Why I Love Kesha

My relationship to Kesha is a curious one. She appeared at a weird time in my life.

On the surface, Kesha seems to be everything I hate about pop music: trite unoriginal pop songs with simple melodies and attention-grabbing hooks but otherwise little substance, cliche or vapid childlike lyrics, shallow subject matter that deals only with partying, sex, vague relationship woes, and verse-rap bragging peppered in between overly-synthesized and overproduced electro pop that is substantive enough to be entertaining but not enough to be unique, and lackluster vocals that are autotuned to the point that no one could have seriously thought the artist was ever really a decent vocalist to begin with in the first place.

I get that. I get the problems with Kesha. I get the reasons that people don’t like her. The above paragraph might lead you to believe I can’t stand her, but curiously nothing could be farther from the truth.

I started out hating her for all of the reasons mentioned above. Like everyone else on planet Earth in 2009, I too was subjected to endless repetitions of her breakout single Tik Tok on the radio, and like everyone else I was annoyed by it’s vapidity but secretly just a little bit entertained by it. But really, I genuinely didn’t like her. She sounded plain trashy. She clearly looked like a hot mess. Her aesthetic has always been “rave girl who hasn’t showered in several weeks and rolled around in garbage and glitter.”

But the truth is, Kesha is not what she appears to be. And the weird thing about is, she isn’t the OPPOSITE of what she appears to be either. She makes frivolous pop music, and she MEANS to do it, she means what she’s saying. She WANTS to be a pop star, and she isn’t making pop music ironically to try and expose the flaws in the medium. The pop music she’s making is genuine.

There are a group of listeners who consider Kesha to be another drop in the bucket, overly-autotuned pop singer cranking out tunes mostly made by producers, with little talent for songwriting or for singing. This is not the case. Kesha isn’t vapid or dumb. She’s incredibly intelligent, she has a genius IQ and received nearly perfect SAT scores. She’s driven and passionate and knows what she’s doing. However, don’t let that lead you to believe that Kesha is in fact an architect and student of Victorian literature whose lifelong art project has been to deconstruct the mythos of the pop star by playing one, laughing pretentiously in her study at night over a glass of sherry at plebeian pop fans who’ve bought into her charade.

The thing that makes Kesha unique among a slew of pop stars is the fact that she’s entirely authentic.

She comes from a humble background. In a life story that seems almost too perfectly fitting with her dirty rave girl aesthetic to be true, Kesha’s mother got incredibly drunk at a party and doesn’t remember the hookup that led to her becoming pregnant, and nine months later gave birth to Kesha Rose Sebert without the slightest idea (or worry) about who the father was. Kesha was raised by her single mother, a wonderful hippie songwriter called Pebe, and together with her brothers the family seems to have lived in an open, accepting home environment. Kesha definitely has hippie elements in her personality, and she speaks with a gentle slur that makes it sound like she’s always intoxicated, and a Californian accent that immediately calls to mind the movie Heather. I think. I’ve never seen Heather. Moving on.

Kesha moved to Nashville to become a musician, and spent many years writing her first album Animal. She made a lot of friends in the business, including fellow newcomer Katy Perry, and her first major role in the pop world wasn’t in her own song but as an extra in Katy Perry’s I Kissed A Girl music video. Go watch the video and near the end there are several sexy blonde girls sitting around a pool with Katy, and there she is, she even has her own close up shot for a moment. Kesha also wrote songs for many other musicians while working on her first album. The first song to put her on the map was Flo Rida’s “Right Round,” a simplistic and artless reworking of the classic song You Spin Me Round by Dead Or Alive into a sugary pop-rap tune with almost no substance whatsoever. When Flo Rida was working on the song, he decided he wanted to try out having a female vocalist on the chorus, and Kesha was working nearby in the same studio, so she was pulled in and recorded some vocals for the chorus. Because of some legalities, or the absence thereof, when Right Round became a worldwide smash hit, Kesha received absolutely no royalties for the song, and continued to live the life of a starving artist scraping to get by, while her voice was playing on every radio in the country and she remained unknown and unpaid.

This is where the infamous dollar sign in her name comes from. Her name is almost always stylized as Ke$ha, leading to some cute jokes in which people pronounce her name Kee Dollar Sign Hah, but it was conceived as a joke about the irony of the circumstance Kesha found herself in: everyone would assume she was rich, being in a worldwide hit single, but she got cheated out of any share of the money. As time would tell, she was cheated out of a lot by the music industry and the shady characters therein, and I’ll come back to that in a bit.

So, enter me. A ninenteen year old gay kid living in the south, struggling desperately to deal with a tumultuous life, and just coming out of a rather powerful bout of Christian zeal. I spent about a year of my life completely devoting my time and energy to being a Christian, and I took it very seriously, and I even achieved some small level of peace, but ultimately I realized it was a coping mechanism, and this time when I came out of Christianity I left it behind for good.

I was fairly aimless at the time. I’d hated school my whole life, and I’d graduated a year earlier. I did not want to go to college because I just hated school and didn’t want to experience any more of it, but I didn’t want to work either, both because I hate the tedium of boring and strenuous minimum wage jobs, and because I’ve been dealing with debilitating anxiety since I was sixteen, complete with rolling panic attacks that for all intents and purposes never really end or begin, but just go on forever. I wasn’t medicated whatsoever at the time, and I was struggling with severe agoraphobia that was developing in my life.

I was in a relationship that was both abusive and incredibly unsatisfying. I was entirely aimless, I was sad, I was lonely, I was horny, and I was frustrated in every possible way. Spiritually, sexually, emotionally, and mentally, I was frustrated to a breaking point. But I’d never had any suicidal tendencies (yet, that would come later) and never self-harmed, so I had no outlet, no real way to truly break down.

My boyfriend and I took a trip to Virginia and spent the night at some friends’ house. These friends happened to be another gay couple, and they threw a party which involved two more gay couples. One of those couples left once the drinks started flowing, leading to there being a grand total of six of us in the house. We got drunk, we got horny, and I, having never actually been drunk before, was eager to use the “oh it’s my first time being intoxicated” excuse to put as many dicks in my mouth as I could before everyone started to say no.

Does that sound a little rapey? It probably does. I can’t say I was in a good state of mind.

At any rate, there was a lot of sexual activity that night between just about everyone, pairing off for a few minutes with one another at different points. The radio was on, and Kesha’s hit single Tik Tok was booming through the house and I put my tongue into several orifices of several guys, and then spent the night in a cuddle sandwich with my boyfriend and one of the others who had broken away from the pack and basically let us fondle him the entire night.

All in all, it was pretty fun.

The next morning I had something of a hangover, which is honestly quite rare for me.

On the way home, Tik Tok was playing on the radio.

I don’t know why, I don’t understand it, but suddenly, I just got it. I enjoyed it. I had fun with that song. It was great. I didn’t want to stop listening to it.

Now, I know it sounds more like a joke than a real story: I never really liked Kesha until I participated in a drunken six-way gay orgy with some delightfully Virginian, slightly trashy gay guys. But it happens to be true.

