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Steve Fisher show (US, radio)
WKQX, Chicago (Q101 FM)
March 3, 1993


Tori Amos interview and live performance

During this radio appearance, Tori performed Crucify, Leather, Silent All These Years and Winter.

Steve Fisher: We are here in the [?] conference room. You guys ready, you psyched up?

Audience: Yeah! [applause]

Steve: Yeah. Alright. My name is Steve Fisher. Hi, Tori.

Tori: Hi, Steve.

Steve: How you doin'?

Tori: Doin' great.

Steve: She's got her snow boots on. You look like you're prepared for Chicago weather.

Tori: I wear these in the desert, too, though. I just love, I love the boots.

Steve: Where are you from originally?

Tori: Um, North Carolina.

Steve: North Carolina?

Tori: Yeah.

Steve: But you spend some time in England.

Tori: Two years, I live there now.

Steve: Yeah, in London, right?

Tori: Yeah, in London.

Steve: I was reading that in your song book. My wife turned me on to your CD about eight months ago. Yeah, she just thinks you're fantastic. So, sing a song for her, would you? Now. But uh, she really admires you and I think the thing that impresses me is just the fact that there aren't a lot of singers out there that write their own songs and play piano. How about it, huh? So uh, congratulations also, she won uh, Best New Female Artist in Rolling Stone magazine. How about it? [audience claps] Yeah. But you've been around for awhile. How long have you been playing the piano?

Tori: Twenty-seven years.

Steve: Wow. That's amazing. When did your career kinda take off? Kinda explain to us. Did you want to talk about Y Kant Tori Read?

Tori: Sure.

Steve: Ok. Cause if you're a big Tori Amos fan, you know about that CD. Compared to Little Earthquakes, it's a lot different.

Tori: I had a better body then.

Steve: [laughs]

Tori: My thighs were tight.

Steve: [laughs]

Tori: But you know, some things have to go, I guess. And um, that went, along with trying to be everybody else. I tried to be everybody else.

Steve: If you haven't listened to that CD, I guess, why don't you describe it for 'em. Cause it was a lot more... upbeat, maybe is the word.

Tori: Well, the band Y Kant Tori Read - I was in a band with Matt Sorum, who is now the drummer of Guns 'N Roses. And he was in that band. The record wasn't that band. The band had broken up because producers got involved and everybody wanted it to be a success. So what happens is, everything fell to pieces and nobody knew what it was. And I'm not blaming anybody because I made those decisions. And I just wasn't strong enough to say , "This is what I do, I'm a girl who plays the piano; and if you don't think that's tough, well then, that's ok." So I wasn't ready to do that yet.

Steve: Well I think the success of Little Earthquakes and getting this kind of award, even though you've been around quite a few years, but getting an award from Rolling Stone proves that uh, she's tough enough. What do you say? Most definitely.

Tori: Thanks.

Steve: Well listen, we're waiting for ya. I'll just quit chatting. I know my program director, Bill, is real happy to hear that. So I'll shut up now and you do your thing. Tori Amos. Q101, Chicago's new rock alternative.

[Tori plays Crucify]

Tori: You're not gonna say something. I thought you were gonna say something.

Steve: I thought you were gonna do four songs in a row.

Tori: Oh

Steve: [laughs] And you want a breather. This is pill time.

Tori: Yeah, I have to take a sip of water.

Steve: Ok.

Tori: So tell us about your wife.

Steve: [laughs] Well, she's hard at work right now. She's a big Tori Amos fan and uh what else can I say? Nah, she's a great gal. She's a musician, too. A singer. But unfortunately...

Tori: Well that's good for you.

Steve: Yeah.

Tori: Yeah.

Steve: Yeah, she uh. She's uh.

Tori: Good breath control.

Steve: She's got a lot of... [audience laughs] Yeah, well, you know... Uh... Tori, let's talk about you. I really like that subject a lot better.

Tori: Ok. Let's do another one.

Steve: Sure.

Tori: Ok.

Steve: Which one is this?

Tori: This is in honor of your wife.

Steve: Awesome.

[Tori plays Leather]

[audience applause]

[Tori plays a little melody...]

Tori: I do this for hours and hours and hours in my, you know, my flat. Because I really don't have too many friends, the piano is like, my friend. And I just sit there [starts playing a melody] and I go, "So what do you think we should do tonight?" "I don't know maybe we should have spaghetti." "But we had spaghetti three times this week." "Yeah, I know" And I do this forever. Anyway, that's how I wrote this next song, I was just talking to myself. And um, this came up.

[Tori plays Silent All These Years]

Steve: How about it? Boy, not only can she sing, but she can play the piano. And the one thing I noticed on The Tonight Show and for those who can't see her, obviously, that aren't in out studio audience - you squirm an awful lot. Where did that habit begin?

Tori: You go to church four days a week. You gotta squirm somewhere. [laughs]

Tori: I've always - you gotta move, you know. It's like, Steve Tyler moves when he sings.

