North American Plugged '98 Tour
Tori performed in San Jose, CA on September 19, 1998 at the Events Center Arena SJSU during the main North American leg of her Plugged '98 tour.
Tori performed American Pie and Smells Like Teen Spirit solo. Special thanks to Matt Page for calling me on the phone with the INCREDIBLE set list. Tori performed her encores in a really cute leopard outfit, which you can see pictured below. Thanks to Audrey who sent me the photos.
The most recently added reviews are first.
October 4, 1998 - WOW!WOW!WOW!..... that's just it...WOW! i've never seen Tori before and oh god,it was THE most amazing experience i have ever had.
I was diassapointed i didnt get to go to the meet and great,but the show totally made up for it.The Devlins were great.I'm from Ireland too so it was kinda neat to see them up there.and then God came.
I was screaming my head off,i musta scared my dad.but there she was.After all the pictures and the albums and the songs and feeling like tori was so godly and out of reach,there she was right in the same room as me. She broke out with Precious things,one of my favourite songs,and i began to scream louder.It was unbelieveable.Ive never seen anything like it.She did it all....the lights...the "cum" line....and the GRRRRLLLL...oh man!I found myself starting to cry.the teaers were coming and i knew there was nothing i could do about it and that i didnt care.I looked around at my friends and their eyes were all wet and glassy too.
The whole set was awesome.Smells Like Teen Spirit kicked royal ass.She did the last part really loud and the lights were just beautiful. I was completely absorbed in the music and yet completely aware of what was around and of the experience i was having and that no one else was feeling the same things as i was but that they were all having a completely different ecperience but a truly great one and one they would never forget. Playboy Mommy was sooooo sad,and the acustic bass set the perfect mood. The finale(before the encore)was waitress.It of course rocked.
we knew there would be encores but we didnt think tori was gonna dress up as a cat,which was great and totally unexpected.What was even better was that she played Rasberry Swirl.I really wanted to hear that one because i just couldn't imagine hiw it could be done live.So,she did it,and it was unbelieveable.
The whole night was awesome...i know nothing can ever top it...i know that she really touched me in a way no one has before and no one ever will.And now i look at pictures of her and she doesnt seem so far away and out of reach and there's something very heart warming about that.
From Kim Stone (Posted to the RDTRN mailing list)
September 29, 1998 - ok, so i ended up at both SJ and LA, 9/23. yippie! ok, just a few notes on these two shows. I bought tix for LA ages and ages ago, and had average seats -- toward the front of the middle section (as in, front, middle back ... not side to side). But the SJ show was a fluke -- I ended up there visiting my bf on the day of the show, so we decided to try and get tickets. I was so happy with them! They were in line with the third row, and off to the left side; there was no obstruction of vision though, so they were great.
I though the set list was wonderful, but Tori's voice sounded a bit harsher then it was before. It sounded fine in LA though, so perhaps the sound difference was because we were only about 10 feet from the speakers. I've never had the pleasure of sitting that close, so is much sound difference usual? I tried for a while to pay attention, and keep up with the songs in my head like i usually do, and look around at all the musicians as well as tori, but about half way through I had to accept that the music was just going to wash over me like a big wave. It was a different feeling from any prior concerts; maybe it came from being so close to the stage and speakers. There wasn't really any separation between her voice and the rest of the music -- needless to say, I suppose it was good to know lyrics, this time! It was just a really amazing experience; more like being a part of this swirl of sound, and not just observing it. And then came the cheetah costume! Amazing :-). Oh, and Matt is just enthralling to watch as well. I've never seen a drummer work so hard!
And my tori-liking-but-not-crazy bf liked the show a lot too. so i bought him the black shirt. and then we went to denny's. redstamen, you went there too, right? what do you look like? anyone else?
LA (9/23) was great as well. The seats weren't nearly as good, but the sound was crisper. I could understand her since there was a bit more space between me and the speakers, and (consequently, maybe?) her voice sounded richer. She also sang tear in your hand, yay yay yay! it just got me thinking, how far i've come from 3 years -- has it only been 3?! -- that i discovered tori. and, i took an musically openminded but not a fan friend, and he came out really respecting tori, and liking the show. and then he went and bought the winter single. ah, spreading the word. mebbe i was an evangelist in a former life. ha!
From Rynn Fox
September 24, 1998 - Blessed events with a high priestess and the Goddess...
Oakland ROCKED!! Got to meet STEVE THE SWEET FAT MAN.. very cool and we conversed on de phone de noche before.. he's very polite and a good conversationalist..
