Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills #317

                  Chalkhills, Number 317

                 Monday, 10 January 1994
Today's Topics:
                       Jane, Aimee
                      Praise Ye All
                   Re: Catherine Wheel
                   Re: Chalkhills #316
                   Re: Chalkhills #316
             Catherine Wheel/catherine wheel
                   Re: Chalkhills #316
                         The Edge
                        info on me
                      worst XTC song

From: "Greg O'Rear" <>
Organization:  Industrial and Systems Engineering
Date:          Fri, 7 Jan 1994 08:49:00 EST5EDT
Subject:       Jane, Aimee

FYI, there is a mailing list called Ecto, at, which is
ostensibly a mailing list for fans of the female artist Happy Rhodes, but is
in general a mailing list devoted to music made by women, like Kate, Tori,
Jane, etc.  There has been quite a bit of discussion recently about various
Ectophiles' experiences at shows by Aimee Mann, Jane Siberry, and Sarah

To subscribe, send a message to  Check it out.
It's a friendly bunch, flame-free.  'Though, be prepared: after hearing
everybody talk about this Happy Rhodes person, you'll get to wondering who
she is.  Then you'll find yourself walking in to your nearest cool record
store, buying a copy of "RhodeSongs," and becoming a fan.  Or not.  I
probably wouldn't have bought Aimee's album without hearing the glowing
reviews of "Whatever" in Ecto.  I'm glad I did; it's a great album.  Dave's
not on it, though; just the tour.  Now, McGuinn....  :-)
 Greg O'Rear                                        E-mail:
 Industrial and Systems Engineering Department      Phone:  (904) 392-3389
 University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida        FAX:    (904) 392-3537


Date: Fri, 7 Jan 94 09:10:57 EST
From: (Todd Elwardt)
Subject: Praise Ye All


John Neuman writes:

>        Now, I'd like someone to answer a question I have. I've seen the
> expression "Catherine Wheel" 3 times recently: it's in the lyrics of "Then
> She Appeared", it was the name of a David Byrne musical, and now I think
> there is a rock group by that name. What is a "Catherine Wheel"? Is this
> some British thing we Yankees have never heard of? None of my friends seem
> to be able to answer this for me.

In regard to the David Byrne part, _The Catherine Wheel_ was actually a
modern dance production by Twyla Tharp that was done in the mid-80's.  Mr.
Byrne only did the soundtrack to the production.  I know this isn't answering
the question, but just another piece of the puzzle.  Perhaps there's a
Catherine Wheel on the side of a hill somewhere in merry olde England.

Joe Kopera writes:

> Hmmm....I don't know about you all, but I think Nonsuch is XTC's worst
> album...I think all of the songs on it basically sound the same, and
> they've lost some originality in it....ah well...I hardly listen to it
> anymore....Except when I'm in the mood for Peter Pumpkinhead or Madam
> Barnum.

Ah, the beauty of public lists.  You can voice your opinion without fear of
losing your right pinky.  As for me, I tend to be one of those folks who got
into XTC circa Skylarking...'bout '86 or so.  I absolutely love everything
since then (including Nonsvch), but this wonderful list (gratitude, gratitude,
Herr Relph) has given me an insight into the "wonderfulness" of the boys'
earlier efforts.

After all, I had never dreamed that those rotting vinyl copies of BIG EXPRESS
or MUMMER in my collection had all of those wonderful tidbits buried within.
So, to all of you who have expressed your hate/love for the XTC catalogue in
one way or another (love those complete dissertations on selected albums by
you liberal arts majors out there), THANKS!



From: Tim Szeliga <>
Subject: Re: Catherine Wheel
Date: Fri, 7 Jan 94 10:44:15 CST

>         Now, I'd like someone to answer a question I have. I've seen the
> expression "Catherine Wheel" 3 times recently: it's in the lyrics of "Then
> She Appeared", it was the name of a David Byrne musical, and now I think
> there is a rock group by that name. What is a "Catherine Wheel"? Is this
> some British thing we Yankees have never heard of? None of my friends seem
> to be able to answer this for me.

