On the 19th April 1978, Tom Waits was in Vienna, Austria in the midst of a European tour in support of his sixth LP Blue Valentine. He had been a approached by two Austrian men called Rudi Dolezal and Hannes Rossacher from an Austrian television station with the idea of conducting a video interview while Waits was in town. The gravel voiced jazz troubadour had other ideas.
According to Rossacher, “He (Waits) came in from Amsterdam saying he hadn’t slept all night, but he agreed to let us film him on the spot. He said he didn’t want to do an interview, but wanted to tell stories instead.” The result is a quite idiosyncratic and unique document of Waits’ day in the capital of Austria. In between renditions of songs from Blue Valentine and 1976’s Small Change, Waits regales the viewer with odd little anecdotes in various places in Vienna, including the red light district where he slow dances with a Thai prostitute.
Waits’ most recent record was released in 2011 and called Bad As Me. As usual, it received critical acclaim and featured on end of year lists by Mojo and Uncut. He is rumoured to be portraying Gepetto in Guillermo Del Toro’s upcoming stop-motion adaptation of Pinocchio.