scarlet

scarlet fever

or scarlatina

Acute infectious disease caused by some types of streptococcus bacteria. Fever, sore throat, headache, and, in children, vomiting are followed in two to three days by a rash. The skin peels in about one-third of cases. After a coating disappears, the tongue is swollen, red, and bumpy (strawberry tongue). Glands are usually swollen. Complications frequently involve the sinuses, ears (sometimes with mastoiditis), and neck. Abscesses are common. Nephritis, arthritis, or rheumatic fever may occur later. Treatment involves penicillin, bed rest, and adequate fluid intake. Scarlet fever has become uncommon and much milder since the mid-20th century, independent of the use of antibiotics.

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Scarlet's Walk is the seventh album released in singer-songwriter Tori Amos' solo career. The 18-track concept album details the cross-country travels of Scarlet, a character loosely based on Amos, as well as the concept of America post-September 11th (2001). The album was the first released by Amos on Epic Records after her split with former label Atlantic Records. After a period of trouble with her last label, Amos proved her fan base was still with her when the album debuted at US # 7, selling 107,000 copies in its first week, and reaching RIAA Gold status about a month after its release.

Track listing

Bonus DVD

  • Polaroids
  • Commentary by Amos on Gold Dust and A Sorta Fairytale videos.

Singles and B-sides

Singles

The first single from the album was the catchy, radio-friendly track "A Sorta Fairytale" (released September 2002), which proved to be one of Amos' more successful singles, landing her in the ARC US Top 40 and in the US Top 10 Adult Contemporary charts. A commercial single was also released in the UK with a B-side entitled "Operation Peter Pan", based on the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962. This served as the last commercial CD single of Amos' career to date.

"Taxi Ride," a partial homage to the late make-up artist Kevyn Aucoin, a friend of Amos' who died in May 2002, served as the second single from the album. An on-line contest was held asking fans to direct and submit a music video for the song. The song reached the Top 40 Adult Contemporary chart in the US. The third single, "Strange," was released to radio in a redone version that was given a Country and Western feel with twangy guitars and additional vocals. A Timo Maas dance remix of "Don't Make Me Come to Vegas" served as the fourth single continued Amos' fortunes on the dance charts. Of the last three singles, only the latter was released commercially, exclusively on a 12" vinyl single in the US.

B-sides

The album, as with most of Amos' albums, is also known for its collection of original B-sides. Amos recorded a host of songs that did not make the album, but were released as B-sides to various singles or performed live in concerts.

Title Single/EP
"Operation Peter Pan" "A Sorta Fairytale" (2002)
"Mountain" "Scarlet's Web" download (2002)
"Tombigbee" Scarlet's Hidden Treasures (2004)
"Bug a Martini"
"Ruby Through the Looking Glass"
"Apollo's Frock"
"Seaside"
"Indian Summer"

Theme description

"The CD's about America -- it's a story that's also a journey, that begins in LA and crosses the country, slowly heading east. America's in there, and specific places and things, Native American history and pornography and a girl on a plane who'll never get to New York, and Oliver Stone and Andrew Jackson and madness and a lot more. Not to mention a girl called Scarlet who may be the land and may be a person and may be a trail of blood." - Author Neil Gaiman

Charts

Album

Chart (2002) Position
Billboard 200 (U.S.) 7
Billboard Top Internet Albums (U.S.) 1
Official UK Album Chart (UK) 26
German Top 100 Album Chart (Germany) 9
Polish Top Selling 50 (Poland) 10
Australian ARIA Chart (Australia) 20
Austrian Album Chart (Austria) 26
Belgian Top 40 Chart (Belgium) 38
Top 100 Album Chart (Canada) 13
Danish Album Chart (Denmark) 32
Irish Album Chart (Ireland) 24
Finnish Album Chart (Finland) 20
French IFOP chart (France) 32
The Album Top 100 (the Netherlands) 17
New Zealand's Top 50 (New Zealand) 45
Official Sales Chart (Norway) 30
Swiss Album Chart (Switzerland) 21

Singles

Year Song Peak positions
Billboard Hot 100
Adult Top 40
ARC Weekly Top 40
R&R's Triple A Airplay (U.S.)
Hot Dance Music/Club Play
Hot Dance Singles Sales (U.S.)
UK Top 40
Canadian Singles German Top 100 Singles
2002 "A Sorta Fairytale" 114∞ 11 35 1 41 6 98
2003 "Taxi Ride" 35 17
2003 "Don't Make Me Come to Vegas" (remix) 6 12

∞ - Denotes position on Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles

Release history

In addition to the standard CD release, a limited edition of Scarlet’s Walk was released in a special box set containing the album, a bonus DVD, a map detailing Scarlet's journey, stickers, a bracelet-charm and mock Polaroid postcards. The album also provided entry to "Scarlet's Web" a web site that was the sole source for special concert ticket offers, photos, merchandise, and unreleased B-side tracks. The elaborate packaging of the limited edition version of the album garnered Amos a Grammy nomination.

In an attempt to prevent Internet trading of the album, Amos, in conjunction with her husband and crew, used glue to bind closed portable CD players containing the album. These were then distributed to the press on the understanding that they would be returned within forty-eight hours. If an attempt was made to open the player, both it and the disc inside would shatter. The success of this attempt was so great that the record industry began to follow suit. As an additional incentive to buy the album rather than download its contents illicitly, the CD also served as a key to access "Scarlet's Web", a website which featured several songs ("Tombigbee", "Seaside", "Mountain") as well as various photographs and journal entries that were not available elsewhere.

Region Date
UK October 28, 2002
USA October 29, 2002
Denmark
France
Germany
Australia
Italy
Mexico

References

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