When Carole King and James Taylor look across the stage at each other and sing “You’ve Got a Friend,” it’s more than just a song. It’s the truth.
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You know that during their concerts when Taylor belts out “You Make Me Feel Like a Natural Woman” with King.
“I’m getting in touch with it,” he told TODAY’s Matt Lauer Friday between songs during their Toyota Concert Series performance in Rockefeller Plaza.
“Insecure,” quipped King with a thunderclap of a laugh.
It’s 40 years since the two iconic singer-songwriters first performed together at the Troubadour in Los Angeles, but to King and Taylor, being back together on their 60-day Troubadour Reunion Tour and enthralling packed arenas with their timeless music makes it seem like yesterday.
“It’s like there was no time in between,” King told
King and Taylor were fresh off two sold-out and critically acclaimed performances in Madison Square Garden and on their way to a Saturday performance in Boston and from there on the Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., Newark, and points north, south, east and west. But they showed no signs of fatigue from a schedule that has seen them play 23 concerts in 20 cities in 41 days.
It’s been too much fun to be exhausting. Backing them up on stage are three members of their original band: Russ Kunkel on drums, Leland Sklar on bass and Danny “Kootch” Kortchmar on guitar.
“For me, to look across the stage and see Carole there and to see Kootch or Russ Kunkel on drums, rugged old Lee back there on the bass – it’s just like your life is right there in front of you,” Taylor said, his guitar slung across his back, waiting for the next tune.
Lauer asked what it’s like after all this time – Taylor is 62; King 68 – to still pack the nation’s biggest arenas.
“It’s a great sort of validation,” Taylor said.
Lauer also remarked that when one or the other of them sings a solo, the other one stays on stage and joins the accompaniment, Taylor on guitar, King on piano.
“I think it says a lot about the depth of your relationship,” Lauer said.
“It’s that and also the fact that musically, we both are songwriters and singers. We’re cats, we’re players, we love playing behind each other.
© 2013 MSNBC Interactive