Recording History - Page 1

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The Weezer recording history: Page 1

Recording History
--- Page 1
(1987 - Feb. 1991)
Page 2
(Late 1990 - Jan. 1992)
All Recording History pages
Page 1
(1987 - Feb. 1991)
Page 2
(Late 1990 - Jan. 1992)
Page 3
(Feb. 1992 - Sept. 1992)
Page 4
(Sept. 1992 - Aug. 1993)
Page 5
(Aug. 1993 - Spring 1994)
Page 6
(Late Spring 1994 - Dec. 1994)
Page 7
(Late 1994 - Early 1995)
Page 8
(Late 1994 - Aug. 1996)
Page 9
(Aug. 1996 - Aug. 1997)
Page 10
(Sept. 1997 - Winter 1999)
Page 11
(Spring 1999 - Nov. 1999)
Page 12
(Jan. 2000 - Dec. 2000)
Page 13
(Dec. 2000 - Feb. 2002)
Page 14
(March 2002 - Nov. 2003)
Page 15
(Dec. 2003 - April 2005)

The Weezer Recording History
What follows is a work in progress. It's a detailed list in generally chronological order of music that was committed to tape, in one form or another, by weezer and its pre-weezer mutations, as well as "solo" works and projects and collaborations involving members of weezer. In cases when a band member is no longer with the band, his efforts are documented to the point where he was no longer closely associated with the band's activity. The recordings detailed here date back from the "early days" before weezer existed. As you will see, these guys have a lot of shared musical history that crossed over in many ways, both before and after weezer was officially going on.

This list is by no means complete, but is a fair accounting of what was and is in existence. In a few cases a recording is completely lost (in which case it might not even be documented here), and in many cases the original "master" tape has been lost - so its recording is listed here but there is no way to hear this music anymore. While the original masters may be missing of very important recordings (such as Rivers's original 8-track version of "Undone"), fans will be happy to know that in most cases, decent copies (mixdowns) of the lost masters still exist and are safe.

Note that my knowledge of Brian's "pre-weezer" history is limited. I've included what I am aware of, which is primarily his appearance on 2 Carnival Art albums, and his own early Space Twins demos. Other serious gaps exist in the pre-weezer periods of Mikey Welsh and Scott Shriner. See the Collector's Discography (the "Tunes" page) for more on Mikey's non-weezer output.

Editorial notes

1) When a song is in guillemets (i.e.: «Song Title» as opposed to "Song Title") that means that there is no definite title for that song, it was/is only known (to this author) by this assumed title.

2) Tables were used to help organize many lists of songs, and recording sessions.However, they are not used everywhere. When there is no table, there are often "bullets" to guide your eyes to song titles. Example:

  • "Song Title"

3) Not everything in the History is really a song. I decided to leave most of the "extras" in, as it seemed weird to pretend they didn't exist. Nonsense recordings, experiments, and untitled jam sessions are listed as best as could be managed without confusing everyone even more. The line was drawn at stuff that was so raw as to be simply (for example) a drum track with nothing added, or personal non-music recordings.

Avant Garde

This was the first "pro" band that Rivers was in, and is mentioned here due to the fact that the 3 demo tapes (1987, 8, and 9) may be the earliest "non-amateur" recording featuring Rivers. (There are several very amateur recordings from the junior-high and High School years leading up to Avant Garde, but they are not listed here) Rivers's contribution to AG was primarily guitar playing and soloing. The whole band is credited as the songwriter, but I believe Rivers mostly came up with the guitar parts. The band also included both Kevin Ridel (later of Ridel High and AM Radio) on vocals, Justin Fisher (later of Shufflepuck, Nerf Herder, and Psoma) on bass, Bryn Mutch on "percussion" (drums, really), and Mike Stanton (later of Microsoft) sharing guitar duties with Rivers.

Avant Garde Demo Tape #1: untitled, 1987

this demo was printed on black shelled cassettes with plain looking light blue label stickers on one side. Probably less than 50 copies printed.

Avant Garde Demo Tape #2: untitled, 1988

this demo was printed on black shelled cassettes with purple label stickers on one side. It featured the Avant Garde logo. Probably less than 50 copies printed.


The following is a note from Greg DiCrosta, a recording engineer at Trod Nossel Studios in CT, 2003. This information reverses the dates on the demo tapes as listed above. If the order of events can be confirmed with "those who were there", then this changes known history a bit. Will update when more is learned.

