My Chemical Romance frontman Gerard Way has shared the story about how he wrote one of the band’s earliest songs ‘Skylines and Turnstiles’.
Way joined Jim Adkins from Jimmy Eat World for the Pass-Through Frequencies podcast, and the pair chatted about songwriting and the early days of MCR.
Way spoke about how ‘Skylines and Turnstiles’ was one of the first songs ever written for My Chem, and he spoke about the process.
“Actually the very first My Chemic song ‘Skylines and Turnstiles’ I did write on guitar,” he said.
“So it was a tool I used sometimes. I wrote a good deal of ‘Vampires Will Never Hurt You‘ on the guitar…Frank and Ray had a way of making the chords I was singing the most interesting they could be. It would be like an improved version of what I was singing.
“It would feel very My Chem.”
Chatting about the art of songwriting, Gerard Way goes on to tell Adkins that he and My Chemical Romance never wrote songs for the purpose of being “radio hits.
“We would get excited about certain things in terms of what we thought was going to be something that communicated very successfully or at the very least something people liked,” he says.
“We never really thought in terms of radio hits or anything like that.”
Later in the interview, Adkins asked about the process My Chem used when they wrote most of their early music.
Way responded by saying he usually came up with a melody that Toro and Iero would translate into a guitar part.
“He [Toro] was writing a song with his son,” Way says. “And he said it reminded him of the early days of working with me because he said his son was basically walking around pacing singing melodies,” Way said.
“Ray had a guitar and was kind of translating it and that’s how it was in the beginning. I would just kind of pace around smoking a cigarette and then I’d be like, ‘no, then it goes here!’ And I’d sing the melody and Ray would go, ‘okay it goes there.’”
Recently a video of Gerard Way performing ‘First Date’ live with blink-182 surfaced online, and boy howdy does it make you remember some of those good times.
It went down on the Honda Civic Tour where the band were playing back-to-back, and Tom Delonge had come down with sickness, so Way stepped in and delivered.