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Concert review: Joan Jett keeps love of rock 'n' roll alive at Sundance

Published: Tuesday, Jan. 26 2010 12:00 a.m. MST

Rocker Joan Jett performs before a sold-out audience at Harry O's in Park City during the Sundance Film Festival.

Michael Brandy, Deseret News

JOAN JETT & THE BLACKHEARTS, Harry O's, Park City, Jan. 23

PARK CITY — It's hard to believe that Joan Jett has been in the music business for more than 30 years. She still has the voice, the guitar chops and the attitude.

And she still looks like the impish punk that took the world by storm with her solo works during the '80s.

When she kicked off her set at Harry O's in Park City Saturday night with "Bad Reputation," it was the '80s once more.

Jett not only performed her hits, including Tommy James' "Crimson and Clover," but also included her remakes of Bruce Springsteen's "Light of Day" and Sly Stone's "Everyday People," the latter during her encore.

The band was full of sweat and energy as it cranked out the power-chord driven "I Hate Myself for Loving You" and more recent works "A.C.D.C." and a remake of the Replacements' "Androgynous," found on Jett's CD "Sinner."

Lead guitarist Dougie Needles zoned in on the notes as he and Jett would team for some powerful chugging chords and let it fly solo throughout the night.

Bassist Enzo Penizzotto kept the lower end of the arrangements thumping as Thommy Price's primal instincts took on his drums. Jett's longtime manager Kenny Laguna also added touches to the songs on the keyboards, tambourines and anything else that was needed.

Jett's energy blasted through the sold-out audience as everyone raised their fists to chant the singalong chorus and bridge of "Do You Wanna Touch (Oh Yeah)" and, of course, Jett's trademark "I Love Rock 'n' Roll."

"You gotta focus that power," Jett yelled from the stage to everyone's delight.

Jett was in Park City promoting the movie "The Runaways," which is based on Jett's one-time bandmate Cherie Currie's biography "Neon Angel: A Memoir of a Runaway."

Jett asked Currie to take a bow and also asked Kristen Stewart and Dakota Fanning, who portray Jett and Currie, respectively, in the film, to also take a bow.

Giving a nod to her former band, Jett also played "Cherry Bomb" and "You Drive Me Wild."

Jett still has what it takes to put on a rousing performances, and with her sideways glances and smiles at the audience and her band, it was clear she was totally in the zone.

e-mail: scott@desnews.com

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