Tori performed in Chicago, IL on Wednesday, November 27, 2002 at the Chicago Theatre. The show began at 7:30PM and Howie Day was the opening act.
a sorta fairytale
Take To The Sky
I Can't See New York
Tear In Your Hand
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Rodney was the first to call me on the phone with the set list. He said the show was really great, and Tori debuted Josephine, Jackie's Strength and Carnival (This was of course the first time EVER Tori performed Carnival live!) Tori played Carnival with the band. Early in the show Tori wished everyone a Happy Thanksgiving and then did an improv about Thanksgiving. She did another "beautiful lady" improv before Josephine when she saw a woman trying to locate her seat.
From Danica Knox:
Danica also called me after the show. She said that Tori had a a lot of energy, and that Carnival was gorgeous. Tori really slowed it down, and did NOT do the fast part at the end of the song.
The first improv early in the show was done after Tori wished everyone a Happy Thanksgiving and told the audience that she would not be with her family this year, a bit of news that seemed to make her quite happy! The improv mentioned throwing stuffing...
The other improv, which Danica calls the "beautiful lady" improv, was done before Josephine when Tori saw a woman in the aisle trying to find her seat. Tori sang, "Beautiful lady" several times.
Tori was laughing all through Cornflake Girl at some drunk girl in the front...
The official set list had Carnival on it, but it was listed as "Black Orpheus".
From Melissa Shubalis:
Just wanted to get ya the set list:
A Sorta Fairytale
Precious Things (yummy)
Take to the Sky
(Here she did some little mini song: First she said, "How's everyone doing on the eve of Thanksgiving?" Then goes into a song... I only caught part of the words: "Tomorrow when you're happy, don't think of this... When you're throwing stuffing... I'm lucky because I'm just the Bird in Pink." Very cute.)
Your Cloud (soooo pretty)
January Girl (AMAZING!!)
Crucify (yes, this is the best version I've heard in a looong time from her - it's very mezmerizing and slightly slower than normal) Wednesday
(Another little impromptu song - Beautiful Lady? There was a gal who couldn't find her seat and was roaming the aisle, and Tori sings something like: "Hello Beautiful Lady - There's a place for you even in this town..." Something about seats, etc. and it was really cool - I'm sure someone else has the exact words... I wish I was the girl roaming - then I could say Tori wrote a song about me!) :)
Jackie's Strength (very nice)
(band came back)
Tear in Your Hand
I just about died. What an amazing ending to an amazing show. I'm almost tempted to buy tickets to Friday's concert too... :)
From Rodney Douglas Bogardus:
Hi all! My name is Rodney and I'm one of the blessed to have attended last night's Tori Amos show at the Chicago Theater, 27NOV2002. I've been attending Tori shows since 1996 and I must say that she is definitely a character that improves with age. Whether she's backed by 3 musicians, 2 musicians, or just herself and her chords (piano, harpsichord, Wurlitzer, Rhodes, etc·) the gals knows how to present music live, and do so in such a manner that many other artists could only dream of doing. I loved her with a full band, I adored her solo on the Strange Little Tour, but I must say that her present concert composition is perfect. A three-piece band (and I refer to all of Tori's instruments collectively) is much more of an egalitarian amalgamation of instruments, than was her previous line-up in 1998 and '99 with the guitar. Being back by only a bass and drums allows her certain freedom with the piano, a freedom that is sacrificed with the presence of the guitar. Certain older songs really come to life with the absence of the guitar÷"Cornflake Girl", "Precious Things" and "Juarez". Her reworking of songs throughout the years is not merely a means to amuse herself and to prevent from giving the same performance time and time again, rather I believe that it marks her creative and spiritual evolution as an artist. Her transformation of certain classics ("Crucify", "Take to the Sky" and "Horses") exemplifies that evolution. And I can honestly say that the "Crucify" of the 2002 tour has got to be the song's most gripping and emotional interpretation.
The venue was beautiful and from what others who have attended previous shows in this tour have said, the acoustics at the Chicago Theater were superior. Last night's audience found Tori to be in an effervescent and energetic state and was graced by her trademark titillating vocal acrobatics that can only be experienced with her live. "Your Cloud" and "Black Dove", with perfect musical execution, were even more beautiful because of Tori's vocal performance.
