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From: chalkhills-request@presto.ig.com
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Subject: Chalkhills #151


                  Chalkhills, Number 151

                  Friday, 26 April 1991
Today's Topics:
                   Drummers and Others
                   Convention in Barrie
                   Re: Chalkhills #150
                      Where's Terry?
                   Re: Chalkhills #150
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Date: Wed, 24 Apr 91 09:12:57 -0400
From: Larry W. Seals <seals@uncecs.edu>
Subject: Drummers and Others

Hello all!

I guess it time I jumped in!  As a new subscriber, I reviewed the
previous couple of issues of chalkhills to pick up on-going discussion.
Some things that caught my eye:

 1) Allan White did the drumming on _Sgt. Pepper's_?  I must have
    missed something somewhere...  I checked with a few friends (both
    drummers and Beatle fans) for some confirmation and they were
    surprised to hear it too...  I dunno.  The style and mechanics of
    the drumming on _Sgt. Pepper's_ and _Magical Mystery Tour_ seems
    too consistent to be two different drummers.  In fact, I would
    venture to say that the overall drumming from _Revolver_ on
    reflected this.  And if Allan White did do the sessions, why did
    they need someone to merely copy Ringo's style (unless, of course,
    he was not available).  BTW, was White primarily a session player
    before taking over for Bill Bruford in Yes?

 2) While I count myself as an XTC fan (and not yet a fanatic), I too
    heartily enjoyed _Skylarking_.  My only previous exposure to XTC
    had been the video for "Senses Working Overtime" which I liked
    but not enough to get _The Big Express_ (digression: I have been
    burned so many times on albums/discs where one song was great that
    I hesitate to rush right out and buy something new without getting
    more exposure.  :end digression).  I found that first track to last
    it was excellent (I was immediately hooked on "Summer's Cauldron/
    Grass").  The only evidence I saw of Rundgren's hand was in the
    only track to get any airplay in Cincinnati "Earn Enough for Us".
    Otherwise, production was excellent (clean).

 3) Was "Dear God" dropped from later releases of _Skylarking_?  It's
    on the copy I bought just after it was released ('86/87?).

Well, it's back to work for me.  I enjoy chalkhills and look forward to
#151!

***********************************************************************
Larry Seals @ Trailing Edge Software - "When it doesn't have to be
                                          the very best!"
"I didn't sell my soul, I just took out a loan..." - Bruce Hornsby
***********************************************************************

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Date: Wed, 24 Apr 91 12:26:41 EDT
From: b <bdofed!@bdofed.UUCP.broderic>
Subject: Convention in Barrie

Being only 100km away from Barrie, I was very excited to hear that the
XTC convention is being held there, but I would like to know exactly what
goes on.  Anybody willing to describe what is likely to happen?

Carol

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Date: Wed, 24 Apr 91 9:59:10 PDT
From: jondr@sco.com (Skinny Puppy)
Subject: Re: Chalkhills #150

>From: bvm@bu-pub.bu.edu
>I think that Allan White (Yes) did the drums on these records...in
>fact I'm pretty sure that he did a lot of work on Sgt. Pepper's
>as well.

Is this some kind of sick joke?  This is even more lame than the Paul
Is Dead thing.
-------------------------
From: james@nrc.com (James McGowan)
>little guy?  Jesus!..."  Next time you listen to a Chambers-era XTC
>album, notice how far "forward" in the mix Terry's drums are placed.
>Good thing, too!  I believe he was/is one of the most rhythmically
>intricate and unpredictable drummers around (I wonder if he ever
>played jazz?  Hmm...).

I don't know that Mr. Chambers would agree with you here.  He
consistently said in interviews that he was a very meat and potatoes
drummer.  I don't have too many problems predicting where he's going
to go.  Perhaps you could list a few of your favorite Chambers drum
moments?

------------------
From: meep@wpi.wpi.edu (MEEP)

>	I've seen a lot of discussion in back-issues of Chalkhills about the
>concept behind *Skylarking*, how it was "ruined" by Todd Rundgren, etc.

Considering that Rundgren was the one who INTRODUCED the concept, I
find it rather hard to reconcile that with him "ruining" it.

Check out the album credits - "continuity concept by Todd Rundgren."