When I got home the following day I honestly felt like I was still drunk. I sat in my bedroom, my head swimming, and looked up Kesha on iTunes, listened to the samples from Animal and read some of the reviews. I was disheartened. The reviewers were all mostly saying the same thing: the music was samey and average, the lyrics were so juvenile they sounded like they were ripped from the diary of a sixth grader dealing with boyfriend drama for the first time, and her singing voice was terrible and autotuned to the point of ludicrousness. I agreed with all of these assessments and quickly decided that Tik Tok was in fact a guilty pleasure, and that in general I still disliked Kesha.

But I couldn’t quite get that song out of my head.

My dysfunctional relationship progressed, as did my anxiety. I dove headlong into a Tori Amos phase from which I have never resurfaced, and mostly forgot about Kesha. I did torrent Animal at one point and gave it another cursory listen but I wasn’t terribly impressed. I fell in love with Imogen Heap, Florecne and the Machine, and many others, and continued to keep Kesha mostly out of my mind. When I finally broke up with the aforementioned boyfriend it happened to be right at the same time that my agoraphobia and anxiety had gotten so bad that I’d developed the curious symptom of alternating between sharp pains on the entire life side of my body or being completely numb in the same places. I was finally put on medication, and like magic, my panic attacks just disappeared. I was riding the first wave of stimulants I’d ever experienced, since I’d never done any kind of drugs before, and I was riding high on the antidepressants which elevated my mood and let me have gloriously peaceful and undisturbed sleep at regular intervals, and the relief and freedom of being done with an abusive relationship and having the freedom to love and to fuck whoever I wanted, provided I could find someone.

It was then that Kesha returned.

I don’t exactly remember what caused it. I just remember being high on my antidepressants, feeling adventurous and excited about going to gay clubs and finally getting my young adult life started, and I went back to those downloaded audio files from Animal, and turned them on, and I became completely hooked.

I listened to Animal front to back, non-stop, for several weeks. I didn’t listen to almost anything else. I fell absolutely in love with the music and started to learn a little more about Kesha. I still understood a lot of the complaints: some of the lyrics were trite, but there were also a lot of hidden gems that you wouldn’t have guessed existed. Tik Tok and Take It Off were big hits all about partying, but other songs on the album lamented the darker aspects of being a party girl, of trying to find solace in living in the moment and enjoying the night as much as possible because it’s all you truly have. Hungover, Blind, Animal, and Dancing With Tears In My Eyes are all very emotional songs about the loss of love and the difficulty of trying to live day to day in a haze of partying. There’s a longing in these songs for something, an emptiness, and a willingness to be up front about the good and the bad, to be unapologetic about sex and fun and relationships, to call things like the way they are.

My little sister joined me on this adventure and loved listening to Kesha with me, and was actually nice enough to buy me a physical copy of Animal with some money she’d been given, which I still have. Later on, when Kesha started to release singles for Animal’s companion EP Cannibal, I downloaded them all as they were released and ordered a copy of the two combined into one two-disc album (Animal + Cannibal) that came with a cute little “K$” temporary tattoo which I intended to put on my cheek at my first concert, and which I have still never used but remains in the case. When I attended my first real concert last year, the Dresden Dolls at Coney Island, I was sad when I realized I’d forgotten to bring along my Kesha tattoo for my first concert. But at least I still remembered. That’s something.

The companion EP Cannibal was a great nine-track romp that fit the atmosphere of Animal perfectly while managing to expand on it. The songs were still about partying and having fun authentically and unapologetically, but there was a song called The Harold Song which absolutely broke my heart and still continues to be one of my favorite songs. It’s a beautiful and melancholy song about the loss of love that really affected me at the time because I was dealing with a terrible breakup, and this song was a companion in that pain and darkness for me. At first I thought that Cannibal deliberately mirrored the songs on Animal (Grow A Pear has a chorus very similar to Tik Tok, elements of Tik Tok are incorporated into Cannibal, Animal itself is included as the last song in remixed form, and many other songs seem to borrow elements of songs directly from Animal), and I’m still not sure if it was done intentionally or if the song structures were just all very similar and working from the same pop framework.

Kesha is honest and authentic, and I think that that’s what makes her special. I think this is also the reason that people like Kanye West, but I just can’t bring myself to think that guy is anything but a self-absorbed douche. Kesha delivers pop cliches with a slight wink because she knows it’s cliche, but she’s doing it authentically. And she isn’t a bad vocalist either. The thing that confused me the most about Animal was the fact that Kesha’s voice is very unnecessarily autotuned in many of the songs.

Kesha is an incredibly prolific songwriter, and there are literally more than a hundred demos for Animal that never made it onto the album. One song, a completely acoustic breakup song called Goodbye, is a really great glimpse into an unfiltered Kesha with all of the pop trapping stripped away: her voice is soulful and unique, and her intonation is similar to Alanis Morissette. Her vocal ability is surprising, it doesn’t completely blow you away, but it’s not at all what you’d expect after hearing so much autotune and vocal effects on her album. She also released another EP between Cannibal and her second album Warrior called Deconstructed, which contains simplified emotional mixes of several of her songs, including The Harold Song, with her vocal ability really put on full display.

I still don’t really understand why she chose to allow herself to be autotuned so much when she didn’t really need it, although considering the dynamic between herself and her producer Dr. Luke that came to light later, it’s not difficult to imagine that maybe he made the decision for her. I don’t really know.

And with that we come to Dr. Luke. Kesha came forward and filed a lawsuit against Dr. Luke for raping her, and for abusing her. I don’t really know if there was physical abuse, and I’m not going to look it up. The thing is, I’ve purposely avoided learning the details of this lawsuit. Kesha’s entire career came to a halt because under her contract she was unable to release any music unless she dropped the lawsuit against Dr. Luke, and he vehemently denied ever having abused her, despite many other women in the music industry coming forward to say they’d suffered abuse at his hands as well. Honestly, my heart was just too broken for Kesha to read the details. I couldn’t handle it. I was having a hard enough time holding my own life together, and to know that someone who I had come to greatly admire and respect had been hurt so badly, and who was being treated unfairly by an unfeeling system, it was too hard. It’s why I still don’t know all the details. I do know that eventually Kesha was forced to drop the lawsuit so she could continue to make music, but I still don’t know many more details. I know that during her absence she appeared at a few live events, and at one of them gave an incredible performance of When It Happens To You by Lady Gaga, a song about surviving rape.

Kesha also briefly had her own reality show which I watched the majority of online and greatly enjoyed. It really showed her beautiful personality, and the general carefree and honest way in which she lives her life. It made me smile to watch it, and it gave me hope.

I used to have this poster on my wall, and alongside the topless poster of Lady Gaga, I imagine that anyone looking at my room was probably really confused about my sexuality

Kesha inspires me. Her strength, her dignity, her willingness to create. There was a moment during Kesha’s reality show where her little brother was attempting to write a song, and she was giving him writing advice. The advice was this: “You have to be willing to let yourself suck.” As a musician and a writer, this has been one of the most important pieces of advice I’ve ever absorbed. What she meant was that when you start out at anything, you’re not going to be incredible. With drawing, composing music, or writing, you start out as a novice, and even your best, most polished efforts, are still going to be less than perfect. You’ll probably experience a few flashes of incredible creativity and accidentally stumble upon expressing yourself honestly and with style, but you have to be willing to let yourself create something that is less than perfect. Kesha’s hundreds of demos are a testament to that. Many of those songs are not that great, but they’re all honest and authentic, and that’s the thing about Kesha that I admire so much.

