The albums – which this year celebrate their 20-year-anniversary – will be pressed on translucent blue and red vinyl respectively, with the reissues expected to hit record stores and Waits’ merch website on October 7. Both reissues are currently available for pre-order via Waits’ webstore here.
Coinciding with the announcement, Waits has also shared a pair of live recordings set to feature on each of the upcoming reissues: ‘All the World Is Green’ from ‘Blood Money’ and ‘Fish and Bird’ from ‘Alice’.
Check out the live recordings below.
Waits’ live version of ‘All the World is Green’ adds a flamenco flair to the original, and was recorded during the singer-songwriter’s Milan show as part of his 2008 Glitter and Doom concert tour. Meanwhile, the previously unreleased rendition of ‘Fish and Bird’ was lifted from Waits’ 2004 show in London, and pairs his live vocals with stripped-down piano keys.
Speaking of the original albums in press materials at the time, Waits recalled his avoidance of string instruments, saying that “too many of [his] songs were drowning in strings.”
“I didn’t want to hear another blasted violin. So, we found string players who felt the same way about their instrument, formed an odd, skeletal chamber orchestra and tried to avoid all the old familiar phrases where strings love to play,” Waits said.
Both ‘Alice’ and ‘Blood Money’ were borne out of Waits and co-writer Kathleen Brennan’s years-long collaboration with playwright Robert Wilson. Wilson had previously contributed to Waits’ 1989 album ‘The Black Rider’, and later featured the songs from ‘Alice’ in his 1992 opera of the same name. On top of that Alice in Wonderland-inspired play, Wilson used ‘Blood Money’ as the basis of his 2000 musical ‘Woyzeck’.
The albums’ contribution to the plays preceded a swathe of Waits’ additional appearances in both stage and screenplays. Over the years, the musician has taken on roles in Francis Ford Coppola’s 1992 film Dracula, as well as his more recent appearance in last year’s Licorice Pizza, directed by Paul Thomas Anderson.
Elsewhere in live performance news, Waits delivered a rare set at Hal Willner’s tribute concert earlier this year. Taking to the stage in April in honour of the late SNL music producer, Waits performed his own 2013 track ‘Shenandoah’, as well as a live cover of Frank Sinatra‘s ‘I’ll Be Seeing You’.