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Tom Waits

Thomas Alan Waits, (born December 7, 1949) is an American composer, singer, musician and actor.

Early Career

Born in Pomona, California, Waits' recording career began in 1971, after he relocated to Los Angeles and signed with Herb Cohen, manager of Frank Zappa, among others. After numerous abortive recording sessions, his first record, the melancholic, country-tinged Closing Time (1973) received warm reviews, but he first gained national attention when his "Ol' 55" was recorded by The Eagles in 1974. The Heart of Saturday Night showed his roots as a nightclub singer, half speaking and half crooning ballads, often with a soft jazz background. The 1975 album Nighthawks at the Diner, recorded in a studio but with a small audience to capture the ambience of a live show, captures this phase of his career, including the lengthy spoken interludes between songs that punctuated his live act.

Small Change (1976) featuring famed drummer Shelly Manne, was jazzier still, and songs such as "The Piano Has Been Drinking" and "Bad Liver and a Broken Heart" cemented his hard living reputation, with a lyrical style pitched somewhere between Raymond Chandler and Charles Bukowski. Foreign Affairs (1977) and Blue Valentine (1978) were in a similar vein, but showed further refinement of his artistic voice. 1980 saw the commencement of a long working relationship with Francis Ford Coppola, who asked him to provide music for his film One From The Heart. Waits would also act in Coppola's Rumblefish, The Outsiders, The Cotton Club and Dracula (as the insane Renfield), and work with such directors as Jim Jarmusch and Robert Altman. In August 1980, he married Kathleen Brennan, whom he had met on the set of One From The Heart. With his wife, he wrote and performed in Big Time, a slightly surreal concert movie. His wife is regularly credited as co-author of many songs on his later released albums, and is often cited by Waits as a major influence on his work.

1980s and later

After he left Asylum Records for Island Records in 1983, his music became less mainstream. His trio of albums from the mid-1980s, Swordfishtrombones, Rain Dogs and Frank's Wild Years, all featured some degree of eclectic instrumentation -- Waits' self described "Junkyard Orchestra"--often marrying soul music horn sections to avant-garde percussion reminiscent of Harry Partch's, or the distorted guitar of Marc Ribot. He also gradually altered his singing style, sounding less like the late-night crooner of the 70s, instead adopting a gravelly voice reminiscent of Howling Wolf and Captain Beefheart. The last of these albums -- an off-Broadway musical co-written with his wife -- and the later collaboration with William S. Burroughs on The Black Rider both demonstrated the increasing interest in theatre, which has resulted in a somewhat successful acting career as well as soundtrack work.

In the popular perception, however, he and his work remain mostly characterised by his rocky voice, his strong personality and theatrical presence on stage and the "late night smoky bars" humour of his texts ("I'd rather have a free bottle in front of me than a pre-frontal lobotomy."). Waits has been reported as having bipolar disorder. In essence, however, and despite his songs having been covered by famous stars such as Bruce Springsteen and Rod Stewart, Waits remains a cult performer, steadfastly outside the mainstream.

Lawsuits

Waits has steadfastly refused to allow the use of his songs in commercials and has filed several lawsuits against advertisers who used his material without permission. The first lawsuit was filed in 1988 against Frito Lay, and resulted in a US$2.6 million judgement in Waits' favor. Frito Lay had approached Waits to use one of his songs in an advertisement. Waits declined the offer, and Frito Lay hired a Waits soundalike to sing a jingle similar to "Step Right Up," which is, ironically, a song Waits has called "an indictment of advertising." [1] (http://www.joe.trussell.com/waits/frito_lay.html) ("Step Right Up" concludes with the lyric "What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away").

In 1993, Levi's used Screamin' Jay Hawkins' version of Waits' "Heartattack and Vine" in a commercial. Waits sued, and Levis agreed to cease all use of the song, and offered a full page apology in Billboard Magazine. [2] (http://www.keeslau.com/TomWaitsSupplement/Copyright/copyrightwaitslevis.htm)

In 2000, an Audi commercial broadcast in Spain featured music very similar to Waits' "Innocent When You Dream", after Waits first had declined when they approached him about using the original. A Spanish court recognized there had been a violation of Waits’s moral rights, in addition to the infringement of copyright [3] (http://www.anti.com/news.php?newsid=86715). The production company, Tandem Campany Guasch, was ordered to pay compensation to Waits through his Spanish publisher.

