Title: KCRW-FM Radio: Evening Becomes Eclectic
Source: audio tape (interviewer Tom ..?..). Transcription (excerpts) by Gary Tausch as sent to Rain Dogs Listserv Discussionlist. August 8-9, 2001
Date: Santa Monica/ USA. October 9, 1992 (?)
Key words: Bone Machine, Studio recording, Fatherhood, Songwriting, Harry Partch, Captain Beefheart, Religion, Audience, Touring, Jim Jarmusch, I Don't Wanna Grow Up, Musical favourites, Charles Bukowski, Dracula, Keith Richards, That Feel, The Ocean Doesn't Want Me Today, Arsenio Hall appearance


KCRW-FM Radio: Evening Becomes Eclectic


Interviewer: Is it nerve-wrecking to go on the road and do interviews?
The road is always rough cause it's different every night. That's why you do it. You do it because it is different every night but at the same time some nights it's like being skinned and dipped in lemon juice and other nights it's like you're eight miles high and the world is covered with mattresses and you can't get hurt. You just have to be ready for the highs and the lows of it.

Interviewer: Where is home?
I live in a little town out in the sticks. I'm in California. The radio is terrible where I am. The food's terrible, the radio's terrible and everyone' s got gun racks. There's a lot of roadkill out there too.

On the sound of Bone Machine:
I don't know if I ever approached digital sound to get away from it. I'm becoming more and more to the point where I think the sound is married to the music. We recorded this thing in kind of a shed. It was great. The first day of recording was difficult because we were booked in this room(1) and I said, oh, man, this room sounds terrible. I was a little embarrassed, so was everybody else. We were booked in there for like a month. Then I went around the place and found a little storage room and I said, boy, this room sounds pretty good down here, let's do it down here and everybody looked at me like - Down here? Well, jeeze, this room's not really a studio. Hey, if it sounds good you do it. Cause I'm also at the point where I kind of like letting the world in. Soundproof rooms don't necessarily get it either. We had a broken window with a sheet over it and a door with a squeaky hinge and no lock on it and a cement floor and a water heater in the corner and there were a lot of maps on the wall. I thought that was a good sign. If you're going on an expedition it's good to have maps on the wall.

On public persona:
It's really like a ventriloquist act. With the media you have to - you don't really want to let yourself be hanging out there too much. You have to do a Charlie McCarthy(2).

Interviewer: Were there naked people in the audience or on the stage for the Nighthawks At The Diner recordings?
(laughs) There were naked people? Really? Gosh, I didn't notice that. I would have noticed something like that.

On changes since becoming a family man:
I'm getting wilder in a way. Kids are very musical. Kids write thousands of songs before they even learn to talk. They write the best songs, better than anybody I know cause they don't know what they're doing. They just fall into it. My kids are writing songs all the time so I listen to them. Kids have problems of their own. We all got problems. Their problems are different. They also make up words all the time which I like. I'm big on words. With words it's usually the sound of the word that I'll become attracted to, particularly in a song. They have to be like sound items. Every word has its own resonance and its own shape and its own things that it does. I had someone write me a letter from the Midwest that my little girl sure does like your songs and likes your music. She rates you right up there with cherry bombs and clowns. I like that. Your voice sounds like a cherry bomb. Just look around, if you're struggling for a word and a lot of times when you're writing a song you'll just be looking for a word. You just look around. You're gonna see something written on the wall or something on the title of a book. We've got words written around us all the time so you just have to keep your eyes open. They're always there.

