Cody Weathers

Music so hip you'll need a bigger belt

 

ROQUE:†Checkmate†(studio, 1991)

BUY IT:

$10 for CD, available by special order

The Songs

They Always Leave/Seize the Day/Perfect/Tell Me/Redhead Tonight/Give Me You/Jozo/Loch Ness (Inst.)/ Velvet Woman/Velvet Outro (Inst.)/ Amanda/Donít Say Goodbye/Crazy As A Fox/One More Angel/October Air

all songs written and arranged by Cody Weathers (c)(p)1991, Cody Weathers, all rights reserved except Jozo by Walsh/Weathers, (c)(p)1991, all rights reserved. No stealing the worthless material, OK?

Additional MP3 Singles:

Don't Hate the Players:

(L-R)

John Fried: bass

John Speranza: guitar

Colby Goff: guitar, vocals

Cody Weathers:†vocals, percussion

Matt Preheim: keyboards, add'l percussion

Nick Walsh: guitar, vocals

with:

Additional Backing Vocals: Cat Mayhugh, Jamie Weathers

Additional Keyboards: Cat Mayhugh, Cody Weathers

MP-FREES:

  • None posted


  • Liner Notes:†

    Notes on the 2000 CD re-release of Checkmate:

    Hi, Iím Cody Weathers, songwriter, singer, and drummer for ROQUE. Most of the supplementary liner notes in this 2000 CD re-release series were written by outsiders --fans, record producers, music critics, pro wrestlers. Letís face it --at this point in time, the members of the band (myself included) are just too shitfaced to write a bunch of touchy-feely Beatles-retrospective world-wide-web gushy wet-dream copy about why this particular album is part of the legend. Or how there even is a legend. But it turns out I wonít get my royalties if I donít do it for one of them, so it might as well be this one. Whatever. The band broke up. You didnít know that, did you. Youíre probably actually buying this ďhiatusĒ crap. No. The band broke up.† Speranza punched me in the face and then later paid some homeless junkie to punch me again. The band is finished. Iím working on UFO Catcher, now, and I donít feel like looking back. Itís the end of 2000, and the band is over, man. And this album was probably the beginning of the end.

    Band historians --of whom there are a pathetically large number for a band that is routinely either ignored or ejected for suckness-- will tell you that this album was an incredible turning point in our evolution. Speranza joined the band, and we did all these shows with three damn guitarists. Yeah, thatís true, we did the whole three- guitar rock thing while everyone else was wimping out and pooping their little diapers about it. But I donít know, we started having all this conflict. Major pain in the ass. And I was to blame for some of it, sure. I mean, people go on and on about how Roque and Roll and Separate Ways are like these great, down-to-earth lo-fi albums, but they totally suck. I mean, we canít play, weíre recording with a boom box --not even a good boom box!-- our instruments are not even garage-sale quality, the song selection is questionable and the production quality is flatly unacceptable. I just wanted to have an album that wasnít an embarassment, so I went up to the brass and said, ďHey man, this Joh3n OíMeara guy doesnít even know the craft of producing! He, like, listens to The Cure and shit! No, man, I donít care, Iím sick of it --I will not work with him again! I donít care what you do: send him to Germany or something to learn how to f-ing produce a record album! Bring me someone else or I walk! I mean, for Peteís sake, Iím the talent! I shouldnít have to put up with these pre- revolutionary conditions!Ē

    Boy, did I screw myself with that little rant.

    See, I thought weíd get a fresh start --record in a studio, work with a real producer. Instead, they sent OíMeara to Germany (where, quite frankly, he belongs) and gave us their version of an Łberprodusser, Cat Mayhugh. He comes in on the first day of pre-production in his little black turtleneck and smoking jacket and he says, ďI hear we have some attitude in this band. Well, I wonít stand for it. Let me tell you the album Cat Mayhugh puts his name on. Itís real life, baby. Itís you five --wait, what are there? six of you?-- without any fancypants jock-enhancing undergarments, singing about this American life. Iím thinking steelworkers. Iím thinking Springsteenís Nebraska. Five or six guys and their rock and roll. I want this to sound like a high school garage band being recorded by the neighbors for police evidence. Iíve got a boom box here. Set up your instruments now. I feel momentous.Ē Shit, man, whatís a rock star gotta do?!


