Ruby

by Catfish

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1.
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.
2.
Ruby 03:29
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.
3.
Jericho Road 04:35
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.
4.
Too Long 04:47
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.
5.
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.
6.
Charleville 03:17
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.
7.
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.
8.
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.
9.
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.

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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