I also got to go to the PHENOMENAL SAN JOSE SHOW!!! ..and I met THE RDTrn DOMINATRIX~ VIOLENT VIOLET~!! *HEY GRRL! Who too is a sweety and was wearing a beautifully naturey Celtic shirt that I have to find and buy somewhere...
but San Jose was a BLESSED event
at both shows Tori was in PRIME channeling form I could totally feel everything. It was like I was touching life's vibrance with every cell and world in my body- it completely permeated me. it was intoxicating.
But San Jose.. for all the pain in getting the tickets it was worth it..
to make a long story short...
BASS fucked up..told me I'd faxed and cancelled the tix which I had -but- not by BASS tix.. I'd faxed arena and cancelled the xtra pair of tix I'd bought at the arena well a worker took my dad's credit card # off of the comp and bought themselves tix and cancelled my BASS ones.. I found this out 10 days before the concert and was CRUSHED CRUSHED CRUSHED!! But mom and dad pulled through -for once- and got on the horn and told BASS that he expected seats for the concert and he expected them to be what I had (7th row, floor seats) or better...
well I got the tix... :) :)
and proceeded to the pre show meet and greet.. was 45th in line so that makes me about 3 people behind the barricades. FOR MY LITTLE SISTER'S (she's 7) BIRTHDAY I WANTED TO GIVE HER AN AUTOGRAPHED COPY OF THE TOUR BOOK. But alas I doubted I'd get to see her so I gave the book to one of the girls I'd met at the meet and greet in hopes she could get it but she couldn't but STEVE THE SWEET FAT MAN came to the rescue and was a sweetie.. he gave tori the book and said something to the effect of,"this is for my friend's sister." to which Tori supposedly rolled her eyes and Steve went on to protest that he was telling the truth and gave Tori my only pic of my little sister looking like she'd been playing hard on the playground. when I heard Steve say that he was telling the truth, I climbed on top of this guy, shot my hand in the air, waved it like mad and said, " it's true I'm her sister! THANk you TORi! Thank you Steve!!" Then she came over to where I was, signed FTCGH and after saying her name urgently 3 times she looked up and I was able to thank her for making LE and music in general as well as tell her that her music has changed my life and given me inspiration and I told her I just had to thank her from the bottom of my heart. so I stuck my hand out and she gripped it and I thanked her again..
IF YOU WERE AT SAN JOSE's PRE SHOW MEET N GREET I WAS THE ONE WHO WAS PASSING UP OTHER PEOPLE's STUFF SO OTHER PEOPLE COULD GET THEIR STUFF SIGNED! ( I was also the 1 beggin people to back up cause I was getting all woozy) so E-MAIL ME PLEASE!! - email@example.com
So I passed people's stuff up so Tori could sign them until Joel got annoyed at me (TOUGH AGENT ORANGE)and said," no more passing." I think he looks like he should be on highlander.
one of the girl's there (firstname.lastname@example.org) was nice and took pic's of Tori at that meet and greet for me...so if you're here..MUCHAS GRACIAS!!!!!!
But I get home and am soo happy, but... my friend from B-town cancelled the day of the concert and I was left scrambling to find someone to go with. Enter my bud from college Emily.. she didn't even know any Tori songs she only knew her from SPIN and Rolling Stone artist lists, never heard any of her songs or anything....SHE LOVED IT! She had a great time she said it was one of the most erotic things she'd ever experienced...
Precious things- the anthem of my adolescence, made me cry
Little Amsterdam- OHMIGOD it ws soooo erotically moving
iieee- I always imagine the burning times witches singing this song
Cornflake Girl- acapella intro cool
Playboy Mommy -made me cry!
the day the music died (solo)
w/ Smells like teen spirit (solo)- two amazing songs I couldn't contain myself!
Donut Song- My fave BFP song STUNNIN!
CALS~ on bosey- good eatting all the way
Hotel~ AHHH!! The premiere!! It was SOOOOO good considering I always blare this song throughout my dorm's halls!
The waitress- murderously sinful
She's your Cocaine- addicting
Raspberry Swirl- Em and I got up and danced our way out to the meet and greet during this song: she came out in a cat suit and was so flirty with Caton and the audience...
Pretty good year- but I wasn't there
Post show meet and greet-
I was right against the blockades and got to meet Caton when he came out. Shook his hand and told him he did an excellent job tonight and that he was a phenomenal guitar playa.. I also asked him to wish me luck on learning how to play the guitar. He said he wished me all the god luck in the world...After about 1 hour of waiting Tori came out and came over to wear I was next to this faery guy and skater grrl.
