The gravel-voiced carnival barker/blues virtuoso/mad genius will play a non-singing character (himself?) who helps Homer "prep" for a prospective disaster.
Said producer Al Jean about the phenomon of "prepping":
“We did a lot of research into the ‘prepper’ phenomenon, where people are convinced that some horrible catastrophe – like an electromagnetic pulse – is going to occur, and that people will have to survive without the grid. ... Homer becomes a prepper.”
Waits joins fellow "gravel-voiced carnival barker/blues virtuoso/mad genius" Justin Bieber in the ever-growing guest-starring pool on the infinitely-running sitcom.
Check out a very rare animated adventure from Tom Waits in the roto-scoped short "Tom Waits for No One" which was created in 1979 for the burgeoning music video channel known as MTV.