10 Songs For People In Love

Hello world! Efrain here from Drive All Night: The Songs of Tori Amos Podcast. It’s that time of year again, Valentines Day. We are willing to bet that whether you are single or partnered, you have an opinion on Valentines Day! These opinions often pit friend against friend, sister against brother. Well fear no more! This year we are offering sister playlists for you. Whether you are Crazy in Love or a Single Lady on the Go (like us), there’s a batch of songs to fit your mood. And remember, these playlists are built to be listened to, so click a link below and start feeling it. Also, while you’re at it, check out our Tori Amos Podcast and please consider making a contribution to support the work we do!

Ten Tori Songs for People in Love on Spotify
Ten Tori Songs for People in Love on YouTube

Bouncing off Clouds
We start our playlist with this bouncy number from Tori’s 2007 album American Doll Posse. This, without a doubt, was Clyde’s most upbeat song, and it served to remind her (and us) that everything doesn’t always have to be so dramatic. It’s you who is in charge of how you see things, and sometimes you just need to turn those umbrella frowns upside down and let yourself feel the love. (Key lyric: Make it easy / it’s not as heavy as it seems)

Sweet the Sting
We will never forget 2005 when Tori confidently strutted onto any stage that would have her, any radio program that would host her, and began to feel herself. “Sexy Sexy Down uh huh” she would chant, “Sexy Sexy Down, uh huh.” This, for us, is permanently embedded into Sweet the Sting, and reminds us how sexy and strong love can be. An absolute highlight from The Beekeeper, this song also houses what we feel is one of the sexiest lyrics Tori has ever written. (Key Lyric: I laid my weapons down with my pistol fully loaded / a hunted man to my root / will it end or begin in your cinnabar juice?)

Dolphin Song
Now there’s just something about love. The right partner can bring out the sweet, silly side of you in a way that absolutely no one else can. It’s hard to explain, but it’s delightful and fun and we all live for those moments. The 2006 collection A Piano, among its many unreleased gems, brought us such a track. It’s hard to deny that Dolphin Song is a tribute to love. It’s clear that in this song Tori is feeling her man, cherishing him, and honoring all that she feels he does for her. When you find someone who can chase that storm away, Tori infers, you best hold tight. (Key Lyric: yes I know, I know the lengths that you’d go / to bring the roughest tide in / smooth like dolphins )

Jackie’s Strength
It would be impossible to compile this list without including this cut from Tori’s 1998 album From the Choirgirl Hotel. The was the first album Tori released after getting married, and no track on Choirgirl talked about that new relationship more than Jackie’s Strength. I mean, just watch the video for crying out loud. Here, on her wedding day, Tori reflects on her past and the part of herself that thought she would never get married, never have a church sanction her love. But she did choose love, and she found her way on her wedding day. Beautiful! Here’s to everyone else doing the same! (Key Lyric: make me laugh / say you know you can turn me into the real thing / so I show you some more and I learn )

The sole entry from Tori’s 1999 double disc To Venus and Back, we see Lust as the next chapter in the love story. Here more than anywhere else on that album, we watch Tori’s relationship with Mark evolve. She talks about experiencing a whole new kind of lust, a lust that is born from trust and patience. For those in long-term relationships, it can be a challenge at times to keep the lust alive. The love doesn’t go away, but the lust doesn’t always get nurtured as much as it should. So this Valentines Day, take a moment and remember the key to long lasting relationships is patience, trust and making your partner feel absolutely wanted and desired. (Key Lyric: rolling and unrolling / coiling, emerging, running free / running through the underworld into your room)