You have to be willing to let yourself suck. You have to be willing to create whatever is in your heart, and sometimes it’s not going to be great, but you have to be willing to do it. Lady Gaga has said something somewhat similar, which is “You have to respect your vomit.” She was referring to one of her songs, and about how the lyrics come in a rush, and she just word vomits them out, and that she then chooses to respect her vomit, respect those words for being authentic and in the moment. This proverb doesn’t inspire me quite as much but it’s worth mentioning in conjunction with Kesha’s advice from above.

And so, in a surprising twist, I ended up loving an artist who I thought represented everything I hated about manufactured pop music. While, yes, the element of pop manufacturing is there, Kesha’s honesty and brazen authenticity still shines through, and even though some of her songs are a bit cliche, her music is a surprise. Her personality is a surprise. Everything about her is a surprise, if you assume that the dirty glitter party girl you see on the cover is as shallow as her surroundings suggest. I don’t know how much irony she injects into her style, but Kesha is a worthwhile person and a worthwhile musician. She’s an activist for animal rights, she loves the gay community and has immense appreciation for her fans, and she approaches life with the kind and passive attitude of a hippie but the fortitude of a revolutionary. Her voice is real and true, even though there’s sometimes a layer of autotune.

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The Sandwiches Are Wicked And They Know You At The Mac Store: The Discography Of Amanda Palmer

amandapalmer

Amanda Palmer is one of my personal heroes. I discovered her a few years ago completely by accident when her song Astronaut popped up in Spotify, and I fell for her instantly. Her piano-banging, open and honest and not-giving-a-fuck style of lyric writing and living in general, she’s been a real inspiration to me as a musician, an author, and a person, and a lot of time it’s been her music that inspired me to keep writing. Her discography is pretty scattered, as her relationship with record companies has always been difficult, and she has jumped from project to project, meaning that she has technically been in four bands and performed as a solo artist as well, but it all began with the Dresden Dolls in 2003. This is not really a compendium of B-Sides and rarities, more a guideline of what albums and singles she’s released, so that anyone looking to get into her music will have an idea of where to start. It should also be noted that almost everything on this entire list is available completely for free on her official website and her Bandcamp page, where it’s almost entirely “pay what you want,” meaning you can choose to have it for free or support her as an artist, a sales model I really love and support. When I first discovered her I had no money, so I took her up on the offer and downloaded the albums all for free, but later when I had the means I threw her a bit of money when buying an album to support her art. This incidentally is really the way I plan to release my music, if I can ever get an album put together (although as a side note, I finally finished compiling my demo album and put it up on Bandcamp, a decision largely inspired by Amanda). So let’s dive right in, shall we?

The Dresden Dolls

The Dresden Dolls

Amanda began her career as one-half of the Dresden Dolls, playing piano and singing while her partner Brian Viglione provided drums, guitar, and the occasional backup vocal. They invented a genre they call “Punk Cabaret,” which is essentially where all of the Panic! at the Disco / Moulin Rouge / The Killers / New Orleans whorehouse / circus freak aesthetic you’ve seen in a million bands since the mid-2000’s came from. It’s not like they’re to first people to ever dress like mimes and have circus acts at their shows, but they should really be credited with having a huge part in the movement of that aesthetic in popular music. In total they released four albums in their career, the first of which was a live album that served as a kind of teaser for the their debut album, and the third of which consisted entirely of B-Sides and cut material from the second album. Later on Amanda released a digital version of a their live album on Bandcamp. They also released a self-titled EP, but as far as I know the only track to ever surface online is the demo version of Girl Anachronism, which they included on their “Live and Unreleased” downloads page on their website, consisting almost entirely of live recordings by fans, and featuring several guest performers, including The Ambitious Orchestra and Ryan Ross of Panic! at the Disco. The downloads page is still active, and all of the songs are still available for download, though they’re not greatly formatted, so I’m going to include my compilation “Live And Unreleased” as I have it in my music library with suggestions on how to organize the tracks.

A very important thing to know if you’re interested in purchasing Amanda’s music is that she purportedly gets paid NOTHING by the album company if you purchase the albums on iTunes, Amazon, or any place other than her official website or on her Bandcamp page, which includes all of her albums, including those in which she’s involved with a band. So, if you want to support her by buying the music, do so on her Bandcamp page, because if you purchase the albums on iTunes or Amazon, all of that money just goes to a record company that doesn’t even support her music anymore, so you’re literally throwing money away. Even if you paid full-price for all of her music on iTunes, you wouldn’t be supporting her art in any way. In summation, buy the music from her Bandcamp page, or download it all for free from there.

Dresden Dolls EP

The Dresden Dolls [EP]
Released: 2001

1. Half Jack
2.  Girl Anachronism
3. The Perfect Fit
4. Colorblind
5.  Good Day

Notes: All of these songs are demo versions. As far as I know the only demo ever to be released online is the Girl Anachronism demo, available on the Dresden Dolls’ downloads archive on their official website.

Original Cover

Original Album Cover

A Is For Accident
Release Date: May 27, 2003 (Original Release)
October 20, 2009 (Bandcamp Re-Release)

1. Missed Me (Live Demo)
2. Coin-Operated Boy (Live At TT’s)
3. The Time Has Come (Live At The Milky Way)
4. Mrs. O (Live At Luxx)
5. Christopher Lydon (Live At Sanders Theater)
6. Glass Slipper (Live At TT’s)
7. Thirty Whacks (Live On WBRS)
8. Bank Of Boston Beauty Queen (Live On WMBR)
9. Will (Album Outtake – B.C. Studio)
10. Truce (Live Demo)

2009 Bandcamp Re-Release Bonus Tracks

11. Stand By Your Man (Live At The Lizard Lounge)
12. A Night At The Roses (B-Side From the Good Day 7″ Single)

Bandcamp Album Cover

Bandcamp Album Cover

The Dresden Dolls

The Dresden Dolls
Release Date: September 26, 2003

1. Good Day
2. Girl Anachronism
3. Missed Me
4. Half Jack
5. 672
6. Coin-Operated Boy
7. Gravity
8. Bad Habit
9. The Perfect Fit
10. The Jeep Song
11. Slide
12. Truce

Physical album cover

Physical album cover

Yes, Virginia…
Release Date: April 14, 2006

1. Sex Changes
2. Backstabber
3. Modern Moonlight
4. My Alcoholic Friends
5. Delilah
6. Dirty Business
7. First Orgasm
8. Mrs. O
9. Shores of California
10. Necessary Evil
11. Mandy Goes To Med School
12. Me & The Minibar
13. Two-Headed Boy
14. Sing

Notes: Track 13, Two-Headed Boy, is a cover of a Neutral Milk Hotel song. It isn’t available on physical editions on the album, and appears as track 13 on the Bandcamp release, as well a bonus track 14 on the iTunes release. Pretty In Pink is a cover of a song by The Psychedelic Furs. Also, there is an advance version of Yes, Virginia… that contains an earlier version of Sing in which the first line is “There is this thing that’s like fucking except you don’t fuck,” as opposed to the line on the final version, “There is this thing that’s like touching except you don’t touch.”

Digital album cover

Digital album cover

Standard edition/physical album cover

Standard edition / physical album cover

No, Virginia…
Release Date:  May 20, 2008

1. Deary Jenny
2. Night Reconnaissance
3. The Mouse And The Model
4. Ultima Esperanza
5. The Gardener
6. Lonesome Organist Rapes Page Turner
7. Sorry Bunch
8. Pretty In Pink
9. The Kill
10. The Sheep Song
11. Boston

Special Edition Bonus Tracks
12. Glass Slipper (Live In St. Louis)
12. A Night At The Roses
13. I Would For You

Notes: I Would For You is a Jane’s Addiction cover, and the version of Night At The Roses included here is exactly the same recording from A is for Accident, which incidentally is featured as track 12 on the Bandcamp version of the album. Also, The Gardener, The Kill, and Boston are all purported to be Yes, Virginia… B-Sides, and I don’t deny that, I just can’t find the singles or material they were B-Sides on)

Special Edition Album Cover

Special Edition Album Cover

Dresden Dolls

Live And Unreleased
The following is a compilation of all the available tracks from the Dresden Dolls’ official downloads page, in the order they were released. I’ve titled them with where they were recorded, though the downloads page includes more specific informtation about the exact dates, venues, guest appearances and who recorded the audio.

1. Girl Anachronism (Live in Portland, OR)
2. Bad Habit (Live in Munich, Germany)
3. Two Headed Boy (Live in Cambridge, MA)
4. Gravity (Live in Munich, Germany)
5. Add It Up (Live in Boston, MA)
6. Backstabber (Live in Munich, Germany)
7. Mandy Goes To Med Shcool (Live in Brussels, Belgium)
8. Sorry Bunch (Live in New York, NY)
9. One (Live in New York, NY)
10. Half Jack (Live in Providence, RI)
11. Dance Me To The End of Love (Live in Boston, MA)
12. Modern Moonlight (Live in Knoxville, TN)
13. The Ghost In You (Live in Cambridge, MA)
14. Seven Nation Death Squad (Live in Boston, MA)
15. A Night at the Roses (Live in Boston, MA)
16. Blueprint (Live in Brooklyn, NY)
17. Life On Mars (Live in San Francisco, CA)
18. The Kill (Live in Boston, MA)
19. Colorblind (Live in Waltham, MA)
20. Ultima Esperanza (Live in Washington, DC)
21. Mother (Live in Portland, OR)
22. Cosmic Dancer (Live in Vienna, Austria)
23. Will (Live in Edinburgh, Scotland)
24. Umbrella (Live in Edinburgh, Scotland)
25. Girl Anachronism (Demo)
26. The Sheep Song (Live in Boston, MA)
27. God Damn the Sun (Live in Cambridge, MA)
28. Hate (Live in Boston, MA)
29. Karma Police (Live in San Diego, CA)
30. Science Fiction Double Feature (Live in Providence, RI)
31. Sing (Live in Munich, Germany)
32. Rid Of Me (Live in Portland, ME)
33. Train (Live in Boston, MA)
34. Imagine (Live in Cleveland, OH)

Map of Tasmania

Amanda Palmer (As A Solo Artist)

Amanda went solo in 2008, co-producing her first album, Who Killed Amanda Palmer, with musician Ben Folds, along with producing an art book with several writers, including Neil Gaiman, to whom she would later marry. She also took to referring to herself as Amanda Fucking Palmer, after having a falling out with her record company, who finally released her from her contract after fans protested them and she was allowed to release her music for free. She officially released two albums, as well as a lot of other EP’s and goodies.

Who Killed Amanda Palmer

Standard Album Cover

Who Killed Amanda Palmer
Released: September 16, 2008

1. Astronaut (A Short History Of Nearly Nothing)
2. Runs In The Family
3. Ampersand
4. Leeds United
5. Blake Says
6. Strength Through Music
7. Guitar Hero
8. Have To Drive
9. What’s The Use Of Wond’rin’?
10. Oasis
11. The Point Of It All
12. Another Year (A Short History Of Almost Something

Deluxe Edition Bonus Tracks

13. Straight (In The End)
14. Leeds United (Lounge Version)
15. Guitar Hero (Alternate Version)

Who Killed Amanda Palmer Deluxe

Special Edition Album Cover

Who Killed Amanda Palmer [Alternate Tracks]

Who Killed Amanda Palmer (Alternate Tracks)
Release Date: December 24, 2008

1. 1.1.94
2. The Point of It All
3. Night Reconnaissance
4. Runs in the Family
5. Blake Says
6. Strength Through Music
7. Guitar Hero (Note that this is NOT the alternate version on the Special Edition of Who Killed Amanda Palmer)
8. Boyfriend in a Coma
9. Oasis
10. You May Kiss The Bride
11. I Will Follow You into the Dark
12. Ampersand
13. Straight (with Strings)
14. Astronaut
15. Have to Drive

Amanda Palmer Performs The Popular Hits Of Radiohead On Her

Amanda Palmer Performs The Popular Hits Of Radiohead On Her Magical Ukulele
Released: July 20, 2010

1. Fake Plastic Trees
2. High And Dry
3. No Surprises
4. Idioteque
5. Creep (Hungover at Soundcheck in Berlin)
6. Exit Music (For A Film)
7. Creep (Live in Prague)

Amanda Palmer Goes Down Under

Amanda Palmer Goes Down Under
Release Date: January 21, 2011

1. Makin’ Whoopie
2. Australia
3. Vegemite (The Black Death)
4. Map of Tasmania (feat. The Young Punx)
5. In My Mind (feat. Brian Viglione)
6. Bad Wine and Lemon Cake (feat. The Jane Austen Argument)
7. New Zealand
8. On An Unknown Beach
9. We’re Happy Little Vegemites
10. Doctor Oz
11. Formidable Marinade (feat. Mikelangelo & Lance Horne)
12. The Ship Song

Singles

Who Killed Amanda Palmer [Neil Gaiman Reading]

Who Killed Amanda Palmer: Neil Gaiman Reading

1. Neil Gaiman Reading (feat. Zoë Keating & Lyndon Chester)

Do You Swear To Tell The Truth The Whole Truth And Nothing

Do You Swear To Tell The Truth The Whole Truth And Nothing But The Truth So Help Your Black Ass

1. Do You Swear To Tell The Truth The Whole Truth And Nothing But The Truth So Help Your Black Ass

Ukulele Anthem

Ukulele Anthem

1. Ukulele Anthem

Yes, Virginia

AFP Reading: Yes, Virginia (A Letter To The New York Sun, 1898)
(released online with the 2011 Christmas merchandise sale)

1. AFP Reading: Yes, Virginia (A Letter To The New York Sun, 1898)

Behavior [feat. Mat Devine, Erica Iozzo, and Caroline]

Behavior [feat. Mat Devine, Erica Iozzo, and Caroline]

1. Behavior [feat. Mat Devine, Erica Iozzo, and Caroline]

Dear Daily Mail

Dear Daily Mail (Live) [Official Bootleg]

1. Dear Daily Mail (Live)

The Thing About Things

The Thing About Things (Live) [Official Bootleg]

1. The Thing About Things (Live)

Here Comes The Rain Again

Here Comes The Rain Again
(released only on Soundcloud)

1. Here Comes The Rain Again (Eurythmics Cover)

Photo of Evelyn Evelyn

Evelyn Evelyn

In 2010, Amanda teamed up with fellow musician and friend Jason Webley to form an extremely weird band called Evelyn Evelyn, releasing one concept album in which the two play the characters of conjoined twin sisters, which they reported to be two real sisters who they had found and whose music they were attempting to promote to help spread their story. In the end, Evelyn Evelyn was actually just an act played by the two, but they kept the facade up on Amanda’s blog and during shows, in which they pretended to invite the sisters on stage and played songs in character after their respective individual shows. The album contains not only songs by the sisters but also three songs that consist of spoken dialogue and background music and sound effect detailing the twin sisters’ tragic lives. After the album and the tour, Evelyn Evelyn has never returned, although Amanda and Jason have played some of the songs on tour together and individually.

Bandcamp Album Cover, featuring artwork by Cynthia von Buhler

Bandcamp Album Cover, featuring artwork by Cynthia von Buhler

Evelyn Evelyn
Release Date: March 30, 2010

1. Evelyn Evelyn
2. A Campaign of Shock and Awe
3. The Tragic Events of September – Part I
4. Have You Seen My Sister Evelyn?
5. Chicken Man
6. The Tragic Events – Part II
7. Sandy Fishnets
8. Elephant Elephant
9. You Only Want Me ‘Cause You Want My Sister
10. The Tragic Events – Part III
11. My Space
12. Love Will Tear Us Apart

iTunes Album Cover

iTunes Album Cover

8in8

Amanda Palmer as a member of 8in8

In 2011, Amanda was set to attend a conference to discuss the state of music, and she decided that it would be more fun to that with friends, so she contacted Ben Folds, Neil Gaiman and Damien Kulash (of the band OK Go), and Ben proposed that rather than just appearing together, why not lock themselves into a studio and attempt to write and record eight completely original new songs in eigh hours? They did just that, only it took them twelve hours and they only produced six songs, but the results were pretty impressive nonetheless.


8in8

Nighty Night
Release Date: April 26, 2011

1. Nikola Tesla
2. Because the Origami
3. One Tiny Thing
4. Twelve Line Song
5. I’ll Be My Mirror
6. The Problem With Saints

Current Bandcamp Artwork

Amanda-Palmer-The-Grand-Theft-Orchestra

Amanda Palmer & The Grand Theft Orchestra

I believe it was at some point in 2011 that Amanda joined forces with musicians Jherek Bischoff, Michael McQuilken, and Chad Raines to create The Grand Theft Orchestra, and used the website Kickstarter to fund the album. The project met with incredible success, and I can say personally that I’ve only ever seen one Amanda Palmer album in stores, and it was this one. Kickstarter backers got a lot of extra tracks on their copies, which until recently were pretty much unobtainable, but Amanda recently released a “complete discography” download for free on her website, which includes the Kickstarter version of the album, containing all eight bonus tracks.

 

Physical Album Cover

Physical Album Cover

Theatre Is Evil
Release Date: September 11, 2012

1. Meow Meow Introduces The Grand Theft Orchestra
2. Smile (Pictures or It Didn’t Happen)
3. The Killing Type
4. Do It With A Rockstar
5. Want It Back
6. Grown Man Cry
7. Trout Heart Replica
8. A Grand Theft Intermission
9. Lost
10 .Bottomfeeder
11. The Bed Song
12. Massachusetts Avenue
13. Melody Dean
14. Berlin
15. Olly Olly Oxen Free

Bandcamp Bonus Tracks

16. Denial Thing
17. The Living Room
18. Ukulele Anthem (New version, not the same as the earlier single)
19. From St. Kilda To Fitzroy

Kickstarter Bonus Tracks

20. Video Games (Lana Del Ray cover)
21. Provanity
22. Assistant
23. Not Mine

Kickstarter Album Cover

Kickstarter Album Cover

 

Polly

 

Polly

 

1. Polly (Nirvana cover)

Amanda Palmer and Neil Gaiman

Amanda Palmer And Neil Gaiman

Amanda’s most recent foray has been a return to working as a solo artist, though she went on tour with her husband Neil Gaiman, performing something of a variety show that included music, readings, and question and answer segments from the audience. She released one album, and two live albums, the first of which consists of covers of Lou Reed and Velvet Underground songs, the second of which is included as a fourth disc on the final release of An Evening With Neil Gaiman And Amanda Palmer.

Lou Reed Surprises

Several Attempts To Cover Songs By The Velvet Underground & Lou Reed* For Neil Gaiman As His Birthday Approaches
Release Date: April 10, 2012

1. Attempt To Sing A Birthday Song / Lou Reed Misgivings
2. Satellite Of Love
3. Walk On The Wild Side
4. Another Birthday Song Attempt In Another Theater
5. I’m Waiting For The Moon
6. I’ll Be My Mirror
7. Vancouver Birthday Song Attempt
8. I’ll Be Your Mirror (feat. The Jane Austen Argument)
9. Sad Little Portland Birthday Song Attempt
10. Caroline Says II
11. Blake Says
12. I’m Sticking With You (feat. John Cameron Mitchell)
13. Perfect Day (Intro)
14. Perfect Day

An Evening With Neil Gaiman & Amanda Palmer (3-Disc Edition)

An Evening With Neil Gaiman & Amanda Palmer
Release Date: November 19, 2013

Disc 1

1. My Last Landlady
2. The Rhyme Maidens
3. The Day The Saucers Came
4. Feminine Endings
5. The Winter Gardens
6. In Relig Odhrain
7. The View From The Cheap Seats
8. I Will Write In Words Of Fire
9. The Man Who Forgot Ray Bradbury
10. Making A Chair
11. 100 Words

Disc 2

1. Margaret Cho introduces the Show
2. Makin’ Whoopee
3. (Introduction to The Problem with Saints)
4. The Problem with Saints
5. Jump (for Jeremy Geidt)
6. Ask Neil and Amanda
7. (Introduction to Broken Heart Stew)
8. Broken Heart Stew (by Amanda)
9. Poem for Amanda (by Neil)
10. Poem for Neil (by Amanda)
11. Electric Blanket (a duet, Amanda Palmer and Jason Webley)
12. Psycho
13. (Introduction to I Google You)
14. I Google You

Disc 3

1. I Want You, But I Don’t Need You
2. (Introduction to Dear Old House)
3. Dear Old House
4. (Introduction to Gaga, Palmer, Madonna; A Polemic)
5. Gaga, Palmer, Madonna; A Polemic
6. (Introduction to Judy Blume)
7. Judy Blume
8. I Don’t Care Much (with Lance Horne)
9. Map Of Tasmania
10. (Introduction to Do You Swear to Tell The Truth, The Whole Truth & Nothing But The Truth So Help Your Black Ass)
12. Do You Swear to Tell The Truth, The Whole Truth & Nothing But The Truth So Help Your Black Ass
13. (Introduction to I Will Follow You Into The Dark)
14. I Will Follow You Into The Dark (for Ashlie Gough)
15. Look Mummy, No Hands
16. Ukulele Anthem

Prelude To An Evening With Neil Gaiman And Amanda PalmerDisc 4
A Prelude To Evening With Neil Gaiman And Amanda Palmer

