Joni Mitchell – Shadows and Light (Live Concert In 1979)

Shadows and Light‘ is the title of a great Joni Mitchell double live album which was released in 1980. The live album is based on a 1979 concert with, most notably, bass virtuoso Jaco Pastorius (best known for his musical activity with the legendary American jazz fusion band Weather Report during the late 1970s and early 1980s), guitar virtuoso Pat Metheny, and saxophone virtuoso Michael Brecker.

Joni Mitchell live in September 1979 at the Santa Barbara Bowl in Santa Barbara, California, U.S. Image source: Youtube

The concert took place at the Santa Barbara Bowl (an amphitheater situated in Santa Barbara, California) in September 1979 as part of Joni Mitchell’s then tour for promoting her tenth studio album entitled ‘Mingus‘ (released in June 1979). As the title of the album pretty much says it all, it also represented a collaboration with jazz legend Charlie Mingus, boasting as such of a jazz fusion sound.

The concert from September 1979 at Santa Barbara Bowl is a mixture of both folk jazz and vocal jazz. Many years later, after being released on album format, the concert was also released on DVD format, more specifically in 2003.

In critical regards, the album was received with mixed views, AllMusic gave it 3 out of 5 stars and so did the Encyclopedia of Popular Music.

The recording personnel was as follows:

  • Joni Mitchell – electric guitar and vocals;
  • Pat Metheny – lead guitar;
  • Jaco Pastorius – electric bass;
  • Don Alias – drums and percussion;
  • Lyle Mays – electric piano (Rhodes), synthesizer (Oberheim FVS-1);
  • Michael Brecker – saxophones;
  • The Persuasions (A cappella American group which was discovered by Frank Zappa) – backing vocals on two songs;
  • Toller Cranston – skates.

The technical personnel was as follows:

  • Andy Johns – audio engineer;
  • Bernie Grundman – mastering engineer;
  • Glen Cristensen – art direction and photography;
  • Joel Bernstein – photography.

Therefore, that being said and without any further needless ado on my behalf, I wholeheartedly recommend integrally watching and listening to the following great Joni Mitchell concert! All the best, much health, take care, stay safe, many blessings, and great peace your way! God bless you and keep on listening to jazz fusion!

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