Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills #171

                  Chalkhills, Number 171

                  Monday, 19 August 1991
Today's Topics:
            Goldmine, Vol. 17 #13 (Issue 285)
             end the agony of digestification
                     XTC Collectables
            WFMU interview with Andy Partridge

Date: Tue, 13 Aug 91 10:12:04 PDT
From: "John M. Relph" <>
Subject: Goldmine, Vol. 17 #13 (Issue 285)

This article appeared in, and I noticed an interesting tidbit:

 ---- begin forwarded (and edited) article ----

From: (Eli Messinger)
Subject: Goldmine, Vol. 17 #13 (Issue 285), 8/23/91: Elvis! Cover Issue
Date: 10 Aug 91 07:58:03 GMT

Goldmine, Vol. 17 #13 (Issue 285): Elvis! Cover Issue

	* Reissue reviews:
	    - XTC "White Music" "Go 2" "Drums and Wires" "Black Sea" "Mummer"

Goldmine is available from:

	700 E. State Street
	Iola, WI  54990
		    Guys Whose Eyes / Are In / Their Backs
	   Get Halos Crossing / Railroad Tracks / Burma Shave (1940)
    CSNET: / USENET: ...!uunet!!ebm / BITNET: ebm@almvmd


Date:     Tue, 13 Aug 91 16:20 MST
From: <RLANTHIE@ducair.bitnet> (Rich Lanthier, Psychology)
Subject:  Waxworks/Beeswax

Hello there again,

I have been delightfully buying up the new XTC releases.  Recently got
Drums and Wires, White Music, and Rag'n'Bone Buffet.  It was nbice to see
that most of the stuff I had on my canadian version of Waxworks/Beeswax
was icluded.  Some of that stuff is just great and nice to have it on CD.
Does anyone want to buy my vinyl copy of waxworks/beeswax?  As far as I
can tell the catolog number is VMD 2251.  ANyway if anyone is interested,
let me know via e-mail (please). The sleeves and lp's are in great shape.

Well what's the scoop on the new album?  Any tentative release dates?  I
have sort of been skimming the last couple of issues of _Chalkhills_ so
if the info was included in them bear with me.



Subject: end the agony of digestification
From: Dances With Voles <>
Date: Fri, 16 Aug 91 15:43:58 PDT

Dear Chalkhillians - for those that dislike digests as much as I do, I
present the Amazing Chalkhills Digest Exploder.  This handy tool turns
your Chalkhills digests into mailboxes that are easily manipulated
using UCB Mail, or Rmail, or whatever you want.  It is available from
the Chalkhills archives (or it will be any day now).  If you can't ftp
(like me) then send me some email and this useful little program can
be yours.  I suppose I should probably mention that it's in awk with a
tiny bit of bourne shellosity, in case someone on a non-unix platform
wants it.

obXTC: Anybody want to predict when the next album will be here?  I
hope they go with the title "Wonder Annual"; I really like it...

Jon Drukman (helter stupid)                     uunet!sco!jondr
Always note the sequencer - this will never let us down.


Subject: XTC Collectables
Date: Mon, 19 Aug 91 11:23:36 EDT
From: J Ross MacKay <>

  Things have been slow on Chalkhills.  Is it the summer doldrums?
I'm divesting my collection of LPs (don't even have a turntable hooked
up anymore). I have a couple XTC collectables I'd like to see get into
some appreciative hands.  If you're interested, or know of someone
who is, all I ask is the postage.  Although it would be nice to get
a cassette or two of home-demos, etc:-)

  1. Black Sea
     e. LP, Virgin USA (RSO), VR-1-1000 (VA 13147), November 1980.  originally
        included green paper outer sleeve.  manufactured as Atlantic VA 13147
        but released by RSO as VR-1-1000.
  2. English Settlement
     a. LP (2), Virgin UK, V 2223, 12 February 1982.  double lp, originally had
        textured cover with green lettering, later covers have white lettering.
        ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^                                         ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
 3.1 Waxworks: Some Singles 1977-1982
     a. LP, Virgin UK, V 2251, 5 November 1982.  first 50,000 copies packaged
        with Beeswax LP (OVED 9).
 3.2 Beeswax: Some B-Sides 1977-1982
     a. LP, Virgin UK, OVED 9, 5 November 1982.  originally free with Waxworks
        LP (V 2251).
  4. Love On a Farmboy's Wages
     b/w In Loving Memory of a Name; plus bonus single Desert Island; b/w Toys.
     a. 7" (2), Virgin UK, VS 613, 19 September 1983.  doublepack gatefold.

