When an artist changes so radically, it’s sometimes difficult to recall what they once were, or, perhaps even worse, to shake that old image. I’ve had discussion with people who, when the subject of David Bowie is brought up — usually by me, I admit — the response I hear the most is “I don’t dig that glam shit.” I’m paraphrasing, of course. Though it could be argued that Bowie never fully divorced himself from his glam stylings, he did spend over two decades exploring other genres. Unsurprisingly, most people can only recall his Ziggy days.
On the other hand, we have Tom Waits; an artist that changed his style so dramatically that all vestiges of the bluesy piano crooner have been destroyed. Your average music fan will probably not be familiar with the triumphs of The Heart of Saturday Night, or Small Change – that is, if they are even familiar with Tom Waits at all.
So, in celebration of all the different things these two artists can be, I give you two performances. The first is Waits performing “Christmas Card From a Hooker in Minneapolis” from 1978’s Blue Valentine, and the other is a slightly truncated performance of Bowie ripping through “Seven Years in Tibet,” from 1997’s Earthling.
and Bowie on Rosie O’Donnell