North American Plugged '98 Tour
Tori performed in Birmingham, AL on August 14, 1998 at BJCC Concert Hall during the main North American leg of her Plugged '98 tour.
Tori performed Leather, Frog On My Toe, and Landslide solo.
The most recently added reviews are posted after my review.
August 25, 1998 - I attended this great show, and I will never forget it! Thanks to a very kind Toriphile named Mark I was able to sit in the center in the third row. The venue was interesting because it was so small. All my previous Plugged '98 shows were in huge arenas, so this was quite a change. The place actually reminded me of the kind of places Tori performed during her 1994 Under The Pink tour. It was great to hear Purple People for the first time. I was also thrilled to hear Siren, Frog On My Toe, Little Amsterdam, and Landslide. Tori told a really long story about her grandfather ("poppa") before Frog On My Toe, and she also commented on the city of Birmingham, saying: "So much happened here." The vibes from the area were obviously affecting her tonight for the better. It was one of my favorite shows. Tori was in top form and really having fun on stage.
When Tori played "Playboy Mommy", the crowd erupted in cheers at the 'From here to Birmingham" line! Turns out Tori really is singing about Birmingham, Alabama, and not Birmingham England. Tori gave a cute grin when she heard the applause.
I hope to have a decent transcript of the story Tori told about her "poppa" soon. It was a funny and charming story. Tori seemed to be criticizing "fake" spirituality, saying something like her grandfather would "pee on their heads." It was really good to hear Tori tell a long story again. She used to do that all the time during the Little Earthquakes and Under The Pink tours, and I sometimes miss that. A friend of mine made the valid point that stories are not as easy to incorporate into the new show, and I certainly understand that Tori wants the music to speak for itself.
"Siren" was a pleasant surprise, and it had a hypnotic effect, not unlike the version of "Caught A Lite Sneeze" Tori did during the Dew Drop Inn tour.
This was the first concert of the tour where Tori played "Purple People" and it was simply beautiful. I never realized how gorgeous this song could be in concert. I was really floating and getting into this song. I still find it so unique that some of Tori's best songs are b-sides.
"God" and "Raspberry Swirl" went really well together and made the first encore very high-energy and fun. This is in marked contrast to the first encore during the Dew Drop Inn tour, which was often soft and tender. It was interesting to note that people remained seated for most of this show.
Another reason I really loved this day was all the things that happened before and after the show itself. I met so many wonderful people outside of the concert hall as we waited for Tori to arrive at the meet & greet. I got to meet so many people, including my friend Danica (who runs the AWESOME Realm Of mp3's web site), Mark from California (man I really owe you!), Nic (the charming gal with the frog tattoo on her toe who asked Tori to play "Frog On My Toe"), Kimber (a native of Alabama who was a sweet person), Jase (who runs the Drops Of Ivory web site), Emi, Gina, and Lisa (3 wonderful young women from the north who are following Tori to a bunch a cities), Jason Cook and his delightful female friend (I am so sorry..I can't remember your name), Nancie Henley, Katie and several others. It really felt like a community of fans and the atmosphere was so relaxed. The vibe was warm and friendly. It was simply the best meet & greet I have ever been to (and I am not just saying that because I met Tori!) In real life I am not an extroverted person, and getting to socialize like this with so many great people is incredible to me.
Thanks to a numbering system, I managed to get to the front of the barricade before Tori arrived for soundcheck. Tori arrived and came to my side of the barricade first. I met her several times during the Dew Drop Inn tour, but I was still nervous for some reason. Tori looks at me and asks me my name. I reply, "My name is Mikewhy, I run....." and that is as far as I got! Tori's eyes lit up and she said (and I am paraphrasing because I simply can't remember exactly what was said), "I know you. You do great work," or something like that. I was completely floored and thought that recognition combined with the hot Birmingham sun was going to make me pass out. I was so honored to be recognized and known by Tori. Ever since I began running The Dent, it was important to me that the site be a place for respectful news and information, and that it always honored her private life. Hearing Tori say good things about the Dent was a huge relief, and made me rather lightheaded.
