Set Lists/Reviews From The KROQ Almost Acoustic Christmas Concert
December 13th, 1996

Updated March 6, 2001

MTV 120 Minutes had a special KROQ show where between regular videos they talked to the artists backstage at the KROQ concert and showed VERY brief clips from the actual concert. Here is a detailed transcipt of what Tori said and more photos!

Tori Playing Precious Things At The KROQ Concert
From MTV 120 Minutes

Tori headlined the Almost Acoustic Christmas Concert, sponsored by Los Angeles radio station KROQ, on Friday, December 13th at the Universal Amphitheatre . It was a concert benefiting 5 different charities, one being R.A.I.N.N. All female artists appeared on Friday. The show was broadcast live on KROQ radio in L.A. . Here is the order in which the artists appeared and the songs that Tori sung:

  • Tracy Bonham
  • Poe
  • Fiona Apple
  • The Cardigans
  • Jewel
  • Garbage
  • Sheryl Crow
  • Tori Amos
  • Sarah McLachlan
  • Natalie Merchant

  • Losing My Religion
  • Precious Things
  • Little Earthquakes
  • Cornflake Girl
  • Silent All These Years

  • KROQ Concert Reviews

  • A review of the show from UCLA's The Daily Bruin newspaper
  • A Comment On The Show From
  • Wonderfully Detailed Review from Kim H..
  • Still More On this evening from Kim H..
  • Review from BrandNew2U.
  • Review from Chrissy.
  • Dor's delightful review.
  • More on the show from Royal Plath.
  • Comments made on the Sarah McLachlan mailing list.

    From a personal email sent to me by (

    I know I'm a little late, but I had backstage passes to the Almost Acoustic Chrismas and I know why Tori's set was really short(maybe this was answered, but I only read like three or four of the reviews). I asked all of the guards where she went after her set, and they all told me the same story: She was really sick, she had the flu. She didn't even come out and say hi to anyone. She was wheeled out in a wheelchair with a blanket over her. She left as soon as her set was over, that was why she was skipping/running off stage, she had been throwing up all day. It was kinda sad, but I really admire her for actually performing.

    From a personal email sent to me by Kim H. (

    Where do I start ? Friday night was quite a powerful lineup. In fact, it's taken me a coupla days to recover enuf to write this review! ;)

    I took notes during the show, so where I quote a performer I can 99.9 percent guarantee it's an exact quote. Where I am not sure or am paraphrasing (some of them spoke very fast) I will put that part in parentheses. I think I have a touch of flu or something, plus parts of the show were done in very dark lighting over the audience, so I did the best I could in making sense of my notes. When I was less familiar with an artist's work I tried to write down at least some of the lyrics. Maybe you can fill in the rest! I missed Tracy Bonham and Poe :( the first two acts, due to an ill-advised decision to attempt a last-minute errand in Friday LA rush hour Christmas season traffic ! My poor friend was no doubt suffering greatly waiting for me :(

    So anyway, that and the fact that the couple next to me were greatly altered (ahem) somehow and were belligerent (kept yelling at people to sit down and shut up--I wanted to say "you are at a rock concert, lighten up!" but they were scary. Sports season ticket holders maybe? But anyway when ever I'd try and use the tiny flashlight I'd brought while writing they got riled up so my notes were going every which way. I couldn't even see which page to write on next it was that dark, so it was hard to tell the order of songs in some cases. I did my best...

    First of all the lineup (copied from the page in the lobby):

    Tracy Bonham at 6:15 pm; Poe at 6:40 pm; Fiona Apple at 7:05 pm; The Cardigans at 7:35 pm; Jewel at 8:05 pm; Garbage at 8:35 pm; The KROQ Show at 9:05 pm; Sheryl Crow at 9:20 pm; Tori Amos at 10 pm; Sarah McLachlan at 10:40 pm; Natalie Merchant at 11:20 pm.

    My general impressions: Everyone in the audience seemed really glad to be there (a redundant statement?). Some of the performers seemed more into the whole "Girls Night Out" thing than others. (IMHO) Tori's set was too short! (but better than none ;)) The KROQ DJs seemed really into the night and the performers. They added little touches like elves which passed out candy (after Tori left) (that's right, appease the crowd with sugar ;)) and Santa bringing out a Christmas tree (more on that later). Overall tho, it was dizzying, as I'd just get acclimated to one performer's vibe when that one would be gone and the next one there. Note: I also missed some bits because of trying to take a photo or everyone standing up quickly.

    OK, so due to traffic like I said earlier, the first one I actually saw was Fiona Apple. I mean we sat down RIGHT before she was introduced, which was great timing IMHO because I really wanted to see Fiona. I thought she did great, and in every casual chat (concession lines etc.) people marveled at so much talent in one so young. We all agreed, she had to have been born with it.

