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Tom Waits — Frank's Wild Years
Album: Beautiful Maladies
Avg rating:
7.2

Your rating:
Total ratings: 621









Released: 1998
Length: 1:49
Plays (last 30 days): 1
Well Frank settled down in the Valley
and he hung his wild years
on a nail that he drove through
his wife's forehead
he sold used office furniture
out there on San Fernando Road
and assumed a $30,000 loan
at 15 _ % and put a down payment
on a little two bedroom place
his wife was a spent piece of used jet trash
made good bloody marys
kept her mouth shut most of the time
had a little Chihuahua named Carlos
that had some kind of skin disease
and was totally blind. They had a thoroughly modern kitchen
self-cleaning oven (the whole bit)
Frank drove a little sedan
they were so happy

One night Frank was on his way home
from work, stopped at the liquor store,
picked up a couple Mickey's Big Mouths
drank 'em in the car on his way
to the Shell station, he got a gallon of
gas in a can, drove home, doused
everything in the house, torched it,
parked across the street, laughing
watching it burn, all Halloween
orange and chimney red then
Frank put on a top forty station
got on the Hollywood Freeway
headed North

Never could stand that dog
Comments (114)add comment
absolutely briljant, what a great song
 Jakethemuss wrote:
That's a poor mortgage rate.
 

That was the 70's, my parents could only afford to rent because the rates were all in the teens, until the early 90's when they could finally afford to purchase their first home.  
It was probably the Mickey's big mouth's that set him off, those things are awful!   Such a unique piece, like most anything Waits did.  
Woh! Big Tom Waits fan here, but still... Yikes!
That's a poor mortgage rate.
Should segue into "Pepe, Hush" by Leo Kottke sometime.
 jp33442 wrote:
Love anything by Tom Waits
 
Total messed up and great.  I love Waits this is the first time I've heard this.
Love anything by Tom Waits
Howl woof woof. Love it
never could stand that dog
Oh, an audiobook.
!#$*@# brilliant segue into Burning Down The House. 
 rhlrstn wrote:
This seems like a really poor choice, even if it was just a gag to intro Talking Heads' Burning Down the House
 
This just segued into Burning Down The House again about a month later. I had already given Tom's Godlike Frank's Wild Years a 10. Later I made the connection and thought, I'm cool with that.
This seems like a really poor choice, even if it was just a gag to intro Talking Heads' Burning Down the House
 BikeCoachDave wrote:
I can see this working well in a jazz club or even a nice piano bar. But honestly I could never see purchasing this to listen to regularly and when it comes on RP, I almost switch channels
No thanks

 
 
It works well in the context of the whole album. Not the album associated with this track on this page, but Swordfishtrombones. I wouldn't want to listen to this track repeatedly much, but I do love it. 
I never could (under)stand those folk who can't allow for broad musical experiences. One of my greatest joys from RP is hearing amazing obscure music from artists that push boundaries... something Tom Waits does in spades, both musically and as an actor. While I'd save my 9s for Eggs and Sausage and Chocolate Jesus, and 10s for Goin Out West and What's He Building In There, this is a solid 8.
10, never could stand that dog.
My! Wasn't that song a ray of sunshine...
 Cynaera wrote:
Short, not-so-sweet, and to the point. Poor dog.

"Frank's Wild Years (For Frankie Z.)"

Well Frank settled down in the Valley
and hung his wild years
on a nail that he drove through
his wife's forehead
he sold used office furniture
out there on San Fernando Road
and assumed a $30,000 loan
at 15 1/4 % and put down payment
on a little two bedroom place
his wife was a spent piece of used jet trash
made good bloody marys
kept her mouth shut most of the time
had a little Chihuahua named Carlos
that had some kind of skin disease
and was totally blind. They had a
thoroughly modern kitchen
self-cleaning oven (the whole bit)
Frank drove a little sedan
they were so happy

One night Frank was on his way home
from work, stopped at the liquor store,
picked up a couple Mickey's Big Mouths
drank 'em in the car on his way
to the Shell station, he got a gallon of
gas in a can, drove home, doused
everything in the house, torched it,
parked across the street, laughing,
watching it burn, all Halloween
orange and chimney red then
Frank put on a top forty station
got on the Hollywood Freeway
headed north
Never could stand that dog



 
this sunny Sunday feels like Spring, smiles and deep remembrances  : )


