Tori Amos: Boys for Pele
at a glance... 

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
First recordings: 1980 

Tori Amos -- vocals, Bösendorfer piano, Harpsichord, Harmonium and Clavichord 
George Porter Jr.-- Bass
Manu Katche -- Drums
Alan Friedman -- Drum programming ("Caught a Lite Sneeze")
Mino Cinelu -- Percussion
Steve Canton -- Mandolins and all manner of guitars

Bands In The Family:
Y Kant Tori Read 

Born Myra Ellen Amos in Newton, North Carolina, the girl who would be Tori was given her name by her friend Neil, who later informed her that a Tori is a type of tree. Growing up in a strict Christian household, she found release by playing on the piano at her Cherokee grandparents' house. Her grandparents would sing to her daily and teach her the legends surrounding nature and dreams - themes that reappeared in many of her songs. She released her first single with help from her brother Mike Amos at the age of 17. It was called "Baltimore" and was written for her school's football team. At the age of 21, Amos moved to LA where she formed Y Tori Kant Read with Brad Cobb, Matt Sorum and Steve Canton. The band was noticed by a producer from Atlantic Records, who signed them shortly thereafter; Y Kant Tori Read only released a few singles before breaking up in 1989. She continued to play in bars and nightclubs before eventually releasing her first solo album Little Earthquakes in 1992, spawning the hit single "Silent All These Years". Under The Pink followed in 1994, and Boys For Pele saw something of a commercial breakthrough in 1996 (as well as Tori's surprising crossover into the clubs via Armand Van Helden's remix of "Professional Widow"). By the time Songs From The Choirgirl Hotel reached its anxious audience in 1998, Tori had built one of the most fanatical followings in pop music. Her fifth album To Venus and Back will feature live versions of Choirgirl songs in addition to 12 new originals. 

Shock Me Sane
Great title, neat design, lotsa streaming stuff...not the most frequently updated site, but definitely one of the best on the Web. 

Tori Amos 
Boys For Pele 
Atlantic, Released 1996 
Tori Amos sits us in a circle around her, spinning tales of sweetness and bitterness, longing and loathing, and the world where she goes to visit unicorns once in a while. Tori is a believer, a strange breed but also a rare gem. She's a storyteller. 

Considered by some to be her breakthrough album, Boys For Pele re-introduced Tori to the mainstream with its singles "Blood Roses," "Caught a Lite Sneeze" and the angelic "Hey Jupiter". The sound here is captivating - her hypnotizing Bösendorfer piano adding to the child-like wonder of her songs. It's all quintessential Tori and a delicious follow-up to 1994's Under The Pink

"Horses" is the perfect example of Tori's strange magic - you half-expect her to sprout faerie wings and summon you to an enchanted forest. This is rare imagery in modern pop music - and her willingness to delve into the otherworldly is truly refreshing. Each song here seems possessed by a different spirit -- from the sweet juvenile delinquent in "Mr. Zebra" to the spirit yearning to dance in "Talula." Her lyrics are esoteric, yet incredibly personal in a way that makes you feel fortunate that she's sharing them. Boys For Pele is a gift from a believer, one who doesn't want us to lose sight of the magic all around us. 

If you like Tori Amos, check out:
Indigo Girls, 1200 Curfews
Jeff Buckley, Grace
Annie Lennox, DIVA

Ink Blot Home
about | archives | contact | links

Copyright © 1998, 1999 Big Shot Entertainment, Inc. All rights reserved. 

articles, reviews, & chat transcripts