Tori Amos has never shied away from controversial topics. With her trusty piano by her side, Amos has unflinchingly sung about rape, religion, miscarriage and, most recently, menopause, offering up cleverly written songs that are sometimes sad, often angry, and always come from the heart. After a few years flirting with classical music, Amos, now 50, has returned to the piano-driven alt pop that endeared us to her with 1992’s Little Earthquakes.

Her new album (number 14 if you are counting ), Unrepentant Geraldines, is an unyielding look at her life right now, so songs about aging, motherhood, religion and spirituality, and even politics (with a reference to Edward Snowden) are in the mix. But it would be boring if Amos were that straightforward in her storytelling, so politics are cloaked in a Grimm-like fairy tale in “Giant’s Rolling Pin,” where truth-telling powers come to those who eat the magic pies, while “16 Shades of Blue” speaks to significant age-related hurdles we climb at various stages in life.

Since she has become one of the preeminent tell-it-like-it-is singer-songwriters of Generation X, it’s perhaps not too surprising that when we asked Tori to make a playlist for Rhapsody, she chose tracks from some of the cleverest songwriters to date: James TaylorPrinceStevie Wonder andElvis Costello. Hit play and enjoy this exclusive Tori Amos playlist.