Ruby

by Catfish

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about

This is the second Catfish album, originally released on the East-West label in Australia in 1991, containing the songs Don Walker had written for himself mostly in Australia the previous two years. Peter Walker again produced, engineered and played guitars. Harmonica player David Blight was again the main lead instrument. The rhythm section for the recordings was Paul Robert Burton on slap bass, and James Brown sidemen Tony Cook and Ron Laster on drums and rhythm guitar. Ian Moss played some solo guitar and sang backing vocals on Jericho Road. Charlie Owen played guitar on Johhny’s Gone, Ruby and Charleville, the first of many times he and Don Walker were to record together.

credits

released January 30, 2017

Album Credits

Produced by Peter Walker and Don Walker.

Engineered and mixed by Peter Walker.

Recorded and mixed at Trafalgar Studios, Sydney, 1990-91.

“Johnny’s Gone”, “Crooked Smile” and “See You Again” remixed by Phil Punch in 2008.

Mastered by Don Bartley.

Cover photography by Tim Baur.

Artwork by Debaser.

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Don Walker Sydney, Australia

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Track Name: Johnny's Gone
Johnny’s Gone

Straight between the headlights
Johnny’s gone
Straight between the headlights
Johnny’s gone
Johnny’s gone gone gone
Johnny’s gone gone gone
Straight between the headlights
Johnny’s Gone

Buried in his jacket
Johnny’s gone
Buried in his jacket
Johnny’s gone
Goin’ down down down
Goin’ down down down
Buried in his jacket Johnny’s gone

Two wheels on the highway
Four wheels flashing blue
Ten wheels comin’ the other way
Gonna make the morning news

When you see that blue light flashing
Ain’t nowhere that you can hide
Ain’t no way that you can turn away
Got to take that lonely ride

Straight between the headlights
Johnny’s gone
Straight between the headlights
Johnny’s gone
Goin’ down down down
Goin’ down down down
Straight between the headlights
Johnny’s gone.
Track Name: Ruby
Ruby


Ruby’s lookin’ over the water
Paris end of Woolloomooloo
Eyein’ off the guns of a mother
USS Missouri to you
Her heart is like a geiger counter
Haulin’ on a Lucky Strike
Ruby’s gonna get her a sailor
And kiss him on the long goodnight

Haulin’ on a drop-dead number
Playin’ with a finger-nail file
Anything to build the hunger
Scrawlin’ on a drop-dead smile

She’s gonna take him back
Back up Macleay
Gonna take him back
Make him pay her
For the hotel room
Make him pay her
By a fly-blown electric light
Hangin’ off a tattooed shoulder
Lickin’ off the red red rum
There’s murder in the room
Murder in the room
Murder in the room
Murder in the room
Tonight

Now Ruby’s steppin’ out of the shower
Waxin’ to the Brisbane line
Smelling like a tropical flower
Walkin’ one leg at a time
Ruby’s got an ivory razor
Got herself a blade so bright
Ruby’s gonna get her a sailor
And kiss him on the long goodnight.
Track Name: Jericho Road
Jericho Road

Out on the Jericho road
Out on the Jericho road
Lookin’ for a lift home
Somebody paid more than anyone’s owed

Three young men in a car
They took things a little too far
With an innocent women
Said she had it comin’
Out on the Jericho road
Yeah, out on the Jericho road

See the locals smile
Desire is not a crime
Young men will be boys
It happens all the time

Back at the Methodist hall
They returned to the Bachelor’s Ball
The lighting flickered low
They hit the liquor
As though nothing happened at all

Now two signs are broken down
To face the black soil plains
“Welcome Tidy Town”
Is all the more profane

The truck-step restaurant’s closed
And something’s comin’ that knows
The blood in the gravel
And nobody travels
Out on the Jericho road no more
Out on the Jericho road.
Track Name: Too Long
Too Long

Sometimes don’t mean much
There are places you could say that, too
You know the feeling when the peeling on the ceiling’s
Makin’ eyes back at you
Sometimes you lose all touch
I’ve had nothing really better to do
For too long

You look around on the streets downtown
Every face has got its evil side
They gather here below round midnight
Creeping like a black king tide
I’ve been on my back with the lights shut down
And my memory open wide
For too long

We made love in a sky-way car
At the Royal Easter Show
As the fireworks detonated up above
And the ghost train howled below
With you, gunpower blind
With you, I could unwind
And hear that whistle blow

Sometimes don’t mean much
There are places where you must ignore
The fake moans of the old transexual
Working in the room next door
Come back now, this is me
I’ve been gone with everything that’s yours
For too long.
Track Name: Crooked Smile
Crooked Smile

