Never reluctant to reveal the vast range of influences who have informed his music and outlook across more than 40 years, Tom Waits still remains amongst the most unique musical artists around. And as many of Tom s original contemporaries spend their twilight years releasing album after album of dull, predictable material, Waits does just the opposite and keeps all of us guessing as to just what he might do next. This film traces the musical and literary icons who Waits has cherished above all others and who have had the most profound influence on his life and music: stand up and take a bow Charles Bukowski, Harry Partch, Frank Sinatra, Captain Beefheart, Jack Kerouac, Hoagy Carmichael, Bob Dylan, Lord Buckley, Ken Nordine, Kurt Weill and Keith Richards for these are the writers, composers and performers who have assisted most pertinently in unlocking the enormous talent and originality with which the person born Thomas Alan Waits on December 9th 1949 in Pamona, CA, was blessed. Featuring live and studio archive of both Waits himself and of those listed above, plus exclusive and archival interviews, rare footage, photographs and location shoots, contributions from close colleagues and Waits experts, and with Ken Nordine, members of Beefhearts Magic Band, David Dunn [Harry Partch s key assistant in the early 1970s] , Barney Hoskins [Waits biographer] and a host of others.
I got me this one. I thought it would be interesting to have a documentary on all of his influences. And it is much of what I hoped it to be.
Not much on Tom himself but a lot on all the artists he was influenced by. It's great to get so much information and footage on all of Tom's influences. It makes me want to explore them even more then I already have.
To show the Weill influence, a pianist plays 'singapore' and 'rain dogs' on piano in chords. And indeed, by doing that it sounds definetely like Weill.
Apparently Tom didn't know Kurt Weill, untill everyone said after 'swordfishtrombones' :"you must off listened a lot to Kurt Weill".
"euhm ? who? Better look him up then"
Acording to Barney Hoskins, on 'real gone' Ribot's guitarplaying is obviously the influence of Keith richard in Tom's music. I'm not really a specialist in this, but to me it's Ribot himself's influence. No ?
1 point of criticsme I have. The chapter on the rolling stones and Keith richards is too big. I don't hear so much of the Stones in Tom's music. But maybe that shows more on what I love about Tom.
Instead 'Howlin wolf' is underestimated. He only gets mentioned because he influenced Captain Beefheart, and Tom is influenced by him. This link is much more important to me, then the stones.
So for me it would have been a better documentary, if they didn't waste so much time on the rolling stones, and used that time to dig in deeper in the work of Howlin wolf.
But everything regarding his 70's period..., Harry Partch, Bertolt Brecht, Kurt Weill.... I really love it.