    Oh, I should describe the set (and IF Mikewhy can work magic with the pics I took you'll kinda be able to see it--or at least the lights): Behind the performers there was a rooftop that looked to me like a gingerbread housetop, but on closer inspection it was a brown house and roof tops with snow dripping down it. Multicolored lights were strung all round the chimney and roof edges. Then on stage right (that is, artists' right) there was a full size Christmas tree with lights, and above the stage (on the wall in front of it and over it--y'know?) were more lights in the shape of a roof.

    So, the DJ said, "All I want for Christmas is--Fiona Apple" (BTW, the DJs stayed unseen in the sound booth, and there was a circular revolving stage divided in half--so one act could set up while the other performed). And Fiona appeared (can't recall from where) to great cheers. She immediately sang "Shadowboxer" at the piano. When it was over (she was great I thought --what a voice!) she *ran* straight to the center stage mic on a stand, and giggled and said "Hi you guys. I'm so f---ing nervous!" She then introduced a song she said she just finished, which started "15 years ago with one asshole and finished with another asshole." (I missed part of that quote but that's close) I didn't write down any words from this one, I was too busy being caught up in it. BTW, I could definitely tell the camerapeople were all hetero men: Fiona did this sort of hip-swivel dance at the mic while singing, it just seemed real natural, and the camera did *LOTS* of long closeups of her hips and navel ring (gold) and etcetc. I even said out loud, enough already! (not very loud tho) I noticed she didn't seem to have on any makeup except thick mascara, also she wore her hair down and wore black stretchy pants and a matching top knotted into a midriff top. Her face looked angry during this song (in another Friday the 13th screwup I forgot my binoculars, but thanks to the bigscreen I hardly needed any). She had a four piece backup band: keyboard, sometimes piano too (when she wasn't on piano), a guitarist and drummer. She had on chunky heeled black boots.

    She then went straight into the next song, which was a slower one. There was fog behind the "housetop" during this one, one lyric of which was "was my aim to get caught". The music stopped while she sang a cappella at times, to big cheers from the audience.

    To intro the next song she said "you know how sometimes you're the asshole? Well I was the asshole once and I wrote a song about that too"

    Here my notes simply say Bad Bad Girl. This is one of those instances where my pages are out of order so the song order may be a little wacky. Let me know if u know for sure!

    I think this was the 5th song next, she said in part: "(I have) one more song but I want to do it alone so I'll do the last song by myself" Then she sang alone at the piano a song which had these lines: "never is a promise and you can't afford to lie" and "the skin of my emotions lies beneath my own". That was that! I can't remember if she said thank you or what, I thought I could fill in all blanks but it's two flu ridden days later...

    So after she left (she got big cheers--and a big laugh BTW when she mentioned how nervous she was--which I thought was endearing genuine and adorable. A mini rant: I just love and admire to death someone who went thru what she did and at such a young age--her career would be inspiring without that part but is even more so, to me, that she overcame it and is using her music to heal herself and others. Ok rant over)

    Next they showed a mini clip from Bewitched: Samantha and Darren are decorating the tree. Ding-dong! It's Mr. Stevens at the door and...

    The Cardigans were introduced! BIG cheers before and after their set. Obviously a lot of people there were Cardigans fans. I admit I am not familiar with them at all (gettin old I guess) and so I think I went out to check out the lobby during part of their set...I did note that the lead singer wore black leather pants and a black Tshirt, and wrote down two lyric's snippets: "say that you love me" and "something to remember". Sorry but I was restless: after the nerve-knotting traffic standstills, not knowing when Tori would be on etc., and all the anticipation (and my scary seat neighbors--who seemingly didn't know where they were or how to form a sentence but god bless them for continually trying anyway--LOUDLY)... I jumped up and roamed around during some of the sets. And I felt I owed my friend a beer, altho I missed some of Jewel's set too.

    Jewel wore blue jeans, if I recall, (she was one of the few leads who weren't in some form of black) and sang a rousing "Who Will Save Your Soul" and also a yodeling song in which the yodels kept getting faster each time. She accompanied herself on the guitar for it, and would stop and ask "Faster?" after each round of yodels and the audience screamed affirmatively. Finally she did the last one a cappella at Guinness World Record speed, faster maybe than that guy who was a hit for a while by reading all the classic books in less than five minutes each ? Anyway, she was smiling big and everyone on stage and in the crowd seemed to be having big fun. And that ended her set.

    In between each act there'd be something on the bigscreen like clips from the Grinch and Charlie Brown's Christmas and I think the Bradys (original show) etcetc.

    During Garbage's set everyone stood and rocked out. I mean "the joint was jumpin". I confess I missed most of it, being too tired to stand & dance (all that worry caught in traffic made me so nauseous I was still weak :() but I did note that she said (and I remember this too) "this was the year for women in rock. Maybe the end of next year will be for the boys" and she raised both her arms high in a 'rock salute' and grinned big. I could barely see her over the heads of everyone standing up, I just recall the magenta hair. The quote may be a bit off as she spoke really fast.

    Then was the "KROQ Show". This bears explaining. Each year the station sends a coupla their recurring comic characters on an odyssey in search of the KROQ Christmas tree (somewhere in the nation). They broadcast its highlights during the quest. Apparently this is an LA tradition. Well, they showed clips from the journey on the bigscreens, then introduced the KROQ tree, and Santa brought it out. They said "it's totally artificial"--and it was, and about four feet tall, but decorated and lit. It stayed its tiny self at the edge of stage left from then on.

    Then, Sheryl Crow. She wore a white tank top and black leggings. If I read my notes right she said something with "101" in it ? (your guess is as good as mine) Then "If It Makes You Happy." Then said "thanks a lot" and "having a nice time. I have to say one thing, Garbage *rocks*!"

    During "it's hard to make a stand" snow fell onto the housetop, and a Santa in sleigh, pulled by a white-light reindeer, came down from the ceiling and paused over the "roof". Sheryl said, "looks like Santa Claus is here," then sang next, "I Can't Cry Any More." During a pause in this song, she said jokingly, "thanks a lot, good night" then finished the song. Then, "Run Baby Run."

    Then, during the intro to "every day is a winding road": she said, "...every day is a winding road. And you know what, every day *is* a winding road."

    At one point (can't recall which song it was during) she sang "Chestnuts roasting on an open fire" but just that one line. It's as close as I heard to a carol all night...

    Then she said "the best way to turn a man on is to start playing an accordion", and then played just that while she sang a nice version of "Are You Strong Enough To Be My Man?". Then she said, "thank you. This is one by the Rolling Stones. This is called Sway." Then after the song: "Thanks a lot. Merry Christmas. See you next year."

    Note: I apologize here, but maybe someone else knows, but the previous paragraph because of the notes being mixed up could have been someone else!

    **THEN IT WAS TORI TIME...** :D!

    The DJ said (I missed the 1st few words): "...who would I most like to introduce tonight...Not only is she an amazing musician and a great songwriter, she believes in faeries! (Tori Amos)!"


    Then suddenly, there was Tori! I don't know where she appeared from, it seemed like all the others were either on stage already or quickly entered from sidestage right, and quickly onto the platform of the revolving dealie, but Tori seemed to come from a side aisle door or something! (When she exited a blond guy held back a black curtain for her on the side so maybe that was where). All of a sudden, there she was, walking on the bottom level (the thrust-style stage itself stuck out in a half circle beneath and beyond the revolving one, right up to the edge of the audience) and when she got to the center she reached down into the first row (lucky ducks) and seemed to be high fiving them but maybe they were handshakes. She seemed pretty peppy. She wore her hair down, some kind of dangly silver earrings, and a jumper style mini dress with a bright yellow panel down the front and back, and black side panels. There was a yellow circle at the front bottom of one of the black stripes, it looked like a smiley face to me! There was some sort of a figure with red in it on the back, could only catch a glimpse, someone wrote it was a red devil, that could be, that makes sense. She had on a black cap sleeve Tshirt under it and black tights and black almost flat boots.

    Tori sat right down after the handshakes and went right into a medium slow, heartfelt but not *real* sad version of Losing My Religion. I was happy 'cos I love that she covers this, first heard it (in a good placement) during the rape scene in Higher Learning. I hadn't heard her sing it live til Friday. It was my favorite part of her set. Then, she bent quickly from the waist, dipping to her left, while still on the bench, and took a big swig of Evian. Then, right into Precious Things, complete with cute sideways elfin looks and playful (not like I'd heard about in other reviews of other concerts; the hair on my neck didn't go up, it was more like a puppy growl) (but very guttural still--a strange blend). I counted the grrrrl on my hands and got 38 seconds. It seemed very long to me! During it, she crawled her hands up & down her body, and thanks to the closeup (!) we saw that she had pulled her dress up to her waist in the effort! There was a big closeup of her um LAP in tights, thanks cameraman (she says sarcastically). But it didn't seem like any biggie from Tori's end, like a little kid might be.

    The "wash me cleans" weren't as intense as the show I saw at The Greek this last summer (which were heartrending!) or as long. I did note that she sang "Wash me clean Sherry", I think on the first one. I noted that she was playing in a staccato up & down motion, tho I think it was mostly on SATY; tho the mood in general was sort of middle Tori, not real comical, not real fierce. Not that that's a knock. Just a different Tori than I have seen before. My general impression of her that night was, lowerkey, but very strong, playful, and in a good mood. I also sensed her awesome intelligence. Well, it's hard to quantify senses, y'know ?

    She gave a really cute elfin look (eyes up and to one side with a little grin, like a little girl looking at her daddy or something) during "wash me clean daddy." Precious Things ended in a whisper then she put up a double thumbs-up then went straight into "Little Earthquakes."

    I believe this is where Caton came out! (again, correct me, if my notes have been horribly misread):I have down that he had a really cool solo at one point, but again, I was finding blank pages in the pad at random so it coulda been during Cornflake Girl. Sorry....mea culpa

    Anyway: she got in some Tori gestures, including crossing then uncrossing her arms on "here". The "doesn't take much to rip us into pieces" part was really tender, and got a big cheer after, at which Tori smiled. (She smiled each time she got a cheer, if I recall; if she was wondering how many came to see her, she must have felt gratified). Her hands were really hopping up and down fast like jumping beans during "I can't reach you" section. The "give me my" was almost a yell. Her hands were hopping again on the "Wee-ee-ee"s.

    The Cornflake Girl dance was next. Here I shifted position for a better photo (if the word applies) and missed part of the particulars, but she started at the piano bench, then got up and would stop and dance then move then stop and dance etc. She skipped down to the bottom edge of stage center and danced some more, leaning over this way and that, it was all sort of jerky motions followed by childlike skips, then she skipped back toward the piano and stopped and faced away from the audience, and bent over, her hair flipped over her face, and bent her elbows and danced and etc. She finally made it back to the bench, moved a bit, then right into the first chord of Cornflake Girl (of course her dance was to Caton's strumming). It was a longish dance!

    During the "rabbit" part of CG she changed the words. She added: "rabbit don't go don't stay...I know you are with me I know you are here oh my darling I know you are with me I know you are here (oh my darling)" During "the man with the golden gun" part she flipped her hair hard & fast forward & back, then on the next repeat she did it again but subtler. On the next "rabbit" she sang "I know that you're calling sometimes I hear you I know that you're with me so where'd you put the keys girl!" (The 'girl' was said like a sentence not a question. And the 'I know you are with me' s were sung very methodical/staccato.

    Then next was Silent All These Years. (I was disappointed she wasn't talking to us and wondered why). I looked down and noticed the cameraman was caught on a bad angle, he was sort of in front of the Bosey (he was in the very front line of the Pit) and looking up at her and all he could catch above her piano were her eyes and part of her mouth sometimes, so he spent ages on just her eyes (which were moist but she wasn't crying--maybe it was her flu ?) and it was weird but OK with me 'cause it was new. Her eyes looked really blue in those lights.

    She gave another cute sideways look (really just adorable) on "orange clouds" then smiled at the cheer it got. The audience was singing along softly, en masse, during SATY; (I thought I heard it on other songs but for sure here-- and most if not all the way thru). Some were holding flaming lighters; all seemed to be standing; the Tori contingent was strong that evening! It was great. I held up my mini flashlight (I don't smoke) but felt a little nerdy doing that plus it didn't shine much. (side-rant: this singing along was nice 'cos it was all together, and softly done; behind me one show at the Greek was a couple who sang every word on every song loudly and out of tune; they looked so happy I didn't have the heart to beat them--tho I noticed they weren't on the bill--knowwhatImean ?)

    ANyway, (back to last Fri) Tori got huge cheers throughout, and grinned each time. Then she hopped up after SATY, came to the edge of the stage, put out both hands straight in front of her (palms together), then over her head, then bowed (very low) like that, then skipped back the direction she'd originally came in from, and a blond guy held the curtain for her & she disappeared :(

    The crowd expected a mini-encore I know, she'd ended ten minutes sooner than scheduled, (maybe she was on half an hour) and they cheered and cheered, I did too, and we yelled Tori then chanted Tori and at one point the Bosey came back up on the screen so I thought for sure she was coming back, but then shortly afterward, the KROQ Christmas Show logo came up & the audience lights came up brighter & the cheers turned to boos. Then the DJ said he had never hung out backstage with a more quality person than Tori and how genuine she is.

    Well this cafe is closing, where I am writing from, so I gotta go but I have lots more, on Sarah and Natalie and the closing song "How Shall I Send Thee?" and etcetc so will send the rest soon.

    It was great!


    Kim H

    PS, the guy from KROQ said the concerts WILL be rebroadcast and to listen to KROQ for when (my guess is next weekend or the following one). We can all tape it. He said there were backstage interviews which they played snippets of during the original broadcast. And he had many superlatives for Tori, as an artist and a person.

    I know my review may sound a bit too glowing in spots, but, when I like something (or a performer) I really mean it!

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    From another email sent to me by Kim H. (

    Hi! Well here is the second installment! But first a few notes and news. KROQ told me on the phone (well not the whole station but the guy who answers the listener line) the concerts will be rebroadcast beginning at noon on Christmas Day, yes the 25th itself. Who will be able to pull themselves away from festivities for this! Maybe it's to foil tape-ers, I dunno, but well it *is* a Christmas concert so I guess it makes sense. I am just grumbling 'cause I'll be outta town so I hope *some wonderful soul* will tape it for the tape tree ;) hinthint I think the Fri show will be first, then right after it, Sat's show, for 12 hours of continuous music! There were no commercials during the original broadcast, so maybe they'll repeat that courtesy :)

    Also, Fiona was on MTV's Lovelines last night, and tho she seemed puzzled by some of what the callers said (we won't go into that) she also gave some sound 'common sense' advice. Tori was on the Best of 120 Minutes, a clip of SATY from the Unplugged Show. But no more than that :(

    I listened to a tape my neighbors made for me of the Fri show (it ends after the Cardigans tho--before Tori--I only had 2 tapes to give them) and it is primo, I encourage everyone to buy the best quality tapes you can (6 hrs per concert) and tape it the 25th! So, a coupla things I didn't remember well enuf to include last time are, Jewel said that she once lived in her car and had to steal food and toilet paper and so dreams do come true so don't forget your own (memory is tricky--I had had a vague feeling Sarah McLachlan had said that! whatever wasn't in my notes I didn't include for that reason) and Fiona at the end of her set said something like 'thanks a lot, Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah and all that, see you guys later!'

    Oh wow, synchronicity again, I love when this happens, Tori's version of Smells Like Teen Spirit just started playing in this cafe :)

    So now to finish the review (or as much as I can B4 the guy waiting to go online here gets antsy :))

    Sarah McLachlan said: "We did another show in Dallas, we flew here for this one tonite." She wore earplugs or earphones (they fit in her ears but were on a black cord which reached around the back of her neck and I couldn't tell where that cord began). She wore all black, (pants and shirt), had short reddish hair, and very blue eyeshadow! (I mean the crayony kind the drama teacher made the girls onstage in plays wear in high school! DOn't get me wrong tho, she pulled it off, she looked great!) Her backup singer (female) had short blondish hair, a satiny shirt which looked lime green or beige depending on the lights, and black pants. There were 2 guitarists and a drummer. Sarah said "you guys enjoying the show tonite ? This is a girly explosion tonite! That's cool !" and "so don't hide behind a facade--if you let people see your true self they'll probably love you" Then she did "Drunk in my desire" (don't know the titles for her so I'll put lyrics down) on the guitar then said "thank you" then "we're gonna go back to my second record now" then sang "In Terms Of" very softly. Big cheer from the audience. Then she said "thanks very much. So uh I've been in the studio for the past month recording a new record. We just did eight Christmas shows. It'll be out by June because in July or August will be the Lilith Faire (here she says how great the girls night idea is) the only thing is I didn't get to hear any of it (she meant that night's concert) except for some of Tori I'd never seen her before and she's beautiful! I wanna get 'em all (for Lilith Faire) 'cause it's cool. So dreams can come true"

    Reviewer's note: I apologize, this is one of the places where in my hurry to find blank pages to write on, in the dark, it was really hard to find their order later, so I will try and correct any discrepancies after I can listen to a tape of it later.'s close tho I know.

    Then Sarah sang something about "come out at night/building a mystery" then said "I'd really like to thank KROQ I've gotta end" then sang "from across the great divide" during which she forgot part of the words and said "help me out here" (smiling about it) then said "thank you very much take care good night" with a smile. The crowd cheered loudly.

    Well I really should go for now, Christmas shopping, the mall calls, and the guy waiting for the machine has finished his coffee. Will send the last installment soon (this is like a Saturday matinee Flash Gordon serial or something!) it's about Natalie's set and the end song with Tracy Poe Sarah and Natalie singing "How Shall I Send Thee?" and the 1st three got silly and danced together (in sync I mean) and even tried to breakdance! Details later, and also more on KROQ's little details thruout which made it lovely.

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    From a personal email sent to me by BrandNew2U (

    Just got back from the Almost Acoustic Christmas show....

    Tori did...

  • Losing My Religion
  • Precious Things
  • Little Earthquakes
  • Cornflake Girl
  • Silent All These Years

    A VERY SHORT SET which included nothing from "Boys for Pele"...maybe because KROQ hates it and refuses to play it other than when Tori is in the studio.