I handed her my LE tape (the tape that healed my life) and she signed it Rynn (heart) Tori Amos and I proceeded to tell her that I was the sister of the little girl who's picture she had (I was gonna ask her for the picture back but didn't). I then asked her what she was going to do with it and sarchastically she replied," o.. I dunno. throw darts at it." I told her she couldn't do that cause she my sis was too cute. Then I asked if I could have a picture with her and she said, "sure.' so I know have a pic with Tori even though I don't know if it came out. (oh god I hope it and the rest of my pics come out!). Then she moved on and I listened to other t-philes ask her favorite thing questions. I wanted to ask something that would sound intelligent and get a well thought out response out of Tori.
NOTHING WAS COMING- but...(thank god for my journalist training)
out came the question: DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR THE ASPIRING MUSICIAN?
and she proceeds to tell me that I have to be true to the music and to myself. While remembering that you have to sell music or you lose your record contract. And that getting on fm radio doesn't necessarily mean that you'll sell music.
TORI THEN WENT ON TO SAY (& I remember this verbatum)
I put my hand over my heart and told her I felt it and I understood it completely. I then thanked her again.
It was REALLY mind blowing~
September 23, 1998 - i got to go backstage after the show (!!!) and joel led me and a couple new friends (there's nothing better than making new tori friends, is there?) to a room with a few tables and chairs. there were about 10-12 people there, us included. jon evans, the bassist, came in to chat with his friends...people he knew from the area and such....after a bit, jon mentioned the leopard costume. he and matt chamberlain had gone shopping that day and found a cool second hand store. when they stumbled upon the leopard costume, they both laughed. then jon held it up and said, 'heeey, this would fit tori!' they laughed again, and promptly bought it. he said it was perfect for tori because she is a leo and is very cat-like.
then matt came in, and said hi. i said, "hey, matt, what are you pounding on during Raspberry Swirl?" he said, "it's an old oil drum with springs and a saw blade attached to it." I said, "it sounds beautiful." he said, shyly, "thanks."
jon was talking about all the travelling they are doing and i asked him if he was homesick (he's from san francisco) and he promptly said, "No," (much to my surprise. guess i just cant imagine *not* missing san francisco ;) and he added that he Loves all the travelling and is loving this tour. :)
From Steve the Sweet Fat Man
September 23, 1998 - Well, OK, so I didn't actually technically meet and greet Tori. But I did go to the San Jose meet and greet, and I came away with some fresh new observations on Her Toriness.
I went by at about 12:15 and got a number (25) placed on my hand by a nice young woman wearing a "Got Faeries?" t-shirt. When I got back at about 2:30, the Rynn Grrl was there, so I hung out with her and chatted. The air was very casual at this point.
Anticipation grew more heated as we were eventually lined up according to number by a nice woman with red hair (no, not THAT nice woman with red hair). People were generally well behaved, although there were a couple of folks I wanted to just slap. (Let's just say the Cornflake Girls were there.) Then, we bunched up around the barricade, not so much in order anymore, but whatever. I was fairly close to the front, enough to take pictures with my tacky little disposable camera, anyway.
After awhile, Steve came out and lectured all of us. He was very stern while laying out the ground rules, and accused us of "not giving him anything" in the way of cooperation. But this was obviously just a "bad cop" routine to let us know who was boss, which was perfectly appropriate. Any of you out there who get pissed when Steve and Joel are stern with the crowds....well, you shouldn't be. Their job is to protect Tori, and they do it well, while still allowing reasonable access.
Finally, after several false starts (folks coming out the door to good-natured "awwwws" by the crowd), the doors opened and Tori came out with Joel. The first thought I had was that, without makeup, she looked 35 years old. And I thought that was great, because after all, that's how old she is! Sometimes, in pictures, she looks a little TOO pixieish. She looked like a real woman here, beautiful but real.
The second thing that struck me was how Zen she was. Serene. Evolved. She was warm with the crowd, but not too warm. Reserved. At first, she seemed almost distant, but then she started to warm to the folks there, feed off their worshipful energy and become a practiced object of worship. I tell ya, if this music thing ever falls through, she could go get a job as a member of a royal family somewhere. She's got it down.
So what did I get to say to her? Not much, really. I don't do the autograph thing myself, but I had something to sign for Rynn's little sister (just seven years old and a huge Tori fan herself), which Rynn had given to a friend because she was nervous that her higher number would mean no signature. (The friend gave it to me after Steve informed us that only one thing per person would be signed.) So, the extent of my communication with Tori was, "Could you sign this for my friend's little sister." Tori got a "yeah, right" sorta look on her face; oh sure, this big guy is going to play on my sympathies and then keep the autograph for himself. But then, she saw the little photo of Rynn's sister that Rynn had slipped in the book, smiled, and slipped the photo in her pocket! (Rynn said later that she hadn't actually intended Tori to keep the photo, but it was certainly OK that she had.)