--                                 Regards,


Date: Mon, 19 Aug 91 21:53:04 PDT
From: Chalkhills Administration <>
Subject: WFMU interview with Andy Partridge
Organisation: Chalkhills Anonymous

29 June 1991
WFMU, Uppsala College, East Orange
Jim Price speaks to Andy Partridge
Phone interview, edited for broadcast

Recording courtesy of Woj
Transcribed by John Relph

				. . .

Andy: Do you know this is the first interview I've done in a long time?

WFMU: Is that right?

Andy: We've been crouched over hot pens lately.  You probably get out of
the swing of talking to people who aren't in your direct family.

WFMU: I guess it's related to releases of albums, too.

Andy: Kind of, or somebody wants to do a feature about how you play your
guitar or blah blah, you know . . .

				. . .

WFMU: The new album?  Possible?  Yes?

Andy: The new album . . .  We were ready to make a new album a year ago
but we've been through an awful lot of feces, certainly with Virgin
Records in England.  And a lot of producers have very badly let us down.
It's a long story and not totally interesting. . .

WFMU: . . . the new album, [it] has a name?

Andy: The new album, well, there's a couple of working titles.
"Balloon" is one of them, except somebody told me that it's a euphemism
for an empty-headed person in America, though I've never heard that.  I
just like the word "balloon".  So "Balloon" is a working title, and
"Wonder Annual" except that a song has now been written called "Wonder
Annual" so I don't know.  If we record the song I don't think that would
be the title of the album because that puts too much damn pressure on
the song and everyone gets the magnifying glass and says, `Hey, what was
so special about this song that they named the whole album after it?'

WFMU: What was that title?

Andy: "The Wonder Annual"

WFMU: What is that?

Andy: It was a series of children's annuals in England, they haven't
made them since the 50s and 60s, but people would always be giving you
them, or you'd find them in junk shoppes, or uncles would pass them on
to you, or somebody would say, `Hey, I've got some old books, do you
want them?'  You'd occasionally find these Wonder Annuals.  They weren't
such wonderful things in themselves, but it's books from that, I hate
the word but i've got to say, genre.  Kind of magazine article-length,
interesting kids books, usually well-illustrated that you can kind of
lose yourself in.  So that and "Balloon" are the two working titles.
But i'm sure there will be plenty more thrown up.

WFMU: Is there a producer at the moment?

Andy: Oh yes, that was really the big problem, was finding a producer
that was either sympathetic to what the band wanted to do . . .

WFMU: Is it Gus Dudgeon?

Andy: It's Gus Dudgeon, yes!  The archaic Gus Dudgeon, the prehistoric
Gus Dudgeon.  He's possibly the wrongest producer we could have picked,
but it's very exciting because of that.

WFMU: Wrong because of what reason?

Andy: I don't know, he's old and square -- oh, I suppose we're old and
square, too -- he's older and squarer.  And he likes some of the songs
of ours that we don't like. . .  I don't know, he's kind of so wrong in
every way that it's going to be really exciting working with him.  I
like the bloke immensely, but his musical tastes are, if mine are North
Pole then his are South Pole, and I think there's gonna be some great,
hopefully enjoyable, tensions.  And he's going hear things that we pass
over and we're going to supply him things that he can't hear and I'm
anticipating good things.

WFMU: Gus Dudgeon was known for a number of major releases in the
early 70s, major artists right?

Andy: My goodness, I think his first number one single was "Time Of The
Season", The Zombies.  It was either "She's Not There" or "Time Of The
Season."  I think it was "Time Of The Season."  So there's an indication
of the age on the bloke.  Yeah, he did that, he did "Space Oddity",
David Bowie, a load of Elton John singles. . .

WFMU: The Bonzo Dog Band.

Andy: Ah yeah, a load of stuff for The Bonzos, including one of my
favourite all-time albums, "The Doughnut On Greenwich Greener", which is
a great record.  So the man who got those sounds and had to translate
their demands is gonna be working with us.

WFMU: I also understand that you've got a drummer, Dave Mattacks, is
that true?

Andy: That's completely true.  He sort of found us.

WFMU: How did that happen?