The set list: Tori was feeling generously festive and gave us a delicious bag of treats! By the time we made it through the Roadside Caf&Mac218;, we had had 2 song debuts for this tour, the beautiful "Josephine" and "Jackie's Strength", and 2 hysterical improvs. The first was in lieu to an earlier comment Tori had made about not being with her family for Thanksgiving. Her improv went, "Tomorrow when you're happy, don't think about today (or "today" or "now" I can't remember which), you'll be slinging stuffing at each other, which is something I know nothing about·" (I think that that could have been a loose allusion to the ending of the "Raspberry Swirl" video when everyone was slinging food across the table!) The second improv occurred when a young woman couldn't find her seat in the audience and Tori started in with "lovely lady, can't find her way, lovely lady there's a seat for everyone, even in this town, if you want to find your way, stick with me·" As if we weren't all feeling lucky at that point, upon the band's return to the stage, the began playing, what I also thought was "Bachelorette", the wonderfully melodic "Carnival", which was the song's first EVER performance! My friend and I stared blankly at each other in shock and/or disbelief when we realized what the song was! No the vocals to this songs aren't the greatest, it is, after all, a cover song, but their execution of it last night was incredible. I felt blessed to have been among the first to hear that song. "I Can't See New York" was mind-numbingly melancholy and powerful and is a song from the new album that translates very well into a live setting. With "Spring Haze" having always been my favorite song from TO VENUS AND BACK, hearing it for the first time live last night was another treat. This is another song that, although I adore the studio version, beautifully morphs when presented live, with the bridge "why does it always end up like this?" sounding passionate and engaging.
All in all, Tori was at her best last night, and although in her improv she says don't think about the present (the show) during Thanksgiving, whether or not I'll be slinging stuffing at anyone, I will DEFINITELY be thinking about the previous night's show·
From Dave Kinnetz:
First of all, the place was awesome. From the big marquee outside, to the chandeliers in the lobby, to the auditorium itself... I don't feel bad at all for paying the $1 or $2 restoration fee. If they can make that place look any better than it already does, more power to 'em. I thought the acoustics were great, too.
So around 7:30-ish, Howie Day comes out. I've never heard any of his music until then. He looked fairly young (like a 12 year old with big hair), which I thought was kinda funny. His songs were okay (not really my thing). He kept banging on his guitar and playing with some loop machine (to mimic drums or something), which he continued to do for every song. It got a little old. Overall though, it wasn't bad.
After a while, the lights dimmed, I could see Jon get into position on the left behind the curtain, and Wampum Prayer started. Wampum Prayer was not live, but from the album. If you listen to the album version closely, there's a point ("...sons of the sons...") when her voice sounds like she has too much saliva in her mouth. I could also hear this when it played at the beginning of the show. Not a big deal, but it wasn't live like '97 Bonnie & Clyde was last year.
Tori comes out in this white dress with pink (maybe red) and black squares or diamonds on it and black heels. Her hair also looked good. She had two red and black flower pins on the right side. Her hair didn't look funky like it has on some of the shows (Letterman, etc.). A Sorta Fairytale starts and sounded really good. She sounded much more relaxed and collected when doing this song than she did on the shows and hit more of the high notes (maybe she's live-camera shy). Then came Precious Things, which she really got into. Take To The Sky sounded really good with the band, but she didn't seem to beat the Bosey as much (probably 'cause Matt was on drums).
Josephine is a song that I've wanted to hear live since To Venus And Back came out. It was really nice. Jackie's Strength is another song that I wanted to hear live. In fact, before the show, I tried thinking of songs that I'd like to hear Tori do. As much as I wanted to hear Never Seen Blue, I knew she probably wouldn't do it again so soon after performing it in Columbus on the 23rd. Carnival is one that I thought would be really awesome to hear, and she surprised everyone when she played it. In fact, some chick a few seats down from me was freaking out during this song, jumping up and down in her seat. My only disappointment with this song was that the heavy drumbeat ending part of the song was left out in her live performance.
The rest of the show was good, too, but nothing noteworthy. She wasn't very talkative, but she made up for it with her improvs (I think there were three total). She did talk about not having a family Thanksgiving dinner and smiled, then did a little song about it. The Beautiful Lady improv was just awesome. She did, however, move around a lot which was cool.
Overall, I really enjoyed this show. The one and only thing that really pissed me off was the idiot behind me singing along to the songs. You know... it's one thing to mouth the words, but to sing along loud enough for anyone else to hear is just rude. I paid to see Tori Amos, not listen to some moron who sing off key behind me. Anyway, I can't wait 'til Sunday for the Milwaukee show.
From Sarah & Simon:
Hey, just looking at your Chicago 27th reviews and thought we'd mail you what we're almost definite were the lyrics for the thanksgiving improv.
Bird In Pink Thanksgiving Song
"Tomorrow/When you're happy/Don't think of this/Throwing stuffing at one another/ Not that I know anything/About that sort of thing/ But I'm happy/I'm pretty happy/That I'm just the bird in pink."
From the Chicago Tribune: