Both Sides Now

by Steve Hochman
Los Angeles Times
June 7, 1998

Joni Mitchell stuck largely to one sound and style during her recent tour with Bob Dylan and Van Morrison. That same jazzy approach dominated TV tapings of two concerts on a cozy Warner Bros. soundstage last weekend. But for the encores each night she put down her guitar and literally kicked off her shoes to show another side.

Most rousing for the audience of fans, industry folks and friends (including Graham Nash and Patricia Arquette the first night) came as Mitchell and her band did Billie Holiday's saucy "Comes Love." Actor-dancer Valentino hopped on stage and took the singer by the hand and the two cut a rug in a stylized jitterbug. Valentino then joined two other Mitchell pals in the audience with wireless microphones to provide doo-wop backup on Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers' "Why Do Fools Fall in Love?," which Mitchell followed with a particularly funky version of Marvin Gaye's "Trouble Man."

The public will have a chance to see all this when the show airs, probably in September through a television outlet still to be determined, in conjunction with the release of Mitchell's upcoming album, "Taming the Tiger."

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