Back in 1997, my friend Edie told me that her favorite albums were Beggars Banquet by the Rolling Stones and Little Earthquakes by Tori Amos. I immediately bought both albums because that’s the sort of thing a 23 year old does when an incredibly hip 35-year-old woman from Brooklyn gives him insight into her music tastes.
Beggars Banquet remains my favorite Rolling Stone album, and I often think of Edie whenever I hear “Parachute Woman.” It sounds like it was written for her — even if she was only six at the time.
Edie was almost 30 and older than Amos herself when Little Earthquakes was released. It intrigued me that hte album had cross-generational appeal. The video for “Silent All These Years” was an unavoidable MTV “buzz clip” in spring of 1992. Tori didn’t register with me then, but I was hooked on her voice as soon as I listened to the album in full five years later. So, thanks, Edie.
My favorite Tori Amos song is actually not on Little Earthquakes, though. It’s a single she recorded with electronica artist BT called “Blue Skies.” It, along with “Parachute Woman,” has turned up on more than a few mix tapes/CDs I’ve made in the 15 years since that first conversation with Edie.
I lost touch with Edie a few years later (in those pre-Facebook days), but wherever she is, I’m sure she’s “laying a solid rhythm down.”