    Anyway...Tori was third to last. Fiona Apple and Sarah McLachlan used a tiny Yamaha piano and you could hear them perfectly. Tori comes out with her massive Bosey and we could barely hear her :( They had her sound turned way down, and she kept gesturing to them to turn it up but for some reason they didn't. Caton was there, and he was pretty hard to hear too. Most of the crowd was composed of Tori fans which was nice, however it was not as nice as seeing her in her own was pretty much expected. Most of the audience insisted on singing along with every single song and yelling "We love you". If you love her then shut up so we can hear! Anyway...she did the crazy fun Cornflake pregnancy dance as well as the long "grrrrrrrrl" (which we couldn't hear AT ALL because people were screaming) and the scary Precious Things ending with the "wash me clean" lyrics. It was a little disappointing, but Tori is Tori :) Tori was the big headliner and I found it odd that she did such a short set while Natalie Merchant ended the show with about 8 songs which seemed to last forever. The crowd really loved Tori though, and was on their feet through her whole set, and we all screamed and cheered and chanted "Tori!" after she left the stage. This was the only artist for which the crowd did this, and after her set the lights didn't immediately come back on and the spot light eventually went over to the side of the stage where she had left...we expected her to come out for an encore, and evidently so did the crew...but she didn't. I also thought it was funny and kinda typical of her to bring out "Demon Tori" tonight...most of the other artists were upbeat and of course the whole show was out Tori comes wailing "Losing My Religion" rocked. Well, that's about it...overall it was a really great lasted for 6 hours(!) so I'd say I got my money's worth. :)

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    From a personal email sent to me by Chrissy (

    That was an incredible concert last night! Not just Tori, but everyone! By the way, I taped it, but I asked my brother and/or dad to change tapes, and right now I'm at my mom's house, so I don't know how it turned out, but I'm pretty sure they got all of Tori, but not all of Fiona:( If they replay the concert, which I think they will, I will try to get Fiona. For now, I will just tell you about Tori's set, and you can e-mail me if you want to know about any other artists.

    Richard Blade (a DJ on KROQ) said he was asked earlier who, out of all the artists there, would he like to announce. He went on to say that the next performer was a beautiful and talented singer/songwriter and announced Tori. You should have heard the applause. IMO, she got the most screams and applause. She came on third to last (I thought she would have been last, but...). The order of artists was as follows: Tracy Bonham, Poe, Fiona Apple, The Cardigans (More people were there to see them than I would have thought), Jewel, Garbage, Sheryl Crow, Tori Amos, Sarah McLachlan, and Natalie Merchant. Tori looked a lot like how she did in the "Little Earthquakes Days". She wasn't wearing any make-up, and actually looked really tired, but didn't act like it one bit. She wore a yellow jumpsuit with a red devil on the back. She was very expressive, but didn't talk at all I don't think.

    She began with a short version of Losing My Religion, and did a lot of headbanging (you know, when she throws her head back). Then she went right into Precious Things. The grrl wasn't that long, maybe 20 seconds at the most. She was kind of feeling herself up as she did that. When she finished PT, she got a drink of water and threw some on the people in the pit (I had 5th row seats behind the pit!). Then Caton came out and she did Little Earthquakes (I had never seen it live!). Then she introduced Caton and he started the Cornflake Girl riff while she did the wildest mime dance I've ever seen. She didn't just sit on her piano bench and do it, she walked around the stage and walked really close to the pit and did it. It was really wild! Then she played SATY and did her little wave and ran off the stage, with Joel helping her off. I don't even know how long people were clapping and screaming when she went off, with hopes she would come back, but to no avail.

    Chris Hardwick and some other DJ (I forget who, but I think Adam Corolla from Loveline) were talking about how Tori's the best and most genuine when you meet her backstage, and how Sarah's pretty genuine too. Then Sarah said how she had never seen Tori before and commented on how beautiful she is. She also mentioned her album coming out in June, because in July/August she's headlining/arranging the Lilith Faire and how she wants Tori to be there.

