Pasties and a G-String
is one of Tom Waits
's most memorable songs. Sung by a drunken lecher on the verge of falling off his feet. He is surrounded by temptation and can hardly keep himself standing, much less indulge himself in the sins that surround him. Waits' voice slurs and breaks and cracks and, all in all, manages to tell the story much better than any words could have.
I have two cover versions of this song - on New Coat of Paint - Songs of Tom Waits
and Step Right Up: The Songs of Tom Waits
, the Tom Waits tribute albums. One is by Andre Williams
, one by Jeffrey Lee Pierce
- two artists I've never heard of before. Both of them were very disappointing when I first heard them, and I think for the same reason - they were both trying to sound like Waits.
You can argue whether their unstable rambling were more or less aesthetically pleasing than Waits', but they certainly weren't trying to make the song their own, which is what makes for a good cover.