Tom Waits – Sleazy Rider (Relix Revisited)
“One of your best songs is ‘Bad Liver and a Broken Heart.’ Are women always dumping on you?”
No I’m just lookin’ for the right one. I’ve tried all kinds and nothin’ works. I may have to settle for livestock, like my first meaningful experience. Her parents didn’t like me so we broke up. She was a small heifer. I’m looking for a woman who owns a liquor store. There’s one maniac who sits on my porch every night—it’s like “Play Misty for Me.” No comic relief there at all; she’s a few bricks short of a full load.
I usually end up makin’ the scene with the magazine. I’ve got a subscription to Frederick’s of Hollywood’s catalogue. I cut out picture of underwear. I used to jack off to Vogue, but now it takes a little more. I occasionally read Hustler. They show photographs of the ovaries themselves.
“Not for long. Larry Flynt is turning it into a magazine with healthy sex,”
Yeah. Nuns with no underwear.
“Do you ever get groupies on the road?”
No. Sometimes a pedophile will come along. Usually you get, like, young English majors with skin problems. The band’s real upset about that. They wish I’d attract something more up their alley. Now Chip White, my drummer, gets more ass than a toilet seat.
“You wrote most of your lyrics about women on your first two albums, but now you seem to be branching out. True?”
I’m trying to get away from unrequited love and more into auto accidents and homicides. My road manager thinks I’m becoming the Sam Peckinpah of music. I’ve had a lot of experience on the road. I’ve eaten in truck stops and shopped at trucker’s supermarkets. I’ve hitch hiked but I hate it and won’t pick ‘em up. People look just like Charlie Manson and they’re on narcotics and probably have firearms and concealed weapons. I don’t trust ‘em. I’m not going to pick up a guy with devil eyebrows and “cunt” tattooed on his bicep. In L.A. in particular on the corner of Santa Monica and Western, it’s Charlie Starkweather and Charlie Whitman or some four-speed transvestite.
When I’m on the road, I usually sleep with my clothes on so I can go right out the door. I stayed at the same hotel in Phoenix with Blue Oyster Cult and Black Oak Arkansas. It was a real thrill for me, you know, being only two or three doors away from your heroes.
“Didn’t you once say that you liked the Cult about as much as listening to trains in a tunnel?”
I said that (smiling). No, I like ‘em. But then I also like boogers and snot and vomit on my clothes.
“You’re known as someone who normally is on the streets about the same time as the street sweepers. What hours do you keep?”
I keep them all—they’re all mine. I’ll eat at some late night place that serves food for external use only. I’m not talkin’ about your health food joint where you can get your bean sprouts and avocado sands. You get your identity crisis burgers floatin’ in patchouli oil served by some girl with a ring on her nose wearin’ a peasant shirt. Oh no. I’m talkin’ about a place where everything’s floatin’ in 30-weight. You wake up the next morning and your mouth tastes like the inside of a dead Apache’s loin cloth.
At this one place I elbowed up to the counter with the truck drivers and some cat telling me about his brother-in-law who lives in Amarillo who installs these little prophylactic machines in Phillips 66 stations. I walked out of there at 4 a.m. with enough gas in me to open up a mobile station.
“At one restaurant last year you got into a fight with the Law. You were accused of challenging some deputies to fight and using profanity, and you were quoted as saying, ‘I growled a little under my breath. It was somewhere between a harrumph and a Bronx cheer,’”
It was a little humbug with three plainclothes policemen. I stepped in to settle a dispute between two tables and got caught in the crossfire. From now on I’ll keep my nose out of other people’s affairs. It was real tacky; they grabbed us and threw us into phone booths and then the strings came up. (Waits breaks into the Jaws soundtrack) Juntada! Juntada! Juntada!
They put the cuffs on us and tossed us into the back of a green cab over a Datsun pickup. I thought we were takin’ that Last Ride. Chuck said, “It sure is quiet,” and I said, “It’s too quiet.” We were found guilty of disturbing the peace.
In honor of Umphrey’s McGee’s return to Summer Camp this weekend, we present the group’s Brendan Bayliss and Jake Cinninger performing this version of “The Pequod” from UM’s Anchor Drops.
Dame shares a song from her new EP Preventions of Heartbreak.
Golden Bloom stopped by Relix to perform a tune from their latest EP No Day Like Today.
The Chapin Sisters share an tune from their new album A Date With the Everly Brothers.
Minneapolis-based Night Moves share a song from their record, Colored Emotions, live at Relix.
Cloud Cult share a song from their latest album live at Relix.
The Giving Tree Band enjoy a spring day on the Relix rooftop, while performing a classic Grateful Dead tune.
Canadian singer-songwriter Hayden performs a duet with his sister-in-law Lou Canon. The song appears on Us Alone his first record on Broken Social Scene’s Arts & Crafts Productions.
The Milk Carton Kids share the first song from their new album, The Ash & Clay.
Here is the new video from Serbian guitar ace Ana Popovic. “Object Of Obsession” appears on her latest album Can You Stand The Heat.
- Brendan Bayliss and Jake Cinninger "The Pequod"
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