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Politiken (Denmark)
June 26, 1998

Loads of Meaning

By Flemming Christiansen

Tori Amos, who played at the Roskilde Festival last night, is prepared to talk about almost anything. Because she writes songs about the innermost affairs in life. But she doesn't give a clear explanation why she in a press release says that she has been "blowing God".

"That expression explains itself", she says.

And leaves the journalists in the resounding press hall at the Roskilde Festival more doubtful than before.

Unnoticed as a thin cat is Tori Amos slipped into the press conference shortly before the concert. But the red-haired American piano virtuoso and sensible composer and singer quickly draws everybody's attention towards her. Every word from her lips sounds like if they were loaded with loads of meaning.

It has been like that for years, but Tori Amos is now a little tired of having her lyric maimed. She prefers to move people emotionally, as she has earlier stated.

Tori Amos's relations to God became a little tense when she lost her unborned child - a subject that there are many references to on her new album From the Choirgirl Hotel.

"The molestation that happened to me, when I lost my child, came from higher force. God wasn't with me the day I lost my child. But if I meets this deity, we will have a Margarita together..."

According to Tori Amos, her previous album was a voyage across the river Styx, but now Tori Amos doesn't just want to be seen as a victim anymore, but as someone who deals with all the forces of life, bright as well as dark.

On the other hand, she will fight for other victim. And she got a helping hand for this fight from the leader of the festival Leif Skov, who presented Tori Amos with a cheque for $25,000. The charitable Roskilde Foundation has earmarked the money to the American anti-rape and anti-incest organization RAINN, which Tori Amos helped to start four years ago - she was raped in the first year of her career. RAINN now has 800 crisis centers all over the USA.

"It is never all right when adults sexual assaults children, not even when they use personally experienced assaults from their childhood as an excuse. Because they have never dealt with their own pain. If they don't do it, assault will continue for generations after generations. It is never all right when uncle John fools about with little Carrie-Sue. Children are not someone's possessions," Tori Amos very clearly stated.

Q: "When you invest so much of your own life in the music as you do, does it help or restrict the success?"

A: "I can't do anything else. Sometimes you can easily have McDonald's as sponsor when you perform. At other times you can't. I love McDonald's French fries but otherwise..."

Q: "Isn't it hard to hand out so much of yourself?"

A: "Maybe the audience is in a sort of ecstasy at the concert and is enjoying it and doesn't take it so seriously. But when you are playing, you play to obtain contact. Even though it is hard when someone in the audience is standing and urinating. But this is not just a job. It is a part of my soul."

[translated from Danish to English by Thomas Lauritsen]


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