Tom Waits on seeing James Brown in 1962

I first saw James Brown in 1962 at an outdoor theatre in San Diego and it was indescribable… it was like putting a finger in a light socket. He did the whole thing with the cape. He did ‘Please Please Please’. It was such a spectacle. It had all the pageantry of the Catholic Church. It was really like seeing mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral on Christmas and you couldn’t ignore the impact of it in your life. You’d been changed, your life is changed now. And everybody wanted to step down, step forward, take communion, take sacrament, they wanted to get close to the stage and be anointed with his sweat, his cold sweat.

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Tom Waits on his most cherished albums of all time

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