Skip Navigation Links
Compact Discs

» Tom Waits

Tom Waits
Born: December 7, 1949 in Pomona, Ca
Active: '70s-2010s Major
Styles: Experimental Rock, Singer/Songwriter, College Rock
Instrument: Vocals, Piano Representative
Albums: "Swordfishtrombones", "Rain Dogs", "Small Change" Representative
Songs: "Diamonds on My Windshield", "Downtown Train", "Tom Traubert's Blues (Four Sheets to the Wind in Copenhagen)"

UPC Type Title
045778663224 CD Alice
045778663217 Vinyl Alice
075596049429 (i) CD Asylum Years
9325583003004 (i) CD Asylum Years
045778715121 CD Bad as Me
4547366061857 (i) CD Bad as Me
045778715114 Vinyl Bad as Me
045778717729 CD Bad as Me-Deluxe Edition
731452451927 CD Beautiful Maladies-the Island
4988005712462 (i) CD Beautiful Maladies/the Island Years
042284247023 CD Big Time
4988005532213 (i) CD Big Time
731451855924 CD Black Rider
045778662920 CD Blood Money
045778662913 Vinyl Blood Money
4943674096558 (i) CD Blue Valentine
075596033619 (i) Vinyl Blue Valentine
731451258022 CD Bone Machine
4988005314017 (i) CD Bone Machine
8712273111414 (i) DVD Burma Shave
075596083621 CD Closing Time
4943674096497 (i) CD Closing Time
4943674103737 (i) CD Closing Time
081227980719 Vinyl Closing Time
075596061827 (i) CD Foreign Affairs
4943674103775 (i) CD Foreign Affairs
4943674096541 (i) CD Foreign Affairs
600753030356 (i) Vinyl Frank's Wild Years
042284235723 CD Franks Wild Years
045778705320 CD Glitter & Doom Live
045778705313 Vinyl Glitter & Doom Live
8714092705317 (i) Vinyl Glitter & Doom Live
075596059725 CD Heart of Saturday Night
081227980689 Vinyl Heart of Saturday Night
075596054720 (i) CD Heartattack & Vine
4943674096565 (i) CD Heartattack & Vine
045778654727 CD Mule Variations
4988010745721 (i) CD Mule Variations
5021456096596 (i) CD Mule Variations
045778654710 Vinyl Mule Variations
045778709915 Vinyl Mule Variations 11th Anniversary
8714092654714 (i) Vinyl Mule Variations
823564633527 (i) CD My Fathers Place
075596062022 CD Nighthawks at the Diner
4943674096510 (i) CD Nighthawks at the Diner
081227980702 Vinyl Nighthawks at the Diner
823564524498 DVD One Star Shining-the First Decade
045778684427 CD Orphans
042282638229 CD Rain Dogs
4988005677365 (i) CD Rain Dogs
045778667826 CD Real Gone
045778667819 Vinyl Real Gone
823564528199 DVD Second Hand Stories
075596061223 CD Small Change
4943674103768 (i) CD Small Change
081227980696 Vinyl Small Change
042284246927 CD Swordfishtrombones
042284246910 Vinyl Swordfishtrombones
767004060125 CD Tom Waits: Vol. 1-Early Years
767004060224 CD Tom Waits: Vol. 2-Early Years
823564527598 DVD Tom Waits: Complete Review
767004060118 Vinyl Tom Waits: Vol. 1-Early Years
767004060217 Vinyl Tom Waits: Vol. 2-Early Years
081227835125 CD Used Songs 1973-80
4943674159383 (i) CD Used Songs 1973-80

Biography: In the 1970s, Tom Waits combined a lyrical focus on desperate, low-life characters with a persona that seemed to embody the same lifestyle, which he sang about in a raspy, gravelly voice. From the '80s on, his work became increasingly theatrical as he moved into acting and composing. Growing up in Southern California, Waits attracted the attention of manager Herb Cohen, who also handled Frank Zappa, and was signed by him at the beginning of the 1970s, resulting in the material later released as The Early Years and The Early Years, Vol. 2. His formal recording debut came with Closing Time (1973) on Asylum Records, an album that contained "Ol' 55," which was covered by labelmates the Eagles for their On the Border album. Waits attracted critical acclaim and a cult audience for his subsequent albums, The Heart of Saturday Night (1974), the two-LP live set Nighthawks at the Diner (1975), Small Change (1976), Foreign Affairs (1977), Blue Valentine (1978), and Heart Attack and Vine (1980). His music and persona proved highly cinematic, and, starting in 1978, he launched parallel careers as an actor and as a composer of movie music. He wrote songs for and appeared in Paradise Alley (1978), wrote the title song for On the Nickel (1980), and was hired by director Francis Coppola to write the music for One from the Heart (1982), which earned him an Academy Award nomination. While working on that project, Waits met and married playwright Kathleen Brennan, with whom he later collaborated.

Moving to Island Records, Waits made Swordfishtrombones (1983), which found him experimenting with horns and percussion and using unusual recording techniques. The same year, he appeared in Coppola's Rumble Fish and The Outsiders, and, in 1984, he appeared in the director's The Cotton Club. In 1985, he released Rain Dogs. In 1986, he appeared in Down by Law and made his theatrical debut with Chicago's Steppenwolf Theatre in Frank's Wild Years, a musical play he had written with Brennan. An album based on the play was released in 1987, the same year Waits appeared in the films Candy Mountain and Ironweed. In 1988, he released a film and soundtrack album depicting one of his concerts, Big Time. In 1989, he appeared in the films Bearskin: An Urban Fairytale, Cold Feet, and Wait Until Spring. His work for the theater continued in 1990 when Waits partnered with opera director Robert Wilson and beat novelist William Burroughs and staged The Black Rider in Hamburg, Germany. In 1991, he appeared in the films Queens' Logic, The Fisher King, and At Play in the Fields of the Lord. In 1992, he scored the film Night on Earth; released the album Bone Machine, which won a Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album; appeared in the film Bram Stoker's Dracula; and returned to Hamburg for the staging of his second collaboration with Robert Wilson, Alice. The Black Rider was documented on CD in 1993, the same year Waits appeared in the film Short Cuts.

A long absence from recording resulted in the 1998 release of Beautiful Maladies, a retrospective of his work for Island. In 1999, Waits finally returned with a new album, Mule Variations. The record was a critical success, winning a Grammy for Best Contemporary Folk album, and was also his first for the independent Epitaph Records' Anti subsidiary. A small tour followed, but Waits jumped right back into the studio and began working on not one but two new albums. By the time he emerged in the spring of 2002, both Alice and Blood Money were released on Anti Records. Blood Money consisted of the songs from the third Wilson/Waits collaboration that was staged in Denmark in 2000 and won Best Drama of the Year. After limited touring in support of these two endeavors, Waits returned to the recording studio and issued Real Gone in 2004. The album marked a large departure for him in that it contained no keyboards at all, focusing only on stringed and rhythm instruments. Glitter and Doom Live appeared in 2009. Waits didn't release another studio album of new material until 2011, when he issued Bad as Me on Anti in the Fall. He uncharacteristically issued a track listing two months in advance of the release, and the pre-release title track as a digital single. He also took the unusual step of releasing a video in which he allowed bits of all the album's songs to play while he scolded bloggers and peer-to-peer sites for invading his privacy. ~ William Ruhlmann, Rovi