Interviewer: Do you have a favourite song on Bone Machine?
I seem to like them all. I like the Earth Died Screaming. We have a pygmy percussion unit on there called the Boners(3) that we formed during the making of it and we recorded outside. Took the microphone outside onto the dirt and put it up and had everybody play sticks on the sidewalk cause we couldn't get the same sound in the studio. It's too resonant. And most of those field recordings that you hear were all recorded outside. Alan Lomax(4) - all that stuff that he did was all outside. He also was interested in capturing sounds that will no longer be with us. Songs of the junkyard, songs of machinery and things that we take for granted that they'll always be around us that we will always keep hearing that are vanishing. I love letting the words into the studio rather than trying to shut it out with soundproofing. We didn't record this in a soundproof room. We had airplanes to deal with and cars and the world. So - Oh, we better stop - wait for that train to pass. I like dealing with that, it puts you in correct perspective on what you're doing. You have to stop for an airplane. It's good, it's good for the music. You might say, let's let the airplane be in there. There are no airplanes on here but there are some things that happened that you can hear if you listen carefully. Helicopters and that stuff. I've always been curious why they haven't considered sending musicians out into space. Because there's all this talk about contacting other life forms and discovering other cultures in space and I've always wondered why they hadn't created a spacecraft where you could have speakers on the outside of it and have musicians inside playing and have them just out there in space playing. Sound never ends, it never disappears. Once you set those things in motion they get more difficult to hear but they never actually go away.

On Sun Ra:
He's an innovator

On Goin' Out West:
The best songs are written real fast I think. You just make 'em. You just need a little bone, a little hair - you make 'em real fast. That was a song that was written REAL fast

Interviewer: Do you do the words or music first?
Chicken or the egg? I don't know. It's always all mixed up together and overlapping. I don't know what comes first. You gotta start somewhere. For us we started writing in a little room with a tape recorder, very crummy tape recorder, pawnshop tape recorder and the sound that we got on the tape recorder was really alive and then we had to go into the studio and see if we could find the same world, the same sound world. I'm also interested in alternative sound sources and I'm more and more exploring different things that aren't instruments but that sound great. I've met a lot of people up around where I'm living. There's a quarterly magazine that comes out called Experimental Musical Instruments.(5) It's people who design, build and perform on their own inventions. Para ventricular decapitators and that type of thing. Harry Partch(6) lived in Petaluma for a while and he was always hitting something that wasn't really an instrument but all the instruments that we know had to go through this evolution. There's skin and metal and wood and glass and wind. Basically you're dealing with the same physics that they were dealing with then but because the world is changing and people are finding that there are a lot of recyclable items that are fascinating sound sources. There's a guy up there named Tom Nunn(7) in San Francisco. He built something called a T-rodimba and another thing called the Bug. It's a 3/4 inch plywood sound base and these enormous metal rods that come out of it. It sounds like - it's like metal and wood, somewhere in the middle of metal and wood. It has a great sound. So I'm always listening for that stuff.

Interviewer: Why did your sound change, were you bored with jazz & those instruments?
You're always looking for something that feels new. Traditional instruments - I use them because I love the sound of upright bass and all that. I'm trying to go a little bit outside of myself which is really where your best comes from. I think. When you're off balance, when you're a little outside. I'm exploring it a little bit at a time in the studio. It's fun because when you start recording it's difficult because you want to hear something you've never heard before. We've integrated some farm machinery into the sounds that we've found on this record. Some of it found its way onto the record and some of it didn't.

On A Little Rain - and ballads in general:
I go back and forth between - I like to hear family heirlooms thrown against the wall and also I like to - I like a lot of different kinds of sounds. When I first started writing songs I loved harmony and melody but I'm changing a little bit. But I still have the other side of me, the old drunk in the corner who had too much wine starting to get a little sentimental.

On his sentimental side:
It came out on the record. I tried to get a balance somewhere between them.

On rain in LA:
LA looks a lot better in the rain. At night when it's raining, Los Angeles really looks wild. It doesn't really get dark in Los Angeles at night cause there's so many lights. I love it when it rains.

On Captain Beefheart as an influence:
I love Captain Beefheart, god, yeah. He's a true innovator and I think he's a creator of forms and a total iconoclast. He has a mad quality and he doesn't subscribe to anyone else's doctrine. He takes things that fell off a truck and adapts them. He's an adaptor.

Interviewer: Joe Venutti once pushed a piano out of a 5th floor window cause he wanted to see what the major tonic would be when it hit.
Hey, everybody that plays piano wants to see a piano thrown off a building. That's the dream. Cause they're so heavy and you always have to go to them. I think everybody that plays piano wants to see it smash on the rocks.