After she said I did good work, I said something like, "Not nearly as good as the work YOU do." Tori then playfully hit me on the shoulder and said, "Oh stop." She was so cute! I then told her that I had met so many great friends over the net because of her music and I thanked her. I then handed her a little slip of paper to sign, because my only other autograph from the Dew Drop Inn tour got stolen. Tori looked at the pathetic little piece of paper and said something like, "Surely we can some up with something better than this to sign." This eventually led to an invitation to go backstage. Later as Tori was talking to others I hear her voice say, "Mike, will you take our picture?" Then I accepted someone's camera and took a photo of Tori with a great Toriphile named Stacey. Even though I thought my hands were shaking, Stacey told me later the photo turned out perfectly!
I then met with Tori briefly after the show. Since I respect her privacy, I will not give a detailed description of what happened backstage, but it was a brief and very intense (to me at least!) She is an wonderful and friendly woman, who treats all her Ears With Feet with equality and respect. I am honored to have met her. You can see a photo of this meeting here.
From Amanda (*~* Sparkly Girl *~*)
September 4, 1998 - Alright! Finally, I can sit down and write my "Tori Experience" out.
We (me and Clay) arrived in Birmingham around 12:30, and we found the other EWF waiting for her. We were #9 and #10. Shortly after we arrived, two other guys showed up. One of them turned out to be Mike Whitehead (MikeWhy), the guy who owns/runs the DENT! He was really nice. The other guy with him was J'ason (Yessaid) who owns the website called Toriphoria. I ended up talking with J'ason for quite a while. We even ate playdoh together, and he showed me pics from his other Tori concerts. We were there for about 2 and a half hours before they set the barricades up. By then, there were about 35-40 people there. Fortunately, because they had been number our hands, we got a place right up front, so I was practically guaranteed to meet her. The time from 3-4:30pm was the pits...it was hot, and crowded, and a couple times I got really light headed, and felt like I was going to throw up. But finally at just about 4:30, Tori's bus pulls up, and everyone got really excited. They parked and she came around the bus with Joel, and I lost it completely, I started sobbing hysterically. She walked to the opposite end of the barricades from where I was, and for the first 10 minutes she was there I couldn't even see her. When she got around to where I could see her, I started to cry a little more, and started to shake. Joel (her bodyguard, for anyone that doesn't know) asked me if I was going to be OK, and told me to hang in there, that she would be with me in 2 minutes. =) He was really sweet. When she got to me, she called me "Sparkly Girl", because I had sparkly eye glitter on. And she gave me a hug! (AHHHH!) I handed her the cover of my LE CD, and she asked me what my name was, and then signed to me with my name and a little heart and her name...(some of you are familiar with this way of signing I'm sure). I could barely speak, and I mumbled something about this being my first meeting, etc. And then Clay asked her if he could take our picture (Tori and me) and she said yes, ofcourse. So I turned around to face the camera, and we put our heads together, and he took the picture. Then the next person was shoving stuff in her face, and I realized that I had forgotten to give her the faerie figurine I had brought for her. So I got her attention again, and I handed it to her and told her it was for her (duh), and she thanked me, and she put it in her pocket. (This is really special to me, because all the other gifts she was getting, she just handed over to Joel, or the other bodyguard that was there, but she put mine in her pocket.) Then at this point Joel was telling her that they had to go, and everyone was still wanting to meet her, but they wouldn't let anyone in the front move to let other people get up front. So, she started to walk away, and she turned around and looked RIGHT at me, and waved and said goodbye. I thought maybe it was my imagination, but Clay and this other girl said, that she was definately looking at me. =)
After all that we went over to the Sheraton and went to the bathroom, ate, etc...we were exhausted from being outside all day. And then we went back over to wait for the doors to open, even tho it was only 6:30, and the venue didn't open until 7, show didn't start until 8, etc.
