Joni Mitchell performs at the Newport Folk Festival on Sunday.
CNN  — 

Seeing Joni Mitchell perform these days is a rarity, but this weekend she made it happen.

Mitchell made a surprising return to the stage Sunday at the Newport Folk Festival, an annual folk music festival in Newport, Rhode Island. The iconic singer – known for ’70s hits like “Amelia” and “Big Yellow Taxi” – joined Brandi Carlile on stage, for a set that included “A Case of You,” “Carey” and the Gershwin classic “Summertime.”

“I wanted to be good, and I wasn’t sure that I could be,” Mitchell told CBS following the performance. “But I didn’t sound too bad tonight.”

And the crowd would agree – cheering loudly for the star, who last appeared at the festival in 1969.

Mitchell, now 78, had a brain aneurysm in 2015, one that required rehabilitation and physical therapy to recover. In 2018, singer David Crosby said Mitchell had to relearn how to walk.

Ever since, Mitchell has been largely out of the public eye, though she has made some appearances at concerts over the years. Earlier this year, Mitchell introduced Carlile at the annual Grammy Awards. And on Sunday, she walked across the stage to join a dancing Carlile, whose other guests included Marcus Mumford and Wynonna Judd.