    Lyrics:

    They Always Leave: I knew a girl about a year ago today. I thought that she would always be here, but then she said that she could not stay --she said to me, "the end is near." She packed her bags and she sold her house, but she said she'd write. A year has passed and the most I got was a postcard about her flight. CH: They always leave, they never stay, but part of them stays with me. They always leave, they never stay, but I still see them in my mind. They always leave, they never stay, but I won't forget them. They always leave, they never stay, but part of them stays behind. I knew a girl with the richest voice --deep in her eyes, I could see the sun. She'd never speculate or make an assumption. She'd always wait until she was done. And now I find that I'm missing her company --she was so warm inside and I'm so cold at night. I always thought she could maybe sing the blues. That's what I've got, now that she's gone. CH. I knew a girl with the greyest eyes --you never saw a face as pretty as hers. She tasted sweet --candy kisses. But now she's leaving and the sugar is gone. I want to tell her that if I had the time, I'd find a way for me to go with her. But now she's packing and she told me she'd write. The sweetest sorrow was kissing her goodbye.

    Seize The Day: I know that you're still hoping that your prince will come. I do not see the reason why you still hold on. If there is magic, then it must be pretty strong. I hope you'll look at me --I can't hold on too long. Chorus: I said to myself, "self, you fool, don't let her slip away. Hold her in your arms because you should always seize the day." I know that just one song won't fix this jealous rage. My heart is open season, aim and fire away. You are not having fun with any games you play. Why do you carry on --don't you feel betrayed? Chorus. Give me a throwaway pill, I'd take it. Need ID, I'd fake it. Bend my will, then break it. Bet my life, I'd stake it. Anything for you, anything at all, just give me the word and I'm yours. Chorus.


    Perfect: You are such a vixen, such a four-alarm fire. Your words can be twisted --such a competent liar. You dance with me all night, but you don't ever tire. You go for what you want and get your heart's desire. Pre-CH: I've known a lot of girls who don't even compare. I'm captured in your glance and blinded by your stare. CH: Perfect. You're so perfect for me. Perfect. I'm sure you must agree that we are a sensation --one-hundred degrees. Perfect. You're so perfect for me. Keep me on my toes, and I'll never let you down. Greet me with a smile --I don't want to see you frown. And I will never give you the same old runaround. I want our love to last --no more lost and found. Pre-CH CH. Doing what I want, and what I want's a kiss. Whatever turns you on, well let me pull your switch. How can you have dreams if you don't ever wish? I'm in the perfect stream to catch the perfect fish.

    Tell Me: Should've learned my lesson not to fall in love with angels 'cause they've got wings and always fly so far away. Tongue-tied and all choked-up, you just cannot persuade them: there's nothing in this world to make an angel stay. CH: Tell me anything -- just say so and I'll leave you alone. Everyone else has someone to hold, someone to laugh with --or so I'm told. But not me: I have polite refusals on the telephone. Here I am all alone, just me and my guitar. We've seen some pretty rough times: this is just one more. CH. I know you like the sad songs with the chords that pull your heart. I wrote you one last sad song since we'll always be apart. I should've known that someday I'd make a brand new start, but no one could've told me that it would be so hard. I can try all I want, I can cry for a day, but nothing will work because angels don't stay. CH.

    Redhead Tonight: Young girls don't know where their heart is. Young boys don't really seem to mind. Twenty-one and you're going to the cemetary. Not me, I want a redhead tonight. I won't really mind if you kiss me. I won't get mad if you try, but if you want me to stay then just don't go away and I'll be here by your side, 'cause me --I want a redhead tonight. Tell me something, Juliet, do you even give a damn or does it even matter that you don't know who I am? Young girls don't know where their heart is. Young boys don't really seem to mind. Twenty-one and you're surely headed for the graveyard. not me, I want a redhead tonight. Chorus: She's red like a flame, and I know she's insane. She doesn't need to have a name to hop aboard my train, and I know I'll forget her, but if I play my cards right, I'll have a redhead tonight. Older girls think they know where their heart is. Older boys don't really seem to mind. Twenty-one and I won't be dead and buried. Even then, I'll want a redhead tonight. I won't really mind if you love me --I won't get mad if you try. Like a fly on the wall, I hear it all --in me you can rely. 'Cause me, I want a redhead tonight. Tell me something, shades-of-grey, is it ever black and white or will that crimson top forever be my guiding light? Is she red all over? What a wonderful sight. Me, I think I'd settle for a redhead tonight. Chorus.

