One from the heart

Jul 2, 2010

The world seems divided on Tom Waits between those who think he’s great and those who think he’s a genius. I don’t subscribe to either camp. Although I admire his single-mindedness and disregard for fads and trends, his affected, increasingly-gruff-over-the-years voice can irritate.

Yet saying that, the soundtrack he recorded for the 1982 film “One from the heart” is quite magnificent. Back in 1981 he hadn’t completely adopted his “deep voice” persona. The songs have a timeless beauty to them, some graced with the gorgeous voice of the gorgeous Crystal Gayle. When the film was released I paid some stupid price to get an imported LP of the soundtrack which I played repeatedly. Of course as it was an american pressing the quality of the disc was diabolical with hisses and clicks during the quieter parts. It was one of the few records I was pleased to duplicate with a CD version (although the CD ought to have had a few more “extras” for the money).

As for the “One from the heart” film, it was a sprawling over-long mess. Why on earth did the director, Francis Ford Coppola, feel the need to spend $$$thousands on a stage-set of Las Vegas when he could just have gone there and started filming ???  Terri Garr was in the film though as a consolation. Conclusion: Film 3 out of 10. Soundtrack CD 9 out of 10.