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Chuck E.'s On Wax

Bill Bentley, L.A. Weekly, 26 November 1981

NOT SURPRISINGLY, Tom Waits provides the best introduction to his erstwhile running partner, Chuck E. Weiss, giving him a snappy street-smart hello in song. It's tucked near the end of the wistful, ruminative 'I Wish I Was in New Orleans', from his 1976 Small Change album. In his patented gutter growl, Waits runs through the prowls and pleasures of life in that jeweled and sultry burg, then spotting a familiar face, perks up his patter: "Deal the cards, roll the dice/If it ain't that ol' Chuck E. Weiss/And Clairborne Avenue, me and you sail/Jones and all." In Waits' world of fast-talkers and low-ballers, in the land of rakish ease and nocturnal sleaze, it's only right that Chuck E. Weiss gets a faithful wink and a nod. Jungle runners, after all, should stick together.

Total word count of piece: 1396


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