Tom Waits – The Heart Of Saturday Night

I was just browsing in the record store while I had some time to kill, I browsed for just under an hour and picked up lots of things before putting them back having changed my mind, then I saw ‘The Heart Of Saturday Night’ by Tom Waits and it was the one. I had played the CD to death and a vinyl copy was a must really.

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This is the Rhino Re-Issue of the 1974 album, his second release, which they appear to have done a good job of. I played it as soon as I got home, it’s a brilliant album which I make no excuses or justifications for. I’ve read previously that it’s a late night album, the sort of thing you’d play at a poker night when he lights are low and the cigars are out. Not true. Play it whenever the hell you feel like it because the songwriting is damn near perfect.  Yes, the title itself suggests that it’s a night time album and the laid back feel of it makes me almost smell that cigar smoke, but it’s 2 pm on a Wednesday and I’m listening to it now , so don’t save it for the night. I do rather fancy a bourbon right now though.

Tracklist

A1 New Coat Of Paint
A2 San Diego Serenade
A3 Semi Suite
A4 Shiver Me Timbers
A5 Diamonds On My Windshield
A6 (Looking For) The Heart Of Saturday Night
B1 Fumblin’ With The Blues
B2 Please Call Me, Baby
B3 Depot, Depot
B4 Drunk On The Moon
B5 The Ghosts Of Saturday Night (After Hours At Napoleone’s Pizza House)

When I listen to this album it evokes a very real sense to me of what Charles Bukowski would have sounded like if he had been a singer/songwriter rather than a writer/poet/hell raiser. Perhaps also some Jack Kerouac in there as well, particularly around ‘Diamonds on My Windshield’:

Well these diamonds on my windshield
And these tears from heaven
Well I’m pulling into town on the Interstate
I got a steel train in the rain
And the wind bites my cheek through the wing
And it’s these late nights and this freeway flying
It always makes me sing

 

If you don’t have it I’d recommend getting it, vinyl, CD, Digital, it doesn’t matter, give it a listen.