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City Buzz (South Africa)
June 30, 2014


MOMENT IN TIME: Sinazo Kunene, Tori Amos and City Buzz senior journalist Graeme Shackleford.

Tori Amos returns to rock Jozi

by Graeme Shackleford, Senior Journalist

JOBURG -- Legendary musician performs sold-out concerts.

American singer-songwriter of legendary status, Tori Amos, performed two sold-out concerts at Montecasino's Teatro as part of her world tour.

The legendary performer's South African leg of the tour in support of her latest album, Unrepentant Geraldines, also included two dates in Cape Town.

Amos performed solo on a Bosendorfer concert grand piano and a keyboard, and stunned the audience by straddling the piano stool to play both instruments at the same time.

The two concerts saw Amos perform a total of 42 songs, of which only two were repeated in both shows, and the setlists included not only songs that skyrocketed her to fame in the early '90s, like Little Earthquakes, Cornflake Girl, and Crucify, but spanned her entire back catalogue, including B-sides and songs rarely played live.

Amos' new album, released in her 50th year, tackles themes of ageing, maturation as an artist, and the demonisation of women's sexuality by patriarchal systems.

Despite these serious themes, Amos' sense of humour shone through in her banter with the audience when she told a story about her early days as a musician, when she played cover songs for tips in a piano bar.

"A lot of things happen when you play [in a] piano bar," she said.

"You get a lot of beer spilled on you. You also get to learn a lot of songs. And then you turn 50, hit menopause, and forget them all..."

Amos has a well-deserved reputation for her appreciation of her fans, and her visit to Joburg was no exception -- two small groups of dedicated fans were able to meet their musical idol at two meet-and-greets held before the concerts.

Each person was able to spend a few minutes in conversation with the singer, have their photo taken, and have something signed by her.

Chantelle Hollenbach, who travelled from Windhoek, Namibia for the concerts, was left in ecstasy.

"To experience [Amos'] live performances is akin to a spiritual encounter," she said.

Amos' South African concerts were opened by Maboneng Precinct-based musician Michael Lowman.

Amos was brought to South Africa by Charl van Heyninging Enterprises, and performed at the Teatro on 26 and 27 June.

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