There are two Catherine Wheels.  The original is the instrument of torture
that St. Catherine of Alexandria was broken on, if I can recall my long ago
reading of Foxes' Book of Martyrs.  This was a Wheel of Fortune in which the
contestant was tied hand and foot in an X and spun rapidly and repeatedly.
She could not buy a vowel.
 The second Catherine Wheel is a rocket-powered pinwheel, and is seen in
ground displays of fireworks, usually just before the American Flag.  Smaller
and more dangerous versions actually have bottle rockets on a pinwheel on
a hand-held stick.  These are difficult to light so that the two rockets
ignite simultaneously, and difficult to hold to avoid a shower of sparks
in the eyes, hair or hand.  They are fun to watch, though.

Tim Szeliga


Date: Fri, 7 Jan 94 16:52 GMT
From: (Andy Holyer)
Subject: Re: Chalkhills #316

> From: (Patty Haley)
> > From: "John Relph" <>
> >
> > >A band one of XTC's members was/is in?  A band one of XTC's members has
> > >produced?
> >
> > The Cleaners From Venus (aka The Cleaners) were Martin Newell and
> > Giles Smith.  They made records from circa 1985 to 1987.  Giles Smith
> > is now music editor of The Independent (thanks to Andy Holyer for this
> > information).  Martin Newell went on to form The Brotherhood Of
> > Lizards with Nelson.  TBOL embarked on a "green tour" of England,
> Nelson who, John?  I know you don't mean those blond Scandinavian brothers
> (thankfully), but who this Nelson be?

Nelson never revealed his second name, 'cos he was still signing on while
a member of the BoL. I *should* remember it, but, you know how it is...
Nelson is now the bass player of the Goth band New Model Army. Atilla
the Stockbroker (Punk poet) has named his mandola after him. *Definitely*
not because he gets a laugh when he gets it out of its case and says
"This is a mandola. I call it Nelson" :-).

> > solo album by Martin Newell.  The Cleaners' music sounds much the same
> > as Martin Newell's solo album.  And therefore may be of interest to
> > XTC fans.  There is ONE CD currently available of The Cleaners' work,
> > a compilation entitled _Golden Cleaners_.
> Where to find this, please?  All leads gratefully accepted.

It ought to be available in the US. I've got the address of the record
company (which is in NE England) if necessary. I've now ordered three
copies of this CD from my local record shop (two for other people) and
don't want to order any more in case they start wondering what I'm doing
with them :-/



From: "Ken Strayhorn Jr." <>
Subject: Videotape!
Date: Fri, 7 Jan 1994 16:29:16 -0500 (EST)

        Someone has mentioned buying a videotape of XTC videos but it was in
PAL instead of NTSC. Wow! I have *never* seen an XTC video! I would
do anything to get a copy of that tape!

        I work in advertising/PR and have access to facilities to
convert these formats. If the owner of that tape would like it converted
for free, let me know. If he has it converted, could I send a blank
tape and have it dubbed?

        Of course, I would be glad to enclose a check for your troubles.

        If anyone else has a tape, the same offer applies.

Ken Strayhorn
Chapel Hill NC


Date: Fri, 07 Jan 94 17:42:05 EST
Subject: Re: Chalkhills #316

New member posting

It's new member time.  I've been an XTC fan since 1988 when I first heard
"Oranges & Lemons." Loved the melodies. Heard the tape, couldn't understand
the lyrics, and went out and bought a CD player and got the CD.

Like them because I was a big Beatles fan in the 1980s and they seemed one of
the few bands to carry on the tradition. Any others you guys can think of?

Now, to answer a question:
A band one of XTC's members has produced? Andy produced 7 of the 14 tracks on
the Lilac Time's 1990 album "& Love for All."


From: (Patty Haley)
Subject: Catherine Wheel/catherine wheel
Date: Fri, 7 Jan 1994 22:54:08 -0500 (EST)

John Neumann asks:

>         Now, I'd like someone to answer a question I have. I've seen the
> expression "Catherine Wheel" 3 times recently: it's in the lyrics of "Then
> She Appeared", it was the name of a David Byrne musical, and now I think
> there is a rock group by that name. What is a "Catherine Wheel"? Is this
> some British thing we Yankees have never heard of? None of my friends seem
> to be able to answer this for me.

