Tori on Later with Jools Holland
May 22, 1998

I have a full report on Tori's appearance on the TV show "Later with Jools Holland" in the U.K. on May 22, 1998. You can read about the show and what Tori said on it and see several photos below sent to me by Mike Gray. I must give thanks to Mandi Cook, John Hingley, Mark Siddons-Smith, PurklePookie, Skecksi, Wybe Magermans, cooking records and Geert-Jan van den Hoek.

There is also a truly wonderful RealAudio interview at the Jools Holland web site. I don't think this interview had anything to do with the show itself. It last 5 minutes and Tori talks almost exclusively about the Internet. Tori talks very favorably about the net, which shows that she does understand the good side to the net as well as the bad. She even expresses the opinion that the net will one day make music critics obsolete! At one point Tori says in the interview, "One of the guys who runs one of the big sites has been really respectful, and if he's heard something he'll double check it before he just goes and puts something out." I can't help but wonder what web site she might be referring to. It would be cool if she were talking about the Dent. but I have no way of knowing that. IF YOU DO ANYTHING TODAY, LISTEN TO THIS GREAT INTERVIEW! Thank you Matt for finding this.

Here is a report on the Jools Hollands show from Mandi Cook:

Tori (dressed all in black - long sleeves and leather shirt over black flared trousers) played 3 songs on this show (pretty good going as the guests are usually restricted to 2) which were Spark, Black-Dove (January) and the most awesome version ever of Cruel when Tori just seemed to be of another world! Honestly, this may be the way she's playing it live and, since I don't get my fix until the Wolverhampton show on Monday (25th), maybe I'm the only person in the world who hasn't seen Cruel played this way, but MY GOD it was worth the wait and I PRAY she plays it at Wolverhampton! My legs may not be able to hold me up! Eat your heart out Nine Inch Nails - what has she been feeding Caton???!

Jools also interviewed her briefly, although he seemed to rush her (who doesn't?) and showed her a clip of Led Zepp playing Whole Lotta Love. Jools was a bit disappointing since Tori has been on this show numerous times before and he asked her more or less the same questions as before. Here's a transcript, anyway:

Jules: I'll steal a kiss if I may...

(Tori lets him kiss her on cheek)

Q: You got a very good new LP out called 'Choirgirl Hotel'. Where does the name 'Choirgirl Hotel' come from?

A: Ummm... I just saw the songs this time really independent of each other, so I saw them in a singing group...

Q: So the songs are the members of the choir?

A: Yeah. They hang out together.

Q: Now, when you were small of course you learned classical piano, but who were some of the groups you enjoyed listened to?

A: Well, always Led Zeppelin...

Q: I'm very glad you said that because, as coincidence would have it, we have some footage of early Led Zeppelin...

(Cut to footage of Whole Lotta Love - Tori whispers to something Jools and points to the screen as it fades out)

Q: What was it that you loved about them?

A: Well, I always wanted to be a guitar player, as a piano player. Uhm... you know, I would sit at this thing (pats piano) and try and find ways to like, make it... do what...

Q: Disort?

A: Yeah, do all that stuff.

Q: Go wild...

A: I've done everything I can to it but at a certain point, you know, you just have to accept that this ain't gonna do what Jimmy Page does so... I started stealing from him.

Q: Did you ever see them play live?

A: No, I never saw them play live, but he did ask me to marry him a few years ago and it was fantastic that I could say "NO"

Q: Which one?

A: Robert Plant... it was like, great, because when I was eight I...

Q: He asked you to marry him when you were eight?!

A: No, no, no, no... no, but when I was eight, I wanted to marry him. But what's so great is you grow up and you go "Wow, he's fantastic" but you're sitting there going "Well, no, I don't think I can really do that because it doesn't really fit into my plans."

Q: "We haven't been formally introduced or anything like that." Had you been introduced?

A: No, I did a duet with him.

Q: What, and after doing the duet, he just proposed like that?

A: He... yeah, but I think he proposes 20 times a day. It's not a big deal.

Q: Well, what's the next song you're going to be doing for us in a moment's time, so to speak?

A: It's called Black-Dove.

Well, we'll look forward to hearing that in a few moments time, but in the mean time thank you very much for coming on... Tori Amos (Applause)

Black-Dove followed shortly, when Tori proceeded to play both the keyboard and the Bosey simultaneously, one in front and one behind her. She also embarrassingly dribbled down her chin and into her lap during a close-up shot but, hey, I'll let her off for her two-instruments-at-once trick!

Incidentally, Tori was on good form and looked very beautiful but she seemed tired somehow. I sure hope she's pacing herself because this programme was filmed the day before the tour started, I think. The set was all black (as the Jools Holland set always is) but she had two back drops, which were meant to be the full length shots from the CD booklet which fold out, except they had been assembled incorrectly - wrong head with wrong body - and I'm not sure whether that was intentional or not!

