A few years ago, after a dalliance with a friend ended, she gave me a CD that included the song Coyote by Joni Mitchell. It’s a beautiful song – structured less like a lament and more like gratitude; acceptance of a relationship that has had its time.
But any other of the 100s of Joni Mitchell songs – barring the odd stray Big Yellow Taxi on someone else’s radio – have eluded me. I’m uncertain whether A Case of You: The Music of Joni Mitchell operates better for fans, or those unfamiliar with her music. In some ways, that’s the wrong question to ask, because either way, the show is really good.
Starting with an abbreviated version of the song, Woodstock under charming, dim golden light, the band – Deborah Brennan, Chris Neale, and Max Garcia-Underwood – take the next hour to meander through a selection of Joni Mitchell’s work.
Sonically, there was a nice balance struck between nostalgic and contemporary. There’s lovely stuff here. It’s clear the trio have worked to craft the music, however, care should be taken to not make the spoken pieces in-between the music sound over-rehearsed, to keep things fresh and engaging.
There are few things as intimate as when you find a music artist that resonates for you. A Case of You is a show that honours that intimacy for fans of Joni Mitchell.
A Case of You: The Music of Joni Mitchell
The Butterfly Club, 5 Carson Place, Melbourne
Performance: Friday 30 September 2016 – 5.30pm
Season: 27 September – 2 October 2016
Image: courtesy of A Case of You
Review: David Collins