On Bible imagery in Bone Machine:
It's my wife's fault. She's a lapsed Catholic. It's her fault. Yeah, there's some Biblical stuff on there. Earth Died Screaming - that's from the Book Of Rudy actually. He was one of the lost disciples. He was in, then he was out, finally he opened up a cafe.

Interviewer: You've always seemed shy and retiring to me.
Retiring? I'm too young to retire.

Interviewer: Is it a burden being famous?
I never run into anything like that. Burden? No. It never comes in handy. I mean if you ever try to use it to like get ahead. It never helps with the cops. No, I don't deal with that. You get the audience you deserve, really, I think. The people that like the Weekly World Newsor the National Enquirer - the people they're interested in are usually people that - there's like an unspoken doctrine and contract that you create between the periodicals.

On Arsenio Hall appearance:
Television is so brief. It goes out there and it dissipates.

On touring:
The road is odd because you're playing every night. It's a real concentrated thing. It's really like being in the circus. You have to use what happens during the day in order to integrate it into the show at night. I really feel like I'm part of a freak show when I'm on the road. That's when it's really at its best. Some nights are thrilling and those are the ones you remember. You may play in fifty cities and there's one night you'll remember out of the entire tour. It's like that'll be the night that really stayed with you. There's so many variables, who knows what's going to contribute to that. I don't know.

On theatre & film acting:
You really leave the ground in a theatre piece and that's the beauty of it. In films you don't really get to leave the ground. They pay you to wait. They don't pay you to act. The acting is free.

On Jim Jarmusch:
Jarmusch is great. Jarmusch is a very good friend of mine. We have a rapport. He's Dr Sullen(8). We work really well together. We're going to do a video when I go back up home for I Don't Wanna Grow Up.(9) I love Jarmusch. He's a great observer of human nature and loves the details. I'm big on details. It's great to work with someone you have that kind of shorthand with.

On I Don't Wanna Grow Up:
Everybody wants to grow up until they grow up. You ever been to a party and you look around and everybody around you is real grown up and you feel like - Oh, Jesus. This happened real fast, a real fast song. Kathleen said, "Oh, that's a great one." I said, "Gee, this is a lame song. This was written too fast. This is the kind of song you write in the car." But sometimes those are the best ones. My theory is the best songs have never really been recorded so we're all listening to like used music. We're listening to things that made it through but there's so many songs that have never made it cause they were scared of the machine and wouldn't allow themselves to be recorded. The trick is to get it in there and not bruise the gin. Don't hurt the song when you record it. This happened real fast. We only did it a couple of times and we just slammed it. We said, well, we better not do this again cause it'd just sound stupid. This was the version that we did and there was only one of them. We said okay, that'll do, you can go, you can come on the trip. I haven't played that song live. That's a good one to have. It's a sing along, it's like a hootenanny.

Interviewer: Was your voice always gravelly?
No, my early records, I can barely listen to 'em. I sound like a kid. I said boy, what are they doing recording a guy that sounds like that. Now I've gotten to the point where it feels comfortable and I can do things with it. I guess that's my real instrument, my voice. I can push it around and find different things it can do.

Interviewer: Do people comment that you're a good singer?
That you're always right on pitch? Nobody ever said that. Right in there on pitch? So I get good grades, huh? You know I can sing like Pavarotti if I want to but I find I feel more comfortable the way I do it. But on a good day I can sing like opera.

Interviewer: Who are some musical people in your hall of fame?
Lately I like Daniel Johnston(10), he's got a lot of records out.. Most of the records sound like they were done in his basement and his mom is at the top of the stairs telling him to come up to dinner. The Replacements have done some of his songs. One called King Kong I really love so much. We don't have that one here. He sounds like a kid and he records on inferior equipment and I always think that's brave. Technology has gotten to the point where I think both in sound and in video - we've seen what it can be when it's well produced and expensive. I think that our ears and our eyes go to that which is - it's just the old pendulum - and when things are produced in a more low rent way you'll listen more carefully. Daniel Johnston's part of that world.

