Boys for Pelé recently turned 20 yrs old and I feel it apt to give it a mention. It was the first Tori Amos album I listened to, and you know, as firsts go, this is a pretty awesome one. I was attending music college preparatory school (gymnasium we call it in Sweden) and I just felt so behind the other kids, because I had my way of playing which didn’t include Stevie Wonder’s greatest hits on piano, no, it was very much my particular way. I couldn’t copy anybody , which at that age determined your cool factor, if you couldn’t=not that cool. Well, where I went to school, anyway, I can’t answer for the rest of them. And in the early 2000’s, there wasn’t much piano based music either that I knew of, if it didn’t have a lot of guitars as well. Maybe the likes of Vanessa Carlton, but I didn’t identify with her at all. Then someone mentioned the name Tori Amos while listening to my music, saying: “it’s a compliment, it really is”.
I saw Boys for Pelé sitting at my local library and thought I’d borrow it just to have a listen. Little did I know; that one act pretty much changed my life. I heard her pushing down that pedal on the Bösendorfer for the first song, and I was hooked after that. It pretty much went on replay ’til I hade to return it to the library, and I realized I couldn’t live without her.
I also realized there was no better partner in crime to accompany my music than the piano, so I invested in my first proper keyboard to be able to write again, as I had moved away from home and couldn’t use the old piano in my mom’s sitting room anymore.
Boys for Pelé wasn’t recorded in a studio, which feels strangely apt for me as well, since drums are pretty much the only thing I record in that environment. I’m saving up to get the vinyl copy, because I revisit it from time to time and I feel I need to make the vinyl journey now.
Simply put, I wouldn’t be where I am now without Boys for Pelé. Happy 20th, you sexy beast of an album, you.