Five-Star Fridays

Friday, December 19th, 2008

Over the last few years, I think Tom Waits’ Closing Time has become my favorite album. That is, it’s probably the proverbial “album I’d take to a deserted island.” Moody, brooding, evocative and poetic lyrics–there isn’t a bad track on the CD. Good for rainy afternoons, night drives, and self-absorbed, pensive reflection. Also, lots of that most beautifully sad sound, the muted trumpet. “Martha” wells me up every time I hear it. This week’s tune is the slightly more upbeat “Old Shoes (& Picture Postcards).”

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16 Responses to “Five-Star Fridays”

  1. #1 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    Does it automatically dismiss your musical taste if you don’t like Tom Waits? I vote yes.

  2. #2 |  John Payne | 

    I don’t think any song with the lyric “So I leave you to cry in the rain” can reasonably be described as upbeat even when compared to another sad song. Nevertheless, this is my favorite track off the album–close runner up is “Old ’55”–and maybe my favorite Tom Waits’ song of all time.

  3. #3 |  V | 

    No argument here. Tom’s the rare artist who’s actually gone weirder and more immediate with age. His new shit’s not “pretty good, considering” or something that reminds you of the golden years, but, just GOOD. This one’s really pretty :)

  4. #4 |  adam s | 

    I’m still partial to The Heart of Saturday Night, but I will revisit Closing Time now that you’ve mentioned it. Thanks Radley!

  5. #5 |  Pinette | 

    Favorite Tom Waits album: “Alice”. Favorite song on that album: “Poor Edward”.

  6. #6 |  PFJO | 

    Thumbs up on that one.

  7. #7 |  Tom G | 

    I first discovered Tom Waits (his music, anyway) with his live “Big Time” album. Loved him ever since, both his older and his more recent material. It’s always good to see him appreciated.

  8. #8 |  Chris Berez | 

    Closing Time is indeed a fantastic album, (although I’m also a huge fan of Rain Dogs).

    “Ol’ 55” is one of the best songs ever written.

  9. #9 |  Frank N | 

    What no “Jersey Girl”, this radio sux!

    Tom is cool…

  10. #10 |  Kevin B. O'Reilly | 

    “Closing Time” is definitely *a* desert island disc for me. Another fave off the album is “Ice Cream Man.”

  11. #11 |  Seth | 

    Martha’s one of my all time favorite songs.

  12. #12 |  Brandon Bowers | 

    Great choice. Excellent album, great song. “Closing Time” may be one of the best songs ever. Ever heard Darius Rucker’s version? It’s a live recording, but he does the song so well it’s worth the mediocre recording quality. I’d encourage you to give it a listen if you have the time and the means.

  13. #13 |  Greg N. | 

    I’ve been pushing this for years, but you have to listen to your fellow Hoosiers, Chamberlain. Check out especially “The Moon, My Saddle” and, still importantly but not as importantly, “Exit 263.”

  14. #14 |  Will Grigg | 

    I’ve not listened to Tom Waits very much, but what I’ve heard I’ve liked a great deal. However, what really made me a fan was his performance as Dr. Heller in “Mystery Men.”

  15. #15 |  aberrant | 

    Closing TIme is great (because what album of his isn’t?) but don’t limit yourself to his first disc. I got hooked with Swordfishtrombones, but now have everything.

    The first time I got to see him was his Rain Dogs tour. Had no idea what to expect, and was completely blown away.

  16. #16 |  Montie | 

    Old Shoes is probably my favorite though there is some pretty stiff competition.

    The album ranks up there for my desert island choices, but overall I think there is too much feeling and emotion involved for me to do that to myself.