Originally published in 2015 - Watershed returns to Comfest June 24th, 2017. Click here for details on that show and other gigs.
Day 3 (Songs 44-34)
Getting Ready (44): “The Fifth of July” really slows down when it hits this song. If this was on vinyl or cassette, would this be the last song on Side one or the first song on Side two. I’d hope for the former, but who knows?
Colin G. - This and "Obvious" are the first two songs we cut for 5th of July. We actually made a mini promo single and took it down to SXSW to pimp the upcoming release. I guess what I am saying is that in our minds, "Getting Ready" was one of the strongest tracks on the record. Nick, it seems that this ranking along with a low ranking of "Romantic Noise" that you aren't a big fan of this side of Watershed. In my opinion, it is this side of the band that makes the other poppier side so appealing. Otherwise, we would just be the Posies or the Gin Blossoms. I really like these lyrics.
Joe O. - Great lyrics by Colin. What a universal sentiment, and I never thought of it quite this way until Colin wrote the song. Oscar Wilde once said, "There was never any smog in London until Charles Dickens wrote about it." Colin did that for me here. So, yeah, Colin and Dickens. Pretty much on the same level.
Ricki C. - Hey Colin, get a load of Professor Oestreich comin' with the book-larnin' with an Oscar Wilde quote, no less. I forget, was Wilde in The Bullet Boys or Poison?
Colin G. - He was the bass player in W.A.S.P.
Just For Show (43): I did enjoy seeing this performed live on Watershed weekend. Just curious, why was this included on the Single Series CD? There are a lot of better songs on “The More It Hurts, The More It Works” that deserved single status over this tune.
Joe O. - I wrote this song in my bedroom in a dive apartment above the High Street Radio Shack on North Campus, the one next to the Blue Danube. I had been in a car wreck that morning. The seat belt kept me from going through the windshield, which, looking back on it, gives the line "Don't lead with the chin, just to be safe," a little extra something.
Colin G. - Hurts/Works took a long time to finish so we released the single series just to get something new out while we were touring. "Just For Show" was probably just finished. We don't always have a master plan for things as such.
Sad Drive (42): The version that Colin re-recorded is so much better than this original. But I like the original and love the story in “Hitless Wonder” about how it started the set that landed the record contract.
Colin G. Appreciate the kind words and the solo version is a different beast altogether, but the original has "Nebraska" -esque charm that is hard to top. Once again, not sure if it is good, but it is something.
Joe O. - Sorry, Nick. The version that Colin re-recorded is nowhere close to this version. I'm biased, of course, because I was sitting in the studio when Colin gave this vocal performance, which is the vocal performance of his life. I still get chills listening to it.
Over Too Soon (41): This song is in a tough spot — between “Can’t Be Myself” and “New Life.” Still a very solid song and one reason this record is considered strong from start to finish.
Colin G. - Somebody has to have a hit with this eventually, right?
Joe O. - One of the highs of my life is when Pat DiNizio of the Smithereens told me that this song is a hit. He's right. It is. For somebody, somewhere, sometime, it is.
Twister (40): I happen to like the first record very much. Just wondered how this song became the title track of the record?
Ricki C. - Fucking number forty? Nick, you've got "Twister" at number FORTY? "Twister" (the song) is ABSOLUTELY in my Watershed Top Ten Tunes. First off, it contains one of Colin's finest couplets ever - "So many times I've walked home and cried as the dark clouds became thicker / So many times I've looked at you and lied when I said I didn't care that you kissed her." How many songwriters would address that sentiment to The Other Guy rather than to The Girl? Brilliant, genius original lyric move. Second, third & fourth: the overall simultaneously restrained but desperate tone of the vocal, the killer bass line from Joe, the atmospheric (pun intended) production touches throughout the song. Fifth, sixth & seventh: the unison guitar & drums hook from Colin & Herb that moves the song into the chorus, Joe's vocal counter-melody in the chorus, Colin's scream that brings us to the guitar solo. Need I go on to eighth, ninth & tenth? Absolutely the first song that proved conclusively Watershed could be just as powerful mid-tempo as they were rocking. I have not one doubt it should have been the title song of the first record.