The Devlin's were pretty good, in my opinion. But Tori was awesome. I have all the songs she played, and she even played the one song I wanted her to play (Siren).
It was great! And I wish that all of you can have just as wonderful of an experience as I did. She is terrific, and so cute in person.
When I walked away from the meet & greet, I said, I feel terrific, I feel like I just lost my virginity. It was the best!
From Nancie Henley
August 28, 1998 - So i got to meet these great people at the birmingham show. It was the second time I went to the meet and greet (last time was birmingham in 96)...sparklygirl and her guy, and tori of course, and mikewhy -- a sweetveryniceguy.
So we waited outside in foreverandever hotness. Then about 4:30 tori came up, and she talked to alot of people who are regulars. Then she moved down the line and the girl I met, Mandy (from sparkville, ms?) started crying cause it was the first time she met tori. And tori took one big look at her and said really softly and imply, "whatcha crying for sparkly girl?" It was a sweet moment. Tori is so giving of herself. She kept the faery that mandy had, put it right in her pocket she did.
So then she came to me, and I had to get her attention cause she was almost leaving, and I said, "tori, i gotta talk to you." and she looked right at me, eyes all big. and I told her about meeting her a year ago, giving her a statue of the goddess Artemis (virgin huntress), and I trailed off cause i knew she wouldnt remember, and she got two inches from my face, and grabbed my arms and said, "No. I remember that. I *do* i remember that." Like I had better believe her because gosh darnit, she'd remembered it and she was *telling* me she remembered it. It was weird. I never really knew *how* empahtic she was (you know how she gets in interviews sometimes, where she *means* something), and she was that way with me. So then I gave her this really old book, which she seemed like she liked alot. And then I asked her to play "Landslide" cause I needed to hear her sing that. So then we hugged and she flew away back to this mists. But it ain't over yet.
The concert was wonderful, she played mostly with the band, but she did play four songs solo; frog on my toe, leather, and then I knew she was going to play Landslide, I just *knew* it was coming. And no landslide.
So I prepared myself to be disappointed. I'd had this much already, so I knew I wasn't going to get to hear the song.
Well, I wound up waiting, but only until the end of the show. She came back out on stage, for her last solo, and I knew she wasn't going to play the song (i want to say "my song" here, but i won't), but she did. And beautifully. And the crowd screamed. And I screamed. And I swooned. But she said right before she played it, "So someone (me) wanted (needed) me to play this for them, so..." and then the first few notes flew out of her hands.
It was a very spiritual encounter for me. I was so prepared. I'd been telling myself that I didn't deserve to hear her, that she wouldn't remember it for me. But she did. And so, i think, right then, I realized that I didn't have to hurt myself anymore. That no one has to. We've got enough spirit and electricity to pass between all of us.
(ok enough rambling)
So time passed, the concert ended with Horses, solo i think i dunno i was glazed by then.
And I went outside again, and she was right there in front of me (and she so loved this most beautiful faery boy beside me, he painted himself and adorned his face with leaves) and she saw me and i told her thank you for the song, and we talked about my revelation, and she looked at me again with those eyes, and hugged me, and woosh, flew away back into the mist again.
sorry if all this sounds mushy, but she's really spiritually inspired me. So much so that I'm seriously thinking about starting a web page for people that have come to self-spritual growth by way of tori (not using tori as a god/diety/higher power)....i don't know, i need to work it out some.