So anyway, I was left with an impression of Tori that really pleased me. Yes, she is warm to her fans - genuinely warm. She genuinely gets something back from the meet and greets. But she's also very insistent on her space, and that is a very, very good thing. An idol of secular worship like Tori could very easily get swallowed up by the idolatry. That ain't gonna happen with Tori, because she sets her boundaries. Good for her!
As for the show that night, it was very nice, though not quite as connected and personal as Oakland. Which, to me, drove the final nail in the coffin of the "arena concerts bad" argument. How much Tori connects with the audience has nothing to do with the size of the arena. (The San Jose place was much smaller than the Oakland place.) She's simply too good for that. Some concerts will just be better than others. And even the ones that aren't as good will still far outshine the live work of almost anyone out there.
Her song selection was really interesting; lots of stuff from Pele, including a version of "Caught a Lite Sneeze" that blew away the studio version entirely. There was a lovely bass solo by Jon before an exquisite "Playboy Mommy", and an "American Pie/Smells Like Teen Spirit" medley which was absolutely stunning. And for her encore - well, let's just say that Tori Amos is the only person alive who could sing a song called "She's Your Cocaine" wearing a leopard suit. No, not a sexy leopard-print leopard. A leopard suit, with a hat and a tail. She really is nuts, you know.
And she really is, bar none, the best live performer of music that I have ever seen, and ever hope to see. That simple.
September 23, 1998 - Here's my late review of the San Jose Tori show, because I'm way too busy with work and my work took away my home pc. I know this is ridiculous, but if you are the Emily whom I spoke to after the show sitting behind all the fans at the meet and greet. The Emily who's an english major and goes to sfsu, please email me! I REALLY want to go out with you, but passed up the opportunity at the time. email@example.com
Anyways, I was front row standing, about 2 feet to the left of Tori. Got some awesome pictures of her, including some of her in the leopard costume. I just hope they come out alright in the dark, I didn't use flash. Anyone else who got pictures upclose like me, please contact me, I'd like to trade pics. I gave her pictures of herself with me and other fans from the 1996 tour, including pics of her greeting fans at the same venue and some of her at an aftershow party from the Fillmore concert. She actually played American Pie and Teen spirit like she did last time she played at this venue. Boy, just when I thought my seat couldn't get any better than second row center(the beset I ever got), I got to stand front almost center and take pics. I was a little timid about it, because during the last tour Joel threatened to rip out the film of my camera if I took pics. This time when Tori was in her leopard suit, I took pics, he saw me but did nothing. But this other guy I saw behind the stage(security) was pointing at me and saying something probably like(hey, that guy's taking pictures)...I was like oh shit, and put my camera away. I saw Caton sort of snickering that I was singing along to Tori's songs. Also being so upclose, I noticed she also had a Kinney doll(south park) in front of the piano or amp with a punk collar on...I think I got a picture of that too. And if anyone can locate a picture of Snoopy and Winnie the Pooh on the dashboard of her bus, please contact me, I want a copy so bad. Lastly, I think I saw you Shari at the preshow greet, I think you were right besides me holding a bouquet of roses. That was a pretty cool story you told about your expereience. I gotta make this one brief sincee I'm at work now.
September 23, 1998 - Just wanted to add my two cents: This was not the first Tori show I've seen. The first was Boys for Pele in Sacto, which was a truely religious experience. I became a Tori convert then. This San Jose show though, was less reverent. She went disco! It was a great show with a perfect set list, but I really missed the Tori stories and her relating with the audience. It was a lot less personal, but it sure did rock. I did think the band drowned her out and that more Tori, less strange band members, would be a great help. Sadly, my sister was not converted. I wish Tori could touch her heart like she's touched mine. One more thing: have you ever noticed that the more you listen to Tori, the more songs you begin to understand? May the faeries help her continue to inspire.
September 23, 1998 - I went to see Tori for the first time in San Jose (sept. 19th) and it was absolutly incredible! I especially enjoyed her costume. She seems to have a great sense of humor and knows how to have a good time. She did a great job of "Rasberry Swirl" and I look forward to seeing her again in concert soon.
