By The Associated Press.

A little over a year after being celebrated at the Kennedy Center, Joni Mitchell will return to Washington for another lifetime achievement honour: the Library of Congress Gershwin Prize for Popular Song.

Mitchell, 79, is widely regarded as among the greatest singer-songwriters of her time, with her best known works including “Chelsea Morning,” “Big Yellow Taxi” and “Free Man in Paris.”

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“Joni Mitchell’s music and artistry have left a distinct impression on American culture and internationally, crossing from folk music with a distinctive voice whose songs will stay with us for the ages,” Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden said in a statement released Thursday. “Joni Mitchell’s music has so many artists and music lovers all singing her tunes.”

Mitchell, a native of Fort Macleod, Alberta, will become the first Canadian to receive the prestigious award. Previous winners include Paul McCartney, Paul Simon, Stevie Wonder, and Billy Joel.

Mitchell, who lives in Los Angeles, will be honoured March 1 at a tribute concert airing March 31 on PBS stations.

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“This is a very prestigious award,” Mitchell said in the statement. “Thank you for honouring me.”

Mitchell was also honoured as the MusiCares person of the year before last year’s Grammys. After nearly two decades away, she returned to the stage in August and plans to perform again this coming June.


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Ellen Bullock