Interviewer: Do you read a lot?
Oh, God, I do sometimes. I'm usually looking for something when I'm reading - looking to get myself ventriculized or adapted. Bukowski's new book is awful good - the Last Night Of The Earth Poems(11) - that's really got some wonderful things. I love Bukowski on record, those Bitter Lemon records(12). I had the pleasure of playing on the bill with him in Pittsburgh(13) about 15 years ago. I opened the show for Bukowski. He came out - oh, he just leveled me. He was backstage with a redhead on his lap and drinking beer, he was great. His new book is really - I would highly recommend it along with everything else he's written but his most recent book is really powerful.

On In The Colosseum:
On this we used the Conundrum(14). This was an instrument that was built for me by a neighbour of mine who's a sculptor and a welder. It's just an iron cross with a lot of metal hanging off of it. it sounds like a jail door closing behind you.

Interviewer: Is it better writing with Kathleen than alone?
Oh, it's better, yeah. It's great. She spins the chamber and I pull the trigger and sometimes the other way around. She's got a wonderful sense of rhythm and melody and she doesn't subscribe to the traditional co-ordinance of music. She's more like a kid in her approach to it so she's really changed the way I hear music and we wrote a lot of the songs together In The Colosseum is kind of an election year song. A lot of people will probably think I'm trying to work bigger rooms and get out of the nightclubs cause if you say In The Colosseum in a song maybe they'll book you in the Colosseum. It's like if you say "on the radio" in your song you'll get played on the radio. That's what they say. Is that true, Tom? If you have a song that says "on the radio" are you more prone to play the song? No? I just wanted to clear that up. Van Morrison says, "on the radio, on the radio, on the radio" - and it's always on the radio (laughs).

On the Bone Machine cover:
I was wearing Glacier Goggles there. I negotiated with my little boy and I got a chance to use his devilhorns which is kind of a skull cap. I thought it looked like Pinocchio on Pleasure Island. That's what I was going for is that Pleasure Island look.

Interviewer: It looks like a Francis Bacon painting.
Oh, yeah? Hey, that's a compliment.

Interviewer: And the toy guitar on the other side?
Hey, you know, children's instruments - really, the stuff that's available for children - some of it sounds better than the grown up stuff. I bought a drum set for $49.00 and it was unbelievable the sound that we got from it. It's a toy drum set, kick drum, 2 toms, temple block, sizzle cymbal - and it's the tits. I thought it was just top notch. I would have paid more for it but they wouldn't take it. They only wanted $49.00. I said let me give you 100 for this thing just so I feel better.

Interviewer: Do you have a favourite instrument?
When you're writing, when you're in a room where there's nothing you'll turn something into an instrument in order to write. I usually like things that have struggle involved. Particularly with percussion. I think drums play a lot better when you're mad. I think unfamiliarity is good for your development, the mystery of musicianship. It's important to keep that alive. I like to do it with the band. I say let's try this thing once all together and now let's switch instruments and let's get really off balance here and see if we can play it again with no co-ordinance and no centre of gravity at all. Let's try it like that. Or you take it and say let's cut the band in half. Half you guys play the song now, the other part of the group here, I want you to play it too but a little bit behind the beat so we get that kind of wobbly kind of Titanic feel. I think suggestions to groups are really important things that you say to them before you go into a song. I like to work with people who respond to those things.

Interviewer: Do you have a hard time finding a band?
Everybody gets with it real fast. There's high music and low music. I worked with a group in Hamburg(15), Germany - half of them played in the train station and the other half were orchestral musicians and the combination was thrilling. Everybody had something to teach to everybody. If you have two people that know the same thing, one of them is unnecessary. This was a place where everybody got - well, gee, what do you do when you get to this point? - well, I don't know - what do you do? - everybody learned something. There's a lostness to playing music that's good. Songs are very simple. They're made quickly. The best ones are made quickly. And some of them you'll never play again. Others will become riddles in your life. No one knows.

