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Tori Amos, "Think for Yourself"

from Visions (Germany) - September 1992

When I was thirteen, I believed in fairies and other spiritual things, was sunk in my own world of imagination, believed in the unseen world, what I still do today. But over the time I started to feel like a nitwit. I mean, when you smoke dope, it might be normal, but like this? You sit in your English lesson and you are talking to a fairy. The people did not want to understand that, and when you are 13, you don't want to be faced with a pitiful smile all the time. So I began to destroy the part in me that is actually creative. Instead, I became very cynical, disguised myself to become popular, to be loved by everyone. But actually that was nothing else than a game of hide-and-seek.

You can be a big mouth without having anything to say. At that time, I definitely only had the wish to be an in-chick. Today I know that you should have your own thoughts and that you have to stick to your point of view. Today I accept that not all people like me, that's alright.

Just before I listened again to some of the songs I wrote at that time, and it was very interesting. There were some really good ideas in the songs, not in the lyrics - after all, at age 15 I had rather different ideas. You are thinking in a different way when you made the experience, but the music was good. Well, with 19 I certainly had experienced so many rejections with respect to my music that I began to doubt my music. I thought, perhaps the people are right, look for a band for yourself, play dance music, at the moment we are interested in heavy metal and so on. In the beginning I tried to discover new things, and perhaps to learn something, but then I let myself be infected with the virus of the everlasting questions. "What do you think of that?"

When you always had success as a small child, you wonder why today no one is clapping any longer. You become so addicted to the noise of applause that you lose your self-confidence and wonder what you have done wrong. And then you begin to convince yourself that what the people tell you is right. Certainly it was an incredible positive experience when I sat down again at the piano and was myself. I do not need to sell myself, in a certain way the first LP was something like the rape of my soul, the music lays more closely to my heart than anything else.

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