© 2024
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Deep Thoughts With Tom Waits

There is an elaborate system of punishment and reward governing the courageous moles tunneling beneath Stonehenge. Or so said Tom Waits in a 1988 interview with journalist Chris Roberts from Rock's Backpages.

The interview, conducted in a London studio shortly after the release of Waits' concert film Big Time, was recently unearthed and expertly animated by Patrick Smith for PBS' Blank on Blank series, which gives lost interviews from famous faces the cartoon treatment.

In addition to the specifics of mole bureaucracy, Waits delves into the finer points of laughing at funeral, how to dress for a career in show business and what it means to be "big time":

I don't know what the big time is, really, except that it's probably some terrible place that you can't get out of. Or that you fall from and break all your bones. Or try to go further and burn up.

If you're going to take advice from just one curmudgeonly, animated, outlandish, gravely voice from the past, it should be 1988 Tom Waits.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Kate Drozynski