Song Analysis

Yo George

Thursday 25 August 2011, by Cécile Desbrun

[article coming soon. In the meantime, read Tori’s quotes about the song.]

Q: That’s true, but there’s also this sentiment sometimes in music, music criticism and music fandom that politics, if they need to be covered at all, need to be wrapped in clever allegory or ambivalent narratives. People can get flustered by very direct questions like “Where have we gone wrong, America?” [from “Yo George”]. Have you had a different experience? Do you think people are ready to answer those questions head-on?

"We’d better. But also a little song like that—because of the ’Yo, Tony’ incident, it was really irresistible on every level. When I walked in the piano room, the piano looked at me like, ’Yo, Tori, get over here, we’ve got a little number to work up.’" (ARTISTdirect, May 10, 2007)

"Well, there’s been a lot of commentary on it. But that wasn’t a surprise. When you start thinking about the British angle, and George Bush and King George, you start thinking, we have to bring in the masses. The crux of that song is really what has gone wrong in America. It’s really a song that addresses us. He’s just kind of the guy we’re talking about, but we are talking about, how did we get here? And it’s very different than a song that’s pointing the finger. It’s as pretty intimate conversation you’re having about the tragic place that we’re in, a heartbreaking place. You had to get the people’s emotions. Unless you permeate the place, people are very defensive of where they are with their politics. If you start pointing the finger, preaching doesn’t get you very far, I don’t think. But getting under peoples’ skin, getting intimate about this subject, was the only way for this song to work." (American Songwriter, July 2007)