Joni Mitchell and Leonard Cohen were household names in the U.S., Collins was introducing their songs to American audiences though her popular renditions. 

Now, at the age of 80, Collins has lost none of her passion for performing, recording and shining a light on unsung talent. Her new record, Winter Stories, is a collaboration with Norwegian musician Jonas Fjeld and the North Carolina bluegrass band Chatham County Line.

(Wildflower/Cleopatra Records)

As the title suggests, the album is a seasonally-themed collection of songs, and yet it's not your typical Christmas record. Like winter itself, it's both beautiful and at times dark.

"I've done too many holiday albums," said Collins. "I've done a lot of Christmas albums over the years and even written a couple of Christmas songs myself. So taking into account the fact that winter actually lasts for three months, we thought we'd do something according to winter and spice it up."

Collins joined q's Tom Power, to reflect on her new record, her remarkable career and why, for her, 80 is the new 20.

If you're in the Vancouver area, you can catch Collins on tour at the Kay Meek Centre on Sunday, Dec. 15. She'll be touring all winter long. 


Download our podcast or click the 'Listen' link near the top of this page to hear the full conversation with Judy Collins.

— Produced by ​Stuart Berman

Miss an episode of CBC q? Download our podcast.

 

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.