1. Intro
2. Ampersand
3. Runs in the Family
4. Shoggoth’s Old Peculiar
5. Blake Says
6. Forbidden Brides of the Faceless Slaves in the Secret House of the Night of Dread Desire
7. Do You Swear To Tell The Truth, The Whole Truth And Nothing But The Truth So Help Your Black Ass
8. Zombies and Shy People
9. Drinking with John Wilmot, 2nd Earl of Rochester
10. Making Mixtapes
11. Everyone Should Have a Hobby That Could Kill Them
12. It Was All Going So Well
13. On-Stage Dating Service

 

Amanda Palmer

Afterward

This is not a complete history of everything Amanda has ever done. On her band camp are some more releases: a collaboration with Kim Boekbinder, a collaboration with Murder By Death, a podcast of she and two friends discussing sexuality with an audience, and a really cool compilation called AFP’s Webcastacular NYC Extravaganza! that features songs from Kim Boekbinder, Bitter Ruin, and even a cover of Missed Me by Meow Meow and Lance Horne. Suffice it to say this is a compendium of mostly everything she has released as a solo artist and with bands that she was an active participant in. If you’ve never listened to Amanda, you should. If you’ve never heard her speak, you should listen to her TED Talk, or read about her life as a human statue, or her experience couch surfing in fans apartments while being on tour, or tweeting that she needs a ride to a show or that she’s welcoming any musicians who want to come and open for her. She’s a revolutionary: she embraces the idea that music and art are free for the taking,that if you like an artist, you should support them, and that decisions don’t have to be dictated by record companies whose main interest is in making money and not making art. She strips her clothes off on stage, she reveals her unshaven legs and armpits with pride, like everyone else she is sometimes terrifying and sometimes incredibly beautiful, and sometimes a little of both. She embraces her fans, she embraces the world around her, and she has been inspiring to me not just as an artist, but as a person. Carry on, Amanda.

The B-Keeper. See What I Did There?

I have been assembling B-Sides like a fucking madman over the last couple of weeks. You know what the secret is? Torrenting. If you’re going to download music illicitly, or go hunting for rarities, use torrents. You can almost always find what you’re looking for, and if you’re missing a specific song, you can do what I do and start checking mediafire and 4shared for individual audio files and comparing minute differences in starting time and audio quality to see which one is superior. I’m sort of an accidental audiophile.

Tori’s Infamous List of Bee Sides

So, of the artists that I “collect,” Tori Amos has unquestionably the most B-Sides (although Ke$ha wins for the most demos/unreleased songs, she has over 80, but I really didn’t bother with them). So, for you Toriphiles out there, I thought I would show you my list of Tori B-Sides as a guide for anyone looking to assemble their own collection of B-Sides. My source for the majority of these files is a thread on a Spanish website called Taringa! where someone very kindly uploaded pretty much every single Tori B-Side, remix, and promo single ever released. Finding it is difficult, I still have to go on a mad hunt for this thread any time I need it, because I never bother bookmarking it, and I also think that it’s been made private now so you have to make an account there to view it (which I did, earlier this year when I first compiled my B-Sides). Also, there are quite a few Tori Amos discography torrents that have a lot of these, and if you can find the torrent with a copy of the 4-disc bootleg called “The Lost Works,” you’re mostly set.

I have done my B-Side hunting for Tori on about 5 different occasions now, always on a different computer each time, and this time I’m getting some CD-R’s and backing this stuff up. Of course I should mention that the best way to go about getting some of these songs is to just BUY the music properly, but some stuff, you’re just not going to be able to find, and some stuff isn’t actually available on CD (like the audio rips of the instrumental versions of tracks from Tales of a Librarian, or the audio rip of Garlands from the bonus DVD in the deluxe edition of The Beekeeper). And for those of you who ARE going to buy the music properly, I have some words of caution for you.

iTunes’ Woefully Inaccurate 1996 Selection

Tori’s third album (and incidentally, my favorite) is called Boys For Pele, released in 1996. If you want to get a copy of this album (and I highly suggest you should), you should know that iTunes has fucked the tracklisting all to hell. Your best bet is to do what I did and order a copy of the album from eBay. I believe I payed about 6 dollars altogether for the physical album, which gave me perfect rips of the tracks without improper audio or tracklisting, for less money than it would cost to purchase the album online. So, there are three editions of Boys For Pele: the original version is 18 tracks long, and has all of the original versions of the songs. The second edition of the album is my personal favorite, and the one you’d find if you were to order the album from any major retailer, like Amazon or Barnes & Noble: this version of the album has one difference from the original, in that the song Talula is replaced with “the Tornado Mix,” which is a version of the song used on the Twister soundtrack. This version is just better than the original, it adds more percussion, makes the song a bit groovier, although it does omit a few little sections of lyrics. If you’re hardcore and want to have everything Tori has ever released, I would suggest putting the original version of Talula in your list of Pele B-Sides, or putting the Tornado Mix in your list of B-Sides. Personally, I just use the Tornado Mix on my Boys For Pele and I’m done with it.

Finally, there is a third version of the album, and this is my least favorite version. The fourth track, Professional Widow, is followed up by the famous Armand Van Helden remix that granted Tori her biggest hit to date when his remix went to the top of the dance charts. Not only does throwing a remix right into the middle of the album mess up the flow of the whole thing, but it also caused one of the songs, In The Springtime of His Voodoo, to be cut completely from this version.

iTunes’ version of Boys For Pele is the third edition of the album, which in itself is already a misrepresentation of the album, but to make things worse, they don’t actually include Professional Widow. Both Professional Widow and the Armand Van Helden Remix are the exact same audio track. It’s just the same track twice in a row. For this reason, I highly, highly suggest buying the original album on eBay or from any major retailer. Hell, if you go into a well-stocked Barnes & Noble, you just might find it.

Now, back to our original mission: B-Sides. The album is not the only thing iTunes has wrong, the Hey Jupiter EP is in even worse shape. The version of Hey Jupiter used here is NOT the Dakota Version (the remix used as the single version of the song, which is about 6 minutes long and includes some heartbreaking additional lyrics), though it’s labelled as such, and the Merry Widow version of Professional Widow, which is an intense, emotional performance of the song live on harmonium, isn’t here either, it’s the original version of the song. Once again, my advice is to buy the physical EP from eBay or Amazon, it’s not very expensive and it’s worth it to get the real stuff.

There’s one another album that iTunes has messed up: Tori’s box set release, A Piano: The Collection. It has all the right audio files, but there are a lot of inexplicable silences at the beginning of the songs. Me and a Gun, for instance, has about 4 seconds of silence before the song begins. It’s not done by the artist, it’s a mistake that for some reasons happens to a lot of album uploaded to iTunes, and I can’t quite explain it. If you really want to support Tori and buy her music, do what I did: purchase A Piano from iTunes, and then go and download a torrent of the album with the proper audio files. That way you’ve payed for it and you’ve got the proper songs.

Apart from the above mentioned releases, the rest of the Tori selection on iTunes seems to be perfectly accurate. The rest of the EP’s are all in good order, I got Crucify, God, and Raspberry Swirl from the iTunes store and they’re the right songs. The only thing is that beginning with Scarlet’s Walk, iTunes has posted multiple versions of the same album, some with no differences from one another. It doesn’t really make a lot of sense, for instance, there are 4 versions of American Doll Posse, one with 23 tracks, one with 23 tracks and a digital booklet, another that is identical to the second one I mentioned, and a third with the digital booklet and bonus videos. It would have much more prudent to either post one edition of the album, or at very least a regular edition and a deluxe edition. But who am I to tell the geniuses at iTunes what to do.

