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Joni Mitchell Dazzles Crowd Print-ready version

by Kenn Johnson
Lexington Herald-Leader
February 10, 1976
Original article: PDF

I hope my mother doesn't read this, but I came to the shocking realization Monday night that I am a Joni Mitchell "groupie."

After listening to the magnificent Ms. Mitchell - in concert at UK's Memorial Coliseum - I finally can understand and sympathize with those girls who make fools of themselves at the feet of Elvis, the Beatles or even Donnie Osmond.

Joni Mitchell undoubtedly ranks with - or above - Bob Dylan, Paul McCartney and Paul Simon as an important singer/songwriter.

And her on-stage charisma is fascinating. How can a person not love a girl who wears a feather boa, giggles and shakes her hips like a dancer but still can fit words like "paradoxically" into a pop tune.

During her three-hour performance, she dazzled the appreciative audience of 11,000 with "Help Me" and "Free Man In Paris" as well as such non-AM radio hits as "Played Real Good For Free."

Her "Big Yellow Taxi" with the line "they paved Paradise and put up a parking lot" held special interest for those who had passed out "Save South Hill" messages before the concert.

As local concerts go, the evening was a welcome change, a relaxing breath of fresh air. Missing was the irritating high decibel noise concert-goers have undergone in recent years.

Although backed by the fine jazz-rock group LA Express, she played most of her double set accompanied simply by her own marvelous acoustic guitar (with pickup).

She returned once for a two-song encore and then vanished amidst an energetic ovation.

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Added to Library on September 18, 2021. (456)

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