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Blue Valentine

Tom Waits

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Customer Reviews

Great bluesy tunes.

Tom Waits is a man of many talents. Singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and sometime actor, he has created a musical world all his own, which can be weird and wonderful at times. Even if you haven't heard him, you may have heard some of his songs sung by others, such as Jersey Girl or Downtown Train.

Tom Waits has a bit of a cult following, and I am a devotee - at last count I had 11 of his albums nestling in my iPod. Which brings me to Blue Valentine.

In some ways this is the easiest entree into the world of Tom Waits and his music - Blue Valentine, while definitely quirky, is not quite as eccentric as some later albums - indeed it begins with a lushly orchestrated version of Somewhere, from West Side Story. The first indication that this might be something different is when you hear Tom's gravelly, husky voice - with a sound somewhere between Louis Armstrong and a lion's roar.

The rest of the album is a mix of bluesy tunes, and songs with a strong narrative lyric, such as Red Shoes by the Drugstore, Christmas Card from a Hooker in Minneapolis, $29.00, and Romeo is Bleeding. These songs evoke the seedier side of life- hoodlums, wastrels and drug addicts. The instrumentation is sparse, loose and incredibly hip.

Waits' has a finely honed blues sensibility- his vocals are exquisitely timed, and delivered with a lot of soul.

The final song on the album- Blue Valentines, is a wonderful Jazz ballad, and a fine way to end what is truly a great record, that repays much listening.

Tom Waits Blue Valentine

in a class of its own basically classic album by one of the great masters of our era. This album is like a story from the nights of blues, soul and jazz. First heard this record 25 years back and its still on my turntable as one of my fav Waits albums.

Waits' Best

Simply my favourite album of all time.


Born: 07 December 1949 in Pomona, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

In the 1970s, Tom Waits combined a lyrical focus on desperate, low-life characters with a persona that seemed to embody the same lifestyle, which he sang about in a raspy, gravelly voice. From the '80s on, his work became increasingly theatrical as he moved into acting and composing. Growing up in Southern California, Waits attracted the attention of manager Herb Cohen, who also handled Frank Zappa, and was signed by him at the beginning of the 1970s, resulting in the material later released as The...
Full Bio
Blue Valentine, Tom Waits
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  • $16.99
  • Genres: Rock, Music, Blues-Rock, Singer/Songwriter, Arena Rock
  • Released: Oct 1978

Customer Ratings