SISTER PLAYLIST: Ten Tori Songs to Remind You Why You Stay Single

You Can Bring Your Dog
Here at Drive All Night Headquarters, we find this song to be so sexy and flirtatious. I mean, how could you not?  We’ve got the coquettish, eyelash-batting piano met by the masculine, motorcycle-revving growl of the electric guitar.  Knowing this call and response comes from Tori and Mark directly (pardon us, Mac Aladdin), just adds another element to that playful flirtation. If Tori’s body of work was Grease The Musical, You Can Bring Your Dog would definitely be Tori’s “Summer Nights.” (Key Lyric: But you still that somethin’ pretty boy / You still got that somethin’ as a man / You still got that somethin’ / Of this I know)

Never Seen Blue
New love is the greatest thing – that time when everything is fresh and exciting, and you’re learning so much about the other person. When your cold, dead heart is ripped from the bottom of the ocean and infused with new life and vigor. The only thing that could possibly make that new love greater, is realizing that this person might actually be the one. You know, the forever one. Though released in 1998 on the Jackie’s Strength single, this song was originally written for Tori’s 1996 album Boys For Pele, when her relationship with Mark was newHere we watch our young heroine chronicle her new love and, by the end of the song, we see a very deep change. By the time she sings “Say goodbye to those you loved” you know without a doubt that she has. (Key Lyric: And I’ve never seen blue like the blues he drives / in and around and through me again)

Wild Way
Fast forward nearly 20 years, and you’ll find this track from 2014’s Unrepentant Geraldines. Here, you see a very different side of the long-term relationship, and we intentionally placed this after Never Seen Blue to showcase those stark differences. If you’re lucky enough to watch your love transform into a lifelong partnership, then be prepared for every facet of what that relationship has to offer. There will be good days, there will be bad days. Here, when Tori tells her lover not to forget that he loved her wild way, it speaks volumes of the journey they’ve taken together. (Key Lyric: yes there was a time you didn’t always get your way / back there where my heart was not so easy to invade)

Edge of The Moon
There are few things greater than finding the person who stirs the Lucy inside of your soul, or as everyone else would say it, makes you feel alive again. A standout track from the 2011 song-cycle Night of Hunters, here we find ourselves looking back on our great love. In this song, the central pair has allowed outside forces to tear them apart, but by remembering their wonderful moments together and the wonderful connection they had, our heroine is able to repair things and rebuild their love. By the time we reach the joyful second section, we are right there as well, doing what it takes to get back to the man who stole our heart to begin with. Sidenote: Dolphin reference  (Key Lyric: Now I’m going back past that marmalade sky / ’cause you’ve got my waxing and waning / as primitive goes you can stir the embers of the Lucy inside of my soul)

There is an upper echelon of Tori Songs. Songs that, we feel, transcend Tori herself, and belong to the universe. Songs that are written in the stars. Gold Dust is one such track, closing our playlist like it closes 2002’s Scarlet’s Walk: with utter, heartbreaking perfection. From Phil Shenale’s complex and devastating string arrangement, to the nostalgic vocal, we are reduced to tears every time we listen to this song. Gold Dust teaches us to enjoy every moment because too soon, it will all be gone. Hold your love’s hand. Kiss your love’s face. And just be here. (Key Lyric: How did it go so fast / You’ll say as we are looking back / and then we’ll understand we held gold dust in our hands)
We followed a strict set of guidelines when making this playlist. Nothing off of Midwinter Graces, no improvs, and namely, no covers. But when all was said and done, we realized we had to bend the rules and toss in at least one cover. This was the hardest decision though, because there are so many to choose from (shout out to Thank You, A Case of You and Father Figure). But we ended up choosing Angie over all others because, even though this song speaks of a love that didn’t make it, we’ve never heard a more perfect tribute to absolute true love.  The desire and commitment of love, through good times and bad, feels so pure here both in the original and in Tori’s vocal. Tori is able to find the heart of the song, and she masterfully illuminates it in a way that only she can. If you’ve ever been in love, you know what she’s singing about: That while sometimes relationships come to an end, certain love will exist forever. (Key Lyric: All the dreams we held so close seemed to all go up in smoke / now let me whisper in your ear)
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