Squeeze prove the staying power of Joni Mitchell’s ‘Coyote’

Squeeze prove the staying power of Joni Mitchell’s ‘Coyote’

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5 Songs We Can’t Stop Listening To is a collection of our newest favorite songs. Every week we ask an artist that we love to tell us about the music they love.

Listen to the whole segment below.

Chris Difford on Joni Mitchell

Chris Difford picks “Coyote” by Joni Mitchell

My guest today is Chris Difford of Squeeze. Squeeze is a classic rock outfit. They were formed in England in the 1970s and have had huge hits like “Up the Junction,” “Cool for Cats” and “Tempted.” They are coming to Milwaukee this Sunday, Sept. 1, at the Pabst Theater

Justin Barney: Chris, what is the last song that you couldn’t stop listening to?

Chris Difford: That’s a really great question. The track that I’ve been listening to a lot recently is Joni Mitchell’s “Coyote.” It’s a song that I find lyrically so fascinating and musically so inspired. I’ve heard a few versions of it, but she does an acoustic version in the dressing room, which you can find on YouTube, and I think Bob Dylan is in the room when she’s singing. I think she’s singing it to Bob Dylan. It’s just incredible, you can feel the electricity in the room.

Justin Barney: That’s amazing. You know, I played Joni Mitchell on the radio yesterday and one of my friends told me, “Joni Mitchell is boring.” And I was like, “I don’t know if you get it.” What do you like about Joni Mitchell?

Chris Difford: The fact that the meter of her songs is so different from anybody else’s meter, and the fact that she writes, well, used to write, about her life from a very emotional point of view, but one that would engage the listener and make them feel part of her life. As a songwriter, that’s kind of the challenge anyway, but she does a great job with it. I think that particular song is beautifully written and I’ve played it a lot in the past couple of weeks, to be honest.

Justin Barney: Do you know what it’s about?

Chris Difford: I think the lyrics speak for itself. It’s about prostitution, I think, about a guy trying to manhandle a woman, and having no respect for the woman. It’s an old fashioned story, and one that will go on for years to come, but it’s beautifully written.

Justin Barney: That is excellent. Especially because it’s relevant today.

Chris Difford: It’s relevant today. It’s beautifully written and relevant today. Incredible.

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