See that? That was a pun. I was being funny. See how funny I am?

On to the B-Sides Already!

So, without further adue, I present to you, my collection of Tori Amos B-Sides. And no, I’m not going to give you download links, because firstly I can’t be bothered to upload them all, and also because collecting these songs isn’t really all that challenging, it just requires a bit of digging around.

Note on my formatting: I include studio tracks first, then songs from soundtracks, and then live tracks. I do not include remixes or alternate versions of songs. Other than that, the songs are pretty much in chronological order of release. Also, for album art, I used some of the Polaroids from the special edition box set of Scarlet’s Walk, just as a way to keep them all uniform, but it’s fun to find different single covers to use as album artwork. All of my information on these songs, as well as the photos I used for album artwork, along with pretty much anything else you would ever need to know about Tori Amos, is from my friend Jason’s very popular Tori Amos fansite, Yessaid.

Little Earthquakes: B-Sides

1 Upside Down [from Me and a Gun single]
2 Thoughts [from Me and a Gun single]
3 Sugar [from China single]
4 Flying Dutchman [from China single]
5 Humpty Dumpty [from China single]
6 The Pool [from Winter single]
7 Take To The Sky [from Winter single]
8 Sweet Dreams [from Winter single]
9 Angie [from Winter/Crucify singles]
10 Smells Like Teen Spirit [from Winter/Crucify singles]
11 Thank You [from Winter/Crucify singles]
12 Here. In My Head [from Crucify single]
13 Mary [from Crucify single]
14 Ode To The Banana King (Part One) [from Silent All These Years single]
15 Song For Eric [from Silent All These Years single]
16 Ring My Bell [Anita Ward cover – from Ruby Trax: The NME’s Roaring Forty]
17 The Happy Worker [from Toys Soundtrack]
18 Little Earthquakes (Live) [from Crucify single]
19 Crucify (Live) [from Crucify single]
20 Precious Things (Live) [from Crucify single]
21 Mother (Live) [from Crucify single]
22 Happy Phantom (Live) [from Silent All These Years single]
23 Silent All These Years (Live) [from Silent All These Years RAINN re-release single]

What’s missing: there is a single edit of China, as well as an edit of Flying Dutchman, both featured on the french China single, that I didn’t include. There’s also a remix of The Happy Worker called “Workers,” I don’t know if it’s an official release, but I didn’t include it. I also didn’t include the single remix of Crucify, not because I don’t like it but because it’s on A Piano: The Collection. In fact, A Piano saves me the trouble of including any of the single mixes, because they’re all featured in the box set.

Under the Pink: B-Sides

1 Sister Janet [from Cornflake Girl single]
2 All the Girls Hate Her [piano suite – from Cornflake Girl single]
3 Over It [piano suite – from Cornflake Girl single]
4 A Case Of You [Joni Mitchell cover – from Cornflake Girl single]
5 If 6 Was 9 [Jimi Hendrix cover – from Cornflake Girl single]
6 Strange Fruit [Billie Holiday cover – from Cornflake Girl single]
7 Home on the Range (Cherokee Edition) [traditional folk song with some added lyrics – from God single]
8 Daisy Dead Petals [from Pretty Good Year single]
9 Honey [from Pretty Good Year single]
10 Black Swan [from Pretty Good Year single]
11 Losing My Religion [R.E.M. cover – from Higher Learning Soundtrack]
12 Butterfly [from Higher Learning Soundtrack]
13 Famous Blue Raincoat [Leonard Cohen cover – from Tower of Song: The Songs of Leonard Cohen]
14 Down By The Seaside [Led Zeppelin cover with Robert Plant – from Encomium: A Tribute to Led Zeppelin]
15 Upside Down (Live) [from Past the Mission single]
16 Past the Mission (Live) [from Past the Mission single]
17 Icicle (Live) [prefaced with a story from Tori – from Past the Mission single]
18 Flying Dutchman (Live) [from Past the Mission single]
19 Winter (Live) [from Past the Mission single]
20 The Waitress (Live) [from Past the Mission single]
21 Here. In My Head (Live) [from Past the Mission single]

What’s missing: every remix of God, and a live performance of Little Drummer Boy that was included on You Sleigh Me: Alternate Christmas Hits as well as More Pink: The B-Sides, the second disc of Under the Pink’s special Australian/New Zealand tour edition. I didn’t include it because firstly, no recordings of it, not even the one featured on More Pink, are very good quality, secondly because I just don’t like it, and thirdly because I haven’t really bothered to hunt around for it. There’s also a single edit of Cornflake Girl that I actually really like, which skips right ahead to the bridge after the second chorus, and I enjoy it as much as the original, they don’t cut out any singing, just a bit of rhythm playing between the second verse and the bridge.

It helped with some of these that the photos are the same color scheme as the album.

Boys For Pele: B-Sides

1 This Old Man [traditional folk song – from Caught a Lite Sneeze single]
2 Hungarian Wedding Song [from Caught a Lite Sneeze single]
3 Toodles Mr. Jim [from Caught a Lite Sneeze single]
4 London Girls [Chas & Dave cover – from Caught a Lite Sneeze single]
5 That’s What I Like Mick (The Sandwich Song) [Chas & Dave cover – from Caught a Lite Sneeze single]
6 Samurai [from Caught a Lite Sneeze single]
7 Graveyard [from Caught a Lite Sneeze single]
8 Amazing Grace – Til the Chicken [the first song is a traditional folk song – from Talula single]
9 Frog On My Toe [from Talula single]
10 Sister Named Desire [from Talula single]
11 Alamo [from Talula single]
12 Blue Skies [from Party of 5 Soundtrack]
13 I’m On Fire (Live) [Bruce Springsteen cover – from VH1 Crossroads]
14 Landslide (Live) [Fleetwood Mac cover – from Y-100 Sonic Sessions: Volume 1]
15 Sugar (Live) [from Hey Jupiter single]
16 Honey (Live) [from Hey Jupiter single]
17 Professional Widow (Merry Widow Version – Live) [A very different version of the song played on harmonium – from Hey Jupiter single]
18 Somewhere Over The Rainbow (Live) [Judy Garland cover – from Hey Jupiter single]

What’s missing: Well the obvious missing links are the Armand Van Helden remix of Professional Widow, along with every other remix of the song. There are also remixes for Talula, In The Springtime of His Voodoo, and even some unreleased remixes of Horses that aren’t included here. The Dakota Version of Hey Jupiter isn’t included either, for the same reason a the Crufiy single remix: both the Professional Widow remix and the Dakota Version of Hey Jupiter are on A Piano: The Collection. I also didn’t include the Tornado Mix of Talula because I have it filed under the album itself, and just omit the original version of Talula altogether. If you wanted to include it, I’d recommend putting it right between Graveyard and Amazing Grace, since that would be where you’d find it chronologically.