so anyway. that was my tori experience. If any of you were there, and wanna say hi, write me firstname.lastname@example.org
Bye Mike, it was nice talking to you there
From Nicole Richardson
August 25, 1998 - I just wanted to share my experience with the Tori world!!! Until August 14th, I was a "Tori Virgin"...I'd never seen her live or met her in person...Well, lemme tell ya... First of all, I met some of the greatest people I think I've ever met...Tori's ears with feet are the greatest!! Anyway, I had the opportunity to meet her at the meet and greet before the show. I knew that she hadn't played Frog On My Toe all tour...I was thinking of asking her to, but didn't want to seem too stingy. One of the first things I noticed was that she had the word "Frog" written on her hand...I got really excited! When it was finally my turn, I told her it was my first show, and then I gave her a tiny copper faerie that I'd brought for her. I told her I wanted to show her something, and I pulled my foot out of my sandals and showed her the 2 and a half week old tattoo of the frog on my right big toe. She instantly looked up and said, "I'll definately play it". I died!! I think fate was definately making herself known that night...For it to have been my first show, and for her to have that written on her hand when I saw her (for the first time) was just too much!! Anyway, I got a really nice hug and a pic...And, I told her that the fella I was with was seeing her for the first time, too. She gave him a big, fat hug and a pic, too. Then she turned to me and said, "You two take care of each other". (So sweet!!) She moved down to talk to the others, and soon had Joel tugging her arm telling her it was time to go. Before she left, she turned to me again and grabbed my right hand and held it as she was pulled away. That night, she told the story of her Poppa and how wonderful grandparents can be. I cried and cried as she beautifully went into Frog On My Toe...solo. After the show, I caught word that there would be an after show meet and greet. I wanted so badly to say thank you, so I went and waited. As she got around to where I was, all I could get out between the sobs was, "Tori, you played Frog On My Toe...my grandparents mean so much to me"...She smiled and said,"Honey, I know" in a soft voice...then she grabbed my hand again and pulled my to the barricade and kissed my right cheek. I wiped my eyes, and asked if she would sign our tourbooks. She agreed, did, and moved down the line. All I can say is that I've read many Tori stories, and now I have my own. I'm so proud of that night, and it'll stand in my memory for a lifetime. Thanks to all the folks I met that night!! (You know who you are!!!) ~*~But one day girl, you're gonna learn to make 'em crawl make 'em grow tall, but have the grace to be a lady with disgrace -- You fry them taters, and make them with ladies' hands I know you're my Poppy's baby~*~ --Tori Amos Love to all who love Tori, Nic (the gal with the frog on her toe)
August 25, 1998 - Hi Mike! We met in Birmingham at the preshow meet and greet...I'm the girl Tori asked you to take the picture for :)...But I have a pretty awesome story I just felt like I should share with you because you pretty much deserve the credit because of your absolutely awesome webpage! One night long ago I was combing the web for information on Tori Amos tickets for Birmingham and I happened upon your registry. I took the information and I emailed all the people on the list, hoping to find some really exclusive legit information to treasure. Unfortunately, I found none, but I met a couple of really nice people and we emailed back and forth and we eventually found out the information, shared ticket-buying tips and so forth. We all got our tickets and through a long-drawn out story I'll spare you of, I ended up with not the best of seats. I was bummed, needless to say. I expressed this to fellow Tori fan, Michael in one of my emails, and it just so happened he had an extra ticket. I begged and begged him to sell it to me, but he would just hedge around the question and never answer me directly. We kept up the emails for a while and then one day I never heard from him again, so I had decided I would just have to sit in my seat and like it, although I almost got arrested, but that is beside the point. So, at the Birmingham concert, I am sitting in my seat, looking around at all the wonderfully happy people, drawing in the atmosphere and just being glad I was at the Tori Amos concert and a man comes up to my seat and is like "Excuse me...Are you Stacey?" and I was thinking "Oh great...I'm in trouble" but I told him I was and he was like "I'm Michael from the dent registry" so I'm figuring he's coming to do one of two things...tell me I'm a stupid person or coming to tell me not to take it personally that he had sold my ticket to someone else. He was like "I still have the extra ticket and I have been out of town for the last month and I have been planning to give you the ticket, I tried to call you last night for six hours to tell you, but I found you because I went back in my old emails when you told me about your seat." So, you know I'm pretty jived by now, right...I'm thinking sixth row...awesome as can be, right? So he leads me to the seat. FRONT ROW CENTER. Mike...I was so surprised and ecstatic!!!! He gave me a front row center Tori ticket because we shared a common bond of being Tori fans and being diligent in being that way. I can't express how grateful I am to Michael for the most amazing seat at the concert and how grateful I am to you for having your registry. That registry cured lots of my nightmares. I just thought this example just exemplified what Tori fans are, how they care for one another and how the Dent and the Dent's registry is just...a most wonderful thing. I cannot thank you enough. Without you, my amazing Tori day would have never happened.
