Introduction to Alchemy: A Study of Tom Waits through Cover Songs

Tom Waits in Paris / photo credit: ntoper / flicker

When I wrote "Inherited Alchemy" my intentions were dualistic: to pinpoint the qualities Tom Waits held as a songwriter that were worthy of imitation, and flat-out, shameless hero-worship. Judging by the response I've received, my goals were achieved; yet there was a single concern the readers constantly brought to my attention, "Who is Tom Waits?" In my attempt to glorify … [Read more...]

Inherited Alchemy: Tom Waits’s Inspiration on Songwriting

Tom Waits LP / gothopotam / Flickr

As a songwriter, everything I hear is an influence, whether good or bad, loved or hated; it is "influential."In order to understand what has truly inspired a song, one should first look for the obvious imitations. Like Prometheus of old, I steal fire from the gods, or rather, I mimic the mastery of Tom Waits. To see the influence Waits has had on me, one must focus on … [Read more...]