Can we talk...TOM WAITS?


I think we could have quite the discussion about this guy given the extraordinarily rich and varied nature of his output. I’d say I’ve been an obsessive for the last seven years or so, and no matter what else I’m listening to I always end up returning to his stuff every six months. At the moment I’m listening to Bone Machine while getting ready for tonight’s pub session, and I have to say it’s my favourite of his atm. It feels like a nicely balanced collection where his avant-leanings are welded to superb songwriting and great structures. There are the great crooners, the mangled blues, and those awesome, fuzzy, heavily textured guitar lines he’d been cultivating since Heartattack/Swordfishtrombone.

I think he’s possibly my favourite songwriter. Nobody can wring as much emotion out of three chords and a plank of wood.


Waits is the greatest. Wish he’d tour again. Hopefully he’ll make another record soon, Bad As Me was superb. Though there’s still quite a few from his back catalogue I haven’t got yet, fairly sure I’ll enjoy all of them. Favourite pick is really hard, but I’m digging Blue Valentine right now for some jazzy autumn rain blues.

Singing along to his songs while pissed is one of life’s great joys


I find this track also has a nice autumn/wintery feel to it, perfect for drunken dark nights of the soul around this time of year:


He’s a performance artist, one classier and more refined than almost any other in history. An incredible pastiche of the frustrated alienation, poverty and macabre of early American capitalism, and what’s more a lyricist switching between razor sharp wit and stand alone poetry.


He really is fantstic. Even though he’s covered many musical styles and consistently challenged his audience I can’t think of one sub par album.
Top 3 albums for me are:
Rain Dogs
Bone Machine

But they all have their charms.


Picking a favourite is really hard. I think Rain Dogs is one of mine. But the really early stuff ich freaking great as well. Ol’55 is seriously one of my all time favourite songs.


Mule Variations is probably my favourite, but he’s consistently great. This is one of my favourites off the last album:




if push comes to shove i’ll pick blue valentine as my favourite record of his, love it. Honourable mentions to heart of saturday night, rain dogs and alice.
he’s absolutely incredible, was fortunate emough to get tickets to both nights when he played edinburgh a good few years back, absolutely amazing. although he ddidn’t play anything from his eralier records which i’d have loved to have heard.


Was a great singer until he got that sore throat