Opel cars is in hot water after it screened advertisements in Scandinavia featuring a soundtrack spookily similar to the style and sound of Tom Waits. Even the 'impersonator's singing voice was a close match.
Waits is now taking legal advice and has issued the following statement:
"In answer to the many queries I have received: No, I did not do the Opel car commercial currently running on TV in Scandinavia. I have a long-standing policy against my voice or music being used in commercials and I have lawyers over there investigating my options. But I got to tell you, it doesn't look good. This is the third car ad, after Audi in Spain and Lancia in Italy.
"If I stole an Opel, Lancia, or Audi, put my name on it and resold it, I'd go to jail. But over there they ask, you say no, and they hire impersonators. They profit from the association and I lose time, money, and credibility. What's that about?
"Commercials are an unnatural use of my work... it's like having a cow's udder sewn to the side of my face. Painful and humiliating."
Waits was informed of the ad after fans contacted his label, many assuming it was the man himself. Waits isn't exactly unfamiliar with the legal process - over the last 20-or-so years he has taken a series of successful legal actions preventing his music and image from being used in association with commercial products.