Saturday, May 28, 2011

On my turntable: Joni Mitchell - Chalk Mark in a Rain Storm

We're facing possible severe weather again in Minneapolis at the moment.  WTH? 

There's not a whole lot that I've got to say about Chalk Mark in a Rain Storm (1988). I remember when the album came out (I was working in a record store at the time), and learning that Wendy & Lisa sing on at least one track. Other big names in the credits include Ben Orr (The Cars), Peter Gabriel, and Don Henley. By the time of Chalk Mark Mitchell's voice had become considerably hoarsened from heavy smoking. If it weren't for her unique phrasing and style it would be easy to imagine that this deeper-voiced Mitchell was a completely different singer.

I had an attitude about Joni Mitchell for many years that prevented me from enjoying her work. After giving Blue an honest chance, followed by the amazing Hissing of Summer Lawns, I became far more interested in her prolific body of work. As of this writing I'm indifferent about Chalk Mark in a Rain Storm. It's pleasant enough, but it doesn't grab me like her early work does. Still, it is good enough to warrant future listens, so who knows how I'll feel about it in the future.

OK back to watching the weather news...

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