Interviewer: Have you done more acting or theatre?
I got a part in Dracula(16) which I finished a couple of months ago. It's coming out around Thanksgiving. That was great. I loved that. I played Renfield and I had to eat insects. I didn't actually eat the insects. I put them in my mouth kind of like a funhouse for the insects - and I moved them around and let them walk along my teeth and then I brought them back out again. Just like a roller coaster.

Interviewer: They must have been terrified.
Well, but they were safe. Everybody loves to be terrified when they're safe. So I'm hoping that the insects will remember that when I'm in my grave. They'll remember how good I was to them. Dracula was great. I got to wear a costume that made me look like a moth and scream in Rumanian. It was really great, I loved it.

Interviewer: What's your favourite time in the record making cycle?
Yeah, when it's done. Yeah, you think that you're gonna be happier when it's done but you're not really. You're happier when you're in the centre of it and it's really an expedition, it's a journey and anything can happen. I think leadership is best when you're lost. The captain is blind but you can never let the crew know that or they'll lose confidence in you. I love exploring sound and I lose myself in it and I work with people who love to vanish into these things. The songs are simple. They're small and they have three legs and you hope they move forward.

On Keith Richards:
Hey, he's great. It's great when you meet someone who you have a rapport with who you didn't know before. We hit it off. Music follows him around. He 's totally intuitive, he's got gypsy in him - a real pirate. Making music with him, it's really like getting on a ship with somebody and going far from home and it's exciting and it's an adventure and I love adventure so it 's simple. You have a bottle and you have a room and you're in a room. I played drums mostly when we wrote. He's remarkable. He's completely natural - he's like a wild - he's like something in captivity. And we wrote a lot of songs, we wrote many, many songs but only a few of them are finished. This is good. You leave a lot of them unfinished and then you've got something to do when you get back together.

On That Feel:
I love this song. We played it hundreds of times and then I made a version of it and then I took it to New York and he was there and he sang on it and played. I really have a soft spot in my heart for this song.

Interviewer: Do you have a favourite time of the day to write?
I don't stay up late anymore. I like the morning. I love it in the morning. It's a good time to record too. We recorded everything about 10 AM. Everybody's fresh. Nobody has any residual music. 10 AM - everyone's fresh, everyone's clean.

Interviewer: Do you learn about songwriting?
Oh, yeah, cause they don't have any laws about it. Songs come out of them very quickly and words too. There's a song on here - The Ocean Doesn't Want Me Today - my little girl came up with a word called Strangels, Strangels are strange angels. Then I said, well, yeah, then we can have Braingels too- those are the strange angels living in your head would be called Braingels. So we put it in there. Kids - they're all trying to grow up and we're all trying to grow down, grow back, or grow something. I remember when I was a kid in the movies, in the theatre, there used to be a place called the Crying Room, do you remember that? There was a big yellow sign and it said The Crying Room and I used to think that was for people who were overcome with emotion from the film and they had to go into this room and they were all in there crying. There was always a lot of people in there. You heard crying coming out. When I got older I realized that was for mothers with their kids and their kids were crying and they wanted to watch the movie but they couldn't watch it with everybody else cause it would disturb the audience so they had to go to the Crying Room and take their kids there but it always seemed that it was more crowded during the sad films, the real sad movies there was a lot of people in there.

Interviewer: Regarding Jesus Gonna Be Here - do you like preachers?
Oh, yeah, I used to hear them in downtown LA all the time, the guys on the corner with their own sound systems in the briefcases and the microphones. Heavy traffic. They always picked like 5 o'clock when it's really busy downtown. It usually seemed like the most important thing that was going on but it was also disregarded by everyone. It used to make me really - I would always stop and listen cause when you have something to say and it's important to you and no one's listening it's a lonely place and it takes a lot of courage and it takes a lot of conviction. Sometimes it just elevates you. Knowing that nobody's listening - there's a freedom in that. You can say anything you want when no one's listening. If you're raging in a room where nobody cares what you say you can say anything you want. I love those guys. Plus the sound systems were really - I love the sound of the little broken speakers.