Waits is like a slice of cheesecake. Good once in a while...But it can become too much very easily. In small doses it's great.
I can see this working well in a jazz club or even a nice piano bar. But honestly I could never see purchasing this to listen to regularly and when it comes on RP, I almost switch channels
No thanks

 
LOVE it; whacked-out genius, pure and simple, bent just right, and right up there with Step Right Up...
If you cannot see the wonderful witty humor of this song, I can't help you.
 AphidA wrote:
I get the impression people think it's cool to like Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, and similar crap because they're told they should like it.

F that. 
 This comment is in my top five idiotic song comments—ever. Waits and Cohen and similar crap?  Waits and Cohen share little and what should we think is similar crap except your comment?


Short, not-so-sweet, and to the point. Poor dog.

"Frank's Wild Years (For Frankie Z.)"

Well Frank settled down in the Valley
and hung his wild years
on a nail that he drove through
his wife's forehead
he sold used office furniture
out there on San Fernando Road
and assumed a $30,000 loan
at 15 1/4 % and put down payment
on a little two bedroom place
his wife was a spent piece of used jet trash
made good bloody marys
kept her mouth shut most of the time
had a little Chihuahua named Carlos
that had some kind of skin disease
and was totally blind. They had a
thoroughly modern kitchen
self-cleaning oven (the whole bit)
Frank drove a little sedan
they were so happy

One night Frank was on his way home
from work, stopped at the liquor store,
picked up a couple Mickey's Big Mouths
drank 'em in the car on his way
to the Shell station, he got a gallon of
gas in a can, drove home, doused
everything in the house, torched it,
parked across the street, laughing,
watching it burn, all Halloween
orange and chimney red then
Frank put on a top forty station
got on the Hollywood Freeway
headed north
Never could stand that dog


Thanks for playing this!  Its been a while since I've heard this and always enjoyed Tom's spoken word like "9th & Hennepin" from Rain Dogs.
You're a pretentious and arrogant tool.

 AphidA wrote:
I stand by my statement.  Your psychographic profile has been targeted specifically with explicit instructions to adopt this music as your own.  Thank you for behaving.   {#Lol}
 

I don't call this "music". It sucks ==> sucko barfo {#Frustrated}{#Puke}
to the guy whining about people liking music cuz he thinks they've been told it's cool: I get the impression you don't like music if you think too many people think it's cool.

i think you need this shirt

Bumping from 9 to 10 after looking up the lyrics!
 big_gare wrote:
Never could stand that dog.  Great!
  I hate dogs.  Cats too for that matter.


 auralfixation wrote:
Had a junior high school teacher introduce me to Tom Waits.  Thought it was horrible stuff at the time.  As the years have passed I am more & more enamored of his artistry.  What's the title of the piece with the quote "the coffee was too weak to defend itself"? 
 

Nighthawks at the Diner is the record you are referring to. The song is Intro to Eggs and Sausage.
A fine record.
Had a junior high school teacher introduce me to Tom Waits.  Thought it was horrible stuff at the time.  As the years have passed I am more & more enamored of his artistry.  What's the title of the piece with the quote "the coffee was too weak to defend itself"? 
 ambrebalte wrote:
And suddenly I am not in Beijing anymore but in one of these mythical night clubs (magic word), smoky and empty, it's the end of the night, I know I should go back home, and this man starts to talk, I listen, and the journey starts. Tom? Thanks
 

Wow— I'm not the only soul in Beijing listening to Radio Paradise? Very cool.  RP, PRC. PRC, RP.
Love it ! .... messed up! .... but still Love it !
And suddenly I am not in Beijing anymore but in one of these mythical night clubs (magic word), smoky and empty, it's the end of the night, I know I should go back home, and this man starts to talk, I listen, and the journey starts. Tom? Thanks
Torched it!
Hilarious
AphidA wrote:

I get the impression people think it's cool to like Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, and similar crap because they're told they should like it.

F that. 
  
 SweTex wrote:

Same thing could be said about Wilco, which you gave a ten.
 
