Cloud On My Tongue

Album: Under The Pink (1994)

Songfacts®:

  • Someone's knockin' on Tori Amos' kitchen door in this piano ballad, but she's not letting him in. The song recalls a real-life experience when Amos was "in a strange place in the Pacific" and her interaction with a potential lover who finally made up his mind about their relationship after she was already taken. She told the crowd at a 1999 concert in Atlanta: "And he said to me, 'I've just come from Borneo, and I've come to take you away with me for a few days.' And I said, 'Well, that's just f--king great, because my boyfriend's here, and you know I have a boyfriend and you had a chance with me a few years back.' And isn't that always the way that they come."
  • Amos told Creem magazine how she came to write the tune. She explained in a 1994 interview: "When I wrote 'Cloud on My Tongue,' I was having a hard day because I put all my power in this other person. Sometimes I feel inferior to men who have this raw wolf energy. The concept of free expression in your life. I have it in my work but not in my life. So when I meet these people who have it, I want to get close to them because... I try and suck their energy, that's what I do."
  • In a 1994 interview with The Baltimore Sun, Amos elaborated on the indecisive man from Borneo and how the Southeast Asian island inspired her. "I travel a lot around the world, and I went to all sorts of places, and I ran into different people," she said. "Borneo had something that I didn't have. It was a very free, hot, jungly place, and the people that, or a person that came from there, had something that I didn't have that I desperately wanted, which was no rigidity. When I say, 'Leave the wood outside, what, all the girls here are freezing cold, leave me with your Borneo.' Or don't leave me with your Borneo, because I've had it before, and that's why I need the wood, because it just - you can go now, you're already in there, whether it's pregnant or whether it's just infused. You don't even have to hang around and watch me disintegrate, because you've already done your job. You've already accomplished what you wanted, which was another scalp on your belt, and you did it. That's not one of my favorite men songs."
  • This is an album cut from Amos' second solo release, Under The Pink. A #1 hit in the UK, the album features fan favorite tunes like "Cornflake Girl" and "God" (her first entry on the Hot 100).

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