VOYAGES OF RC! Tori Amos: The Unrepentant Geraldines World Tour, Fillmore Miami Beach (8/24/14)
Unrepentant Tori Amos Spreads Her Gospel
By: Derek Kearney
After years of masculine devotion from afar, I was finally able to personally experience all that is Tori Amos, live and in glorious color. After getting over the intimidating femininity of her first album, “Little Earthquakes” (which I eventually became man enough to love), I have been a devotee since her second album, “UnderThe Pink”. I always wanted to see her live, but I never had the nerve to see her on my own without the camouflage of female accompaniment, nor could I ever find someone who loved her as much as I did in the social circles I occupied. Finally, I connected with a lovely, Cuban fairy-girl who loved her beyond earthly reason and we vowed to go together one day where I can free the feminine side of my soul, undauntedly! As a diverse and hip crowd of all ages, the loyal masses gathered at the Fillmore to bear witness to their Scarlet matron of femininity. And, despite my expectations, there were far more men than I ever expected, men like me and even men not like me at all there. But, as expected, the majority of the crowd were of the fairer gender, ready to lip-synch and sing the lyrics of Tori songs that have become part of the soundtrack of their lives.
Before Tori emblazoned the stage with her presence, we were treated to the cozy folk songs of Trevor Moss and Hannah-Lou, while a majority of the crowd was still either lounging in the lobby or making their way to their seats. The English couple harmonized to their acoustic guitar, strumming in a very soothing and unobtrusive way that didn’t interrupt what the unsettled crowd was up to at that time. Their pleasant guitar-plucky-jingle-jangly songs such as “A Proud Surrender” typified their entire set and we witnessed the chemistry that lead to their marriage and partnership. Even though they hadn’t captured the attention of the still gathering crowd, I was happy about their good fortune in joining Tori on this tour.
Photos: Derek Kearney
Alas, when Tori takes the stage to her lovely song ‘Parasol,’ my favorite song from “The Beekeeper,” I finally have my Tori virginity gently plucked away from me. She appears to be more stately and serene from the imagery I previously envisioned, a young, writhing chanteuse at her piano in live videos. She is now fetching and very becoming in her grey leather pants and super funky wedge shoes. And her voice, truly as angelic as ever… God, she is mesmerizing! There was the “totally Tori” bi-piano straddling that she manages so well, a unique playlist that included a wide array of songs from her 14 album catalog, and the highlight for me, covering two of my favorite songs: ‘Tear Drops’ by the Cocteau Twins and a Tori-ized version of Michael Jackson’s ‘Billy Jean’ during the Lizard Lounge portion of her show that included pre-recorded musical accompaniment. The excited, yet polite, crowd sang along with Tori, knowing all of the lyrics and punctuating the set with the occasional shout-out of “We love you TORI!” turning the Fillmore into one very large, cozy living room of love. Only until the last song before the encore, ‘Cornflake Girl,’ did the crowd choose to stand en masse. All her truly loyal fans knew that this was their window of opportunity to rush to the stage and dance along, a ritual I was not familiar with, as I watched my friends disappear and make their mad dash towards the stage.
Overall, this was a religious calling and I finally got baptized. I have finally seen Tori Amos, live.
Derek Kearney is a freelance photographer and avid concert goer. We welcome his initial contribution to Rock Cousteau.