Clarkson turned in a faithful, albeit slightly truncated, performance of the song, accenting the primary piano arrangement with a bit of acoustic guitar as well (she was joined on stage by her musical director Jason Halbert and guitarist Jaco Caraco). “I wish I had a river/I could skate away on,” Clarkson effortlessly crooned, “I’m so hard to handle/I’m selfish and I’m sad/I’ve gone and lost the best baby/That I ever had.”
“River” is the second Mitchell cover Clarkson has performed on her daytime talk show this year. Back in January, she delivered a similarly stripped-back rendition of Mitchell’s “Both Sides Now,” off her 1969 album, Clouds.
— The Kelly Clarkson Show (@KellyClarksonTV) January 6, 2022
Along with helming The Kelly Clarkson Show, Clarkson was recently busy co-hosting American Song Contest, a Eurovision-style music competition featuring entrants from all 50 states, plus Washington D.C. and five U.S. territories. The first season wrapped earlier this month with Oklahoma’s representative, AleXa winning with “Wonderland.”