It’s no secret that by mid-1975 Tom Waits was drinking far too much and close to exhaustion as a result of the pressures from almost constant touring over the period since he had signed with Asylum in ‘72. In October of ‘75 the delightful ‘Nighthawks At The Diner’ was released as a double album, recorded live in front of a small club audience a few months before, but containing only new songs - alongside introductory banter from Waits of a quite hilarious nature - everyone of which is now regarded as a true Waits classic.
In December, Tom entered the studios of KQRS Minneapolis for his first ever FM broadcast, floated across the airwaves by that very station and syndicated by many others nationwide. Now considered the holy grail of Waits broadcasts amongst serious collectors of the great man’s work, this performance featuring Tom Waits alone at his piano with just his magnificent voice as accompaniment, the way he should be heard, is nothing short of staggering.
This CD contains the full KQRS broadcast in perfect FM stereo quality, during which Tom performs a range of songs taken from his first three records – ‘Closing Time’, ‘The Heart Of Saturday Night’ and the aforementioned ‘Nighthawks’. Bonus tracks include a further three exceptional TV broadcasts from the early to mid 1980s, and include ‘Mr. Siegal’ performed on Don Lang’s show in 1981, plus two 1986 Letterman broadcasts in support of his then brand new masterpiece ‘Swordfishtrombones’.
1. Emotional Weather Report
2. Eggs And Sausage (Intro)
3. Eggs And Sausage
4. Better Off Without A Wife
5. Semi Suite
6. Spare Parts
7. The Ghosts Of Saturday / The Heart Of Saturday Night
8. New Coat Of Paint
9. Warm Beer And Cold Women
10. Virginia Avenue
11. San Diego Serenade
12. Putnam County
13. Ol’ 55
14. Mr Siegal (Don Lane Show 1981)
15. Tango Til They’re Sore (David Letterman Show 1986)
16. Time (David Letterman Show 1986)