Steve: Right.

Tori: Those guitar players, they're not standing still. What about Anthony and the Chili Peppers? He and his little chili's moving all over the place! You gotta move it, you know?

Steve: It all comes from the pelvis, right?

Tori: You know, it comes, it's complete. [A train goes by outside] I love this, isn't that great? We didn't pay for that or anything.

Steve: [laughs] To prove we're really in Chicago and there's really a train going by.

Tori: Yeah, but what part of the body does that represent? You know, that could be anything.

Steve: You're gettin' deep on me.

Tori: No, I'm not.

Steve: Tori, just play. You're gettin' deep on me, Tori. Just play for me.

Tori: Ok.

Steve: [laughs]

Tori: So um...

Steve: Now a lot of people. You know that she does this rendition of Teen Spirit? Smells Like Teen Spirit.

Tori: Yeah, but I'm not playing it, Steve.

Steve: Yeah, I know. I know. But just in case you haven't heard it, you gotta pick up the CD. You have much more than just Little Earthquakes and Y Kant Tori Read out there. You have a lot of EPs out there.

Tori: Ten.

Steve: Yeah. So go get 'em.

Tori: Ten, but most of them are in England. There are a couple here. The Crucify EP is here and the uh, Winter EP is here.

Steve: Right. So if they want to get a copy of Teen Spirit, they can get that?

Tori: Yeah, they can get those. On the Crucify EP. The reason I don't do it - there's a reason - is because I recorded it on this macho Bosendorfer. Bosendorfer, it's like this plane - do you hear that plane coming by, everybody? That's what a Bosendorfer is, it's like, ohhhhhhh, it's massive. These pianos are nine feet, people. Nine feet. And you just walk up to them - and I'm kinda small, and I just walk up to this nine foot piano - I say, "Hello, darling." [Tori and Steve both laugh] And so, you know, you sit behind one of these nine foot babies, and you just, you sit down and play and you feel like you are Metallica. You do. And they're massive. And that's what I recorded Teen Spirit on. And nothing against what I'm playing, but you know, it's a little digital piano, and Teen Spirit would sound like um, Minnie Mouse's version at this point.

Steve: The Chipmunks.

Tori: Yeah.

Steve: Yeah. Something like that. A little softer.

Tori: So that's kinda why.

Steve: Ok.

Tori: But I'm gonna do um, something that you all have been playing, which is one of my favs cause um, it's about my dad.

[Tori plays Winter]

[audience applause]

Steve: Incredible. Incredible.

Tori: Ok. So guess what's in the car waiting for me.

Steve: [laughs]

Tori: No, no, no - I'm serious.

Steve: I don't know. Pizza?

Tori: No.

Steve: Deep-dish pizza.

Tori: No. I eat thin crust, anyway. You know, the thighs, Steve.

Steve: Ok, that's right, my fault.

Tori: Ok. But I'm cheating on the thighs with what's in the car. The only place in the world that makes things this good is this place.

Steve: Hot dogs.

Tori: No. I don't know about those.

Steve: Ok.

Tori: Taffy apples. Everytime I know I'm coming to Chicago.

Steve: Really?

Tori: Taffy apples. They are the best in the world. That's all I can say. You make the best taffy apples in the world. They are so good, I dream of them.

Steve: Is this your sponsor?

Tori: No.

Steve: Ok. [laughs]

Tori: But I was in Korea, you know. And I was playing - and that was kinda fun, but they were serving raw um, um, octopus. But they called it another name and my brain's gone. Alba-, al-, what is it, you guys? Come on, somebody's... No. No. Oh but that's a good one. Pallpie [?]. No, but it's an octopus, raw octopus they were serving, and all I could think of was, "My god, if I could have a taffy apple in Chicago right now."

Steve: [laughs] That's a great story. Well listen...

Tori: It's an okay story. But the point is, I really have taffy apples in the car. So I'm living for them.

Steve: The world is your oyster.

Tori: Yeah.

Steve: Absolutely. Well listen, thanks for stopping by. How about it, another round of applause for Tori Amos.

Tori: Thanks.

Steve: Incredible. I guess my next question would be, when are you coming back to Chicago? Any plans?

Tori: I start the next record - recording - within the next three weeks.

Steve: Wow

Tori: So...

Steve: It'll be awhile.

Tori: Looking for uhh, like January '94 release. I've gotta write it and put it down. Took me three years to do this one, so... I'm trying to put a little bugger under my butt and speed it up.

Steve: [laughs] So it'll be a little while.

Tori: A little while, yeah.

Steve: Alright. Well listen, those that got to witness this I know are privileged. I certainly am, I know my wife is gonna be jealous as hell when I get home. So thanks for stopping by, Tori Amos here on Q101, Chicago's new rock alternative. Best of luck to you, have a great '93.

Tori: Thanks, guys.

[transcribed by jason/yessaid]

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