>	Now, maybe it's just me, but I have a tough time tying this album
>to more than a loose concept (sort of general bittersweet nature of life),

That's because Todd just picked the songs that vaguely tied in to his
cycle of life thang, and it was never specifically written to fit
this.  There is nothing wrong with you.  (Well, at least, not in this
regard.)

>Or do people
>just really dislike this album and try to cover by blaming it on Mr.
>Rundgren?

I have a feeling that this might partially be it.  Also, Andy
disagreed rather violently with Todd at certain points in the
recording, and overall the experience of making this album was just
not a pleasant one for the band.  Knowing this, we fans may tend to
treat the album as inferior.  (I use the editorial "We" here since I
do not personally feel this way.)

From: Mark Hessman <ST601287@brownvm.brown.edu>

>     Two.  As an XTC fan but not (yet) a fanatic, I haven't heard most of
>the extra CD-only tracks, and was wondering if anybody could give me
>their opinions (which ones are the best, which are just filler, etc).

They're all great.  Often the B-sides are the best things about the
albums.  Probably my least favorite period, b-side wise, is Black
Sea.

>I'm most likely going to buy most of the newly-midline CDs eventually
>(though probably not *D & W*, which never really appealed to me save
>a few songs) but need to plan out which to buy first.  ;)

The Big Express.  No question.

>a copy of *Big Express* in an old *Black Sea* green paper jacket.
>I've actually never heard this one (the three songs on *Compact XTC*
>did not impress me), so I picked it up.  Nothing to lose, eh?  ;)

Weird.  I don't know why the songs don't impress you, they're great.
Admittedly, they rarely pick the best songs for singles, so the ones
on Compact XTC are not the best, but they're still good.  Play "Train
Running Low On Soul Coal" at full volume, and pay close attention to
the lyrics.  If you fail to be impressed, then you should just kill
yourself immediately.

--
jon drukman                 jondr@sco.com       always note the sequencer:
sco docland wage slave      uunet!sco!jondr     this will never let us down

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From: Martin Luther Zen <stewarte@sco.com>
Subject: Where's Terry?
Date: Wed, 24 Apr 1991 17:49:02 -0700 (PDT)

    From: james@nrc.com (James McGowan)

    Which leads me to the question:  Does anyone know if Terry is still
    drumming, or should I say "making music" (lest I incur the wrath of
    all those sensitive drummers on this list)?  From past Chalkhills, I
    understand that he moved to Australia with his family.  Considering
    Australia's healthy pop music scene, it seems likely that he could
    land a spot with a good band, eh?

He did join up with a band in Australia, in fact -- a group called
Dragon.  He played on at least one album of theirs, my 1K brain (same
model as Mr. Partridge's) says that it was called "Beauty and the
Beat", and that it was quite unremarkable slightly-new-wavish-but-not-
enough-to-startle-anyone pop/rock stuff.  I haven't heard of anything
since then (this would have been about 1984).

-- Stewart
******************************************************************************
"In this elegant chaos
 I stand to one side."
                       -- Julian Cope
/* Stewart Evans, alias stewarte@sco.COM, aka uunet!sco!stewarte */

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Date: Fri, 26 Apr 91 11:39:23 PDT
From: John M. Relph <relph@presto.ig.com>
Subject: Re: Chalkhills #150

doug (MEEP) <meep@wpi.wpi.edu> writes:

>	I've seen a lot of discussion in back-issues of Chalkhills about the
>concept behind *Skylarking*, how it was "ruined" by Todd Rundgren, etc.

I don't think it was the "concept", it was the music.  The concept was
Todd's, after all.

>	Now, maybe it's just me, but I have a tough time tying this album
>to more than a loose concept (sort of general bittersweet nature of life),

Actually, to me it's more than a loose concept: it metaphorically
covers most of a lifetime, from puberty to death, and covers a year
passing as well.

