Somewhere out there, tickets (as good as ours) from July 13th’s FANTASTIC Tori Amos concert would have sold for more than $400. We spent only $50! This has definitely renewed my faith in Ticketmaster, considering that I’ve NEVER found tickets as excellent as this–selling for its face value. We were on the second row (Row B, aisle 3, seats 109 and 111) right smack in the middle of the main orchestra. This has got to be the best $50 I have ever spent in my entire life–even better than the first time I watched her live in 2007.
One Eskimo a London based indie group opened ever so promptly at 8:00 p.m., and while their ambient music was beautiful, the wave of anticipation that surged within me was meant for only one act. Tori walked out and greeted the crowd with arms outstretched as if to embrace all 3,000 of her fans with a smile that gleamed from ear to ear. Crowned with long fiery red hair, her dress was fringed with cowboy trimmings across her arms and it draped asymmetrically past her tiny waist, over shiny electric purple tights and three inch heels. Entranced by the very mere presence her and the bacchanal introduction of Give, we all stood up and cheered on as she nimbly moved across the stage towards her Bosendorfer where she curtsied and sat herself down between pianos. I fumbled to get my camera photo ready and managed to get a hopelessly blurred photo of her, in spite of how close I was (apparently, all my motor functions ceased as soon as I saw her). She then threw her head back, hair like flames, as she uttered the first line of the song with fierce confidence, “So you heard, I’ve crossed over the line”. What followed was a dangerously erotic, dark, albeit pleasurable hexing through sound and sheer emotion.
In a segment called the Lizard Lounge, where on previous concerts was her alone time with Bosey (her beloved piano) Tori talked about how she loved the Paramount theater and how a movie of her was made the last time she visited. There was unfortunately no mention of its release date, though the affirmation that it would–someday, was enough to keep us going. She then went on to talk about her conversation with her daughter, Tash.
“Tash I’m going to play this song”, said Tori. “You’re kidding me” uttered her daughter. “No, I’m not kidding you”. “You don’t know that song” Tash replied sharply.
“I don’t know any of the fucking songs I play”.
“So you haven’t guessed who it is yet have you?” Tori asked the audience.
None of us knew what was coming. Now, of all cover songs that she has skillfully mastered in true Tori style, no one expected it would be Britney Spears’ breakout single. I never knew a pop song as ubiquitous as “Baby One More Time” can have such fiendish depth and poignant lyrical insight. Tori singled out the undulating desolation beneath Britney’s catholic school girl accouterments and released its lyrics and emotions into the wild with sadomasochistic flair. “Hit me baby, you always do, hit me baby one more time”. Twelve more songs followed after her surprise cover song, including Carbon, Precious Things, and Tear in your hand– some favorites of mine.
As posted in my previous entry, I have been a fan since Tori’s career started out as a little earthquake, until today, where I find myself a part of cult fanbase that proclaims how her music has guided, helped, comforted, and entertained us. Hearing a song from her first album like Precious Things (among other songs) LIVE after seventeen years brings back so many memories of my angst ridden teenage days. And though my angst has long gone (overriden by the occasional pathos that gnaws at me) her songs, old and new, are still relevant because they transcend the shifting paradigms of our lives.
Looking through her past repertoire and performance from 2007’s American Doll Posse Tour (See Dec. 8, 2007 setlist below) where I sat SO far back it felt like lawn seats, I was given a second chance at the Paramount to see her up close last Monday. Now, with a new and almost primeval awareness of the senses–the fresh blood on my lips from my first kill, I can’t help but want more. More concerts and front row seats, because as far as sins go, I now plead the third of all seven. Greed.
Sinful Attraction Tour
July 13, 2009
Paramount Theater, Oakland
A Sorta Fairytale
Beaty of Speed
Baby One More Time (Britney Spears Cover)
Martha’s Foolish Ginger
Strong Black Vine
Tear in Your Hand
American Doll Posse Tour
December 8, 2007
Paramount Theater, Oakland
Putting the Damage on
Cloud on My Tongue