Thank you again and again,
From the Birmingham News
August 25, 1998 - EWF Cindy26471 sent me a press review of this show that appeared in the August 15, 1998 edition of the Birmingham News. They gave it 3 stars out of 4 (=good)
TORI AMOS THROWS HER ALL INTO MUSIC ON BJCC STAGE by Mary Colurso
The exquisitely eccentric Tori Amos indulged in a rare brand of performance
art Friday night at the BJCC Concert Hall.
Here's a delicate, flame-haired woman wearing black pants, a black top and
some type of long, flowered apron tied at her neck and waist. In spite of her
diminutive size, she straddles the piano stool with intensity - now dreamily
passionate, then rigid with fury.
She writhes on the keyboard as she plays it, pushing out songs heavily laden
with imagery that nevertheless dissect the human condition. Her voice? A
unique, hiccuping, gasping, crooning instrument that soars into icy soprano
whenever the mood of the piece requires it.
Amos' lyrics can be frustratingly hard to make out in concert (what's that
she's murmuring/shrieking about "Precious Things" or "Playboy Mommy?") but the
emotions behind them stand out in crystal relief.
She's artsy in the best sense of the term, too, providing the audience with a
brilliantly evocative light show. These flashes of color and pattern punctuate
her tunes, enveloping Tori in a sea of jewel green, a startling haze of blue
or a hailstorm of purple and gold.
Definately cool stuff - although Amos would only be idiosyncratic if her
music wasn't grounded in strong composition and an obvious command of the
Happily, her 8 p.m. show in Birmingham demonstrated that Amos is far more
that a feminist novelty act. Appearing here with a three-man backup band, Amos
exuded the air of the fierce individualist - a singer/songwriter compelled to
do things her own way no matter what anyone thinks.
Her albums are that way, as well, probing sore subjects such as incest, rape,
domestic violence, religion and sexual oppression. Leave it to Amos to call
her latest CD "from the chiorgirl hotel" when performing as a demure cog in a
traditional collective is the last thing that would suit her talents or
Speaking of tastes, Amos is probably an acquired one; few people appreciate
or understand her songs upon the first hearing. Neither her recordings nor her
live shows are straightforward and she occassionaly strays into the baroque.
At times, its easy to admire Amos' work but rather difficult to like it.
Still, Amos' originality and power have propelled her to stardom, and these
qualities have a worth that's undeniable. Here, they glistened through
renditions of "Little Amsterdam," "iieee," and other selections from her four-
Amos was preceded by a nicely balanced opening set by The Devlins, an Irish
pop/rock band that made the most of its 45 minutes on stage.
The exquisitely eccentric Tori Amos indulged in a rare brand of performance art Friday night at the BJCC Concert Hall.
Here's a delicate, flame-haired woman wearing black pants, a black top and some type of long, flowered apron tied at her neck and waist. In spite of her diminutive size, she straddles the piano stool with intensity - now dreamily passionate, then rigid with fury.
She writhes on the keyboard as she plays it, pushing out songs heavily laden with imagery that nevertheless dissect the human condition. Her voice? A unique, hiccuping, gasping, crooning instrument that soars into icy soprano whenever the mood of the piece requires it.
Amos' lyrics can be frustratingly hard to make out in concert (what's that she's murmuring/shrieking about "Precious Things" or "Playboy Mommy?") but the emotions behind them stand out in crystal relief.
