In 2003, the band went to the studio one more time to record a few songs for the Greatest Hits CD. However, they ended up recording 16 songs - an entire album. Only two of these songs came out on Greatest Hits, "Save the Population" and "Fortune Faded" (which started being made during By The Way). Because of the small amount of time passed since By The Way, the company and the band didn't want to relase these other songs in a new album so soon and Frusciante himself, after some time, lost interest in it. Apart from the songs which were released, and the By The Way b-sides released by iTunes, - "Bycicle Song" and "Runaway" - the songs "Mini Epic (Kill For Your Country)", "Leverage of Space" and "Rolling Sly Stone" (played live in 2004) were written for this album - along with first versions of "Hump de Bump" and "Desecration Smile". But I was thinking if the cover songs "Black Cross" and "Brandy (You're a Fine Girl)" also played in 2004, were also made during that time. Can you tell us more about it?
Dave Lee: "That timeline seems correct. I can't remember for sure. But I do remember when "Brandy You're a Fine Girl" came into the picture. That song was a huge hit in the US in the early 70s. The guys really put quite a bit of work into learning it. That song is harder than it sounds. They learned it for the European tour. Got there, played it live, and it didn't get much reaction from the crowd. Turns out, "Brandy" was only a big hit in the US. And hardly anyone in the audience would have been familiar with it. Kinda funny. To me, anyways."
"We were contractually obligated to give them [Warner Bros] two new songs [for the Greatest Hits collection] and in my opinion, we didn't even give them the best two songs of the session. One of them was the song they wanted ["Fortune Faded"], they said they only wanted to release one single so we had to take the other song that we thought could be a good single and we're gonna save it for our next record. And we just put a song that we feel is a great song ["Save the Population"] but at the same time couldn't be a single. 'Cause they only planned on releasing one single, so. So yeah, that's the way that worked out. I feel fine about it, I mean, these days, people put extra songs on Greatest Hits just as a selling point to people who already have the rest of the material."
- John Frusciante - "Fortune Faded" - October 2003
“When we were doing our Greatest Hits record in 2003, Warner Brothers wanted a couple extra songs. So we went in to write a couple during the next break on the tour we were on at the time, and we recorded like sixteen songs. They weren't all great, but twelve of them were probably good.
So we put the Greatest Hits album out and toured a little bit more, and then we were going to come back and write some more songs, and I was like, “Let’s just write another ten, take maybe seven out of that, add it to the others we’d previously done, and we’ll have a record.”
I remember John Frusciante was like, “Hmmm… that was like nine months ago; I’m not really doing the arpeggiated thing anymore. I’m playing differently, I’m listening to different stuff, so I’m going to write different music." So there’s an album that we did that I don’t know if anyone’s ever going to hear."
- Chad Smith - Modern Drummer - September 2011
- Raphael Romanelli Andrade de Oliveira - Ilicínea, MG - Brazil