I challenge you to not be affected by these songs.
and it’s a battered old suitcase
to a hotel someplace
and a wound that will never heal
no prima donna, the perfume is on
an old shirt that is stained with blood and whiskey
and goodnight to the street sweepers
the night watchman flame keepers
and goodnight Matilda, too
I never saw the morning ’til I stayed up all night
I never saw the sunshine ’til you turned out the light
I never saw my hometown until I stayed away too long
I never heard the melody until I needed the song
So, she left Monte Rio, son
just like a bullet leaves a gun
With charcoal eyes and Monroe hips
she went and took that California trip
And here are a couple more that sadly I can’t find live performances of, but are just as worthy:
Blind Love. JGL did a cover of this, which is admirable but just can’t compare to the original.
Martha. This song is from his first album, when his voice was relatively tame! Love that chorus. <3
I know I’ve said this before, but I’m a sucker for hard people who are softies at heart (Keith Richards, Pete Townshend, et al.). And this definitely applies. Maybe Tom Waits is mostly known for his scraggly voice and the weird characters he plays in movies, but let it be known that he writes beautiful songs, too.