From Erin Ahern
September 21, 1998 - The San Jose show was great. Before the show we got to get to see Tori. I asked her to play Pretty Good Year, and then I told my friend to ask her, and she said she would "put it on the list". So the whole concert, which was great cause I heard Little Amsterdam, Playboy Mommy, American Pie, and Hotel.... i was waiting for Pretty Good Year. I had left my really great seats to go to the top and try and get out to see her after the show. When Pretty Good YEar came on I started crying, it was kinda funny. I just felt like it was for me, and I had wanted to hear it for all the shows I had went to. It was the perfect closer. There were so many people out to see her after the show, i got pretty close, but then left. Anyway.. One of the best parts of the day was seeing Tori, and meeting the other Toriphilles. Like Aaron, who was very nice and seemed that Tori liked him a lot too. It was a great 3 shows for me! I hope everyone has fun in Santa Barbara and LA!! YEAH TORI!! P.S. The leapord costumes were the CUTEST thing i have ever seen. She looked like a little cuddely teddy bear. The whole time she had the biggest smile on her face, it was so funny!
From Chloe (posted to the Precious-Things mailing list)
September 21, 1998 - Hmm...Tori did American Pie -->SLTS, and PGY last time she was in San Jose. It made me think about how she's said that she draws on the energy of an area to form the setlist. Has anyone else noticed that she's played songs in your city that she played on previous tours that she hasn't really played very much on the current tour? (Did that make sense? =D)
Various comments on SJ show...I was thrilled to hear the premiere of Hotel! It was wonderful! And when she came dancing out for the encore she was wearing this adorable leopard suit that had a tail, hood with ears on it, and little paw mittens! It was soo cute!
From Ali Fard
September 21, 1998 - I too was a lucky contest winner of sorts and got a chance to meet/take a picture with tori at San Jose State. I just wanted to add that since I go to the school, I got a chance to hear 3 of the soundchecks .. one was Sugar, one was an endless rendition of Hotel, and the last one was Father Lucifer .. she played Hotel a few times.
From Alden Harbour Keith
September 21, 1998 - I was extremely,extremly dissappointed with the show last night. It just seemed to be a mockery for everything that she used to be. Tori didn't seem healthy at all on stage, she might have had a cold or something. This might have been why she didn't talk so much. The set list was,well, to put it bluntly, horrible. The sound from the band drowned out Tori for just about every song, and that really upset me. Gone was the driving power of Tori and her piano. It was just a huge rock show. I know, I should have expected as much after the Filmore show last May, but this was horrible. She played only popular songs, no real Bee Sides, and I was just unimpressed by the whole deal. I hope that this may be the last tour that she does something like this. I know she popular now, and it will be hard to for her to play at intimate clubs anymore, but I really wish she would. It's not the same anymore. Nothing is. Maybe I just wasn't in the right mood for this, I have been extremely sick for the past week, and just really out of it. The medication that I was put on has just made this whole week really surrealistic, and after the show, I just wanted to break down and cry. It was so bad. Yeah, the Cheetah costume was cute, but it really just made things seem even weirder than they were.
From Mickey Sun
September 20, 1998 - I have always had good vibes with Tori and San Jose... The last show I saw of her here back in '96 was the most memorable of my life. I had not originally planned on seeing Tori play at the Event Center because I was in Anaheim the night before for her show at the Pond, and driving *back* to San Jose within a twelve hour time span was not my idea of fun. However, the thought of not seeing her in San Jose did not sit too well with me at all, so I drove back anyway (hey, it's Tori). Boy. am I glad I did it! She did not fail to disappoint... This show was simply incredible. "Hotel" finally made it to the party! Tori also played "Playboy Mommy", "Caught a Lite Sneeze", "Crucify", "Little Amsterdam", and others. I was elated when I heard the familiar chords to "American Pie"... It's one of my favorite covers and she played it for a good 3 minutes instead of the usual 2. As usual, Smells Like Teen Spirit came after and it was one of the better renditions I have heard in a while. I was grinning like an idiot when Tori came out dressed in a leopard suit for the first encore. Tori is truly an amazing musician... She closed out the show with "Pretty Good Year". It was a pretty good way to close out a pretty good show. :)
September 20, 1998 - last night was truly the happiest night of my life. i really don't know if it could be possible to even try and top it. i'm still blown away.
so what happened--julia and i went to berkeley (took the BART) and hung out for a couple of hours. we both spent way too much money at the vintage stores and i didn't even have dinner because i knew i had to save money for a tori program and at least one shirt. at that point, though, we didn't even know if atlantic had sent julia's tickets yet. see, we had soundcheck/backstage passes and pretty good seats. if those didn't come through, we would be in row twenty-six.
but we figured out once we got there (at 4:20 PM--we missed the meet-and-greet. we were there, but way too far back to pass her anything. julia did get her cornflake girl book signed though.) that they did come through, and we were going to get to meet her and talk to her. there were fifteen of us radio station winners. we met a really sweet girl named sheila from seattle whose boyfriend couldn't come. she was crying through the whole experience, which is okay because i cried too. actually, i cried a total of three times. once when we found out we did have the tickets, the second when we were walking down the corridor to the "backstage area/locker room," and the third when she played "smells like teen spirit/american pie," but that comes later.
