Here's a song I fell in love with when I first heard it on Turbulent Indigo. I learned the chords from watching Joni's fingers on the PBS documentary on Troubadours of Folk Festival, where she first introduced the song. This is very classic Joni melody writing, on a par with Both Sides Now in its folk simplicity. The chords are not that exotic or jazzy, but there's a fluidity to the chord changes that really heightens the emotions of the lyrics - a Joni trademark!
As before, I have not included the right-hand fingering - it's best left to the individual player to flesh out. Select a tuning that best suits your voice (the fingering is the same for all three):
Tuning on Turbulent Indigo album: BF#BD#F#B (my guitar goes dead this low!)
Tuning on live performance: CGCEGC
Also can be played in DADF#AD
4/4
Borderline - Words & Music by Joni Mitchell
|---0---------------------|---0---------------------|--0---------------------|
|---0---------------------|---0---------------------|--0---------------------|
|---5---------------------|---1---------------------|--5---------------------|
|---5---------------------|---2---------------------|--5---------------------|
|---5---------------------|---2---------------------|--5---------------------|
|---5---------------------|---2---------------------|--5---------------------|

|---0----------------------|-5-----------5-----------|---5-----------5--------|
|---0----------------------|-5-----------5-----------|---5-----------5--------|
|---1----------------------|-5-----------6-----------|---5-----------6--------|
|---2----------------------|-5-----------5-----------|---5-----------5--------|
|---2----------------------|-5-----------7-----------|---5-----------7--------|
|---2----------------------|-5-----------5-----------|---5-----------5--------|
Every - body looks so ill at ease so distrustful so dis-
|--5----------------5-----|------0-----------------|--0-----------0---------|
|--5----------------5-----|------0-----------------|-12----------13---------|
|--5----------------6-----|------6-----------------|-12----------13---------|
|--5----------------5-----|------0-----------------|-12----------13---------|
|--5----------------7-----|------7-----------------|-12----------13---------|
|--5----------------5-----|------0-----------------|--0-----------0---------|
pleased. Running down this table, I see a borderline. Like a barbed-wire
|--0------------0---------|---0------------0--------|---0-------------------|
|-12-----------13---------|--12----------13--------|----0-------------------|
|-12-----------13---------|--12----------13--------|----8-------------------|
|-12-----------13---------|--12----------13--------|----9-------------------|
|-12-----------13---------|--12----------13--------|----9-------------------|
|--0------------0---------|---0------------0--------|----9-------------------|
fence strung tight, strung tense, prickling with pretence, a borderline.
(slur):
|--7--------------7-------|--7-----------7---7-----|--7------------7----------|
|--7--------------7-------|--7-----------7---7-----|--7------------7----------|
|--7--------------8-------|--7-----------8---7-----|--7------------8----------|
|--7--------------7-------|--7-----------7---7-----|--7------------7----------|
|--7--------------9-------|--7-----------9---7-----|--7------------9----------|
|--7--------------7-------|--7-----------7---7-----|--7------------7----------|
Why are you smirking at your friend? Is this to be the night

|--0----------------------|---5--------5-----------|--5---------5-----------|
|--0----------------------|---5--------5-----------|--5---------5-----------|
|--8----------------------|---5--------6-----------|--5---------6-----------|
|--9----------------------|---5--------5-----------|--5---------5-----------|
|--9----------------------|---5--------7-----------|--5---------7-----------|
|--9----------------------|---5--------5-----------|--5---------5-----------|
when all well-wishing ends? All credibility re - voked? Thin skin, thick
|---5---------5--------------|----0-----------0------| etc. for remaining verses
|---5---------5--------------|----0-----------0------|
|---5---------6--------------|----6-----------5------|
|---5---------5--------------|----0-----------5------|
|---5---------7--------------|----7-----------5------|
|---5---------5--------------|----0-----------5------|
jokes! Can we blame it on the smoke, this sudden border - line?




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