Thursday, May 10, 2007

Funny Thing

That I mentioned Tom Waits after a posting about Frank Zappa. It's funny because I saw Tom Waits for the first time at a Zappa concert at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium. I'm not sure it's still there, but it used to be a great venue.

Anyway, Tom was the opening act. My buddy and I had really great seats so we were really close, 4th row I think. So this guy comes out I've never heard of, in a scruffy thrift shop suit and white shirt and starts singing Ol' 55 (which he wrote by the way), his voice wasn't quite as gravelly back in those days, but still it was an extremis throaty. He had some quirky Joe Cockeresque mannerisms (although not palsy-like) and he was GREAT!

At some point during the set some guy is whistling loudly, either he thought Tom was great or he wants Tom to end his performance, it wasn't exactly clear to me which, but it was distracting. In mid verse, Tom stops, takes a long drag from his cigarette (which is perpetually hanging from his mouth), reaches into his inside coat pocket and takes out a Bud, takes a chug, puts it back in his pocket, leans towards the mike and says

"Eat my shorts, Sailor".

Then promptly resumed his tune where he'd left off.


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