"I am currently Chief Engineer at the recording studio that Rivers did the 2 Avant Garde demos. After some "spring cleaning", we tracked down both DAT masters. Here are the track listings on the DAT's:

DAT 1 (dated 7/3/88-7/16/88)

  1. "U Were Just Using Me"
  2. "Never Forget"
  3. "Rennaisance"
  4. "Free Fall" (segment)
  5. "Standing in the Paris Rain"
  6. "Father"
  7. 3 Stooges bit from VCR
  8. edited 3 Stooges

DAT 2 (dated Jan-Feb '89)

  1. "Tongue of Fire"
  2. "Bite the Bullet"
  3. "Shogun"

Something Different!

The third demo tape was entitled Somethin' Different!. As were the first two, it was recorded in Connecticut, where the band lived then, but this time at Trod Nossel Studios. The tape was professionally duped and featured the songs and info printed directly onto the clear cassette, as well as a black and white J-card that had portrait photos of the whole band. I don't know how many copies they made, but I would guess at least 50, perhaps 100+.

Avant Garde "Somethin' Different!" demo tape 1989
song comments
"Judge and Jury" holy cow, these guys rocked!
"Bite the Bullet"
"21st Century Shogun"
"You Were Just Using Me"
"Never Forget"


There exist several very very rare live bootlegs of some A.G. shows, mostly in the Connecticut area. These are in the hands of old friends of Rivers and do include the ocassional song that was never officialy demo'd. There are no dates on these, but in theory they all date to around 1988.

"Let Go" is also known to exist as a 4 track demo.

Zoom (89-early 90)

Zoom was a re-named, re-focused Avant Garde, changed after the band moved to LA in (I think) 1989. This 2 song demo was recorded in LA, at an unknown studio, in either late 1989 or early 1990. This tape has no j-card (that I've ever seen), and the songs and info is printed directly onto the cassette. Again, I would guess that 50 were made.
Note that Zoom broke up, with most members besides Rivers returning to Connecticut, around the spring of 1990. By summer or fall of 1990 Rivers was starting to write his own music.

Zoom: 2 song demo tape w/ no j-card...

"Street Life" is also known to exist as a live recording.

1989 - Rivers 4 track demos

Known collectively as "Cherokee Riffs" (after the apartment on Cherokee Ave. in Hollywood where Avant Garde/Zoom was living), these constitute Rivers' earliest attempts at recording his own stuff. While he was just getting his stuff together here, the recordings are notable in that they indicate Rivers seeking to write his own material, perhaps seeing something beyond the world of Zoom.

Matt Sharp: The Clique - Summer/Fall 1989

A somewhat pretentious Cure/Joy Division style recording by Matt with 2 guys he met in a meeting of the Black Rock Coalition, including one Herschel Burton, whose computer artwork graces the cassette j-card.
Matt soon abandoned this style of music, but left behind this 3 song demo tape, that was packaged as a cassette maxi-single.

The three songs were all different mixes of The Cliques only song:

  • "Ice Butterfly"
  • "Ice Butterfly" (remix)
  • "Ice Butterfly" (instrumental)

It's guessed that between 20 and 75 of these were pressed up. They have tan colored j-cards with "computer-style" art, and song info is printed onto the cassettes.

According to Matt, one day a man came into his workplace in Westwood who claimed to be from NBC, and that he was producing a made for TV movie: "Ice Butterfly, The Nancy Kerrigan Story". Matt was looking for any inroads into the music scene and explained that he was a musician. The man was soon commissioning Matt to “write the theme song for my TV movie”. Matt went gung ho into the project - he had never written a song before or sung before. Borrowing funding from his mother, Matt and his 2 buddies rented a real studio and recorded the track. Soon it was learned that NBC killed the guys project, and the man stopped coming into Matt's workplace. Matt and his gang decided to turn the recording into a cassette "Maxi Single" and try to get it played on local LA college radio, etc. The project fizzled soon afterwards.

Bush (NOT Gavin Rossdale's U.K. Bush!!)

Active from spring 1990 - spring 1991

Bush was a trio that featured Pat Finn on bass, Pat Wilson on drums, and Tom Gardocki (later of Wax) on guitar. After Pat Finn convinced Pat Wilson to join him out in L.A, in early spring 1990, the two hooked up with Tom to create a power trio that drew influences from Primus, Fishbone, the Chili Peppers, and modern Jazz weirdness. There were few songs with lyrics, which were usually sung by Finn. I'm unsure how many shows this band did, but it wasn't very many.
Note that as of 11/1/90, Bush was officially de-named, probably due to Tom's leaving the band. (Probably around the time Wax was forming) Pat and Pat kept going, rehearsing with just each other as well as Matt Sharp (see below) and in the spring of 1991 with Jason Cropper (see below), who Pat Finn had made the aquaintence of up in NorCal. None of the subsequent new band names stuck however, so i'm calling the whole thing Bush.