    Give Me You: In the world today, we're all a bunch of thieves. If we can't touch it, see it, then it's hard to believe. When the president says that we have got to give, we let the homeless die while the death row lives. Everything's expensive 'cause money's so damn cheap. It's getting hard to pull out because we're in so deep. When missiles and planes and guns and tanks just don't work, then we look the other way and hide our heads in the dirt. Union corporations try to get more pay. It's a fucked-up, maniacal world that we're living in today. Chorus: Give me you and I'll give you me; we'll give each other company. 'Cause I need you if you need me --we'll fit together perfectly. Social services budget gets smaller and smaller while foreign aid is adding up by the dollar. It seems to me that our problems should come first. Who gives away water when they're dying of thirst? We shop at home with a remote control, and the garbage we make begins to take its toll. The Earth will live long after we are gone --we're only killing ourselves, and yet we still press on. If we don't shape up pretty damn soon, the only person left will be the man in the moon. Chorus. I'm just a skull on top of this neck --my days are numbered, like all the rest. You cannot fool with Mother Nature; it is not wise to make her hate you. Are you who you say you are, can I take your word? Don't treat me like a child: seen but never heard. Do we believe in Constitution --our right to peaceful revolution? The wall has fallen down in Berlin. Soon we'll find out just what we win. Chorus. Some would give up speech to save a flag --a tattered, colored, painted, sentimental rag. It's just a symbol a thief can touch or see. the question is: is that what we believe? In China, forget not Tienamen. They could not speak. They could not win. I love my country, even when it's wrong because I do not have to always go along. I can see you, touch you, I can feel you breathe. Hold me in your heart --I never want to leave.

    Jozo: What my Jozo wants is what my Jozo gets. Let love rule you and you'll never hear the end. When I touch her, she's off in some other world. Jozo, Jozo, you are quite a crazy girl. Pretty Jozo steals my heart away again. Chorus: Pretty Jozo, sexy Jozo, pretty Jozo steals my heart, but it's no crime. Pretty Jozo, sexy Jozo, pretty Jozo, won't you say you will be mine. What my Jozo is is what my Jozo feels. Let love rule you, and you'll never know what's real. When I kiss her, she's off in some other world. Jozo, Jozo, you are quite a crazy girl.

    Velvet Woman: Velvet woman at the table, sipping coffee, sipping slowly --she's got something on her mind. I am staring from the corner --she can't see me. I am thinking, "what could ever make her mine?" She is thinking about the man who left her hanging. She's so proud, but she is fragile in the wind. What she needs is some exciting kind of action --she's been flattened, now she must get up agian. CH: You had your dreams, and now you hold them in your hands --never let them go. All her life, she's been expecting someone special. All her life, she's wanted something just for her. It's so awful how you can get disappointed --one bad vision and your life is in a blur. She expected love was smooth and love was easy. She was wrong, and now she's questioning herself. Disappointment somehow makes it seem so sleazy, but the voice of reason seems to point to someone else. CH. Velvet woman finally smiling, finally smiling --sweet as honey, she is something to behold. Through the clouds the sun is shining, finally shining. Velvet woman, like the phoenix, liquid gold.

    Amanda: Amanda wants me to call a friend of hers, someone I don't know too well. But I don't think so, 'cause it's Amanda I want, even though she's still inside her shell. Amanda tells me I should give it up. She tells me her hands are tied. Me, I'm doubtful it's so black and white. I think that she might change her mind. Chorus: And I'm so tired of trying to love without my heart. And I could sure use something good that hits my mark. I grow impatient, but I wait another day. Amanda, I need you to take my breath away. Amanda says I've got to show what I feel. She's always right, you know --at least she tells me so. And when the telephone rings, I always hope it's her. She always lets me know just when she says hello. When I'm feeling down, she always cheers me up --I can always lend an ear. And when her heart is broken, she can always find me here. My shoulder always dries her tears. Chorus. Tell me I am not too late to say hello. Amanda, how I need you so.

    Don't Say Goodbye: I got your letter today -- didn't know you felt that way. Guess it's something I'll have to accept. I know I'm not the greatest date and I know I'm always late. Guess it's something you didn't want to accept. Please don't punish me, don't hang me from your highest tree. Don't leave me shivering cold and wet. I know the times have changed but you and me, we're still the same. I'm not through loving you just yet. Pre-Chorus: This time next year, I still want to see you here. Hold my hand when you're in fear, I'll guide you 'til the coast is clear. Chorus: Don't say goodbye to me, I'm still in love with you. Don't say goodbye to me, just give me time, and I'll pull through. Don't say goodbye to me, I'm still in love with you. Don't say goodbye to me, don't break my heart and make me blue. I could sit here alone with my tears and I couldn't make you stay. Seems the people that we don't want to leave always go so far away. Into the night, into the storm, they fade from the light of day. Over my shoulder, the winds of change erode their faces away. Pre-CH/CH. I didn't mean to hurt you, but I think I did all the same. Seems that reputation is getting tied onto my name. But I'm really at your command, and I'm quite easy to train. I'm not like a wallet picture --I'm really best to frame. Pre-CH/CH. The sun has bleached the wall where your picture used to hang. Reminds me of all the songs I wrote about you but I never ever sang. When i thought that I could not take it, well, the telephone rang. I can't describe how happy I was to hear your voice again.

