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I’ve Been Here.. Silent All These Years September 23, 2008

No woman more beautiful, talented, and filled with spirit than this woman right here…

Tori Amos.

She has been written about, filmed, recorded and watched, world-wide.  Tori’s fans are among the most loyal that I’ve ever witnessed.  Her music is not for the dance club scene (well, 95% of the time)… nor is it the BUBBLE GUM POP you see in today’s and previous generation(s). 

Her work is intense, complicated, and each song has a life of its own.. a spirit underneath it that you feel to you the center of your body.  Her songs are not for the faint of heart or for those who take music at face value.  Rather, her work demands your attention if you crave to understand it.  Each song an integral moment and memory of the life of the album… and, they all have different lives, independent of one another.

I became a fan of Tori Amos rather late in life, although I knew Silence All These Years from the radio.  It was one of those songs I’d sing over and over again after I’d left the car (well, that is, the words that I knew… “I’ve been heeeerrreee, Silent All These Years”).  But, that was about it for Tori and I until a woman named Marianne Ellis came into my life.  Marianne is such an unique and gifted person and she knew so much about music that I did not.  Marianne, herself, was a singer and shared with me her musical tastes and singing talents.  One afternoon, she introduced me to Tori Amos.  She couldn’t decide how to introduce me to her… “oh, there is so many I want you to hear… which one?”  Marianne settled on the Little Earthquakes Album.   I fell in love after I listened, with all my heart to Crucify.

…I’ve been looking for a savior in these dirty streets

looking for a savior beneath these dirty sheets

I’ve been raising up my hands drive another nail in

just what GOD needs one more victim…


I crucify myself and my HEART is sick of being in chains

I exclaimed to Marianne that I loved it, but she didn’t realize how much I related to it.

We listened to the entire album, and when I hit Silence All These Years, I said, “I didn’t know she is the one who sang this!”  The album is comprised of the following works:

Crucify – A haunting, relatable song about personal spirituality


Girl – A song about that girl who has been everybody’s girl & maybe one day maybe one day she’ll be on her own.  My most memorable lines:

I ride to work every morning wondering why

“sit in the chair and be good now”

and become all that they told you

the white coats enter her room

and I’m callin’ my baby

callin’ my baby callin’ my baby callin’


Silent All These Years –  A widely played song on US Radio.. Most popular lines:

yes I know what you think of me

you never shut-up

yeah I can hear that

but what if I’m a mermaid in these jeans of his with her
name still on it

hey but I don’t care cause sometimes I said sometimes

I hear my voice and it’s been HERE silent all these years

 so you found a girl who thinks really deep

what’s so amazing about really deep thoughts

boy, you best pray that I bleed real soon… how’s that thought for you?


Precious Things – Her most popular song, in my opinion:

these precious things

let them bleed

let them wash away

these precious things

let them break their hold over me 

he said “you’re really an ugly girl

but, I like the way you…play.”

and, I died

but, I thanked him

can you believe that?

sick, holding onto his picture

dressing up everyday

I wanna smash the faces

of those beautiful boys…

those Christian boys.

so you can make me cum?

that doesn’t make you Jesus!



Winter: A beautiful, melodic song… haunting.

he says “when you gonna make up your mind

when you gonna love you as much as I do

when you gonna make up your mind

cause things are gonna CHANGE so fast.”

all the white horses are still in bed

I tell you that “I’ll always want you near”

you say that “things change, my dear”


Happy Phantom A song about “… and, if I die today…” what she’d do. 

so if I die today, I’ll be the HAPPY phantom

and I’ll go wearin’ my NAUGHTIES like a jewel

they’ll be my ticket to the universal opera

there’s Judy Garland taking Buddha by the hand

and then these seven little men get up to dance

they say Confucius does his crossword with a pen


China: This is a very well-written song with over-crossing metaphors… how distance affects your relationship:

sometimes, I think you want me to touch you.

how can I when you build the great WALL around you?

in your eyes, I saw a future together.

you just look away in the distance.