She's artsy in the best sense of the term, too, providing the audience with a brilliantly evocative light show. These flashes of color and pattern punctuate her tunes, enveloping Tori in a sea of jewel green, a startling haze of blue or a hailstorm of purple and gold.
Definately cool stuff - although Amos would only be idiosyncratic if her music wasn't grounded in strong composition and an obvious command of the piano.
Happily, her 8 p.m. show in Birmingham demonstrated that Amos is far more that a feminist novelty act. Appearing here with a three-man backup band, Amos exuded the air of the fierce individualist - a singer/songwriter compelled to do things her own way no matter what anyone thinks.
Her albums are that way, as well, probing sore subjects such as incest, rape, domestic violence, religion and sexual oppression. Leave it to Amos to call her latest CD "from the chiorgirl hotel" when performing as a demure cog in a traditional collective is the last thing that would suit her talents or tastes.
Speaking of tastes, Amos is probably an acquired one; few people appreciate or understand her songs upon the first hearing. Neither her recordings nor her live shows are straightforward and she occassionaly strays into the baroque. At times, its easy to admire Amos' work but rather difficult to like it.
Still, Amos' originality and power have propelled her to stardom, and these qualities have a worth that's undeniable. Here, they glistened through renditions of "Little Amsterdam," "iieee," and other selections from her four- album songbook.
Amos was preceded by a nicely balanced opening set by The Devlins, an Irish pop/rock band that made the most of its 45 minutes on stage.
August 25, 1998 - Jase runs the excellent Drops Of Ivory web site. He has a section of the site where he detailed his experiences on the Plugged '98 tour, including Birmingham. Go to Drops Of Ivory for a review of the Birmingham show and for some photos!
From Ashley Barnes
August 25, 1998 - hello i cant remember if i e mailed you before asking about tori amos concert i think i did oh well i will tell you a little bit if you want to hear about it i went to her show in b'ham aug 14 it was great she started out with precious things and ill name all i can remember
and about 3 or 4 more
she also sung a fleetwood mac song i think all in all it was a great concert i enjoyed every minuite of it she talked a little bit and did two encores at the end she gave hugs to the fans and left
From Jason Cook (Fasonc)
August 16, 1998 - OH Good gosh - I can not even tell you people how excited i was. I MET TORI BACKSTAGE!! Let me start from the beginning , I was one of the lucky winners of the Best Buy RAINN auction. My friend and I got to the bjcc a little early to get our passes. We finally got our passes after walking back and forth from the backstage door to the will call window. The people told me that there was no way i was getting my camera in ,and that they couldn't even hold it, so i was freaking out at this point. After letting these nice girls try to smuggle it in their shirt I decided I would just do it myself. With trying to sneak my camera in,sell my extra ticket, and talking to all the toriphiles: I was freaking out. I'm sure those that talked to me realized. (Hey Mike, Danica, Weirdyboi, Hang ten girls ,Mandy ,Amanda, and the people from Minnesota with fifteen tickets.) Well anyway i got my camera in and we got seated. I was hoping they would upgrade our 10th row seats like in the previous shows,but it was ok cause we met Tori. The show was so awesome!! I know the set list is already up so i wont bother ,but the highlights of the show for me were PURPLE PEOPLE, LANDSLIDE, SIREN, and CAUGHT A LIGHT SNEEZE. I was happy cause she sang purple people and frog on my toe for the 1st time . Purple People sounded alot like the CD version. Tori told a story about her popa before she sang Frog on my toe. Something about how you always remember things your grandparents tell you. Someone yelled out "Mother", and Tori said mother wouldn't be what i would sing for my popa "DUH". Tori gave an awesome performance as usual. She also did the slow intro to Cornflake Girl. I didn't even know what it was at first,something about flesh and skin. I thought the lighting was spectacular ,Rasberry Swirl was awesome there weren't too many people dancing. We kind of danced in our seats cause we were in the front of the section and i knew there would be some unhappy people if we got up. Overall this show was up there ,this was my 3rd time seeing Tori. Then i was so excited cause after the show I knew we were going to meet Tori . They took us back and we waited outside her dressing room for a couple of minutes,I was suprised cause i thought it would be longer. I thought she might rest a sec or change or something like that. We went back with the 2 other people that won the auction.(hey Francois and Candice). I was more subdue than i thought I would be,but still a little nutty. Tori was as sweet and beautiful as everyone says. She signed my tour program and limited edition Spark single,talked a little, got our picture made ,gave her our stuff we brought her ,then were escorted out. I still dont believe it ! I looked her straight in the eyes and talked to her . What a night -we exchanged email with the other winners and then were on our way ! Now I can't wait till Monday and Tuesday cause I get to see her here in Atlanta. Thanks to all the people that were so nice and to Tori!