Discography

Major releases


+ Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Folk Album


^ Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album

Collections

  • 1983 Anthology of Tom Waits (Elektra)
  • 1991 The Early Years, Volume One
  • 1993 The Early Years, Volume Two
  • 1998 Beautiful Maladies: The Island Years

Contributions

  • 1991 Sailing the Seas of Cheese, by Primus: Waits does character vocals on Tommy The Cat
  • 1992 Beautiful Mess, by Thelonious Monster: Waits appears as a guest singer on Adios Lounge
  • 1993 Jesus Blood Never Failed Me Yet, by Gavin Bryars: Waits appears as guest singer
  • 1999 Antipop, by Primus: Waits does vocals on Coattails of a Deadman
  • 2000 Helium, by Tin Hat Trio: Waits appears as guest singer on Helium Reprise
  • 2001 It's A Wonderful Life, by Sparklehorse: Waits does vocals on "Dog Door"
  • 2002 For the Kids by various artists: Waits performs the lullaby "Bring Down the Branches"
  • 2004 The Ride by Los Lobos: Waits does vocals on the track "Kitate"
  • 2004 The Late Great Daniel Johnston by various artists: Waits covers Johnston's "King Kong"

Tribute albums

  • 1995 Temptation, Holly Cole
  • 1995 Step Right Up, various artists
  • 2000 New Coat of Paint, various artists
  • 2001 Wicked Grin, John Hammond
  • 2004 Step Right Up: The Songs of Tom Waits, various artists

Filmography

  • 1978 Movie debut as 'Mumbles' in Paradise Alley.
  • 1980 Worked with Francis Ford Coppola on the soundtrack to One From The Heart.
  • 1982 Soundtrack of One From The Heart. Nominated for an Academy Award for best original score.
    • Played petrified man in carnival in The Stone Boy.
  • 1983 Played Buck Merrill in The Outsiders.
    • Played Bennie the pool hall owner in Rumble Fish.
  • 1984 Played Irving Stark in The Cotton Club.
  • 1986 Starred as Zack in Down by Law.
  • 1987 Played Rudy The Kraut in Ironweed.
    • Played Al Silk in Candy Mountain.
  • 1989 Played the 'Punch & Judy Man' in Bearskin: An Urban Fairytale.
    • Starred as Kenny the Hitman in Cold Feet.
    • Voice of the radio DJ in Mystery Train. Composer on Sea of Love
  • 1990 Played a plainclothes policeman in The Two Jakes.
  • 1991 Played Wolf in At Play in the Fields of the Lord.
    • Played a disabled Veteran beggar in The Fisher King.
    • Wrote the score of Night on Earth (With Kathleen Brennan).
    • Played Monte in Queens Logic.
  • 1992 Composer (With Kathleen Brennan) on American Heart.
    • Played R.M. Renfield in Bram Stoker's Dracula.
    • Played Earl Piggott in Short Cuts.
  • 1996 Composer on soundtrack of Dead Man Walking.
    • Composer on soundtrack of The End of Violence.
  • 1999 Mystery Men -- played an inventor who specialized in non-lethal weapons.
  • 2003 Appeared in conversation with Iggy Pop in Coffee and Cigarettes: Somewhere In America.
  • 2004 Composer (with Kathleen Brennan) on soundtrack of "Shrek 2"

Tours

  • 1973 Closing Time touring
  • 1974-1975 The Heart Of Saturday Night touring
  • 1975-1976 Small Change touring
  • 1977 Foreign Affairs touring
  • 1978-1979 Blue Valentine touring
  • 1980-1982 Heartattack and Vine touring
  • 1985 Rain Dogs touring
  • 1987 Big Time touring
  • 1999 Get Behind The Mule Tour
  • 2004 Real Gone Tour

See also:

  • Kazik Staszewski, Polish artist extensively covering Waits
  • Holly Cole, Canadian artist covering Waits' songs in jazz style

