Friday, April 15, 2005

Book: "Fearless Women, Mid-Life Portraits"

Aged pop princess Joni Mitchell says Vineyard troubadour James Taylor was the best lover she ever had. So good, in fact, that Joni's now celibate!

``She had quite a succession of men back in the day,'' said former Channel 4 producer Nancy Alspaugh, who includes Joni in her new book, ``Fearless Women, Mid-Life Portraits.''

``In the '70s, she was with Graham Nash, David Crosby and James Taylor but she said James Taylor was the best. Just the best.''

Well! Hats off to Kim Smedvig, the Boston Symphony Orchestra spokesgal who married Sweet Baby James a few years back.

Mitchell, now 62, chain smokes and doesn't sing anymore, Alspaugh reports. The ``Big Yellow Taxi'' gal paints full-time and has also given up on sex.

``She's an amazing woman,'' Alspaugh said. ``She's still beautiful. But she wrote `Both Sides Now' when she was in her 20s. She looked at love from both sides even back then and says she's done with that. She said she loves this age because of the sense of freedom. She said `The only person I have to answer to is me.' ''

Mitchell is one of 49 women profiled in Alspaugh's book, which she co-wrote with Marilyn Kentz, whom you may remember from her talk show, which Alspaugh produced. Or``The Mommies,'' the short-lived NBC sitcom she did with her real-life neighbor, Caryl Kristensen.

Alspaugh, who produced ``Evening Magazine'' for WBZ and was formerly married to ``Today'' show stud Matt Lauer, was in town yesterday to promote the new tome.

``I love Boston and I love seeing everyone,'' she said.

Last night, she was reunited with her old ``Evening'' co-hosts Barry Nolan and Sara Edwards when she did their new show on CN8. ``It was like old home week,'' she joked.
Some of the other women in her book include actresses Stefanie Powers, who would not reveal her age, and Cybill Shepherd, who traveled with a posse that included a guy whose job it was to change the music on a boom box whenever Cybill pointed at him.

``She was the most divaesque,'' Nancy laughed.

Alspaugh's doing the ``Today'' show with her ex-hubby on April 25 (although Katie Couric will likely do the interview honors) and hopes to return to Boston soon with a stage show she and Marilyn devised called ``Boomer Babes.''

File under: Fearless Factor.

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