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Posted by purplemary54 on October 11, 2012

Tom Waits is an acquired taste, and I’ve always been really glad I acquired it.  His gravelly voice can project such a myriad of emotions and moods–from cheerful burlesque to sinister dishonesty.  His version of “Somewhere” from West Side Story is hopeful despair.

I like to think that Waits based his performance less on the romantic duet version from the musical, and more on the sad, broken version Maria sings to Tony just before he dies.

That scene from the movie kills me every time.  This song kills me, too.  There’s so much packed into those few minutes.  There’s something better just over the horizon–blue skies, safety, gold-paved streets, and rainbows.  And there’s a barbed-wire fence and a minefield between the singer and the horizon.  He knows he’s never going to get there, but he’s never going to stop hoping or dreaming.  It might be a lost cause, but someone once said that lost causes are the only ones worth fighting for.

Wow, I’m just a little ray of sunshine today, aren’t I?  Sorry to be depressing and run, but I’ve got to start work in a little bit.

Note: Don’t forget to vote on my proposed regular features here.  I might keep the poll open a little longer, since I suck at reminding people about it.


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