Here is more from John Hingley:

she played spark, black dove and cruel, in that order, but there were other bands playing in between... she played the programme out with cruel...

there was a quick interview.. jools asked her what music she liked when she was younger, she said led zeppelin.. and that one of led zeppelin proposed to her... and that she always want to be a guitar player, and how she tries to pay piano like guitar, but there's only so far she can go.. "i guess you go too far when pianos try to be guitars"?

whenever i see her singing 'live', it always amazes me how much she can change and adapt and improvise, as far as changing the melody completely, and it still sounds perfect. she suddenly started flying up the octaves in cruel, and just totally broke free. whilst in spark she kept away from the high notes, and just changed the tune completely in some parts to achieve this... i've not seen her in person yet.. so i'm really looking forward to the wolverhampton concert on monday.

Additional comments from Wybe Magermans:

i send you my review on the show from Tori at the "Later with Jools Holland".

Cuz i haven't seen any live stuff from Tori (only her perfomance on Top of The Tops, but there was only her own voice live. The band was from tape) i was really looking forward to the Jools Holland show. As i watch this show allmost every week, i know that most artiste really make something from there performance there. Beside Tori there were also four other bands/singers there. Only Tori song three songs. She was second in the row. First she song of course Spark. A well performed but no specataculair version of a terrific song. But nothing really special. After a song form another band a very little interview with Tori was taken by Jools Holland. He asked where the title from her latest album was from. The answer we all know was givin by Tori. And then he asked what Tori really inspired when she was young. Of course she said (as allways) Led Zeppelin. Then they saw a little footage from a video of "A whole lotta love". Then Tori told the already many times told story about the purposal of Jimmy Page.

Okay so the interview was nothing spectacular. But than after a short break ( a break from another band playing a song, thank God that the BBC doesn't have any commercial breaks)Tori played Black Dove.

Really good, it made my skin crawl. What a version!!! Now i'm really looking forward to her liveshow i will see on the 10th of June in The Haque, Holland. And i must give the band lots of credit. I did't think they could keep up with the improvisation of Tori. But they did!!!!

Tori also was the last artist on the show. She performed Cruel. It was a bit unusual for me. Justin (the bassplayer) really was freaking out. ehmmm, yep it was good. Refreshing to see Tori with this great band.

When i got used to it, it went on to be a great version. She also did a very long high-vocal improvisation. Like we are used from her. But i haven't seen her do that kind of singing on tv-show's. You could see that Tori really was giving very much, and was enyoning being there.

A GREAT show and Tori was the star.

More commentary from cooking records:

Introduced as goddess from maryland (or words to that effect) the not so charmingly jeans-clad JHolland bid Tori a great Brit. welcome, after which she embarked on a gritty version of spark, the most powerful I've heard Tori in a long time. Surprisingly, apart from some customary lip gloss, Tori sported nil makeup and her hair looked, frankly, as if she were balding. BIZARRE. The song was great, but the piano was shrunk, and maybe her solos could have been a little too drowned out, by Matt's complementary GODDAMN INCESSANT drumming, but her voice, (which has grown in maturity beyond, well...) managed to overide and completely enchant the audience. She then did an ikkle interview with the lovely Jools, in which they played, a like, FIFTEEN minute clip of Led Zepplin; everyone was like SHUT the @~#/? up, you got Tori up there, so let's hear from her, to hell with Plant and Page. She talked, with a characteristically impish smirk about the time she was proposed to by him and the proceeded to give another rendition, this time of Black Dove. This was stunning, her playing was mellifluous, and quite bafflingly she succeeded in playing both the mallet and the bose at the same time, whilst instictively singing AND dancing as well. Well, that's a choirgrrl for you.

Here are some thoughts from Geert-Jan van den Hoek:

I just came back from a friends' place, where I watched Tori on the BBC.

I don't know if you can receive BBC2, so I give you a short review...

First she played Spark (behind her: photos from cd booklet in giant size; but I am sure you get pictures)

She seemed to be a bit nervous. I was like the first songs of Unplugged: it is always good to hear her play live, but the divine sound was not completely there.

After some other acts there was a short interview (bad questions! 1st: Why 'choirgirl hotel', 2nd: What did you like in your youth? 'Led Zepplin' Oh we have some images...-whole lotta love!- also remarks from Tori about Robert Plant asking her to marry him... nothing new)

She played Black dove. Again not her top performence.. although she seemed to loosen up at the part that differed from the Album version... After that it was a lot better (this sounds a bit negative, but it was in my opinion really less than the 3rd song)

Well, the third song, at the end of the show was really astonishing! Awesome! First I did not recognise it. Perhaps She's your cocaine? (they showed Led..) Than...


SHe played Cruel, completely different from the album version. SHe really was into it, made a lot of moves. Did some cool things with her eyes... And really sang cool (a very long ooooooooh-oooooooh-oooooh-oooooh!)

This was Tori in shape. We all know this magical moments, don't we? ;) A catharsis, really.

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