The band rehearsed extensively, and several rehearsals were recorded. These feature various versions of:

originally practiced Bush songs well as numerous extended jam sessions, that contain an astonishing variety of musical styles and achievements, as well as some of the funniest musical fooling around ever recorded.

7/25/1990: Pat and Pat do a Bush demo

7/25/1990: Pat and Pat do a Bush demo, without Tom's help.
This was done at their friend Mark Kern's house in Hollywood. Pat F. played both the bass and guitar and did the singing. Pat Wilson did the drumming on the Roland "Octopad", an early drum triggering thing. They recorded these 4 songs, but the demo never saw any distribution.

Bush rehearsals

Surviving examples of recorded Bush rehersals include:

Aug 1 1990: A full funky rehersal, no vocals but a lot of yelling and joking around.

Late 1990: Full rehersal jam: a whole Bush practice
...Includes mutated freaked out versions of Bush songs, ends with a 'Barry White tribute'

Early 1991: unknown rehersal space: Jam session with Matt Sharp, who plays Yamaha keyboard!

Also, throughout this period, Pat Finn recorded solo 4 track versions of the Bush songs, to have a presentable demo tape. It was never quite finished. As far as I know, Bush never prepared an official full band demo tape

1990 Rivers demos: aka "Best of The Worst"

Rivers demos from 1990, still developing songwriting.

April 1990

May 1990

Summer 1990

late 1990 Rivers demos: aka "Finishtum Productum"

Rivers demos and recordings from later in 1990.

Bush-related goofy recordings Summer/fall 1990

Basically the following were done by Pat Wilson, Pat Finn, and Tom Gardocki for fun, though they aren't actually Bush songs nor "serious" band recordings. All were done in an apartment on Genessee Ave. in LA, much to the neighbors' confusion.

song comments
"Ugh We March" Pat W. live to handheld recorder w/ guitar. a very funny song about divorce
«This One's for Pat» the two Pats and Tom doing a jazzy, loungey thing; ridiculously funny
«Mi Amor Bandito/Kooky Spanish Song» another great silly song from this impromptu session
«The Night» and another...
«Nickel in My Pocket» yet another...
«Nickel in My Pocket» totally revised w/ light drumming. this one must have inspired them to get "serious"
"All I Want Is You" Pat Wilson solo demo, covers U2 (fragment)

Pat Wilson and Matt Sharp make funny 4-track recordings spring-fall 1990

At this point, Pat was doing a lot of hanging out with Matt Sharp, who was already an acquaintance of Pat Finn and Pat Wilson. Pat and Matt made numerous "They Might Be Giants" - like recordings on Matt's 4-track, while Matt lived in Westwood, CA. These master tapes are in storage somewhere that only Matt knows for sure, and I have been unable to document their contents. The little I heard a long time ago was hysterically funny and very clever.

Pat Finn also recorded at Matt's around this time, but as far as I know these were solo/Bush related efforts.

Brotherhood Groove Grand Junction

early 1991 (approx.) demo tape

Jason Cropper lived in Northern California and played guitar in this band, until Pat Finn brought him to LA in Spring 1991. This tape is included for the sake of completeness. It is unknown if it was distributed beyond band members and their friends.

4 song demo

Another early Jason Cropper effort, he plays guitar on this 4 song unmarked demo

Post-Zoom Rivers's 4 and 8 track recordings

Fall 1990 - about February 1991 (aka Yeastmaster Pt. 1)

Once Rivers started focusing on songwriting , the material added up quickly. Much of this stuff was either somewhat bitter or really goofy, but the seeds of some excellent writing were being sewn.