it was a pretty nervewracking experience waiting for tori to come into the locker room. we all sat in a little circle thinking of things to say to her. i kept shaking and making sure our camera was working- we couldn't hear the soundcheck too well, but from what we heard it was "hotel," "father lucifer" (a seemingly endless version of "father lucifer") and "doughnut song." i was really happy to hear "ds" because it's one of my favourite songs...
and then when she finally came in it's like a dream. it's really hard for me to even think about it because it doesn't seem real. i remember giving her our flowers, and getting the polaroid with her. she asked me if my name was a nickname or my real name and that she liked my butterfly hairclip... julia asked her "how she does it" and she answered "the crew." i asked her if "merman" could make an appearance and she said no, but that she would do something "really cool." and BELIEVE ME, she DID.
after we got our tori merchandise and suffered through the devlins, she came out. we had row U seats, which weren't extraordinary persay, but pretty damn good.
Precious Things - i expected her to open with this but it still blew me away completely.
Little Amsterdam - never my favourite song but i was pleasantly surprised. SO GOOD.
iieee - "they took my little girl..." rocking of the stomach. powerful.
Cornflake Girl - obviously. the radio favourite. the crowd went nuts.
Playboy Mommy - julia really liked this.
American Pie (solo) - i couldn't figure this one out for the first half, then i started crying hysterically when i figured out what it was. it turns out another radio winner (sheila i LOVE YOU) requested ap/slts. i would have never, ever, EVER in my WILDEST dreams expected her to play these two. julia, i'm sorry if my sobbing distracted you...
Smells Like Teen Spirit (solo) - i just kept right on crying through this. like i said, i never would have expected it.
Doughnut Song - i had a feeling weeks before the show that she'd play this. it was so beautiful. since i was already crying, i just cried through this one too.
Caught A Lite Sneeze - one of my favourite "boys for pele" songs. it rocked. then again, so did everything else.
Hotel - is this the first time she's played "hotel" on the plugged tour? anyway, it was INCREDIBLE. the lights weren't distracting at all.
The Waitress - she added a long "improv" at the end--"i believe in love, i believe in you, i believe..." as well as the "hang ten, hang ten" at the end.
First Encore: tori comes out in a leopard suit!!!! she was soooo CUTE!
She's Your Cocaine - again, the lights were incredible.
Raspberry Swirl - i felt like i was at a disco. i got up and danced and i'm not a dancer.
Pretty Good Year - the "heyyy what's it gonna take" part surprised everyone for some reason. it was like a collective gasp thing.
September 20, 1998 - I'm very exhausted from the concert, but I'm still ecstatic as all heck about the incredible setlist!!! I was at the Sacramento concert on Wednesday, and I just have to say that Tori Amos is a completely amazing woman...she blew me away tonight.
Before I say my bit about the actual show, I just have to stick this little story in. Just a little before the Devlins came on, (who were better today, I thought, than Wednesday....and he had great hair! :) ) my friend, Amy, wanted to get another t-shirt. Well, the woman behind the 'counter' gave Amy ten dollars too much change back. And the weird thing is, I think she did it on purpose because she stared at Amy while Amy calculated everything in her head. When Amy honestly gave the woman back the ten dollars too much, she said, "Good things will happen for you tonight." And boy was she right!!!!! Tori played an absolutely beautiful set and I couldn't ask for more!!
Now...on to this amazing show. From the moment she stepped onto the stage, I could sense that this was going to be a very different show. She seemed to me to have a kind of sad air about her, and I was worried for awhile that she wasn't feeling herself. I think her throat was bothering her because she had a jumbo cup of tea by her Evian. She also didn't do much talking tonight, but her exquisite setlist made up for the lack of Tori stories (well, kind of! there's no such thing as fair trade when it comes to Tori Amos).
Well, to make a long story short, my hands were shaking uncontrollably as she sang "American Pie" because I suspected what was coming next...and by the time she was done with "Hotel," I was one happy horse in the sea. She also did some really great improvs before "Little Amsterdam" and "Cornflake Girl." I didn't think the show could get any better than that until the first encore came around. The band started to play "She's Your Cocaine" and eventually, Tori sluggishly waltzed onto the stage in the most adorable leopard suit. There's still enough smiles in me for next year from seeing her in that suit!!! At some points during the song, she wagged her leopard tail and lifted her hand from the piano to wiggle her ear. Not many people can be adorable without making you want to retch!! It was hilarious!! :) She was exuding all kinds of energy tonight, but for the first time, I realized what a sincerely lovable woman she is....just an all-around silly gal!
