two side by side images of Tom Waits (left) and Nicolas Cage (right) at the SFFILM Awards Night in San Francisco.

Tom Waits made a rare public appearance this week to honour actor Nicolas Cage.

The singer-songwriter presented Cage with a lifetime achievement prize at the SFFILM Awards Night in San Francisco, California on Monday evening (December 4).

Waits’ participation in the event had not been announced prior, and his presence prompted “gasps” and “wild applause” from those in attendance, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.

After taking to the podium at the Yerba Buena Center For The Arts, the musician spoke about how he and Cage have known each other since the Oscar-winner was a teenager working for Waits as his driver.

“He was the same as a teenager. It was troublesome for his family and other people around him,” Waits joked in his speech. “He needed some kind of a swimming pool to put that [talent] all in, and I’m sure glad that he has that now.”

As Conscequence notes, Cage previously hailed Waits as his “ultimate music hero”. The pair also appeared together in Francis Ford Coppola’s drama film Rumble Fish (1983).

Cage introduced Waits to the comic series The Eyeball Kid, which inspired a character in two of his songs: ‘Such A Scream’ from his 1992 album ‘Bone Machine’, and ‘Eyeball Kid’ from ‘Mule Variations’ (1999).

Nicholas Cage
Nicolas Cage. CREDIT: Getty

Waits, who is known to be reclusive, recently paid tribute to the late Shane MacGowan in a rare public statement.

Last Sunday (December 3) Waits participated in an interview with Iggy Pop as part of a two-hour programme on BBC Radio 6 Music. You can listen back via BBC Sounds here.

Back in May, Waits’ longtime Irish music agent Paul Charles claimed that the artist had “started writing again”. Further details about any potential new music have not yet emerged, however.

Waits released a 50th anniversary reissue of his debut studio album ‘Closing Time’ in June.

Meanwhile, Nicolas Cage recently spoke about two movies that he believes are his most underrated: Bangkok Dangerous (2008) and Joe (2013).

He has also opened up about the possibility of retirement from acting, saying that his time on the big screen may be coming to an end. “I may have three or four more movies left in me,” Cage explained.

The post Tom Waits makes rare public appearance to honour Nicolas Cage appeared first on NME.


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