This is the reason I started listening to jazz. I was about 14 years old when I first heard this record, listening to bands like Parliament/Funkadelic
and The Red Hot Chili Peppers. But when I heard this live recording it changed my life.
This is one of Joni Mitchell's best recordings.
This album also contains some of the best work I believe Jaco Pastorius has done. Here he plays exactly what's needed
for this kind of pop/jazz-ballad music. Beautiful fills/solos throughout the record, and at times extremely complicated but suitable bass lines.
Pat Metheny also plays on this record. There's a separate track where he plays a nice solo accompanied by Lyle Mays on keyboards (who now plays
in the Pat Metheny Group). On the Charles Mingus classic "Goodbye Pork Pie Hat", Michael Brecker solos fast, but it suites the ballad very nicely.
Joni sings, not only the melody originally written for the song, but also the melody from the original saxophone solo recorded on Mingus Ah Um in 1959.
The other Mingus composition, "The Dry Cleaner From Des Moines", which really lifts the album at the right point, ends with an amazing 3-minute
jazz-jam where Michael Brecker really "let's it all out", and Jaco grooves like never before.
I gave this album 5 stars, but I must point out that this album is also available as a double-cd. On this one they have left out "Free man in Paris", "Black Crow" and "Don's Solo" (percussion solo by Don Alias). If you're about to buy this record, I recommend the full version, which probably costs a little more money, but it's worth it!