Tom Waits is set to appear in the latest episode of The Simpsons tonight (January 6).
The singer will play himself in the episode, which will air on the Fox Network in the US and is titled ‘Homer Goes To Prep School’. The episode sees Waits introduce Homer to a group of committed “Preppers” – a survivalist movement whereby people make active preparations for potential global disasters.
Executive producer Al Jean previously described the plot as “Homer becomes a prepper”, saying: “We did a lot of research into the ‘prepper’ phenomenon, where people are convinced that some horrible catastrophe – like an electromagnetic pulse – is going to occur, and that people will have to survive without the grid.”
Jean also revealed that Waits does not sing in the episode, but said that fans will recognise his distinctive voice “in a second”. The episode was originally expected to air in December last year (2012).
Waits joins a long list of musicians who have made a guest appearance in the long-running cartoon series including Smashing Pumpkins, The White Stripes, Red Hot Chili Peppers, U2, Lady Gaga and Sonic Youth.
Last month, The Decemberists and Daft Punk appeared in an episode of The Simpsons. Titled ‘The Day The Earth Stood Cool’, the episode also saw a guest appearance from Wild Flag singer Carrie Brownstein – writer/star of TV’s Portlandia – who played Homer’s new neighbour.
You can check out NME‘s gallery of the 15 Classic Band Cameos in The Simpsons for more musician appearances.
For even more facts about the Springfield clan, see NME‘s blog on the 50 Things You Didn’t Know About The Simpsons.