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Old 06-09-04, 11:54 PM
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If I have never....

heard Tom Waits or not that I knew it at the time but want to get into his stuff, what songs should I access?
Old 06-10-04, 12:15 AM
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My first Tom Waits album was Heartattack and Vine. It has what I believe to be one of the most melancholy songs ever written in the form of Ruby's Arms. From there, I went to the beginning of his catalogue and worked my way forward. His earlier works focus more on his saloon singer guise and features more piano work. Through the 80's, he started to experiment with sound more but I think if you like something by Waits, you'll like it all. Start out with some early stuff and then try moving forward.

After hearing that album for the first time 6 years ago, Waits has become one of my most cherished artists.
Old 06-10-04, 12:24 AM
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Tom Waits was the singing pirate in Shrek 2...so if you saw that movie, you heard him.
Old 06-10-04, 09:19 AM
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Personally I think Rain Dogs is his best album. It is my favorite album of his, and probably in the top 5 of my favorite albums of all time. I don't think there is a bad song on the album. Honestly though I don't think Tom Waits has a bad song. His latest few albums have been very good too.

If you are looking to find a few to sample, look for his Rain Dog era stuff. Possibly something off of Frank's Wild Years too.

For some, his voice is a little much at first, but nearly everyone I know eventually falls for him after hearing his stuff.

Check out the song Cemetary Polka
Old 06-10-04, 04:19 PM
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Start at the beginning and go from there (listening to entire albums). You will get the full impact of his growth and diversity of music.

Closing Time is my personal favorite (I love all of his albums, btw). Many people think that Closing Time is subpar because it was his first cd and redundant blah blah blah...well it isn't. It is brilliant.

It is more "piano/folk jazzy" than most of his later albums, and it seems to have more jazzy/folk production than most of anything he has done, but if the album doesn't tug at your heart strings you are can't be human.

Martha makes me cry everytime I hear it. Old Shoes (& Picture Postcards) lifts me up when I am feeling down.

Although there is really only one (Old Shoes (& Picture Postcards) upbeat song, that shouldn't stray you away.

The writing is fantastic and his vocals don't have the harshness that later Waits albums do (although I love his harsh voice).

Again, start at the beginning.

Last edited by conscience; 06-10-04 at 04:22 PM.

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