    Crazy as a Fox: High moon, yellow moon, smoke from the chimneys. She wears a dress that is perfect for taking off. Dark eyes, yellow eyes, she stares delicious. She walks away, but she'll be back before too long. Still air, smoky air, she tastes the ashes. She spots her prey and she is off --the hunt begins. Chorus: I will win her, I will win her in the end, 'cause I'm crazy as a fox, I am crazy as a fox. Up, down, all around. She's hard to pinpoint. I'd have to say she is playing hard to get. My eyes, hungry eyes. She feeds my vision. This sweet sensation is something to hold on to. Bright lights, city lights. What is she after? My hand upon her heart gives me no answers. Chorus. Long shot in the dark --all that I live for. She wears a dress that is perfect for taking off. Quick smile, something won, glimmer of hopeful. She has a way that is hard to understand. Quick kiss, scarlet kiss, cut to the credits. She has a heart that is tangled up in mine.

    One More Angel: I'm not much of a real smooth talker, but I sure like talking to you. I've got a notion that you're looking for someone, and maybe baby I am, too. Well, you don't look too satisfied, and your pink, pink shirt is stretched way too tight. But at least you're laughing, and I guess that's something, which is one step better than nothing. Pre-CH: Me, I'm vicious with a lying streak, but I can keep you happy for another week. You, you're fragile, but you shoot to kill, and you want a lot more than just another thrill. CH: One more angel, and to think I thought I'd learned my lesson. One more angel, but I guess it's not so bad. One more angel that I'd really like to be undressing. One more angel, best thing I've never had. You could make me do anything, my heart is in your hands. Punish, please, serve or tease, your wish is my command. Seduce me with your perfume and the sexy way you stride, I'm always a sucker for a pretty face --my passion knows no pride. Pre-CH CH. Tell me something, darling, do we really stand a chance or will we go our separate ways, a hurricane romance? Sorry to upset you --forget I even asked. Just kiss me and forget it, let's make the good times last.

    October Air: When you were young, oh so young, you had your dreams but now you've got to live your life however you can make it work, and I can't wash away your problems with a single potion. And I can't take you where you've never been before. CH: Let it go like the autumn leaves as they fall to Earth in October air. In the spring, you will grow new leaves that will feed you 'til the cold October air. Stabbed in the back, but you still persist. Do you even know what the conquest is when you have wasted all your options on frivolities? If I can't make you see the light, guess you'll have to say goodnight because life doesn't give a damn if you don't give a damn about yourself. CH. When life deals the cards, you can't always hold the aces. Sympathy made me weak to a hundred falsehood faces. I'll never let the day come when I let jealousy tear me apart because nothing ruins friendships more than jealous, broken hearts. CH. Sometimes you must let go to hold on to your sanity. Sometimes you have to take a brand new direction. You've got to give up what destroys you and start again. I cannot help you when you're bringing me down.


    Listening Log:

    This is the last and best karaoke-style album.† I like the sound of this album.† I finally start writing parts for Fried.† This is our first album with Speranza playing rhythm guitar, and he had a real natural feel for it --despite only playing for < 1 yr.† We actually have three guitarists for this album, Colby & Speranza playing rhythm guitar and Nick playing lead/rhythm.

    They Always Leave: Nice start, sets the tone for the rest of the album, which is definitely bluesier.† Good energy.† Ah cruel fate, why have you ripped her from me?!

    Seize the Day: we re-recorded this on River Dreams, and it's always been fun to play live.† Having three guitarists gives this whole album a great crunchy unison guitar sound.† We all had such crappy equipment.† Actually, that's not true --it was a mix.† I had a pretty crappy kit, cobbled together out of miscellaneous pieces and --in some cases-- held together with duct tape.† Speranza's amp was constantly in danger of overheating.† Fried actually had a very good rig, owing to the fact that his crappy prior rig was stolen from his car and turned out to be a collector's item.† Colby's guitar was fairly crappy.† Nick had decent stuff.† The meaning of this song should be obvious.

