Not many artists have as distinctive a voice as Tom Waits. And not many have his lyrical abilities. AND not many put on a show quite like he does. Which is exactly why there’s only one Tom Waits! But, he is often imitated. Such musical greats as Bruce Springsteen, Rod Steward and the Eagles have remade some of his tunes. But will a remake ever be as great as the original?

Lyrically, Waits’ tunes usually focus on seedy characters and grimy situations. His words even sound whiskey-covered coming out of his mouth. That’s no exception to his latest masterpiece. In October, 2011, Waits released his 17th studio effort called Bad As Me. The album as a whole has been described as being “…Like a good boxer, these songs are lean and mean.” This is evident by the sounds of the first single also called “Bad As Me” as well as others where he seems to spit out his lines as if they were losing horse track tickets soiled with stale beans. An example:

As anyone can plainly see, his music and stylings aren’t for every music listener. But, it’s also very clear that Tom Waits has very much earned his cult following with his uniqueness or character and showmanship. The next time that there’s a Tom Waits tour date scheduled near you, it’s worth the surcharges to see how a musician can stay relevant in multiple genres for over 30 years. Don’t miss the chance!