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Talent in Action Print-ready version

by Rudy Garcia
Billboard
March 6, 1976
Original article: PDF

JONI MITCHELL
L.A. EXPRESS
Nassau County Coliseum, N.Y.

Mitchell is a fine composer. She is a fine musician. She is a dynamite singer. She is a dynamite performer. She should not play the Nassau County Coliseum.

As a matter of fact, no artist who depends on lyrics, musicianship and a controlled voice should play this barn-like venue.

Despite the difficulties she faced singing in a stadium designed for basketball, hockey and horse shows, Mitchell proved an exceptionally competent performer, dedicated to her music and quite willing to experiment with new songs in order to give something extra to her audience.

One of the new songs "Coyote" was quite interesting and the second, "Don Juan's Reckless Daughter" was truly exciting in its musical intricacies. Unfortunately, the acoustics made it a bit difficult to fully understand the lyrics.

She was much more appreciated when doing familiar melodies from her recordings such as "In France They Kiss On Main Street" which is currently getting lots of local airplay.

Of course, when she did "Big Yellow Taxi" she virtually caused the building to shake as the soldout audience clapped and sang along. Here there was no problem with the lyrics since just about everyone knew them by heart.

L.A. Express, the Caribou Records group which opened the show and backed Mitchell, proved to be quite good in a jazz vein and it should do exceptionally well in the future.

The show Feb. 20, despite the difficulties with the venue, was gratifying for its musical content and Mitchell's dynamic performance.

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