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^ Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album. Louis Rams (won 1, lost 2; one loss as Los Angeles Rams)
2 - Baltimore Colts (won 1, lost 1; franchise now Indianapolis Colts)
2 - Kansas City Chiefs (won 1, lost 1)
2 - Cincinnati Bengals (lost 2)
2 - Philadelphia Eagles (lost 2)
1 - Baltimore Ravens (won 1)
1 - Chicago Bears (won 1)
1 - New York Jets (won 1)
1 - Tampa Bay Buccaneers (won 1)
1 - Atlanta Falcons (lost 1)
1 - Carolina Panthers (lost 1)
1 - San Diego Chargers (lost 1)
1 - Tennessee Titans (lost 1)
.
+ Grammy Award for Best Contemporary Folk Album. 8 - Dallas Cowboys (won 5, lost 3)
6 - Denver Broncos (won 2, lost 4)
5 - San Francisco 49ers (won 5)
5 - Pittsburgh Steelers (won 4, lost 1)
5 - Oakland Raiders (won 3, lost 2; one win as Los Angeles Raiders)
5 - Washington Redskins (won 3, lost 2)
5 - New England Patriots (won 3, lost 2)
5 - Miami Dolphins (won 2, lost 3)
4 - Green Bay Packers (won 3, lost 1)
4 - Buffalo Bills (lost 4)
4 - Minnesota Vikings (lost 4)
3 - New York Giants (won 2, lost 1)
3 - St. A Spanish court recognized there had been a violation of Waits’s moral rights, in addition to the infringement of copyright [3] (http://www.anti.com/news.php?newsid=86715). The production company, Tandem Campany Guasch, was ordered to pay compensation to Waits through his Spanish publisher. (*) Note: New York City is scheduled to host Super Bowl XLIV in 2010 only if the proposed West Side Stadium, future home of the New York Jets, is built.. In 2000, an Audi commercial broadcast in Spain featured music very similar to Waits' "Innocent When You Dream", after Waits first had declined when they approached him about using the original. With the new television contracts beginning in 2006, NBC, which last telecast Super Bowl XXXII in 1998, will take ABC's place in the network rotation starting with Super Bowl XLIII in 2009.

[2] (http://www.keeslau.com/TomWaitsSupplement/Copyright/copyrightwaitslevis.htm). Super Bowl XXXVIII was shown on CBS, Super Bowl XXXIX was shown on FOX, and Super Bowl XL will be shown on ABC. Waits sued, and Levis agreed to cease all use of the song, and offered a full page apology in Billboard Magazine. In the United States it is shared between three of the four major television networks - ABC, CBS, and FOX. In 1993, Levi's used Screamin' Jay Hawkins' version of Waits' "Heartattack and Vine" in a commercial. The television network showing the game changes from year to year. Waits declined the offer, and Frito Lay hired a Waits soundalike to sing a jingle similar to "Step Right Up," which is, ironically, a song Waits has called "an indictment of advertising." [1] (http://www.joe.trussell.com/waits/frito_lay.html) ("Step Right Up" concludes with the lyric "What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away"). While most home teams in the Super Bowl pick to wear their colored ones, only the Cowboys in XIII and XXVII and the Washington Redskins in XVII have worn white as the home team.

Frito Lay had approached Waits to use one of his songs in an advertisement. The Dallas Cowboys wore their rarely-used blue uniform tops in Super Bowl V, and lost to the then-Baltimore Colts, which has led to the belief that many people believe that the Cowboys do not play well in their blue shirts. The first lawsuit was filed in 1988 against Frito Lay, and resulted in a US$2.6 million judgement in Waits' favor. Prior to that, the home team always wore the dark jerseys. Waits has steadfastly refused to allow the use of his songs in commercials and has filed several lawsuits against advertisers who used his material without permission. The home team is given the choice of either wearing their colored jerseys or their white ones, this started with Super Bowl XIII. In essence, however, and despite his songs having been covered by famous stars such as Bruce Springsteen and Rod Stewart, Waits remains a cult performer, steadfastly outside the mainstream. The designated "home team" alternates between the NFC team in odd-numbered years (the Philadelphia Eagles in 2005), and the AFC team in even-numbered years (the New England Patriots in 2004).

Waits has been reported as having bipolar disorder. However, Super Bowl XIV (which involved the then-Los Angeles Rams) was played in the Rose Bowl in nearby Pasadena; and Super Bowl XIX (which involved the San Francisco 49ers) was played at the nearby Stanford Stadium on the Stanford University campus in Palo Alto. In the popular perception, however, he and his work remain mostly characterised by his rocky voice, his strong personality and theatrical presence on stage and the "late night smoky bars" humour of his texts ("I'd rather have a free bottle in front of me than a pre-frontal lobotomy."). No NFL team has ever played the Super Bowl on its own home turf. The last of these albums -- an off-Broadway musical co-written with his wife -- and the later collaboration with William S. Burroughs on The Black Rider both demonstrated the increasing interest in theatre, which has resulted in a somewhat successful acting career as well as soundtrack work. The chosen venues have either been located in the southern regions of the United States where the wintertime weather is expected to be mild, or in domed stadiums where weather is not an issue. He also gradually altered his singing style, sounding less like the late-night crooner of the 70s, instead adopting a gravelly voice reminiscent of Howling Wolf and Captain Beefheart. The location of the Super Bowl is chosen well in advance, usually 3-5 years before the game.