I never thought I’d turn that crooked smile around
I never thought I’d burn those cold emotions down
Every time that I fell, I knew
You cared that much less for me

I never had to deal with what I knew was right
I never could remember what I did last night
And watching you try not to show it, I knew
You cared that much less for me

These things are changing as I turn away
And leave my troubles where they fall
I’ve been rebuilding and its all your way
So if you’ll turn again
You’ll see no more pain at all

I’ve seen familiar faces turned away
Seen everything I try go wrong
When no-one offers you the time of day
Those cold emotions
Can get you through the night alone

Now I know that compared to you
A lot of that pain was easy to lose
Never again will you see that smile
Turned on you.
Track Name: Charleville
Charleville

Well I met her at a disco in the School of Arts Hotel
The kind of place that some girls won’t attend
The moon shone over Edwards Street and later I could tell
I’d never be a lonely man again

In Charleville
In Charleville
There’s a pretty little woman says she’ll say I will
In Charleville
In Charleville
There’s a pretty little woman says she’ll say I will

We’re gonna have a wedding cake that’s twenty layers high
And fifteen hundred family and friends
We’ll cook ourselves a dozen lambs
And drink the district dry
Then whip around a hat and start again

In Charleville
In Charleville
There’s a pretty little woman says she’ll say I will
In Charleville
In Charleville
There’s a pretty little woman says she’ll say I will

Well I’ve seen girls in Paris
To humble any man
I’ve seen Earls embarrassed
By models in Milan
I’ve seen enough to know the only girl I need to see
She’s waiting back in Charleville for me.
Track Name: El Alamein Blues
El Alamein Blues

A sickle moon is out tonight
The bodies in the firelight
Are smashed as the pension allows

The shadows off the fire
Rock the bones of a building block
Nothing else has moved for hours

The bottom of the bottle
Says the sun’s gone down
The evening has long been sold

The battles are forgotten
The dead stay dead
And these that are left grow old

The charismatic’s screaming
At the veterans bleeding
On the corner how they’ve got to be saved

The palaces are pumping
At the rubbernecks
C’mon, you’re so beautiful, rich and depraved

The barbie-dolls are earning
What they need to buy the anaesthetic
Needed to remove another face

As I go steppin’ out
Get a view, breath air
Look a news headline in the face

Up above the station house the children cruise
The El Alamein Fountain in their one’s and two’s
It’s early in the week
The hit parade is sleeping off
The day’s El Alamein Blues

A moving line of Japanese
And Americans with heart disease
Are targets from the bus to the bar

They step around the one man
One leg band
Pissing out from under his guitar

Somebody hit some trouble
With the banks the other day
Now I read about someone’s in a jam

Well you win the daily double
Then it goes the other way
You know its hard for me to say I give a damn

Everybody’s selling everything that crawls
Cashing in the fakes from off the family walls
Gold for forgeries
Sold behind the mortuary
To pay for the El Alamein Blues

And up above the station house the children cruise
The El Alamein Fountain in their one’s and two’s
Its early in the week
All the world is sleeping off
The day’s El Alamein Blues.
Track Name: The Year That He Was Cool
The Year That He Was Cool

I can see him now by the poolroom door in 1965
Answering only to his own sweet law
Deadpan and alive
He could surf the curl on a barmaid’s lip
He could surf a yard of beer
He surfed the break down the Queensland coast
For six months of that year
Back in a time of innocence
He did not suffer fools
He put aside all childish things
In the year that he was cool

They said he’d screwed a meter maid
The girls said it wasn’t true
He knew a guy who knew Pete Zuber
From “The Shades of Blue”
Many of the same girls claimed to have spent the night
In his panel van
He’d shake his head and we’d admire
The politeness of the man
They said he’d smoked raw opium
The line was hard to rule
Between the facts and legend in
The year that he was cool

Now its hard to believe how twenty five years
Have underlined that face
Undermined that special time
That ties him to this place
To see his eyes it’s hard to say
Just when the lights were drowned
There ain’t much else to do besides decay
In this six-pack town

Now he’s seen all the pricks who stayed at school
Come home with law degrees
The girls who once were his to choose
Have travelled overseas
And he harbours such a hatred
He drinks in such a rage
But the target’s hard to focus on
Approaching middle age
Now he stands outside the bowling club
Barfing like a mule
No-one recalls or wants to know
About the year that he was cool.
Track Name: See You Again
See You Again

Kerosene
Is turned down
Mosquito coil
Burns round and round
Until the long night ends
I’ve had red dirt
Slow blues
White heat
And no news of you
Or when I’ll see you again

I could have followed you to Brisbane
I would have followed you to hell
We could have fought together
Round and round
The circles that we knew too well

Love dies
A slow death
I dream
With each breath I draw
Until I see you again.

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