Tori Amos casually entered the room wearing a knee length pleated dark denim skirt and a blue and white striped dress shirt covered by a long, dark denim buttoned down jacket.
Black boots finished the outfit topped with a pink fuzzy beret to one side with her red, wavy hair flowing underneath.
A coffee mug in one hand, Amos sat down for interviews before her Nov. 16 show at the Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford, Conn.
She addressed the questions with great depth, honesty and creativity, seeming incredibly content where she was.
She said what motivates her to continue each day and get up in the morning is due to the loss of her best friend. Life is what we make of it and it’s easy to look at the tough side of life, she said, and that you don’t get the same life again.
“It’s in our hearts,” she said. “I believe somewhere there is consciousness and enlightenment and I believe I want to be awake for this, now.”
Balancing work and family, Amos is a mother of two-year old daughter, Natasha. Amos brings Natasha on tour and calls her the “director of entertainment.”
“I’m more comfortable being a mom than anything else,” Amos said. “I’m still a musician, a nurturing force and I’m better all around.”
Amos said motherhood exposed her to a new life and put her priorities in perspective.
Constantly in the public eye and dealing with personal struggles Amos said, “I really had to pull back and ask myself, why do I have to make everything be okay?”
Amos said that a person’s definition of happiness is his or her key to success and that she thinks happiness is an underachievement.
When asked how she would describe love, success and happiness, she covered her eyes and contemplated:
“Success is about not being seduced by happiness. Sorrow is not a bad friend to have.”
She said it is truth that you have to deal with and in times of trouble, happiness does not necessarily matter. When someone experiences sorrow, happiness doesn’t know what to do.
“She’ll drink your last glass of wine and it will piss you off,” Amos said.
Amos personified success and happiness to further illustrate her point. She said there is a lot of change in the music industry and that it is hard to know where to fit.
“If you hang around long enough, you change, you move,” she said. “It’s not a competition. There’s room for everyone at the table. If you try to be them, there is only one chair for that and they are probably sitting in it.”
She said there is this karaoke idea that you can do it better. There’s a fantasy side and she said she thinks that it is okay.
Amos was asked if it was hard to return after her two-year break.
“I don’t know if you feel like you ever go away,” she said. “It’s perceived that way but I wasn’t in a cave or anything.”
She said it is important to have a breather.
“You have to regenerate because as a writer it is easy to write one great work, but after that you have to know the skills, learn them, to become a writer,” she said.
Amos said she never stops being a song writer, not even in the shower.
“It’s something you take with you,” she said. “There are layers to it. You surround yourself with it.”
For Amos’s new CD, “Scarlet’s Walk,” she chose photos that resonated her lyrics.
She was looking at photos from the 1920’s and 30’s. She bought loads of books and looked at images that affected her.
What she found were pictures of people who have been through troubled times with their country. She said you get a feeling for what you want.
When asked how her music is a form of activism, she said, “How do you get through to a generation that could change everything right now?”
She said there is a large amount of concern in the political world and dealing with terrorism.
“You have the power within your hands across this country,” she said. “Is it that you don’t realize your power, or is it that there is so much distraction to survive each day?”
Amos stressed that this is the time of the young generation, and if they want to make a change they can.
“You are the generation that can network like no other, and what I don’t understand is why you don’t,” Amos said.
She said that it is up to this generation, more than it is up to her generation.
“I’m old, you’re young, it’s really up to you guys,” she concluded. “We have to hold a space for you to pick up your torch.”