  "Summer's Cauldron": those dreamy never-ending summers that always
ended too soon.  "Grass" and "The Meeting Place": wild and furtive
first loves.  "Supergirl": the loss and feelings of betrayal after she
breaks up with him.  "Ballet For A Rainy Day": not much about life
here, I'll agree, but we touch on the seasons and weather, and it goes
well with "1000 Umbrellas": feeling like there's no tomorrow,
aftermath of "Supergirl", and then he gets over it.  "Season Cycle":
the year theme spelled out.  "Earn Enough For Us": the reality of
providing for two, leading up to "The Big Day".  "Another Satellite":
the spectre of an affair, middle age has arrived, are they growing
old?  "Mermaid Smiled": reminiscing about childhood?  (What is this
song about, anyway?)  "The Man Who Sailed Around His Soul": the older
man reflecting on his life, his soul, his deeds and his misdeeds,
paying for it all with a feeling of emptiness, finally finding peace
with himself, "He found the treasure he'd been seeking".  "Dying":
dying.  "Sacrificial Bonfire": but death brings new life, the winter
solstice festival to celebrate Mother Earth's imminent warming, the
stooped grey old year is killed to bring forth Baby New Year.  Soon we
shall make love to the Earth with our plows and plant the seeds that
will bear fruit in the Summer.

>and I have to admit, I think the production (both technical and artistic)
>is uniformly excellent.

Andy has often said that he thinks that _Skylarking_ doesn't sound as
"hi-fi" as most of XTC's other albums.  A review published in _The
Absolute Sound_, a high-fidelity enthusiast's magazine, had this to
say about _Skylarking_:

      I AM MAD.  I am *infuriated*.  Time to hit the Shift
    key: !@#%$*@$!

      Why?  Because this record, by one of my favorite bands,
    is yet another example of great music rendered almost
    unlistenable by bad sound.  It's so frustrating. . .

The review goes on to extol XTC's musical virtues and simultaneously
disparage the production of the album.

>  I know that Colin Moulding quit the band at one point over
>dispute with Rundgren,

Really?  Damn, I must have missed this.

> but the only *concrete* piece of meddling I know of
>was the killing-off of "Dear God" (which, to my mind, doesn't belong on the
>album anyway...I love "Dear God," but I don't feel it fits *Skylarking*).

According to Todd, he wanted "Dear God" on the album, but Andy really
didn't, he wanted "Another Satellite" instead, which Todd didn't like
as much.  I think "Another Satellite" was written during the recording
of _Skylarking_ and thus wasn't in Todd's original concept.  After
"Dear God" started selling, the record company made the choice to
remove "Mermaid Smiled".

				. . .

bobby maruvada <bvm@bu-pub.bu.edu> claims:

>> albums like _Rubber Soul_ and _Magical
>>Mystery Tour...
>>Ringo is among the best pop drummers ever, if not _the_ best.

>I think that Allan White (Yes) did the drums on these records...in
>fact I'm pretty sure that he did a lot of work on Sgt. Pepper's
>as well.

Michael Weiss <weiss@watson.seas.ucla.edu> says:

    I've got [Mark Lewisohn's book] The Beatles Recording
    Sessions, and nothing about White is mentioned in any of
    the Rubber Soul sessions.

To which J. Porter Clark <jpc@avdms8.msfc.nasa.gov> replies:

    I'm working from memory here, but didn't a certain Alan
    White play drums on one of the Lennon LP's, "Imagine", I
    think?  I've often wondered if it was the same guy as the
    one who was once (or maybe still is, it's hard to keep up)
    the Yes drummer.

And Frank J. Schima <francis@rpi.edu> adds:

    Yes they are one and the same. Alan White (currently the
    drummer for Yes along with Bill Bruford I suppose) was on
    Rockline a few weeks ago with a few other members of Yes.
    Someone asked Alan what he remembered about John Lennon
    since he played drums on Imagine. He said that they played
    the song Imagine a few times and he thought they were just
    practice run throughs. But John liked one of the takes (it
    might have been the first one even) and it went on the
    album.

All this transpired in rec.music.beatles, your source for Beatles
trivia.  From the above, I would say that Alan White drummed only on
John Lennon's _Imagine_.

However, I do know that Chris Squire learned to play the bass guitar
by learning Paul McCartney's basslines from Beatles records.

				. . .

Mark Hessman <ST601287@brownvm.brown.edu> asks for opinions:

>I'm most likely going to buy most of the newly-midline CDs eventually
>(though probably not *D & W*, which never really appealed to me save
>a few songs) but need to plan out which to buy first.  ;)

I'll agree with Jon here.  But I always say this when someone asks.
Buy _The Big Express_.  Andy says that the song "Seagulls Screaming,
Kiss Her Kiss Her" is one of the few songs that successfully made the
transition from imagination to tape.

	-- John

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