songs | interviews | photos | tours | boots | press releases | timeline | stories

WHFS, Baltimore (US, radio)
December 12, 1995

Tori Amos telephone interview

Male DJ: 8:12 at HFS and we are linked with Tori Amos

Female DJ: We're doing a mind-meld right now.

Male DJ: That sounds dirty. I sense the presence of a friend.

Tori: Hello, guys.

Male DJ: Morning, Tori.

Tori: How are you?

Male DJ: Good, how are you?

Tori: I'm pretty good.

Male DJ: Pretty good?

Tori: Yes,

Female DJ: Where are you right now?

Tori: I'm in New York City. I just flew in from London pretty late last night.

Female DJ: So you're pretty jet-lagged?

Tori: Yeah, but I've got all these bagels coming, I'm very excited. I got blueberry, I've got poppy seed, I've got onion bagel, I just, and all this cream cheese, and butter.

Male DJ: What, no salmon?

Tori: No salmon, honey, I want it hot and sweet. I mean, I'm not interested in this dieting scene. It's, forget it. Chicks, the more to love. That's all. I'm having butter.

Female DJ: More to love, I agree.

Male DJ: Butter's the kiss of death.

Tori: Mmm.

Male DJ: That'll clog your heart up.

Tori: Mmm. But I'm goin' smilin', baby. I'm goin' smilin'.

Male DJ: So, Tori.

Tori: Yes.

Male DJ: Boys for Pele.

Tori: Yes.

Male DJ: Not a soccer player reference.

Tori: Um, if you'd like it to be. I'm sure there are those who would like it to be, which is just fine.

Male DJ: The Brazilian market.

Tori: Mmm.

Male DJ: Well what is the meaning, then? Or do you have one?

Tori: Pele is the volcano goddess and she's been around a little longer than he has, I think. Yeah.

Male DJ: You're becoming English on us.

Tori: Nooo.

Male DJ: Yes, you are.

Tori: Nooo.

Male DJ: You can't tell from your perspective because you are you.

Tori: [laughs]

Male DJ: You're seeing the world through you-colored glasses. However, there's a distinct British influence on your voice, there. Well, you have spent quite awhile in the Isles.

Tori: Yes, I've spent a bit of time. You know, I've been, I've been flirting with a few Brits, it kinda rub off on you, you know. But the thing is, um, let's talk about -- can I say hi to my friends?

Male DJ: Yeah, you can do whatever you want.

Tori: I want to say hi to Connie 'cause I haven't talked to her in six months. Hi, Connie, I'm sorry I didn't call. And I want to say hi to mym nieces and nephews 'cause they've been sick all week. Really, really sick.

Male DJ: Sorry to hear that.

Tori: Yeah.

Female DJ: So last time we talked, you said that this new cd is a little bit darker. That um, you know, darker than the last one. Is it?

Tori: Um... this whole record is really about how I stole fire from the men in my life. Took me awhile to be able to admit that, but um, it's about stealing passion, not being able to find your own. And each song became a fragment, another piece for me to find that.

Female DJ: Was it hard to write?

Tori: Um, well I got my vampire's license as I wrote this. Just because I think um, when you start seeing, you know, the hooks that you throw in to the people that you say you love. And it got pretty volatile at certain points. And I think the whole reference to Pele is the boys, the men that brought me to my fire, what they gave me -- or what they didn't give me in many cases, in truth -- um, forced me to have to find my own. And that's what it's about.

Female DJ: So when you're, and a lot of people do this, too, when they write, writing is almost like therapy, where you're reaching down in there and you're expressing it. Um, which originally starts out as some form of healing yourself, but then when you have to go recreate that on stage and giev night after night, you know, does it ever turn on you and become something that is destructive?

Tori: Um, we'll see. I don't know what this tour's gonna be like as far as how it's gonna affect me, just because this record is so personal. It's about intimate experiences. And um, I don't know if I'll be reliving them as I play it, or not. I don't really know that. But I do know that, for me, this record is partly my Shadow. It's the descent, the descent of Woman, trying to remember those fragments, those sides to us. You know, Mary Magdalene was not one of our, um, blueprints that we could follow. And I really went back to that bloodline, to the idea that she was the sacred bride of Jesus. I went back to the idea that this woman, we're not talking about virgins here, we're talking about becoming a Woman, honoring Woman -- the passion, the compassion and the power, and the wisdom of that.

Male DJ: Now Tori, how does Edison feel about that?

Tori: Well, we'll see, won't we?

Male DJ: Your dad. Are there any tracks that are so personal that you'd like us not to play them?