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    From a personal email sent to me by Dor (

    Well, I flew to L.A. blindly.. just wanting to see tori and the wealth of online friends i have out there. i didn't have tickets, just the incredible determination (and a couple hundred dollars) with which to get them. fully prepared to contact a scalper should my luck have run dry, i lined up at a tower records near Palos Verdes, CA along with my friend david and about 200 people. we drew out a wrist band (they were doing this crazy lottery system.. it didn't matter how early you lined up.. it was all luck o' the draw. when we all lined up in numerical order, i was the 56th person in line. i was quite sad, because i'd overheard someone saying that last years tickets had sold out in six minutes, and only the first 50 people had gotten seats. eee, i'd be cutting it close. the first seven or eight minutes in line were agonizing. i thought sure any moment the ticketmaster folk would yell out that the show was sold out.. but they didn't..i got up there, and there were only singles left.. no seats together, but i handed the man my $74 dollars and watched in awe as my two tickets were printed out. once i had them in my hand, i was deliriously happy. all the worrying was over.. i had a seat! now all i had to do was hope and pray that the other ten or so people i knew had gotten tickets also. and as we all got in touch later on in the evening i found out that everyone had gotten tickets!! in fact, i had an EXTRA!! i was hoping to give it to a dear friend of mine, but she was unable to take it. after that, i planned on giving it to a friend who was flying in from NYC to see the show. but she didn't show up at our designated meeting place (it turns out she had gotten into the soundcheck and was too busy hanging out with all of the artists to come meet us ) so i literally didn't know who to give the ticket to.

    as it got closer to show time, i decided i would try to sell it. with my GOOD ticket that i was going to keep (it was a relatively good seat) in my back pocket and the bad one (third balcony ) in my hand under my sleeve, i proceeded to the short line at the box office. as i asked who needed a ticket, it became aware to me that the people in line were scalpers. not to stereotype torifans, (or sarah/jewel/garbage fans, etc) but these forty year old men with tickets already in their hand were scalpers, or my name is mud. they definitely didn't look like torifans. they offered me $20 for my ticket. informing them that i paid almost forty for it, i (not so politely) turned them down. after a bit more haggling and hearing embarassingly low offers for my extra ticket, i became frustrated and walked away. thirty feet away, i slipped my hand into my back pocket, only to realize that my GOOD ticket was gone, and all i had left was the horrible seat i was holding the ticket for in my hand. i vaguely remembered someone brushing up close to my pocket back in the line, but it didn't click that my ticket was back there. hmm. needless to say i was CRUSHED. i went from section ten (not a bad seat since i didn't WIN it) to section 21.

    crying, and feeling very violated, i used the bad ticket to get into the show. we all walked to our seat, but i went with david because i didn't even want to see where mine was yet.i was incredibly sad. all i could think about was how far i'd come.. and how happy i had been when i'd gotten a relatively good seat. hmm. i remembered the seat number of the stolen ticket. i went to see who was sitting there. it turned out to be a guy who'd also met tori in the small crowd of people who saw her before the KROQ interview earlier in the week. i asked him how he'd gotten a ticket for that seat, to which he replied "i bought it ten minutes ago for a hundred dollars." i started to cry again. there was nothing we could work out, because he didn't know it was stolen of course, and he certainly deserved the seat for what he had paid for it. i fled the auditorium sobbing.

    i ran into a security guard and decided to tell him what was going on.. even though i was sure there was nothing he could do. i began with "i'm sure you hear things like this every day, but.." and told him the whole story through tears. he listened, and when i was done, directed me to the office of operations, down the hall. i wearily walked there, sure that nothing would come of it, and told my story to a big important-looking man behind a counter. after i was finished, i sniffled real loud and wiped my eyes as he began. "well, you did a stupid thing by trying to sell your ticket in the first place." i nodded and watched him pick up a black and white wristband from a pile beside him. "but how about if i trade you your ticket there," said he as he took it out of my hand, "for this wristband which gives you access to the pit?" i tried not to grin to widely as he fastened it to my wrist. "thank you," i mumbled as i SPED out of the office. i ran into the theater and, as Poe was finishing their wonderful rendition of "grandma got run over by a reindeer", i located all of my friends to tell them my wonderful news, so they wouldn't worry about me during the concert (i had left them last with tears going down my face.)

    they were quite happy for me, and i proceeded to to front of the theater to weave my way through the crowd, with a good spot for when tori came onstage on my mind. i managed to maneuver my not so small body up to the second row of the crowd, and watched the show from like, ten feet away. here are some comments on the first performers. i'd never hear fiona apple before, but had heard much about her. to see her up so close was interesting. she's so tiny and small that she almost looked like a child. her music was alright.. i liked the last song on the piano a lot (something about "never is a promise and you can't afford to lie"). one thing i noticed was her demeanor on stage.. hm. demeanor isn't the right word.. but. she didn't project the same "strong woman" image that the rest of the women really really did. the first words she uttered were "i'm so nervous right now." she just...and i'm sure this is because of her age... came across as still going through a lot of the feelings she sang about, not like, looking back on it as much as tori sings about. i dunno if that makes any sense.. but.. i don't think she's quite there, like tori and sarah really are. but for her young age, she was good. hmm. who else. jewel! oh. i hated her single on the radio.. that saving your soul song, because i don't care for how her voice sounds in the lower ranges at ALL. thankfully she didn't go into that tone in concert.. and i was really impressed with her songs, her voice, and how she interacted with the crowd. there were two obnoxious preteen girls behind me that kept yelling "jewel! play my song!" and "jewel! can i have your guitar?" she finally, after glaring their way for a while, looked over and with a condescending smile said "shut up, please." it was amusing. also, i had never heard her yodel and was quite impressed. the cardigans and garbage were alright.. i'm not really into either of them but enjoyed their music well enough. the worst part of the whole concert for me was Sheryl Crow's set. it dragged ON and ON and all of the songs sound the same. towards the end of her set the people in the orch. pit were leaning up agains the railing with their heads down... it was so boring.