Hmm. IMHO, you're both wrong.

brilliant! this would be a perfect segue into Zappa's Muffin Man!
Is Bill getting us ready for the weekend here?
Thanks! I really needed that.
Never could stand that dog.  Great!
Well done !
 AphidA wrote:
I get the impression people think it's cool to like Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, and similar crap because they're told they should like it.

F that.
 

Same thing could be said about Wilco, which you gave a ten.
 sharkartist wrote:
Anyone remember Mickey's Big Mouths? Truly bad stuff!   ...the beer, not this song, of course.

 

I had a girlfriend she was from Michigan, went to Michigan State, had a 165 IQ. She introduced me to Mickey's which we used to make boilermakers. She had a great Dog, named Emma, and two black cats, Flotsam and Jetsom.  We would drink those boilermakers all night, on friday's bbqing brats, and metts. God i miss those B'Makers! {#Devil_pimp}
 lmic wrote:
Sure! Seriously skunky! But sooooo easy to drink from that barrel-shaped jar.
 
Reminds me of a restaurant review: "The food is terrible, and the portions are small too!"

I like this song though.

 sharkartist wrote:
Anyone remember Mickey's Big Mouths? Truly bad stuff!

 
Sure! Seriously skunky! But sooooo easy to drink from that barrel-shaped jar.

Anyone remember Mickey's Big Mouths? Truly bad stuff!   ...the beer, not this song, of course.

 More_Cowbell wrote:
Is this music?
 
Yes, very good music actually.

Uplifting.
 More_Cowbell wrote:
Is this music?
 
Memories.

Back in the summer of '83(?)... getting to work early before sunrise to beat the heat (it was still 98f out).
Pulling up to the house I was working on, I would drive around it to get the best signal I could get from KROQ FM Los Angles. It was an effort to get a good FM station in this desert (still is 26 years later!). My stereo in my truck was a really sensitive tuner, so I could get L.A. stations with a little static.
I had a system rigged up that had a !00% fader, so I could shut the speakers off in the truck then output to a household 110 plug in the bed of my truck. I used extension cords for speaker wire and ran two speakers into the house I would work in.
Good ol' Larry Woodside played this one. So everytime I hear it, it's a flashback to that hot summer morning.

Thanks Larry.
And thanks Bill!


Is this music?

One of Waits funnier songs and that is saying something!!{#Roflol}


rKokon wrote:
Wish I had heard all of it . . . if it had characteristics of being a good segue to "HIghway 61," I would have been intrigued. Maybe you will play it again on Monday, March 16, between 9 and 5:30 Eastern Time? (Please.)

Oh, it is. One of the classic RP pairings, IMHO!

Wish I had heard all of it . . . if it had characteristics of being a good segue to "HIghway 61," I would have been intrigued. Maybe you will play it again on Monday, March 16, between 9 and 5:30 Eastern Time?  (Please.)
 AphidA wrote:
I get the impression people think it's cool to like Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, and similar crap because they're told they should like it.

There is no basis for that impression.  It's your own imagination.

People (like me) think it's cool to like Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, and similar "crap" because we actually really like it.  Only an arrogant cuss would think that we only "pretend" to like Waits and Cohen because somebody told us to. 


 OZA wrote:

He'll only set your house on fire.

 

I'm insured.
 mandolin wrote:
morphine - you look like rain
tom waits - frank's wild years

...dare i hope for soul coughing next?..
 

Hell yeah!  "Down To This", perhaps?  {#Cool}
 pinklife wrote:
I'm going to marry Tom Waits when I grow up...
 
He'll only set your house on fire.

I'm going to marry Tom Waits when I grow up...
 AphidA wrote:
I get the impression people think it's cool to like Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, and similar crap because they're told they should like it. F that.
 
give me one similarity between tom waits & cohen.....
don't know cohen too good to judge, but Tom waits is unique!

Gave it an 8,just for the Hammond.Story kind of ....!
.
"....never could stand that dog." 
Love it.

I stand by my statement.  Your psychographic profile has been targeted specifically with explicit instructions to adopt this music as your own.  Thank you for behaving.   {#Lol}
Great story of blue-collar angst, but waaaay too short!
I second the call for Ken Nordine.
 AphidA wrote:
I get the impression people think it's cool to like Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, and similar crap because they're told they should like it.