From the Choirgirl Hotel: B-Sides

(the amount of B-Sides drastically decrease after Boys For Pele, both because Tori started releasing remixes of her songs, and also I assume because CD singles were beginning to become obsolete. I personally enjoy a nice single EP)

1 Purple People (Christmas In Space) [from Spark single]
2 Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas [traditional folk song – from Spark single]
3 Bachelorette [from Spark single]
4 Do It Again [from Spark single]
5 Cooling [from Spark single]
6 Beulah Land [from Jackie’s Strength single]
7 Never Seen Blue [from Jackie’s Strength single]
8 Finn [from Great Expectations soundtrack]
9 Siren [from Great Expectations soundtrack]
10 Merman [from No Boundaries: A Benefit for the Kosovar Refugees]

What’s missing: Every remix of Raspberry Swirl, Spark, Cruel, Jackie’s Strength, and Father Lucifer. Although I do personally like some of those remixes, I just don’t like including remixes in my B-Sides. There’s also a track in the Great Expectations score called Paradiso Perduto that features some Tori vocals, but I didn’t include it here either, both because I just didn’t want to and because it’s annoying to try and hunt down the score.

I used the garden because of Datura. Aren't I clever?

To Venus And Back: B-Sides

(Venus doesn’t actually have any original B-Sides, they’re all live performances that I assume were scrapped from Still Orbiting. It is interesting to note that all of the live performances featured as B-Sides are Tori playing solo without the band. The only thing that can be considered a B-Side from this album is Carnival, which is a song featured on the Mission Impossible 2 soundtrack. I personally think it looks weird and throws off the way the Venus B-Sides look. You might want to tack it on to the end of the Choirgirl B-Sides, even though it’d be chronologically incorrect, since Venus was the album that was out when she did the song)

1 Carnival [from Mission Impossible 2 Soundtrack]
2 Hey Jupiter (Live) [from 1000 Oceans single]
3 Upside Down (Live) [from 1000 Oceans single]
4 Baker Baker (Live) [from Glory of the 80’s single]
5 Winter (Live) [from Glory of the 80’s single]
6 Famous Blue Raincoat (Live) [from Concertina single]
7 Twinkle (Live) [from Concertina single]

What’s missing: the single mix of Concertina. However, as with the other single mixes, it’s included on A Piano: The Collection. I don’t ever let songs repeat in my collection, because as you can clearly see, I am extremely organized. On that note, this is not technically organized chronologically, because Famous Blue Raincoat and Twinkle were released on the Glory of the 80’s single first, but I prefer them in this order.

Strange Little Girls: B-Sides

1 After All [from Strange Little Girl single]
2 Only Women Bleed [from Strange Little Girl single]

What’s missing: not much. There are only two B-Sides for this whole album, and they were included on the same single, which is the ONLY official single released for the album. There is a promo single of Strange Little Girl, which contains supposed “single edits” of Strange Little Girl, ’97 Bonnie & Clyde, and Heart of Gold. I cannot find any difference between the “single edits” and the album versions, but I wouldn’t have included them here regardless.

Scarlet’s Walk: B-Sides

(some of the songs that I’m crediting as being released on Scarlet’s Hidden Treasures, the bonus CD that comes with Welcome to Sunny Florida, were originally released on Scarlet’s Web, a website that was accessible using the Scarlet’s Walk CD, but not only are the versions released on Welcome to Sunny Florida of generally better audio quality, they’re also just better in that order because it makes a very nice EP)

1 Ruby Through The Looking-Glass [from Scarlet’s Hidden Treasures]
2 Seaside [from Scarlet’s Hidden Treasures]
3 Bug A Martini [from Scarlet’s Hidden Treasures]
4 Apollo’s Frock [from Scarlet’s Hidden Treasures]
5 Tombigbee [from Scarlet’s Hidden Treasures]
6 Indian Summer [from Scarlet’s Hidden Treasures]
7 Operation Peter Pan [from A Sorta Fairytale single]
8 Mountain [from Scarlet’s Web]

What’s missing: the single mix, and the 101 mix, of A Sorta Fairytale. Both of them are good mixes, though. Also it should be noted that there are no versions of Mountain of very high audio quality, as far as I’ve been able to find at least. There are also some remixes of Make Me Come To Vegas, and some radio versions of Taxi Ride and Strange, that I am completely not interested in.

To be honest, that’s the end of the B-Sides as we know them, there have been singles or EPs released after Scarlet’s Walk, and we now get our B-Sides from poorly put-together bonus DVDs, and deluxe editions of the albums. However, for your convenience, I’ll include the remaining bonus tracks.

Tales of a Librarian: B-Sides

(there is one “reconditioned” [or “badly remastered”] version of Putting the Damage On that didn’t make the physical album, but it is on the bonus DVD, as well as the iTunes release. The live performances are taken from the sound check of the performance that was used on Welcome to Sunny Florida. I personally don’t have any of these in my library.)

1 Putting the Damage On [reconditioned version – bonus track on iTunes release of Tales of a Librarian]
2 Mr. Zebra (Instrumental) [from Tales of a Librarian bonus DVD]
3 Putting the Damage On (Instrumental) [from Tales of a Librarian bonus DVD]
4 Pretty Good Year (Live) [from Tales of a Librarian bonus DVD]
5 Northern Lad (Live) [from Tales of a Librarian bonus DVD]
6 Honey (Live) [from Tales of a Librarian bonus DVD]

What’s missing: There is a radio edit of Mary that was released on a promo single, but my rule for Tori B-Sides is that I don’t include alternate versions, all the important ones, except for A Sorta Fairytale’s single version, can be found on an official release somewhere.

The Beekeeper: B-Sides

1 Garlands [from The Beekeeper bonus DVD]

What’s missing: there are some audio rips of Tori playing live on the DVD, but I’m not interested. In my iTunes, I have this filed as Garlands – Single, and I used the Sleeps With Butterflies artwork. Just a suggestion.

American Doll Posse: B-Sides

1 My Posse Can Do [from American Doll Posse bonus DVD]
2 Miracle [bonus track from iTunes release of American Doll Posse]
3 Drive All night [bonus track from Borders release of American Doll Posse] 

What’s missing: Not a thing. And in fact, the final three tracks on the album are apparently bonus tracks themselves, but there’s no version that doesn’t feature them, so I don’t quite see how they’re bonus tracks. Incidentally, Posse Bonus is an entire song dedicated to telling you that you’re getting bonus tracks. Yeah, it’s safe to say Tori’s albums are a little less entertaining nowadays when you get an entire number about your bonus tracks… Also, My Posse Can Do is an audio rip from the bonus DVD on the deluxe edition of American Doll Posse, I don’t know of anywhere you could properly buy the audio file, but the audio file is floating around, and can be found on some torrents.

Abnormally Attracted to Sin: B-Sides

1 Oscar’s Theme [bonus track on iTunes release of Abnormally Attracted to Sin]

What’s missing: That’s it, it’s just Oscar’s Theme. It’s track 18 on one of iTunes releases of the album.

Midwinter Graces: B-Sides

(All of these are covers of traditional folk songs. There are some original songs on the album, and Tori adds/changes some lyrics on all of the carols, but these tracks are still traditional folk songs)

1 Comfort and Joy [bonus track on deluxe version and iTunes release of Midwinter Graces]
2 Stille Nacht! Heilige Nacht! (Silent Night! Holy Night!) [bonus track on deluxe version and iTunes release of Midwinter Graces]
3 Good King Wenceslas [bonus track on iTunes release of Midwinter Graces]

What’s missing: Unless you want to count the bonus interview on the DVD of the deluxe version and the iTunes release as a B-Sides, nothing’s missing from here.