Actress Scarlett Johansson has recorded an album of Tom Waits cover songs called Anywhere I Lay My Head, which will be released May 20. The album was produced by Dave Sitek of the band TV on the Radio, and features contributions by David Bowie, Nick Zinner of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, and members of the group Celebration. The record also contains an original song by Johansson.
What the commentators said
Johansson “was pretty much universally panned for her performance with The Jesus & Mary Chain at last year’s Coachella” festival, said the blog Egoeccentric, yet now she’s “poised to release her debut album.” Why some record executives thought it was a good idea for Johansson to do a Tom Waits cover album is “beyond me.” And just think what this “could spawn: Lindsey Lohan sings Neil Young? Paris Hilton re-records Blood on the Tracks?”
It’s not like Johansson is the first actor to “dive into the musical world,” said IGN.com. She’s “following in the footsteps of the likes of Johnny Depp, Bruce Willis, Keanu Reeves, Michael Pitt, Zooey Deschanel, Jeff Bridges, Juliette Lewis, and countless others.”
I’m pretty “skeptical” about this album, said the blog Pop Sugar. But you have to give her credit for scoring a duet with David Bowie. And anything is possible—“maybe the album will be way more legit and awesome” than some people imagine it will be.
We actually got to hear a few tracks from the album, said Josh Jackson in PasteMagazine.com, and they “were nothing like we imagined. Instead of the lounge-y approach favored by fellow young thespians like Minnie Driver, it’s a feast of indie production” that stays “true to Waits’ spirit of weirdness without sounding anything like him.”