I've said too much already, so I'll leave the rest of the details to someone else, but just before I go, I want to say...what a great show!!! There aren't words in the language to describe what I saw tonight....I'm off to invent a new word as I slumber..... :)
From Beth Winegarner
September 20, 1998 - For the fashion watch, Tori was wearing a black off the shoulder top, black pants, and a grey lace apron dress. (The rude women standing behind me at the show kept screaming "take off your apron!"). And of course the leopard suit, which was cute, especially during Raspberry Swirl when Matt was in his glowing deely boppers. (Jon and Caton need costumes too!)
The floor for Oakland and Sacramento stood for pretty much the whole show (at Oakland, oddly, everyone sat down halfway through "Hey Jupiter," but then stood back up when the band returned). At San Jose, people would stand for the hits -- CfG, CaLS -- or the dance numbers -- Hotel, RS -- and would sit down for songs like Little Amsterdam. I couldn't make any sense of it, but was glad not to have to stand the whole time!
Hearing "Hotel" was amazing. A lot of people know that this is one of my favorites from the new album, and I was so disappointed she wasn't playing it from the start. For a while it was looking like it might not happen. But when I started realizing she was practicing it a lot, and it looked like it'd debut at one of the Cali shows... well I got pretty excited. Oakland and Sac went by ... no Hotel... and then tonight there it was! I was bouncing! Violet said that during the song she figured I was probably peeing my pants right about then. :)
"Hotel" came out a little slower than the album version, and cut off with the "King Solomon's Mines" bit (and not the keyboard "horn" solo on the album). The "I have to learn..." part was played on the piano rather than the keyboard (which I am assuming is responsible for the harpsichordlike sound on the studio version). But it was together, and nobody messed up, and the "where are the velvets" (err... I mean 'ventrues!' :) ) part was just fantastic.
It was also wonderful to be treated to "American Pie/SLTS." One thing I noticed no one pointed out yet is that Tori waved her arm for everyone to sing along with the chorus of "American Pie." She rarely has sing-along songs in that way, so it was nice to be able to share with her like that. And of course hearing SLTS was wonderful -- she plays it so rarely. I've never heard her do it live before.
And PGY was the perfect ending. A great show-closer at any time. But it seemed to be a special message to the Northern California crowd; she mentioned she had been seeing many of us 'up and down the coast.'
Tori didn't talk to the crowd much; she omitted the post-second-song 'so how are you guys?' and waited until after (I think) i i e e e to say anything to the audience, and then she introduced the band.
That's all the energy I have for now; I'm sure other people will have more to say. Definitely a great show. I'm glad I managed to be there.
From Matt Page
September 20, 1998 - Matt was extremely excited when he called me on the phone. He said this was one of the best shows of the tour. Not only did Tori perform "Hotel" for the first time during the Plugged '98 tour, she also performed "American Pie" for the first time as well. (Tori did play Smells Like Teen Spirit at her birthday show on August 22, 1998, but not American Pie.) During previous tours and after Kurt Cobain's death, Tori would always preface Teen Spirit with American Pie. She did the same thing tonight, but Tori sang more from American Pie than she did in the past and in a way it was its own song. Tori was also extremely playful and funny tonight. When the first encore started, the band played the musical intro for "She's Your Cocaine" for what seemed like a long time. When Tori finally took the stage, she had a leopard costume on. It was a full body costume complete with a tail and a head piece with ears! It was so cute and the crowd went completely nuts. She played both encores in this outfit, though she did take the head piece off for the second encore.
September 20, 1998 - okay, so i broke down and spent the LAST of my money on one more tori show this tour. After Oakland's vaguely disappointing set, I was sceptical about san jose.
WOW am I glad I went. I think this had to be the best tori show i've seen. The vibe was intimate, i had damn good seats (considering i bought the tix at the last minute), the set list was incredible and diverse -- HOTEL!!! American Pie/Smells Like Teen Spirit! Oh, and many Boys For Pele appearances, which seems to be rare this tour.
Tori wasn't too talky. She mentioned that some people were popping up at lots of the west coast shows, and how much fun that is. Then said that she'd try to catch up on the requests tonight.
I was looking forward to telling Mike about the leopard costume first, but a stop at denny's on the way (yay onion rings and adrenaline!!!!!) delayed me :) hee hee.
I can't believe it -- i still have full body chill bumps about a few moments tonight. Tori is so fucking cool.
SO FUCKING COOL!!!!!