Tori: I wouldn't have put them on the record if I didn't want to share them.

Male DJ: There are a lot of tracks, here. Fourteen songs.

Tori: Fourteen songs with four intros and outros. So...

Female DJ: After reading the lyrics, I really liked Horses. I thought, that is a great song. Did you ride, growing up?

Tori: Did I what?

Female DJ: Did you ride?

Tori: I got thrown. [laughs]

Male DJ: Metaphorically or actually?

Tori: Well, you know, this record is pretty much a metaphor, so... It's um, written in novel form. From beginning to end it's a story. It's a story of this descent of Woman.

Male DJ: Now, Tori, you talk about gaining passion from others, which I think to a certain extent exerybody does. Um, in the first single, Caught a Lite Sneeze, there is a pretty obvious Trent [Reznor] reference.

Tori: Well, a lot of people show up on this record. They come in, the come out. And we wave hello and we wave goodbye.

Female DJ: Ok.

Male DJ: Alright.

Female DJ: You know, here's a question that I wanted to ask you last time we spoke and I didn't get to it. When I saw you, and you had playing in Washington and your father was in the audience, and you started talking about your childhood, and I found I was squirming. I'm going, "Oh no, Dad's in the audience, you can't say that." How does he react when you get like, extra personal, when you're talking about, you know, the Robert Plant stuff, if you know what I mean, and I think you do.

Tori: That doesn't affect him, in truth. I think the things that um, we have little chats about um, is I have a real different view on how Christian mythology has affected and controlled the way of thinking of humanity. And so, when I talk about Father Lucifer on the record, when I go after those ones, Muhammad My Friend... um, when I go after Professional Widow and talk about the control of the patriarchy, that's when he and I kind of agree to disagree. But we honor that.

Female DJ: That's good.

Male DJ: Does he get out to a lot of these shows or is it just every once in awhile?

Tori: Oh, you know he comes out.

Male DJ: Oh, I've seen him everywhere from, you know, here in town to up in New York I saw him at one of your shows.

Tori: Well, he has to be there, he's my publisher.

Male DJ: You still have a lot of irons in the fire, still a founding member of RAINN. Well, you always will be that.

Tori: Yeah.

Male DJ: The Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network. That number is 1-800-656-HOPE, if you wanna get that down.

Tori: Yes. 656-HOPE.

Male DJ: Well, Tori.

Tori: Yes, guys.

Male DJ: When can we look forward to seeing you in the area here again?

Tori: Um... I think I'm gonna be coming through, touring April and May.

Male DJ: You know, that's gonna rekindle the fixation that all the males at the station have on you. They've got posters all over their offices, which is normal, you know, for a radio station, but there are a lot of pictures of you around here.

Tori: Yeah well, where were they when I was thirteen? That's what I wanna know.

Female DJ: Yeah, really. Now these guys have the Tori shrine where they make offerings.

Tori: Well just, you know, with some of the pictures on the new record when it's coming out, 'cause again, it's like a novel, the music as well as the booklet. Um, Little Earthquakes was more diary form, Pink was more like an impressionist painting and this is like a story. And so some of the pictures... just have a sense of humor, ok?

Male DJ: Ok.

Female DJ: Uh-oh.

Male DJ: And the new album, Boys for Pele, will be in stores January 23rd, is that right?

Tori: Yes, that's what I'm being told.

Male DJ: Alright, right on. Tori Amos. I think we should hear new music.

Female DJ: How about Caught a Lite Sneeze? You want to introduce it, Tori?

Tori: Um, gesundheit. [laughs]

Male DJ: Any insight on this?

Tori: I'm keeping... mum's the word, babe.

Male DJ: Leave it open to interpretation?

Tori: Absolutely.

Male DJ: Ok. That's what we love about you. You spelled Lite wrong, there must be some insight to that.

Tori: Honey, it means... no fat, no butter. Lite.

Male DJ: Hey, but you're about to have some butter right now.

Tori: Yes.

Male DJ: Maybe you ought to try apple butter.

Tori: [laughs]

Female DJ: Thank you, doctor.

Male DJ: Entirely up to you.

Tori: Just to get the health side in, eh?

Male DJ: Yeah. Well, Tori, thanks very much for joining us this morning and we look forward to seeing you when you're in out neighborhood.

Tori: Ok, guys, thanks.

Male DJ: Yes, come to our brand new studio.

Tori: Ok.

Female DJ: Alright, bye.

Tori: Bye-bye.

Male DJ: Bye-bye.

[transcribed by jason/yessaid]

t o r i p h o r i a
tori amos digital archive