    anyhow. hmm. i thought tori would be last, even though at KROQ when she was talking to us afterwards she said she didn't want to be ("everyone will be going to the bathroom!").but she was something like third to last. she came out wearing a short dress.. it was yellow and black. with black tights. it was pretty, and interesting. it had some sort of weird symbol thing on the front. anyway. she begin with Losing My Religion. it wasn't as um, violent as i'd heard her to it, with her almost yelling "youuuuu, youuu, you" at the end, but it was very emotional. next was precious things, which was very improv-y at the end as always, as well as expressive and emotional. after that was little earthquakes (makes that ten out of eleven times i've seen that song in concert), followed by Cornflake Girl (YAY!! the dance was great.. she came out to the front of the stage and everything. i was so glad to see it again) and then silent all these years. i was shocked as she did her little wave goodbye thing after only five songs (everyone else did more, it seemed) but it was a really great performance. despite rumors afterwards that she was quite sick (she left right after her set), she did really well. i thought she looked like she was really enjoying playing a concert again. she smiled, just GRINNED through cornflake girl... and even seemed so smile during most of precious things. it was sooo good to see tori perform again. she smiled at me when she saw me in the pit. last time i talked to her i didn't even have tickets. heh. i wish she had done a longer set.. but if she was indeed sick (john told someone she was when they tried to visit her backstage before the show) then she did a WONDERFUL job al things considered. hmm. i think that's all for now. more reviews from dor after the new york show in january. : )

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    From a personal email sent to me by Royal Plath (

    My name is Royal Plath, and I recently discovered your wonderful site. I've been a fan of Tori's for a little over two years know. I just wanted to mention that I had the incredible luck of seeing Tori play yesterday at the KROQ show, and it was the best thing I have ever seen (as I'm sure you know!). This was my first time seeing her live, and I nearly came to tears, which is something I haven't done in years. I really can't comment on what happened during her performance, as I cannot remeber any details due to the state I was in. The entire concert was great. It was a "religious" experience. I only wished Tori could have played as long as Natalie Merchant, who played last. At the end of Sara McLachlan's set, Sara mentioned that it was the first time she saw Tori live, and that she would love for her to join the Lilith Fair (as noted on your site). During the last song, Natalie invited all the performers to come and sing a christmas song, but only Sara McLachlan, Tracy Bonham, and Poe came out. I'm not sure if Tori was still in the venue, but I doubted she would have wanted to sing along anyway, it was a bit cheesy (but "nice") and it was some sort of religious song (I just heard something about jesus).

    The entire event was extremely good. Fiona Apple was another highlight besides Tori (though not nearly as moving). I only wish more people could have gotten in who would have appreciated the talent more, alot of the audience consisted of drunks and football players. I wouldn't have even gotten in, but luckily for me, I went to a ticketmaster that had been broken down until I approached it! The clerk said nearly a hundred people had already been turned away. I was first in line, but for some strange reason I still ended up sitting in the back. Well, I'm going to stop babbling. I just wanted to tell a fellow Toriphile of my experience.

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    From a posting to the Torinews mailing list by John Stewart (

    FWD from the Sarah McLachlan list -- thought you all would like to see it :) -- and if anyone else saw the show, we'd love to hear about it I'm sure.


    "Tori opened with "Losing My Religion" and did "Precious Things" next."


    "I got back in time to hear her sing 'Little Earthquakes" which has to be one my favorite live songs. Tori was weird...psycho seems like a good word. Although our seats were pretty far (RAFTERS, did i mention that?) it is a pretty small amphiteatre, so we could still see their bodies pretty well. The cool thing was that they had these two HUGE screens on either side of the stage, and i swear they were focused on her eyes for about 2 minutes. Those two minutes were scary! :) her eyes crossed at one point, and her tongue curled up in this weird way. She looked possessed. It was kinda weird, but cool all the same. She went on to play "Cornflake Girl" while dancing all over the place, and then ended with "Silent allthese years." Her set was the shortest of them all."

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