His trio of albums from the mid-1980s, Swordfishtrombones, Rain Dogs and Frank's Wild Years, all featured some degree of eclectic instrumentation -- Waits' self described "Junkyard Orchestra"--often marrying soul music horn sections to avant-garde percussion reminiscent of Harry Partch's, or the distorted guitar of Marc Ribot. This ban includes the pre and post game shows. After he left Asylum Records for Island Records in 1983, his music became less mainstream. Las Vegas is the only city that is not allowed to run commericals during the game. His wife is regularly credited as co-author of many songs on his later released albums, and is often cited by Waits as a major influence on his work. Prices have increased each year, reaching $2.4 million (US) for a 30 second spot during Super Bowl XXXIX in 2005. With his wife, he wrote and performed in Big Time, a slightly surreal concert movie. Famous commercial campaigns include the Budweiser "Bud Bowl" campaign, and the 1999 and 2000 dot-com ads.

In August 1980, he married Kathleen Brennan, whom he had met on the set of One From The Heart. Following Apple Computer's 1984 commercial introducing the Apple Macintosh computer, directed by Ridley Scott, the broadcast of the Super Bowl became the premier showcase for high concept or simply extravagantly expensive commercials. Waits would also act in Coppola's Rumblefish, The Outsiders, The Cotton Club and Dracula (as the insane Renfield), and work with such directors as Jim Jarmusch and Robert Altman. In terms of household percentage, the most watched was Super Bowl XVI in 1982 which was watched in 49.1% of households (73 share) or 40,020,000 households at the time. 1980 saw the commencement of a long working relationship with Francis Ford Coppola, who asked him to provide music for his film One From The Heart. The most watched Super Bowl was 1998's Super Bowl XXXII between the Denver Broncos and Green Bay Packers which received a 44.5 rating and 67 share, attracting 90 million viewers. Foreign Affairs (1977) and Blue Valentine (1978) were in a similar vein, but showed further refinement of his artistic voice. Also it is estimated that 130-140 million tune into some part of the game.

Small Change (1976) featuring famed drummer Shelly Manne, was jazzier still, and songs such as "The Piano Has Been Drinking" and "Bad Liver and a Broken Heart" cemented his hard living reputation, with a lyrical style pitched somewhere between Raymond Chandler and Charles Bukowski. This means that on average, 80 to 90 million Americans are tuned into the Super Bowl at any given moment. The 1975 album Nighthawks at the Diner, recorded in a studio but with a small audience to capture the ambience of a live show, captures this phase of his career, including the lengthy spoken interludes between songs that punctuated his live act. households, and 60 percent of all homes tuned into television during the game). The Heart of Saturday Night showed his roots as a nightclub singer, half speaking and half crooning ballads, often with a soft jazz background. on average, 40 percent of all U.S. After numerous abortive recording sessions, his first record, the melancholic, country-tinged Closing Time (1973) received warm reviews, but he first gained national attention when his "Ol' 55" was recorded by The Eagles in 1974. The Super Bowl tends to have high Nielsen television ratings which usually come in around a 40 rating and 60 share (i.e.

Born in Pomona, California, Waits' recording career began in 1971, after he relocated to Los Angeles and signed with Herb Cohen, manager of Frank Zappa, among others. (See: Professional American football championship games and National Football League championships). Thomas Alan Waits, (born December 7, 1949) is an American composer, singer, musician and actor. The game was called the "All-America Football Conference Championship Game", the "AFL Championship Game" or the "NFL Championship Game", depending on the league playing it. Holly Cole, Canadian artist covering Waits' songs in jazz style. Previous to the 1966 football season, American professional football's championship games were played for various league championships, and games were not played between league champions. Kazik Staszewski, Polish artist extensively covering Waits. The trophy was named prior to Super Bowl V in his honor following his death in 1970.

2004 Real Gone Tour. The winning team receives the Vince Lombardi Trophy, named for the coach of the Green Bay Packers, who won the first two Super Bowl games. 1999 Get Behind The Mule Tour. After the 1970 season, the game reverted from an essentially interleague championship to the NFL championship, featuring the champions of the NFL's two conferences, the American Football Conference and the National Football Conference. 1987 Big Time touring. The name was inspired by Kansas City Chiefs owner Lamar Hunt's daughter playing with a small rubber ball with high bouncing powers called a super ball. 1985 Rain Dogs touring. The third such game, after the 1968 season, was called the "Super Bowl", and that name is now used to refer to the first two AFL-NFL Championship Games as well.