F that.
 

Naw ... that's people who listen to Radiohead.

It is frickin impossible to get tickets Waits' live shows.  One of the great frustrations of my life ...


mandolin wrote:
morphine - you look like rain
tom waits - frank's wild years

...dare i hope for soul coughing next?..

and again today....same order for the first two.

Sounds like Jack Black
mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm
poetry in  motion
love the commentary
nothing beats this for me....just a man with a great imagination who knows how to use his skill to WOoOoo my ears into a great story!
Ok, so where are the Ken Nordine tracks?

morphine - you look like rain
tom waits - frank's wild years

...dare i hope for soul coughing next?..
Sounds like my dad...{#Eh}
Can't get enough Tom Waits.
AphidA wrote:
I get the impression people think it's cool to like Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, and similar crap because they're told they should like it. F that.


In what universe have Tom Waits and Leonard Cohen ever been forced down anyone's throat? You could make that statement about a lot of groups; but it sounds ludicrous when you attach Waits and Cohen's name to it.

If I could just add one reference note: Frank's Wild Years appears on the release of the same name (1986 or 87, I think) — it's more appropriate to list the original release than the much-later compilation.
AphidA wrote:
I get the impression people think it's cool to like Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, and similar crap because they're told they should like it. F that.


Wrong.

 AphidA wrote:
I get the impression people think it's cool to like Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, and similar crap because they're told they should like it. F that.

 
Then there's us who like music for the hard of thinking.

BRILLIANT, PERFECT SEGUE!!!
Thank you! 
Gotta love that Frankie. never could stand that dog
AphidA wrote:
I get the impression people think it's cool to like Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, and similar crap because they're told they should like it. F that.
Doubtful. Clearly not cool to like music simply because someone tells you it is cool to do so. Waits appeals to certain people. Others, not. So be it. Because you fall in the latter camp, why make more of it than that?
I get the impression people think it's cool to like Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, and similar crap because they're told they should like it. F that.
RobK wrote:
A classic Waits tune if there ever was one. Watch him do it live on Letterman: (click here) with an interview to boot
FABULOUS!
A classic Waits tune if there ever was one. Watch him do it live on Letterman: (click here) with an interview to boot
I think Frank must be buddies with Michael Vic.
nothing wrong with her $100 wouldn't fix
:D
dionysius wrote:
We have a right to know.
I'll tell you one thing, He's not building a playhouse for the children
Some might say he talks better than he sings...
Is that him playing the Hammond on this, or is it someone else? It's very good.
fretman wrote:
What's he doing in there?
We have a right to know.
What's he doing in there?
chasech5 wrote:
Great use of post-Beat spoken-word pacing, tone, and instrumental timbre.
Yes, indeed! :whisper: I was just going to say "cool."
Tom's a national treasure and Frank's the quintessential Valley dude!
supergroverx wrote:
oh my and I was just on San Fernando Road today!!! I don't know that I've yet heard Valley life captured so exquisitely. I have always loved this song. 9.
oh my and I was just on San Fernando Road today!!! I have always loved this song. 9.
An all time classic.
This song makes me laugh in ways that make me uncomfortable with myself. More please. :)
There can never be too much Tom Waits - keep adding his stuff to the playlist!
Sweetness! ...thanks for that one Bill! "never could stand that dog"
I've heard this tune lots and lots o times but that last line still kills me every time not that I've got anything personal against dogs...
that was awesome.
See, SEE what happens when you list to Top 40 stations? You torch some poor Chihuahua.
ARE YOU KIDDING ME?? Hell yeah Bill...nice one. "His wife was a used up piece of spent jet trash that kept her mouth shut most of the time and made a great Bloody Mary....." "...Never could stand that dog...."
Thanks for playing this, Bill!
. . . never could stand that dog . . .
Top man, top song. A 10 all day long.
Always could use some more T.W. Great use of post-Beat spoken-word pacing, tone, and instrumental timbre.
coool
Yes, Keep adding more Waits to the playlist!!
Bill, you're going WILD today!
from Swordfishtrombones I think--too funny.
My hero...