Epic has created a special bonus CD called Scarlet Stories - Commentary By Tori Amos, which is a track by track commentary by Tori of the Scarlet's Walk album. (ESK 59258) Below you can see scans of this CD, information I have received on how to get a copy, and some descriptive comments about it from Richard Handal, as well as some interesting thing HMV in Canada is doing with Scarlet Stories.
rYan sudick has emailed me with details about this bonus disc. It is being used in a promotion among indie music retailers that has the name "Get Tori as a Gift -- Get a Gift From Tori" Basically if you go to one of these independent music retailers and buy two copies of Scarlet's Walk, then you can get Scarlet Stories for free.
You can access a list of independent retail stores participating in the "Get Tori as a Gift -- Get a Gift From Tori" Scarlet's Stories promotion by surfing to www.the-ird.com (Independent Retail Directory). Ignore the Store Locator and instead go this special page that they have about the Tori promotion. There you can search by U.S. state for the store closest to you that is taking part in the promotion. You can always call your favorite record store and see if they are taking part in this promotion. Try the smaller record stores that fit the profile of an Independent Retailer more than the big chain stores like Tower.
Here is some good info from Alexander Jhin:
Some retailers seem a little bit confused about Scarlets Stories and Scarlets Walk Limited Edition. Scarlets Walk Limited Edition DOES NOT INCLUDE Scarlets Stories. The Limited Edition contains a map, some stickers, a DVD, and Scarlets Walk CD. Scarlet Stories is a completely separate CD that has to be picked up at the register when you buy Scarlets Walk from one of the Independent Retailers listed on www.the-ird.com. Make sure to ask for the Scarlet Stories CD and insist that the CD is different from the Limited Edition. (The salesperson didnt believe me, so I simply argued, "If the Limited Edition came with Scarlets Stories why would they be charging more for the Limited Edition and giving "Scarlets Stories" away for free with the non-Limited Edition?" That convinced her.)
I was asked if this is a U.S. only promotion. The answers appears to be "yes".
However, Toriphiles in Canada can get the Scarlet Stories interview disc through HMV.com and their stores, who are offering a special 2-CD version of Scarlet's Walk that includes the album and Scarlet Stories!
Shortly after the album went on sale, HMV.com removed all reference to Scarlet Stories off their web site. Jessica sent me this email from HMV explaining this:
Thank you for contacting www.HMV.com. Due to overwhelming demand, we regret that we have sold out of copies of the bonus interview CD ("Scarlet's Stories") that was offered with pre-orders for Tori Amos' new "Scarlet's Walk" CD. As a result, we have removed this offer from our web site.
However, I think some stores may still have the exclusive 2-CD version in stock. Look below for scans of this special 2--CD version of Scarlet's Walk coupled with Scarlet Stories. Thanks to Evan Careclakis for the scans and info, as well as to davyd quintal, Edward, Wesley, John Fielding and Jonathan Lavallee for the info!
I also have reported that some people are walking in HMV and finding an Australian version of the2-CD album that couples the album with Scarlet Stories as mentioned above for Canada. Can someone from Australia verifiy if HMW made such a special 2-CD version of the album available there?
Other than this special version put out by HMV, I am not aware of an easy way for Toriphiles outside the U.S. to get this interview/commentary CD.
It also appears that the promotion mainly applies to buying two copies of the regular album and not the limited edition version. But I have to wonder how strict all stores will be about that... I have seen many vendors confused and giving it away with one copy of the album, with one copy of the limited edition and so on. It depends on how strict the store near you is!
In an earlier update, I stated that Scarlet Stories is a shorter, edited version of the commentary that comes on the DVD packaged with Limited Edition version of Scarlet's Walk. This is NOT correct. The limited edition DVD contains longer commentaries from Tori on Scarlet's Walk and Gold Dust, but that is it. So if you a completist collector, you will need to get Scarlet Stories.
You can see larger versions of these scans at Toriphoria.
Comments about Scarlet Stories from Richard Handal:
You can tell there were some edits here and there, but Scarlet Stories is pretty much just Tori speaking close into a microphone in a studio seamlessly relating the narrative of Scarlet's Walk, and providing some backstory and details to go along. As with Tori's music in general, it's mainly about the emotions from the perspective of the characters in the songs, and there is plenty about the emotions and underlying themes going on in this commentary.