    Perfect: Nick and I did those overdub fills while singing during the 2nd Stage of the karaoke.† I think this is the first album that I'd be perfectly fine with someone hearing today.† Even though it's not radio-ready, I'm very happy with the sound, performance, and song selection.† It doesn't have the polish of typical garage band demos recorded today, but still....

    Tell Me: I thought this was the best song of the batch when we were putting this album together, but the band never embraced it.† I still like it a lot, and occasionally play it live.† Unlike ballads off of Separate Ways, this one builds nicely to the end.† By this point, I definitely have found my voice as a singer --even though my technique isn't as far along and I don't scat as much.† Nice solos, especially Nick's little dynamic touches at the beginning of his.† When someone wants out, they're getting out, no matter how you feel.

    Redhead Tonight: This wound up re-recorded on the Leaky Joe album in a different feel, but this holds up.† There's Mr. Cat Mayhugh rockin' the mic on the backup vocal.† Nice guitar solo from Nick.† I think by this point he and I were accomodating each other a lot better --though not blues, this song clearly has a blues-rock feel to it and lends itself easily to Nick's style of play.† I love love love love this outro.† Cat plays the falling keyboard part here under some loose guidelines from me.† So we've got the main instrumental track, and now for the karaoke overdub, I'm singing lead, Cat's singing backup, and Nick's soloing on a direct line (hence the extra-fuzzy sound), but when it comes to the outro, I switch to casaba (shaker) & other percussion, Nick continues soloing, and Cat is forced to play keys.† And we have to get everything right or else start the take over.† This song's a criticism of promiscuity.

    Give Me You: I really liked this music, but these lyrics are incredibly dated, and again, politically naÔve.† Not that I'm the polar opposite of my 17-year-old political self now, but my opinions were definitely largely acquired wholesale from my parents without a whole lot of inner debate.† In this age of Cody & the Codies & 3/4-part harmonies, I'd forgotten that Nick was only comfortable singing unison backups, and to harmonize, I would occasionally leap out of the lead vocal while he carried it.† This is one of the first albums where I cover some of the keyboards during overdubs.

    Jozo: One of my better collaborations with Nick.† Live, Speranza and I often played an alternate arrangement for acoustic shows (it's included on "How About A Beating").† I like the fade out/dissolve into the keyboard.† By this point in time, I was a fairly confident "rhythm pianist," and did most of my writing on piano.† If someone's got the nickname Jozo, how can I not immortalize that?

    Loch Ness: I love that French Horn patch on O'Meara's keyboard, which I borrowed the entire year he was in Germany (to comic effect).

    Velvet Woman: Groovy, man.† Pure speculation into the life of a pretty girl in a coffee shop.† More solid Fried playing.† Speranza is the dominant rhythm guitar here, and you can hear how good he was, even as a novice.† Crisp, tight, confident playing.† The chorus got a reference as the basis for the outro on Wardrobe.† This outro is obviously about 4 minutes too long, and there's not quite as much interplay as I was hoping for.† You can hear Colby basically pack it up and quit about 1:15 from the end.† He just quickly strums his open guitar once, then stops playing.† I seem to remember him actually wrapping up his cord and everything.

    Amanda: I like this song.† Nick did a good job on this album of really separating his solos from each other with distinct thematic material.† This solo's one of my favorite ideas of his.† This is about wanting someone whose friend wants you.

    Don't Say Goodbye: This is such a catchy bouncy verse, but I really phoned it in on the other sections, and I think that's why we never really played this song much.† Plus, the chorus drags for some reason, which is awkward to hear.

    Crazy As A Fox: I really like this one.† The rest of the band didn't get into it as much, though.† Another good solo from Nick.† This is definitely going on the haardvark album.† That's right, it's already got a working title.† This is a song about the optimism of a pursuit not yet soured by my inescapable unattractive nerd vibe.† Fall seven, rise eight, my friend.

    One More Angel: I like this, but it could use a better hook.† Generally speaking, I paid a lot more attention to writing music than words at this stage of my dubious career.† As time went on, I put a lot more effort into words, and I think my songs improved a lot as a result.† I think this song would've benefited from better words.† The kind of quality lyrics that nobody understands.† I think people can understand too much of what I'm saying here, and sometimes those feelings are best left unexpressed.

    October Air: This song has been re-recorded several times and has emerged as the lasting survivor off this album.† I kept it on since it's so different from subsequent versions.† That's my sister, Jamie, on backup vocals there at the end.

    (Removed from CD re-release: "Walls," "Guide" and "Not At All."† Walls was just a little bit too ambitious to try to pull off without overdubs with six people.† The re-recording on As Rome Burns is a lot better.† Guide is re-recorded on Drive By.)