On Jesus Gonna Be Here:
This was done real simply, it's just guitar and bass and that's it - in a small room. I never played upright bass before. It was one of those trades, Larry took the guitar and I took the bass. You can hear the helicopter on that.

On Arsenio Hall(17) appearance:
That was interesting. I had a 3 piece group. Gregory Boaz on upright, Brain on drums, Joe Gore on guitar - we did Goin' Out West (laughs). I don't know how that's gonna come off. I really don't.

Interviewer: Will you watch it?
I don't know.

Interviewer: Can you listen to your records after making them?
I can listen to this for a while, I'll be listening to this for a while and then I'll stop listening to it and then you start listening to things you can't hear which is the music that you're gonna do next. Basically the only reason to write new songs is cause you got sick and tired of the old ones. That's what Miles Davis always said. Why else would you start again. If you really hit the bell you'd probably just give it up. You got half way there and you want to try again.

On the Bone Machine record sales:
Somebody called me from the Midwest and said we got a record store out here in Indiana and this record is just going out of here like a rabbit with his ass on fire and it's really selling. In Florida they called out the National Guard cause people were breaking into the record store and opening up the boxes before business hours and trying to steal the records. So I always take that as a good sign.

On Bone Machine title:
You have one when you come in, you have one when you go out and hopefully you have a few while you're here. I think most of the principles of engineering came from the physics of the human body. Certainly during the industrial revolution the machinery that was being developed was based on the principles that were obvious in the human body. Bone Machine. Man versus machine. Music versus commerce. It's all there. I don't know what a bone machine is. It's just a title. I said let's write a bunch of songs that fall into the category of a bone machine.


(1) Because we were booked in this room: Prairie Sun recording studio in Cotati/ California. Former chicken ranch where Waits recorded: Night On Earth, Bone Machine, The Black Rider (Tchad Blacke tracks) and Mule Variations. Further reading: Prairie Sun official site

(2) You have to do a Charlie McCarthy: "Born in Chicago in 1903, Edgar Bergen developed a talent for ventriloquism at a young age. When Bergen asked a local carpenter to create a dummy, the wisecracking Charlie McCarthy was born. The duo began their career as talent show headliners, performing in Chicago while Bergen attended Northwestern University. Bergen eventually left Northwestern to concentrate on performing, but Charlie received an honorary degree from the school in 1938, a "Master of Innuendo and Snappy Comebacks." Bergen and McCarthy made their radio debut on Rudy Vallee's Royal Gelatin Hour in 1936 and were an instant success. In 1937, they were given their own show for Chase & Sanborn. Almost immediately, The Edgar Bergen/Charlie McCarthy Show became one of radio's highest-rated programs, a distinction it enjoyed until it left the air in 1956. Edgar Bergen died on October 1, 1978." (Source: "Radio Hall Of Fame", 2004)

(3) The Boners: improvised unprofessional percussion group, formed during the recordings for Bone Machine (Tom Waits, Kathleen Brennan, Joe Marquez and others).
- Tom Waits (1999): "Clive Butters, who is the ranch foreman (Prairie Sun). Who is also now a member of The Boners." (Source: "Tom Waits: A Q&A About Mule Variations", by Rip Rense. Date: ca. April, 1999. Also re-printed in "Performing Songwriter" July/ August, 1999)

(4) Alan Lomax: "In the early 1930s, Alan Lomax and his father, pioneering folklorist John A. Lomax, first developed the Library of Congress' Archive of American Folksong as a major national resource. Alan Lomax has been called "The Father of the American Folksong Revival," for his subsequent work as an ethnomusicologist, record producer and network radio host/ writer. He first presented Woody Guthrie, Leadbelly, Burl Ives, and Pete Seeger to a national audience on his radio programs in the '30s and '40s. As a radio producer and field recordist at the BBC, he sparked a British folksong revival, which soon fueled the British pop-rock Invasion. He also assembled the first recorded overview of world folksong for Columbia Records. As an anthropologist of the performing arts (for Columbia University and Hunter College), he produced a multimedia interactive database called The Global Jukebox, which surveys the relationship between dance, song, and human history. The author/ producer of many books, scientific articles, films, and record releases, Lomax has been a passionate advocate of "cultural equity", a principle which proposes to reverse the centralization of communication and give equal media time to the whole range of human cultures. After six decades of "folk song hunting" Alan retired in 1996. Alan Lomax passed away on July 19, 2002." Further reading: The Alan Lomax CollectionThe Alan Lomax Collection at Rounder RecordsLibrary Of CongressSouthern Mosaic.