From Chris Cochran
August 16, 1998 - Hi everyone... I've just returned from tonight's show in Birmingham. It was my 6th Tori concert, but my 1st of the plugged tour, so I was anxiously awaiting to see what the night would hold. The Devlins played from 8 - 8:35, and Tori finally took the stage around 9:30, which was a longer wait than I thought it would be. The Devlins were very melodic and had a good sound. I enjoyed their set.
Precious Things - Nice, long introduction. This was very powerful. I was anxious to hear how her voice and piano sounded. The piano seemed nice and loud at first, not covered up by the other instruments. Her voice, at first, sounded a little high-pitched and metallic and I wasn't sure if it was just her, or the sound system. I didn't notice that much else throughout the show, so I really think it was just on that song. She did a lot of angry improv at the end, and that's when I realized that I wanted to be able to hear the piano better. It was a little covered up toward the end.
Little Amsterdam - I'd been hoping to hear this one. It really works as the second song in the set. Precious Things got everyone pumped up, and Little Amsterdam kept us up on that plane. It was really swanky - you could hear every breath and lip movement. I began to notice that with this show, she would often grab the microphone with both hands when she needed to emphasize something. I think she did this during, "Girl you've got to know these days...." At the DDI tour, she had more of a habit of hitting the piano. She still did that tonight, but you couldn't hear it because of the other instruments. (If you saw a DDI show, you remember how cool it was to hear her slap on the piano!)
i i e e e - In my opinion, the best song of the night. This song is just so involved, and it's really cool to watch her sing, play the piano, play the keyboard, and work the buttons on the keyboard to start the background vocals. I wasn't sure, from listening to the bootlegs, exactly how that would work. The many different colored lights were really good on this song, too, and her piano solo in the middle was the best I've heard it.
Playboy Mommy - Very nice. The bass solo at the beginning seemed a little more uncertain than I'd heard it before, but once the keyboard came in it it was all together. Her vocal performance on this was very heartfelt too. I also was pleased with how the audience was pretty well-behaved on this one. Everyone seemed to just want to sit and listen. Although, when she sang, "From here to Birmingham," we had to scream just a little. She seemed to like it though - she looked up and smiled like she knew that was coming and she was just waiting on it. It was cute.
After this, she said, "So how are you doing? It's great to be here...what a wonderful place. So much has happened here."
Siren - I nearly died when I realized what this was. She said, "Some of you might not recognize this - it isn't on any of the albums." It was kind of softened from the cd version. Matt played a tom tom-like drum set, that gave it a very flowing feel to go along with the flowing piano. That's the best I can describe it. On the chorus, a blue light would spin out just above the audience. It was a highlight of the evening.
Cornflake Girl - I wish I could remember her little intro to this, but I'm sure someone will quote it. This song was fun, but like Precious Things, I would say she got a little drowned out on this one toward the end. The thing I loved about this in 96 was all the improv stuff. A lot of it was lost for me at the end.
Leather - This has never been one of my favorites, but it serves as a sharp, quick contrast to go from Cornflake to something to sparse. She seemed to be having fun and the audience really liked it. It was a good performance. It was nice to hear her bring out the loud, low parts on the piano.