Leather The opening line tells it all: look I’m standing naked before you don’t you want more than my sex?


Mother My favorite line: I walked into your dream and now I’ve forgotten how to dream my own dream you are the CLEVER one


Tear In Your Hand  By far, my favorite song on this album, despite the fact that Winter, Crucify and Silent All These Years is on here. He doesn’t know all the power he has with my tear in his hand: 

I think it’s that girl

 and I think there’re pieces of me you’ve never seen

maybe she’s just pieces of me you’ve never seen

 well, all the world is all I am

 the black of the blackest ocean

and that tear in your hand

all the world is DANGLIN’…danglin’… danglin’ for me DARLIN’

you don’t know the power that you have

 with that tear in your hand tear in your hand


maybe I ain’t used to maybes

smashing in a cold room

cutting my hands up every time I touch you

maybe it’s time to wave goodbye now

time to wave goodbye…. now

If you have ever lost your entire soul to a man…  and then lost him… especially to another woman… this song will rock your soul!


Me & A Gun  A song about rape


Little Earthquakes  these little earthquakes doesn’t take much to RIP us into pieces




Little Earthquakes is where you should start, if you do not know or love Tori Amos.  Although Enterainment Weekly obviously disliked the album:

Forewarned is forearmed, which is why you might want to know that singer-songwriter Tori Amos thanks ”the Faeries” in the acknowledgments on Little Earthquakes. Amos’ thrushlike voice is quite pretty, but it’s hard to enjoy it — her songs are too self-consciously weird, like the gnarled wax candles produced in droves by ’70s art students who read too much Tolkien. Some of these tunes do have glossy, polished surfaces: The lush orchestral washes that skim over Amos’ spare piano lines in songs like ”Silent All These Years” are agreeable enough (if sterile), and Amos’ jazzy fern-bar piano inflections dress up ”Happy Phantom” and ”Leather.” But the Faeries themselves might be embarrassed by the chorus of droning voices intoning, ”Give me life, give me pain, give me myself again” on the title track. And when Amos sings (in ”Tear in Your Hand”) that she can’t believe her lover is leaving her just because ”me and Charles Manson like the same ice cream,” you’d be willing to bet that neither Manson nor ice cream has anything to do with it.

, another review reads:

Review by Steve Huey
With her haunting solo debut Little Earthquakes, Tori Amos carved the template for the female singer/songwriter movement of the ’90s. Amos’ delicate, prog rock piano work and confessional, poetically quirky lyrics invited close emotional connection, giving her a fanatical cult following and setting the stage for the Lilith Fair legions. But Little Earthquakes is no mere style-setter or feminine stereotype — its intimacy is uncompromising, intense, and often far from comforting. Amos’ musings on major personal issues — religion, relationships, gender, childhood — were just as likely to encompass rage, sarcasm, and defiant independence as pain or tenderness; sometimes, it all happened in the same song. The apex of that intimacy is the harrowing “Me and a Gun,” where Amos strips away all the music, save for her own voice, and confronts the listener with the story of her own real-life rape; the free-associative lyrics come off as a heart-wrenching attempt to block out the ordeal. Little Earthquakes isn’t always so stomach-churning, but it never seems less than deeply cathartic; it’s the sound of a young woman (like the protagonist of “Silent All These Years”) finally learning to use her own voice — sort of the musical equivalent of Mary Pipher’s Reviving Ophelia. That’s why Amos draws strength from her relentless vulnerability, and that’s why the constantly shifting emotions of the material never seem illogical — Amos simply delights in the frankness of her own responses, whatever they might be. Though her subsequent albums were often very strong, Amos would never bare her soul quite so directly (or comprehensibly) as she did here, nor with such consistently focused results. Little Earthquakes is the most accessible work in Amos’ catalog, and it’s also the most influential and rewarding.

OK, I think I hate Enterainment Weekly, now.  In any event, Tori is for some, but not for others.  I can’t say enough about it.   For somebody who is seriously interested in hearing the entire album, please contact me so that I can arrange to get something to you.