Anniversary Show: Sophie B. Hawkins fetes 30 years of ‘Tongues and Tails’

Sophie B. Hawkins’ song “Damn I Wish I Was Your Lover” reached No. 5 on The Billboard 200 chart. (Submitted)

By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski

Thirty years ago, when Sophie B. Hawkins created the album “Tongues and Tails,” she wanted to make a classic album. 

As a result, the hit “Damn I Wish I Was Your Lover” kick-started her career. It sounds as fresh as it did in 1992. 

“The lyrics are still so appropriate,” Hawkins adds via Zoom. I really was conscious of wanting to make a classic album and I feel that, in my own heart, that was achieved because every song is so valid. The melodies in these chord structures are so good.”

Hawkins will celebrate the album’s anniversary with a show at the Musical Instrument Museum at 7 p.m. Wednesday, October 26. She says the songs are still fun to perform. 

“I perform songs from ‘Tongues and Tails,’” she adds. “Then there are the new songs, which I’m previewing, and I’m excited about that. ‘Love Yourself’ is dropping October 6. So, I will definitely be singing that song and a few others from the new release.

“Then there are going to be some covers that people have never seen me play before. Of course, I’m going to do the cover from ‘Tongues and Tails,’ ‘I Want You’ (by Bob Dylan). So, the question is always how to slim down the set and really make it the perfect time. We’re really working within the music to bring something new without leaving the old behind.” 

“Damn I Wish I Was Your Lover” didn’t just help her career, it broke through a sensitive barrier of LGBTQ understanding. 

“I was fighting for that without fighting,” she says with a smile as she lies on her bed with her dog. 

“I would not let them take that third verse away,” which refers to said lover as a “her.” “I had to get my vision across, but I never named what I was doing, but I knew what I was doing. I thought if I named it, those big guys would never let me get away with it.”

Sophie B. Hawkins

WHEN: 7 p.m. Wednesday, October 26

WHERE: Musical Instrument Museum, 4725 E. Mayo Boulevard, Phoenix

COST: Tickets start at $38.50