song comments
"You Overpower Me" (does not appear on the Yeastmaster Pt. 1 collection, unclear how it fits in.)
"Xmas in LA" 12/25/90 a sad, goofy 'letter home' about being stuck in LA for xmas
"Bushman" 12/29/90 employed a looped sampled drum beat
"Ain't Got No Words" (became a Fuzz song later) 1/13/91
"Maybe It Was Too Soon" (Rivers and Pat Wilson: nonsense) 1/17/91
"The Answer Man" (became a Fuzz song later) 1/23/91
"The Biggest Animal" (became a Fuzz song later) 1/?(2?)/91
"Bored and Boring" 2/91? AKA "Bunch of Crap" 1 (not a song really)
"Depressed and Depressing" 2/91? AKA "Bunch of Crap 2" (not a song really)
"Lethargic and Lethargicing" 2/91? AKA "Bunch of Crap 3" (not a song really)
"Reggae Joint, Man" 2/91? AKA "Drugs" (not a song really)
"English" also not really a proper song
Allman Bros. drumming 3/91? another experiment
"I Can't Sing" 3/91?
"Spiderbitch" Ver. 1 ?(late)/90 (became a Fuzz song later)
"Spiderbitch" Ver. 2 ?(late)/90 may not exist
"Spiderbitch" Ver. 3 late 90/early 91?

These recordings were collected by Rivers into a volume of home demos called The Yeastmaster Part 1, which picked up where the 1990 collections Best Of The Worst and Finishtum Productum left off.

Note on "Magic" above. This demo (if I recall correctly) has Justin Fisher singing. According to copyright documents that fans unearthed online, the song was written in 1989 by Rivers (music and arrangements) and a friend of his at the time, one Gurukarta Khalsa. Gurukarta wasn't a girlfriend as far as I recall, but she was a girl and a friend of Rivers and Justin's in the Zoom days. She may have assisted Zoom by making flyers etc. The details are foggy (to this writer) 20+ years later.

late Bush / early 60 Wrong Sausages

.....Spring 1991

Although Sixty Wrong Sausages would not be officially formed until later in the summer of 1991, this practice tape represents an important step on the road there. Pat, Pat, and the newly arrived Jason Cropper (whose guitar stylings were similar to Tom Gardockis, who was by now a full time member of Wax) run through numerous songs, mostly without vocals. The only thing missing from the 60 Wrong Sausages line-up was the name, and the soon-to-join Rivers.

late bush/early 60 wrong sausages rehearsal tape spring 91
song comments
"Sports Beverage" (instrumental) there was little actual singing here, outside of spontaneous stuff
"Evil Nest" (inst)
untitled aggro song (inst)
"Sheriff Wong" (inst)
"Sheriff Wong" -take 2 (inst)
"Sheriff Wong" #3 (inst)
"Sheriff Wong" #4 (inst)
"Sports Beverage" #2
"O Canada" a cappella a full rendition of Canada's anthem (without explanation)
(Pat demonstrates some drum solos) including Van Halen's "Light Up the Sky"
"Sports Beverage" # 3 (weird jam version w/ "O Canada" intro!)
"Sports Beverage" #4 (another "O Canada" intro)
"Sports Beverage" #5
very goofy switched instrument jam I think Pat Wilson got on bass, Finn on drums

Fuzz (active early spring 91-early summer 91)

Fuzz was a band that Rivers formed to embody the songs he was coming up with. The sound was heavy and rocking, somewhat in the style of the then - new style of such groups as Nirvana, Mudhoney, and Soundgarden. Actually, it was far more rocking than those bands! Fuzz had an enormous sound.

I believe they had 2 shows. The line-up was Rivers singing and guitar, Pat Wilson on drums, and a girl named Scottie Chapman on bass. Then Scottie either left or was kicked out. (Scottie turned up years later, by the way, as one of the cast members of Mythbusters on The Discovery Channel. See her present day Mythbusters bio here. There was an attempt to keep the band going, and a different girl bass player was briefly tried out for a few days. But around that time (early summer 91), 60 Wrong Sausages started up, and Rivers let Fuzz fizzle out.

The band (while still with Scottie) recorded a 5 song demo together, on Rivers's 8-track. I believe it was recorded at a rented rehearsal space...

note that all 5 of these songs were later attempted by weezer (see later on)

Demo 3/9/91

Fuzz Demo 3/9/91
song comments
"Answer Man" the first 4 songs are UNBELEIVABLY rocking
"Ain't Got No Words" "so what, the hell, is she doing here?"
The Biggest Animal "so open your door, open your door, open your door..."
"I Will Not Cross Over" later referred to as "Burn My Bridges", and "Burn My Britches")
"Spiderbitch" a sad, slow lament of a song. More bitter than bitter

Recorded practice

February 18, 1991: 5 songs from a Fuzz practice are recorded, probably at that same space, but "live" , not multitracked. (again, the "rock" level here is extreme)