(5) Experimental Musical InstrumentsThis quarterly journal ran from 1985 through 1999, producing a total of 70 issues. In its 14 years of publication, the Experimental Musical Instruments journal also published reviews of hundreds of CDs, LPs and cassettes featuring music of unusual instruments. Further reading: Experimental Musical Instruments

(6) Harry Partch: San Diego multi-instrumentalist. Developed and played home made instruments. Released the album" The World Of Harry Partch". Major influence for the album 'Swordfishtrombones'. Partch died in San Diego, 1974. Further reading: Partch, Harry 1Partch, Harry 2Partch, Harry 3;

(7) Tom Nunn: Both the T-rodimba and the Bug were used for the original play Alice in 1992. Tom Nunn has designed, built and performed with original musical instruments since 1975. His instruments typically utilize commonly available materials, are sculptural in appearance, utilize contact microphones for amplification, and are designed specifically for improvisation with elements of ambiguity, unpredictability and nonlinearity. In addition to the more than 50 instruments he has made, Tom has performed extensively throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, and in Canada and Europe, both as soloist and with other musicians. In 1998, Tom completed writing and self-published "Wisdom Of The Impulse: On The Nature Of Free Improvisation", a book that examines various aspects of this illusive art and presents a theoretical foundation for creative listening, analysis and discussion. Tom has also written a number of articles about the use of experimental instruments and improvisation in publications such as Experimental Musical Instruments. Waits and Nunn have worked together on the albums "Moanin' Parade. Gatmo Sessions Vol. 1" and "Swarm Warnings, Gatmo Sessions Vol. 2" (Jackalope, 2000). Further reading: Gatmo Studio

(8) He's Dr Sullen: Nickname given to Jim Jarmusch on the set of Down By Law (1985).
- Tom Waits (1987): 'It was Dr Sullen [Waits' name for Jarmusch], Bob Angeles [Benigni], the Great Complainer [Lurie], and I'm the Prince of Melancholy." (Source: "Son Of A Gun, We'll Have Big Fun On The Radar" New Musical Express magazine (UK), by Bill Foreman. Date: January 10, 1987)

(9) Video for I Don't Wanna Grow Up: I Don't Wanna Grow Up (1992) TW: musical performer/ actor. Music video promoting: "I Don't Wanna Grow Up" (Island Records). Director: Dayton, Jonathan/ Faris, Valerie. Shot by Jim Jarmusch. Further reading: Filmography

(10) Lately I like Daniel Johnston: "Until the '90s, Johnston's recording were basically homemade affairs, his plain voice accompanied by crude piano and guitar playing. His narrative concerns focused mainly on lost love, the pain of miscommunication, his love for the Beatles, and comic-book superhero Captain America. Johnston's music is unflinchingly direct, almost embarrassingly and painfully honest. Because of this and his increasingly erratic behavior, he was considered a local hero in his home of Austin, TX (where he moved from rural West Virginia), but too extreme to engender the interest of a record label. That situation changed in 1985, when MTV filmed a program on the Austin music scene. Johnston's performance brought him almost overnight acclaim, and he went from local legend to national cult figure. Soon, many of his self-released cassette recordings (on his appropriately named Stress label) began showing up in hip record stores from Boston to L.A., and the buzz was that Daniel Johnston was the coolest. There was, however, a grim side to this "success," as if his mental illness was the primary component of his hipness; therefore, there was a feeling that those not close to him were marketing his illness as much as his talent. In the late '80s, indie label Homestead issued some of Johnston's early recordings on vinyl and a full-blown appreciation of Johnston's work was well underway." (Source: ALL Music, Daniel Johnston biography, 2003).
- Waits recorded Johnston's "King Kong" for "The Late Great Daniel Johnston - Discovered, Covered". Various artists (Gammon. September, 2004). Re-released on Orphans (Bastards), 2006 Anti Inc.
- Further reading: Rejected - UnknownOfficial Daniel Johnston Site