Colin G. Holy shit! Ricki really likes "Twister." Performance-wise it is a stand-out from that era. Herb just owns those drums.
Joe O. - True fact: Colin is a fan of natural disasters. The real question is why did he choose to write about twisters rather than tsunamis, volcanic eruptions, or the attack of the killer tomatoes?
Sticky Bomb (39): We have officially hit the point in this list where the songs are interchangeable (ranking wise) for the next twenty or so.
Joe O. - For what it's worth, this is my 4-year old son's favorite song on Brick and Mortar. It could be because of the swinging bass part, or it could be because he thinks the song is called "Stinky Bomb."
Colin G. - "We only fight about serious things: like who was better, The Beatles or The Kinks?"
Small Doses (38): Just a very solid, catchy song.
Ricki C. - ANOTHER killer Colin song that should've been much higher and absolutely should have been the second single from "5th Of July."
Colin G. - Enough with the Colin/Joe song stuff already. We woodshed all this stuff together as a band. And Tim Patalan added the crazy drums and timing changes. We literally played this like 75 times before we got the take. God bless Dave Masica. It should have been a single.
Joe O. - The line "throwing rocks at the moon" is a shout-out to Raleigh's The Backsliders, who released a masterpiece of an album by that name. Stop reading this and go buy that record.
Half Of Me (37): This version is so much better than the League Bowlers attempt. Would have fit really well on “The Fifth of July.”
Colin G. - Joe played this for me at The Barn at Thundercreek and I was like, "Oh, that's a cool cover. Who is it? George Jones? Terry Anderson? Hank Snow? Hank?" "No, I wrote it." "You wrote it? Damn." The League Bowlers version is better, though. Mike Parks on guitar rules. Come on. Listen here.
Joe O. - This was me trying to write a George Jones (RIP) song. It's nowhere in the same league as "The Race is On," but it ain't half bad. The first time we played it live was opening for Dash Rip Rock at Brothers Bar in Jacksonville, Alabama.
Rare footage of live version from Newport with "Maybelline" tacked onto intro.
Black Concert T-Shirt (36): This is the slower version found on “Star Vehicle.” It’s a very good song, but it can’t touch the remake on the next record.
Joe O. - The minute I planted a flag in the title, I was fired up. I thought: Watershed now owns one of the most ubiquitous symbols in rock and roll. I need to do more of that rock and roll symbol thing. Okay, my next mission is to write a song called, "I Got a Maglite in my Pocket." Just rolls off the tongue, don't it?
Good Day (35): Love the lyrics and harmonica. The perfect segue between the great version of “Black Concert T-Shirt” and “Can’t Be Myself.”
Colin G. - This is the song that bumped "Sweet Kisses/Bitter Scars" off Hurts/Works. Tim had an epiphany and suddenly said this should be second track on the record. Mind you, we hadn't bothered to listen to this song in over a year so we all were like, "say what?" But Tim was adamant and a big part of working with a great producer is trust so we acquiesced to his wishes. I'm glad we did. Tim is right about most everything except that I need one more beer.
Joe O. - I love this song, too, but it's a weird one, a great song that didn't seem to fit in with the rest of the tunes on the record. Patalan said, "Put it as the second track." Embrace the weirdness.
Waiting For The Greatest (34): The lyrics in this song are brilliant. The story is great. The chorus and title just aren’t quite as good as the rest of the song. “Throw us on the soccer field, stop keeping score” and “We were free to think for ourselves as long as we agreed with them” hit home in these times.
Joe O. - Thanks, Nick. You and I are the only ones who think so. This is a tweak on a song that Poochie's band Twin Cam had already written and recorded. I always loved the Twin Cam song; I just thought that the verse lyrics could better tie-in to the chorus. So I asked our good buddy Mike Sammons of Twin Cam if he'd let me take a crack at writing new verses. He said yes, so there you have it. I love the story in this version, but I suspect that I'm the only one. Well, me and Nick. You should buy up every Twin Cam CD you can find. Second best band Poochie was ever in.
Colin G. - For the record, I dig this tune.
Let's wrap up Day 3 with a full concert from Small's in Detroit, Michigan from the Hitless Wonder/Brick & Mortar tour. Yes, the same Small's that is the first chapter in Hitless Wonder.