Mike Patton recently released his first album with Tomahawk in eight years, Tonic Immobility, and to mark the occasion he sat down for an interview with Forbes. Among the topics of discussion were artists he loves, which include Tom Waits. Forbes asked about Tonic Immobility's opening tracking, saying, "When I was listening to the opening track, 'SHHH!,' if felt like Tom Waits’ 'What’s He Building' to me. I’m going to guess that you’re a fan. Are you a fan?"
"Absolutely," Patton answered. 100 percent yeah, yeah, yeah. Of course. I channel him a lot. Even though I can’t really be him, there are moments in every band that I’m in where we reference people, like, 'Hey man, more Tom Araya or more Tom Waits or more, fuckking, Nancy Sinatra.' These things are said in the studio. And it helps me because I’m not a learned, trained musician. I don’t read notes, I don’t speak that language. So when I’m working, and I purposefully work with people who are better than me. All of them, every guy in every band that I’ve played in is better than me. They know more and they teach me. A lot of times in Faith No More, what we would do is reference movies like, 'Hey, make it more like Paris, Texas. Not Paris. But Paris, Texas.' And I knew exactly what that meant. Make it more western. Make it more fucked up and funky. It’s all about communication and how a unit becomes a thing. And it’s tough to do for a band. Different people, different ideas. You know all that kind of stuff. But one day, it will come together. And there are so many examples. But it’s really about, for me, being open minded enough to listen. And listening is one of the hardest things for a musician to do. ‘Cause once you’ve achieved some things, you think you know it all. But you don’t know shit. So keeping your ears open and your mind open is the most important thing. Listen to others and then you’ll get better."