(11) The Last Night Of The Earth Poems: Black Sparrow Books (April 1, 1992) ISBN: 0876858639

(12) Those Bitter Lemon records: "Poems And Insults" San Francisco: Bitter Lemon Records, 1975. The LP recording of Charles Bukowski's live reading on September 14, 1973 at City Lights Poets Theater, San Francisco. Released in 1975 by Bitter Lemon Records and produced by Joe Wolberg.

(13) Playing on the bill with him in Pittsburgh: March 12/13, 1976. S.U. Lower Lounge, University of Pennsylvania. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania/ USA.
- Tom Waits (2002): "You know I played on a bill with him in Pittsburgh many years ago." S: Really? He did readings? TW: Oh yeah. He was amazing on stage. You couldn't beat him. I was the opening act. He was the headliner. And it was just as you might expect in the dressing room: he was there with a bottle of beer, a big-ass redhead sitting on his knee, whispering in his ear, messing his hair up--he's all glassy-eyed waiting to go on--yelling out the window at people on the street. And then he did about an hour on the stage. S: Did you spend much time talking to him trying to know him at all? TW: No, I didn't want to be too cloying or inquisitive. He had his own world, his own life. He kind of whipped the beer bottle around like a microphone all night. He's a performer. He picked short poems to read. He also riffs with the audience like a stand-up comic. S: Was he funny? TW: Oh yeah, he'd say, "Come on up here, fucker, and say that." He's very confrontational. And that's what everyone wanted. They were going out of their minds." (Source: "Tom Waits" SOMA magazine (USA) July, 2002 by Mikel Jollett). Further reading: Performances

(14) Conundrum: Percussion rack with metal objects. Made for Waits by Serge Etienne. Further reading: Instruments

(15) I worked with a group in Hamburg: The Magic Bullets, Thalia Theatre Hamburg/ Germany. Further reading: The Black Rider

(16) I got a part in DraculaBram Stoker's Dracula (1992) Movie directed by Francis Ford Coppola. TW: actor. Plays R.M. Renfield.
- Rip Rense (1992): "Renfield was a masochist's nirvana. Waits wore a straitjacket for much of it, as well as manacles that imprisoned each finger individually (based on an actual apparatus used in Italy two centuries ago to teach young pianists to keep the proper position at the keyboard), thick glasses and one of those Supercuts-from-Bedlam haircuts. For a good deal of the movie, he was wet. "I was hosed down," he says. "And they seemed to want me that way...I got to have a really meaningful scene with Winona Ryder. Not how I imagined it would be, though. Bug juice dripping from the corners of my mouth. Unshaven. Totally gray. Screaming behind bars. Not how I saw our scene together. But I tried to rise above it." One more "Dracula" item, heretofore unreported, bears mentioning: Waits' voice was employed for the "primitive" vocal utterances of the Count. Gary Oldman was unable to get the desired horrific element into the lusty animalistic grunts and snarls of the character, so Waits was enlisted: "There's the lady in the back of the room with the bifocals on the chain, and the sweater, and the hair up, coffee and a cigarette, looking at the script," says Waits with bemusement, "and they're telling me, 'Tom, it's deep growl - you're killing her, and yet you're drinking of her'. And she looks up from her coffee and says, 'Tom - savor it!' And then looks back at her script. 'Oh, OK, savor it.' It was like porno radio. It was actually demeaning. But I think it will be good." (Source: "Waits In Wonderland" Image magazine (USA), by Rip Rense. Date: December 13, 1992). Further reading: Filmography

(17) On Arsenio Hall: The Arsenio Hall Show (1992) TW: musical performer and interviewee. FOX television talk show/ USA with Arsenio Hall (broadcast September, 1992). Interview and performs "Goin' Out West" Further reading: Filmography