Frog On My Toe - This was absolutely wonderful. She told a nice, long story about her poppa. I won't attempt to repeat it, but one important moment.... She began by saying, "My grandfather was one of the most important people to me, and he died when I was 9." So everyone should have known what was coming, and should have just listened. But some guy yelled out, "Mother," and Tori said, "No...Mother's not about my Poppa.....Duh!" I just thought, good for her. I think Tori wants us to have fun at her shows, but you just have to know when to scream and when not to. During a story is not the best time. Anyway, the song was wonderful. Very emotional, beautiful performance. And she sang, "Maybe I'll grow up to be half as good as he."
Purple People - Another time I nearly died when I realized what it was. This was a good one, and it got a nice applause when people realized what it was. She did make a little mistake though - instead of singing, "No matter what it takes she promises a show," she sang something like, "She always promises....(chuckle)...promises a show." Just a little goof. I think this was the first time she's played this. It was nice and jazzy, and on the very last note, she slid her voice up to it as the lights rose up. It was a nice effect.
Spark - This is very powerful live. This was a good, clear performance of the song. That little middle piano solo she's added that's not on the cd was really good. It was nice and jumpy with a good lighting scheme.
Caught A Lite Sneeze - I do miss the harpsichord on this, and feel like it gets a tad repetitive, but the drum beat is so groovy, and works so well. And when the piano comes in at the beginning it's very effective. I liked this a lot. (But I wish people wouldn't yell out during, "Right on time.")
The Waitress - This was around 8 minutes. It was so loud at the end, that once again, I lost alot of the improv stuff. And there was alot! It sounded like she was singing "I believe in...." and saying different things, like jesus and the devil.
She doesn't make you wait as long this time for the encores!
God - This was cool. A lot of fun. I just love the "You dropped a bomb on me," part of this. She really gets into it too.
Raspberry Swirl - What's cool about this was how she played both the keyboard and piano at the same time. The lights were good, and it sounded good. I was a little surprised that people weren't standing up for this. From the reviews I'd read it sounded like a big techno party.
Landslide - She came out and said, "Somebody asked me to play this, so..." and she played it. Beautiful.
Horses - The disco balls add a really cool effect. I'm beginning to appreciate this new version (although the original will always be a favorite). It's a lot different, but it is a nice way to end the show. I left with the "I'll chase down your posies," line going through my head. The only thing about this is that there was a little too much guitar feedback throughout the song.
Well, after seeing this tonight, I really appreciate the band enhances some of the songs. It works well with Little Amsterdam and Caught A Lite Sneeze, but on songs like Cornflake Girl and Precious Things, I couldn't help but feel it was a little over the top, and that we missed some of the piano work in there. The "secret time" section really reminded me of the 96 tour, and made me wish we had a few more songs with just Tori. Overall, I thought her performance was excellent. She was really on fire tonight - maybe her day off yesterday really helped her to end her sick spell. She looked and sounded great, and after the show, she seemed really eager to talk to everyone. I was a few rows back and was able to see her clearly (I've talked to her before), and she seemed to be in one of the best moods I've seen her after a show. I thought the setlist was good, with some nice surprises. But when it comes to comparing this with the 96 tour (even though they're completely different experiences), I have to say I left the 96 shows feeling more fulfilled. As if I'd seen Tori the way she was meant to be seen.
From Cindy26471 (Posted to the Precious-Things mailing list)
August 25, 1998 - I was at the m&g in birmingham and i got to meet tori. I got there about 1pm and was #13 in line. there was a girl there (elise - of kenny fame) who took it upon herself to organize people and number everyone. i thought it was very helpful b/c we were able to leave and come back. joel and the security people came out around 2:30 or 3 and set up the barricades. we then stood behind them in semi-order according to our numbers. tori didnt come until 4:30 (i think), but at least those of us who had been there forever got to be up front.
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