Triangle Couple Celebrates 18 Years With Tori Amos–And Each Other
Back before social media, when Usenet was a force and walkmans were still the preferred portable audio device, a couple of other things were happening, too. Musical artist Tori Amos was taking the world by storm with her first solo release, Little Earthquakes, and Rob Reinhardt and Kelley Harrell stumbled into a tiny alcove of digital fandom, rec.music.tori-amos, or as it’s more commonly called, rmt-a. It was there, in this small online niche group, they met each other.
So before there was Facebook, Google+, even Reddit, and Yahoo Groups, there was Usenet–a bullet board haven where command line geeks found community on the dial-up Internet.
Created in the 1979 by a couple of Duke University students, Usenet newsgroups were the precursor to Internet forums, as we know them, today. Home of some of the most raucous topics and unmoderated content on the World Wide Web, Usenet was an experience unto itself. After many legal battles and bouts with censorship, the discussion system eventually was absorbed into the booming online industry.
Started in 1993, rmt-a became the core fan hub of Amos. From it sprang the fanzines, Really Deep Thoughts and Little Blue World, (an editor of which was also a Triangle resident), and The Dent, which became the main hub of all news Tori. By 1996, the community generated enough support to begin ToriCon, an annual Ears With Feet gathering that united Toriphiles around the world. For Raleigh’s 2000 Toricon, Reinhardt and Harrell created the event’s entertainment guide.
The couple met on Amos’ third world tour, Dew Drop Inn, in 1996–15 August, to be exact.
Both had been fans of Amos since her first solo release in 1992, and followed her career closely. A North Carolina native, herself, Amos was born in Newton, and still has family in the state. Her parents and brother attended that particular show.
Through rmt-a, a group of Triangle fans gathered before the Raleigh Memorial Auditorium show (now the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts), and Reinhardt and Harrell became fast friends. They spent the rest of that tour going to East Coast shows. It wasn’t until October of the same year that the two became an official couple.
Reinhardt is a Licensed Professional Counselor, and is the founder of Serenity Springs Counseling and Wellness, also in Fuquay. Kelley is a bestselling author, and has a modern shamanic practice, Soul Intent Arts.
Still fans of Amos, this fall, the couple celebrates 18 years together.
Wednesday 20 August, Tori Amos performs at DPAC.