Features > Artist of the Month > February 2005


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   Walt Lafty, vocals
   Nick Perri, lead guitar
   Mark Melchiorre, Jr., rhythm guitar
   Brian Weaver, bass
   Kevin Frank, drums


   Silvertide lyricist Walt Lafty recently discussed the songs on Show & Tell, the band’s debut full-length album. Produced by Oliver Leiber, the disc releases September 28, 2004.

   “Ain’t Coming Home”: That’s about being out partying, having a real good time, and not wanting the night to end. You worked hard all week long and it’s Friday night and you don’t want to come home.

   “Devil’s Daughter”: I was using a girl here as a metaphor for how I was feeling about the music industry. When you start out in a band, things seem to look the way they are. But as you really get involved, you start to see that about 90 percent of it is marketing. It’s bullshit; it’s just not cool. The song goes: “I went to bed with an angel/ At least that’s what she said/ But as she tore off her dress/ Lord I must confess/ I’ve got the devil’s daughter in my bed.” It’s about waking up and realizing, I walked into this thinking it was one thing, and it’s not. A lot of people get into relationships really quickly and a week later, this person they thought loved them isn’t even returning their calls.

   “SFC”: People try to tell you how you should do things, how you should dress, how you should act, how you should be. I’m saying to all those people: How dare you? I’ll never turn my soul in; I’ll never see things the way someone else wants me to see them, because it’s not the truth. People want your individuality, your freedom, and no price is worth that.

   “California Rain”: I wrote that about being in California and missing my girl. A phone is no replacement for a hand touching your face. I really wanted to show the loneliness and desperation I was feeling.

   “Blue Jeans”: This is more or less a fantasy. It’s about things I wish I’d done and things I have done but wish I hadn’t, things I regret. But it’s fun. It has a killer beat and that’s what I like about it.

   “Mary Jane”: This is a double entendre. I try to go for that a lot with my lyrics, where something has more than one meaning. People will take things in a certain way and who am I to tell them they’re wrong? At first this was about smoking weed, but then it became about a relationship. Not everyone smokes weed, but everyone – I don’t care if you’re a recluse living in the woods – everyone has been involved in some sort of relationship. It’s what we compulsively do as human beings.

   “Heartstrong”: In some ways, this is an extension of “California Rain,” but it’s more of a breakup song. It’s about someone breaking up with you, going away, then coming back. There’s a lot of pain and anger and confusion when something like that happens.

   “To See Where I Hide”: This is about addiction, about being addicted to anything, whether it’s a substance or negative behavior or whatever. It says, “I’m running circles/ With hopes held up so high/ My skeleton’s got faster legs than me/ So he always looks behind/ To see where I hide.” We were living in the band house, before we made the record, and I was just doing the same things over and over. I finally stepped outside myself and said, Alright, I’m going to stop. I’d had this angry realization, mixed with depression, that I’d always been a pretty happy person, but this stuff I was doing was not making me happy. It would make me happy for a little bit, but then I’d get so pissed off because I’d need it to be happy. I thought, why should I rely on something like that when I have myself? And beyond yourself, the only truths are change and death. You can bitch and moan about it, or you can have a happy life and be free.

   “You Want It All”: It’s catchy. She wants more and more and more and more. Doesn’t that say it all?

   “Nothing Stays”: This was written after our first show. Our first real show was at this place in Philadelphia called The Hollywood Bistro. The cops raided the place because everyone was underage. Half my friends got locked up. They had to go to court. It was a real big mess. We had practice, like, two days later. I hadn’t showed up to work the day before so I’d been fired from this job I’d had a long time. I was miserable. The song was written about what we thought was a really shitty show. That feeling of romance, of possibility, the one you have at the beginning of a relationship – and a band is like a marriage – was just gone. It’s that moment where you’re looking at each other and just going, fuck. I was reading Robert Frost at the time, so there’s a line in there that references his poem “Nothing Gold Can Stay.”

   “Foxhole Jesus Christ”: Right after September 11th, a buddy of mine went into the Marines. This song is basically a letter to him saying, “Don’t act like a fucking hero; don’t be stupid.” One of my best friends is in the Marines and one is in the Army. My uncle was in Vietnam, my grandfather was in World War II, and my older uncles were in the Korean War. I’m not anti-military; I’m just anti-stupidity.