Don’t Forget the Songs-365: Mach Tres: Day 62
Fri. Mar 29, 2013
“She’s Your Cocaine”
control it/ then
she says you
it/ then she
the way she
“She’s Your Cocaine” is Tori’s channeling Zeppelin’s charged stimulation a-la Robert Plant with shades of her lyrical wicked dark lusciously lip stick flavored “Strawberry Fields Forever” that any lusty addict would love to discover. The strength of From Choirgirl Hotel comes from the lascivious backbeats from drummer Matt Chamberlain.
During the making of Boys for Pele percussionist Manu Katché recommended that Tori find her own drummer. Amos followed Katché’s and invited Matt Chamberlain to record and tour with Tori. Chamberlain talked about working with her in Ann Powers book, Tori Amos: Piece by Piece, when he said, “Tori’s the only person I’ll tour with. I hate to tour. It’s usually a boring drag. With Tori, though…she’s strong and musical it’s different. You feel like a better musician being with the tour.”
But it’s more than touring with Tori, Chamberlain described to Ann Powers what he brought to Amos sound in From Choirgirl Hotel, when he explained, “I don’t really contribute to the melody; I contribute more to the color. I’m like the context and texture person, who helps determine whether a song is going to be earthy, light and ethereal, funky or rock.” “She’s Your Cocaine” is the definition of the latter and Chamberlain brings the wanton backbeats reflecting the seductive need behind Tori’s sexy lyrics. Amos explained how she brought the sultry nature of her “Cocaine” Choirgirl to life when she said, “For “She’s Your Cocaine,” I put on this tiny black body, jeans and high heels, got a margarita and walked outside for 30 minutes to drink Tequila in Cornwall, in the freezing November night.”
You can tell from the opening keys that “She’s” not the “China” girl from Little Earthquakes past, Amos has a new aftershock of sensuality that will shake you. “Cocaine—” like its title it’s not for the shy or timid hearted. Tori Amos described the character in “Cocaine” as, “She not being me, she being the one that he’s obsessed about, and whatever we think of her is whatever we think of her – probably we think about her in cruel.” On reflection, Amos tried to find some compassion for her rock chick counterpart as she explained, “It’s very much about thinking you were loved for who you were, and realizing you weren’t, and realizing maybe you don’t love yourself… You can only be you. A lot of times that’s not enough for some people.”
You can feel the hurt; the angst as Tori uses teeth with her lusty Choirgirl anthems with her biting lyrics. Tori explained the inspiration behind the songs on Choirgirl when she said, “Each song would show me a certain side of herself because of what I was going through. So a song like “Cruel” came to me out of my anger. ‘She’s Your Cocaine’ and ‘iieee’ came out of a sense of loss and sacrifice. And other songs celebrated the fact that I found a new appreciation for life through this loss. There’s a deep love on this record. This is not a victim’s record. It deals with sadness but it’s a passionate record — for life, for the life force. And a respect for the miracle of life.”
Tori claimed she was referencing her rock chick days of Y Tori Kant Read, but “Cocaine” reflects the scars that may still remain from an addiction, a liaison or loss that once was skin deep remains a tattooed memory, fading more scars once forgotten… brought to life within the stunning fills of drummer extraordinaire Matt Chamberlain. “She’s Your Cocaine” hits you like once before, Tori Amos most dynamic Choirgirl cut is one of the most seductive songs in her musical canon, inhale “She’s Your Cocaine—” the one hit you thought would last, cuts fast before you finally leave that last line and let her fade to black.