September 20, 1998 - well i just got home..Geeze, those guys got to you fast!!! Since you already know the setlist and all, I dont have to repeat it..The leopard outfit was soooo cute...I tried to meet her afterwards, but the crowd was a little rowdy and she went back after about 15 minutes! Oh well, at least i got to see her up close ! :-)One complaint about the concert though: the band tends to drown her out and it was really hard to hear her at all sometimes. It was REALLY loud, nd sometimes it was hard to even tell what songs were being played because you couldnt hear music...But it was really really great....Precious Things and Cornflake Girl really rocked, but Raspberry Swirl got the place jumping!! I guess it was our "discoed" version of a song instead of Horses , like it was at the others.. I was kinda bummed that she didnt play Spark or Jackies Strength, but oh well...I was just psyched to see her at all. I dont know if someone mentioned it, but one of her band members (i think) came out with this hat with yellow police-car lights..you know, the kind that spin and flash....I was seated on the floor, and everyone STOOD for almost the whole concert..Now I'm a shorty, so this wasnt good..there was a lovey dovey couple in front of my friend Stacey and I and they were kissing about every five seconds...When they were apart, i could see Tori just fine, but joined...AAAGGH! ...Reading through the reviews, I see noone mentioned trying to meet her...Oh my, what a nightmare..They kept telling us, over and over BE QUIET OR SHE WONT COME OUT...Did anyone listen????? No! I can totally respect Tori's need for calm when she comes out to see us, but apparenty the majority of the crowd did not.... When they finally calmed down enough, Tori came out and said hi..She had her hair back, and she was wearing jeans and a green Tshirt..They had kind of an L-shaped barricade. and she was way down at the other end from me but i still got to see her.. Then these STUPID girls at my end wrecked our chance.. They were obviously intoxicated and started screaming about their love for Tori....but not very politely....Someone from security escorted them away, and five minutes later Tori had left, without reaching my end. Although I was bummed that i didnt get to meet her for the first time,.I honeslty didnt blame her at all..Id be scared too. As we were leaving, some girls were falling down on the lawn crying hysterically..Either they met Tori for the first time (which I could understand) or they were throwing a hissy fit..I dont know....I dont know if anyone else had the same experience as me, but i was really embaressed by the wasy some people acted...i felt bad for Tori too, because it was kind of a yucky way to end what was a really great performance and what looked like a fun evening for her.
PS..I just want to say I am genuinely happy for the people who did get to meet her, and i want to applaud the people that DID behave... Oh, and thanks to the nice guy who gave me his place in line at the barricade, even though it didnt matter..That was really sweet.
PS..one thing...even though the crowd was bad outside, everyone pretty much behaved during the concert as far as screaming/talking/ect... They were ok then...
From Bert James Hall
September 20, 1998 - The show tonight was amazing! I saw her in Sacramento last Wednesday, and she seemed to be doing alot better. Her voice seemed a bit tired in Sac, although she talked to the crowd more there. By far the highlight of the show tonight was the debut of "Hotel". I can see why it took them so long to get it down, but they all did well with the tempo changes and it came together beautifully. I am proud to have been present at the final choirgirl's introduction. Hearing "Playboy Moomy" tonight made me remember hearing "Me and a Gun" for the first time on stage...overwhelming. She is an amazing woman.
This was also my first time hearing "Pretty Good Year" with the band. Since secret time was only one (and a half) songs, I was kinda hoping for another solo song before the finale (which I expected to be Horses or Pandora), so PGY was a real treat cuz it was like having both a solo song and a tune with the boys (and let me just say that Jon Evans looked very sexy playing that upright bass!) I also was pleased at the way "She's Your Cocaine" has evolved since I saw her in May at the Fillmore. I still think that out of all the songs, the four of them kick ass the most on "Precious Things"...it gels so well, I almost can't imagine it with just her and the Bosey (I said almost...)
I'm sure everyone will write about the cat suit, so I'll just say that I smiled so big when she came out in that that my cheeks are still recovering.
My dream of hearing "Space Dog" has not yet been realized, but i still have two more shows to go! LA on the 23rd and Las Vegas! If those shows are even half as good as this one I'll be on cloud nine.
From Joel Spitzer
September 20, 1998 - Hotel was good but it'll get better too! I don't think the crowd realized what was going on. Dough! PGY and Caught a Sneeze, Amsterdam, and Rasp Swirl were really good. She came out in a leopard outfit for the encores. Just being silly I guess. Show was great but the crowd was more into it in Sacto.
Still we got Hotel'd....
From Trent (posted to the ToriNews mailing list)
September 20, 1998 - Well, I just returned from quite a night at the San Jose Event Centre. Needless to say, this was a very lovely show she put on tonight. I won't go into great detail (I suppose other people will), but lets just say that she suprised me with American Pie and Hotel. =) My friend and I were livid.
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