"Ruby Soho" is one of the most popular Rancid songs, and also one of their most mysterious. The song tells the story of an itinerant punk rocker who once again heads out on the road to another "destination unknown," leaving his girl behind. This time, though, they both know it's over - his music has won out over her. The song was written by band members Tim Armstrong, Lars Frederiksen and Matt Freeman. It's not clear if Ruby is real or fictional, or possibly a metaphor.
Rancid followed their fellow northern California punk rockers Green Day to the pop charts in the mid-'90s, landing hits with "Time Bomb" and "Ruby Soho," both from their third album, ...And Out Come the Wolves. The punk rock revival didn't last long, and Rancid never had another pop hit, which was fine with them. The group maintained a solid fanbase and was in some ways relieved when they could once again fly under the corporate radar.
Tim Armstrong directed the video with the band's manager, Jim Guerinot. It recalls Armstrong's days when he saw bands like Black Flag and Verbal Abuse perform in the punk hotbed of San Francisco's East Bay.
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