Andy: Well, it's a bit of a fairytale really, because the Dukes' drummer,
Dave Gregory's brother Ian, or E. I. E. I. Owen as he is in his Dukes
guise, went to a Fairport Convention gig.  Now Dave Mattacks' regular
drum stool is with Fairport Convention.  They had some programmes for
sale, kind of giving you a history of Fairport, and Ian Gregory had
one of these and was reading through and he got to the bit on Dave
Mattacks, because Dave Mattacks is a very famous drummer amongst
drummers and musicians.  He's kind of like one of England's top two
studio drummers.  To get back to the original story, Ian Gregory was
reading through this programme and in the programme was an interview
with Dave Mattacks and the interviewer asked Dave Mattacks, were there
any bands or artists that he hadn't worked with that he would love to
be asked to work with, and I think it was us and Joni Mitchell.  And I
got to see this programme, Ian Gregory got this programme 'round to me
and said, "Look, you're looking for a drummer, how about Dave
Mattacks?"  And I thought, no, I could never ask Dave Mattacks, he's
like one of those legendary figures, you know.  And I rang him up out
of mischief at a show and the roadies were there setting the gear up
so they passed the message on.  I think that when Dave Mattacks got
the message he thought it was a joke and rang up expecting it to be a
sex line or some kind of convent school and it was actually me on the
other end and I said, "Look, will you drum on our album?" and he was,
I think the expression is, "blew his socks off!" at the very
suggestion.  So we've been rehearsing with Dave Mattacks who is an
alarmingly tasteful drummer, nauseatingly tasteful.  He just plays the
right thing.  One of those players that are so good at what they do
that you have to either laugh when you hear them play something. . .
My reaction is kind of to laugh, with joy I suppose, or to stop what
you are doing in kind of a dumbstruck fashion.  Sometimes when I've
heard, say for example, a Charlie Parker thing that I haven't heard
before, sometimes the playing is just so good I have to giggle and
it's kind of an uncontrollable reaction.  It's like pure joy or
something.  Dave Mattacks is one of those drummers.  Sometimes he
leaves such amazing holes in his drumming that in reheasrsal I
wouldn't be able to carry on with the singing.  I'd just have to stop
and guffaw.  So I'm looking forward as well to working with him.  The
long-jinxed wait that we've had making this album looks like it's all
falling together in a great way.

WFMU: Are there any songs you're dying to get started on?

Andy: Oh yeah.  There's one called "Rook" that I had a great difficulty
finishing.  It was a really blank period for me, I had a bit of writer's
block, I couldn't find these songs anywhere, the muse had deserted me.
And "Rook" fell out at a very low point in my life.  I couldn't actually
finish the demo, I kept bursting into tears.  Almost a mixture of
gratitude -- I don't know to who, the muse -- a mixture of gratitude and
just the joy at finding (I'm trying to be modest here, it's going to
sound really pompous) the joy of finding of what I consider to be a
personal little musical jewel.  It's very austere and very empty
sounding and I think when we record it for real it will retain a similar
emptiness.  I played it to Dave Gregory who stopped by one afternoon for
a cup of tea and I said look I've got a new song and I played it to him
and he said, `Yeah, it sounds like Hoenniger with lyrics.'  So I'm very
proud of "Rook" and I really want to get to grips with that.

WFMU: Do you think it will be a long CD?

Andy: Well, we want to record as many tracks as we can.  We have about
thirty, but I think in terms of budget and the time it's going to take
we may be able to get twenty recorded, which would be great.  I want to
do as many of these things as possible.  It's a real mess, I mean,
there's a song on it that sounds not unlike Burt Bacharach, there's kind
of things that go between African High Life and John Barry, there are
some swampy bits.  It's kind of a nice mess.  I just love these records
that are a nice mess.  Why have a meal consisting of just one thing when
you can have every ingredient on Earth and you can choose your own?  And
to be truthful we sort of stopped writing, because it got like we were
having so much trouble with other producers and/or Virgin Records and
that we thought, hell, we've over-written, and went off doing different
things.  I got into sculpting and producing other people.  I think Dave
was playing more and more sessions for other people just to keep his
hand in, and Colin was disappearing off the face of the Earth and got
into doing stained glass windows!  So we all disappeared doing different
artistic endeavours, because we were really sick and tired of this mill
with the record company, you know, putting us thorugh the mill of "Oh
you mustn't work with them, oh you can't afford to do this, that and the
other."  A kind of negativity, that I think we wrote the album and kind
of slowed down and went into other projects to keep our minds . . .

[To be continued. . .]


A laurel and hearty handshake goes out to new subscribers
Sonny Hays-Eberts, Steve Krause, Trent J Jakubec, and
Eric Singer!

Acoustic Radio Tour tapes from 1989 are still available.

For all administrative issues, such as change of address,
withdrawal from the list, fan club addresses, discography
requests (last update 17 August), back issues, etc., send a
message to the following address:


All views expressed in Chalkhills are those of the
individual contributors only.  Excepting the interviews.

Go back to the previous page.