1980-1982 Heartattack and Vine touring. The game was a result of the merger agreement between the two leagues that took full effect for the 1970 season. 1978-1979 Blue Valentine touring. An AFL-NFL Championship Game was first played after the 1966 football season on January 15, 1967, between the champions of the American Football League and the NFL. 1977 Foreign Affairs touring. It is held annually on the last Sunday in January or the first Sunday in February, and is one of the most watched television broadcasts of the year. 1975-1976 Small Change touring. The game is almost like a national holiday in the United States.

1974-1975 The Heart Of Saturday Night touring. The Super Bowl is the championship game of the National Football League, the pinnacle of American football. 1973 Closing Time touring. Super Bowl XXXIX was the first such game to be tied after three quarters of play. 2004 Composer (with Kathleen Brennan) on soundtrack of "Shrek 2". Also, because of the attacks, the Super Bowl was a National Special Security Event. 2003 Appeared in conversation with Iggy Pop in Coffee and Cigarettes: Somewhere In America. Most of the events two years afterward were scheduled in February.

1999 Mystery Men -- played an inventor who specialized in non-lethal weapons. This was the first Super Bowl to be played in February. Composer on soundtrack of The End of Violence. But the game was moved back one week to February 3, 2002 because of the September 11, 2001 attacks. 1996 Composer on soundtrack of Dead Man Walking.

    . Super Bowl XXXVI was originally scheduled to be played on January 27, 2002. Played Earl Piggott in Short Cuts. The reason for this was that "XXX" is usually associated with pornography, and proxy servers thought those trying to visit that site were trying to access pornography.

    Renfield in Bram Stoker's Dracula. In the months leading up to Super Bowl XXX (30) it was discovered that some proxy servers were blocking the web site for the event. Played R.M. 1992 Composer (With Kathleen Brennan) on American Heart.

      . Played Monte in Queens Logic.

      Wrote the score of Night on Earth (With Kathleen Brennan). Played a disabled Veteran beggar in The Fisher King. 1991 Played Wolf in At Play in the Fields of the Lord.

        . 1990 Played a plainclothes policeman in The Two Jakes.

        Composer on Sea of Love. Voice of the radio DJ in Mystery Train. Starred as Kenny the Hitman in Cold Feet. 1989 Played the 'Punch & Judy Man' in Bearskin: An Urban Fairytale.

          .

          Played Al Silk in Candy Mountain. 1987 Played Rudy The Kraut in Ironweed.

            . 1986 Starred as Zack in Down by Law. 1984 Played Irving Stark in The Cotton Club.

            Played Bennie the pool hall owner in Rumble Fish. 1983 Played Buck Merrill in The Outsiders.

              . Played petrified man in carnival in The Stone Boy. Nominated for an Academy Award for best original score.
                .

                1982 Soundtrack of One From The Heart. 1980 Worked with Francis Ford Coppola on the soundtrack to One From The Heart. 1978 Movie debut as 'Mumbles' in Paradise Alley. 2004 Step Right Up: The Songs of Tom Waits, various artists.

                2001 Wicked Grin, John Hammond. 2000 New Coat of Paint, various artists. 1995 Step Right Up, various artists. 1995 Temptation, Holly Cole.

                2004 The Late Great Daniel Johnston by various artists: Waits covers Johnston's "King Kong". 2004 The Ride by Los Lobos: Waits does vocals on the track "Kitate". 2002 For the Kids by various artists: Waits performs the lullaby "Bring Down the Branches". 2001 It's A Wonderful Life, by Sparklehorse: Waits does vocals on "Dog Door".

                2000 Helium, by Tin Hat Trio: Waits appears as guest singer on Helium Reprise. 1999 Antipop, by Primus: Waits does vocals on Coattails of a Deadman. 1993 Jesus Blood Never Failed Me Yet, by Gavin Bryars: Waits appears as guest singer. 1992 Beautiful Mess, by Thelonious Monster: Waits appears as a guest singer on Adios Lounge.

                1991 Sailing the Seas of Cheese, by Primus: Waits does character vocals on Tommy The Cat. 1998 Beautiful Maladies: The Island Years. 1993 The Early Years, Volume Two. 1991 The Early Years, Volume One.

                1983 Anthology of Tom Waits (Elektra).

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