Tom Waits is reportedly “writing again”

“He basically got distracted by the movie world for a while”

Tom Waits has supposedly made his return to writing, according to his longtime music agent.

The update came from the singer-songwriter icon’s longtime Irish music agent Paul Charles — discussed as part of his new memoir Adventures In Wonderland.

In the book, as mentioned in the Irish Examiner, Charles discusses his transition into being one of the most important agents in the music industry, as well as his time working with artists including Van Morrison, Dire Straits, The Kinks, U2 and more.


At least one section of the book also discusses his longtime relationship with Waits, and includes a discussion of the last performance Waits did back in 2008 — in a tent venue in Dublin named the Rat Cellar.

“We all hope he will tour again,” Charles writes. “After he did the three nights in the Rat Cellar, he went home. He enjoyed the tour a lot, and the idea was to start writing.”

Tom Waits performs onstage at the 26th annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony in 2011
Tom Waits performs onstage at the 26th annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony in 2011. CREDIT: Jeff Kravitz/Getty Images

He continues: “He did a bit of recording, and then he basically got distracted by the movie world for a while. The news is that he’s started writing again. We’ve all got our fingers crossed for another return visit.”

In the time since 2008, Waits has had an extensive acting career, and starred in films such as the Coen Brother’s western The Ballad Of Buster Scruggs (2018), star-studded action film The Book Of Eli (2010) and the 2021 film Licorice Pizza, which also starred Haim-guitarist Alana Haim.

He has also participated in some voice acting roles since his final live show, including an appearance in The Simpsons and the AMC+ puppet series Ultra City Smiths.


Waits released his last studio album, ‘Bad As Me’ in 2011 and, more recently, his 1973 debut album, ‘Closing Time’ celebrated its 50th anniversary with a new vinyl reissue. The original version of the record arrived on March 6 1973, and featured the single ‘Ol’ ‘55’. A remastered version of the LP is now available on streaming platforms and a special edition of the LP is also set to arrive on June 2 via ANTI (pre-orders are available here).

The 1973 debut recently featured in NME‘s round-up of classic albums that are turning 50 years old in 2023. “Although the world was slow to pick up on Tom Waits’ debut album ‘Closing Time’, once it did, the record quickly gained a cult following,” it reads.

“The star recorded the album after being discovered at LA venue The Troubadour by David Geffen and its songs introduced him as a poetic songwriter rooted in jazz – something he would move away from as he entered the ’80s.”

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