Well, John, you've come to the right list.  Spent a long time in the library
a couple of weeks ago researching what a catherine wheel is.  Took me a lot
longer than I thought, and there was a lot less to read than I thought there
would be, but here is a summary of what I read:  Catherine of Alexandria
died in 322 A.D. and was canonized by the Catholic Church sometime thereafter.
Catherine was an early Christian, (here's where the story gets a bit murky
for me--still have a bit more research to do), and was condemned to death
by the emperor for converting various and sundry Alexandrians to Christianity.
Her persuasive powers were mighty, as she was able to sway entire crowds
and convert them en masse.  She was first sent to a wheel of torture, a
spiked wheel, but it fell apart upon being touched by her.  She was then
beheaded.  These days, catherine wheels are fireworks that spin very quickly
in the shape of a wheel.  I am not sure if the original spiked wheel of
torture soon became known as a catherine wheel--like I said, I found very
little.  The name Catherine for many centuries was associated with all things
good and pious after this St. Catherine (there are others) and became a
hugely popular girls' name.  It is naturally still popular now, but not
to the extent that it was back then.

And, yes, there is a band Catherine Wheel.  I am a great fan of theirs--if
anyone on this list is interested in trading, etc. Catherine Wheel goodies,
please get in touch with me at

One other note:  I was almost relieved to read that it was Marianne who
left Andy and not the other way around.  Not that I am the least bit pleased
to read that Andy is so unhappy--I was just beginning to wonder if Andy had
succumbed to the Rock Star Ego bit and had decided to seek greener pastures
and fresher females.  Relievedly this is not so.  Sure hope things don't
get nasty for everyone's sake, including the children's.  He seems
the devoted father enough to make sure that there is no ugliness involved.
I am sorry for everyone's sake, and hope things all turn out for the best.
John Relph writes:

> Thanks to Patty Haley for sending me the photocopy of the Andy
> Partridge interview from _The Big Takeover_: ``A Conversation in Two
> Acts'', Act Two.  Here are some bits I thought interesting.

You're quite welcome, John.  It was so refreshing to read an interview
conducted by such knowledgeable fans.  Wish I'd have been one of them.



Date: Sat, 08 Jan 1994 16:43:20 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Re: Chalkhills #316


Date: 09 Jan 94 05:34:45 EST
From: (John J. Pinto)
Subject: The Edge

A possible answer to the question about "The Edge".
I very much doubt that the button (badge)  described is in any way related to
a recording, bootleg or otherwise. If so it would have turned up even as a
rumour in the "Wonderland" discography.
I lived in Toronto, Ontario Canada during Punk and there was a very active
club there called "The Edge" which was short for Edgerton Ryerson, a
prominent 19th century Canadian educator. The Edge was a student pub of sorts
adjacent to Ryerson College. Just about everyone who was "New Wave" played
there thanks to the men collectively called The Garys who booked the club. I
saw XTC there in 1978 with Barry Andrews. The Little Express printed some
photos from that show a few issues back. XTC played two, possibly three
nights. They headlined at least two other shows in Toronto booked by The
While I don't recall any promotional material of the sort described there may
have been buttons made. It wouldn't surprise me as "badges" were very popular
merchandise in those days. The Garys, like alot of club owners, taped
everything so perhaps a Live at The Edge recording will emerge someday.

I had a brief conversation with Peter Dix of The Little Express over the
Holidays. He mentioned that there are less than 100 copies of "The Bull With
The Golden Guts" cassette still available. They have no plans to make this
cassette available once the remaining stock is gone. Don't say I didn't warn


Date: Sun, 9 Jan 1994 16:14:18 -0500 (EST)
From: Richard Lee Puffer <>
Subject: info on me

Hello! Thanks for letting me sign up for your mailing list. Well my name
is Richard Puffer and I am a 23 year old college student at the University
of Delaware. My major is Political Science and History.
        I have been listening to XTC since 1986 when i heard this music at
a bookstore in town and asked what it was. The clerk said it was the
English Settlement by XTC. From that time on I have been a fanatic of
music by XTC or Dukes of the Stratosphere.
        I also enjoy late 70's-early 80's music such as the Jam, The
Clash, and other English groups of that era. I was wondering if you could
send me a discography of material before English Settlement? I have most
of the material after that but am not sure about before it.

                Thanks   Richard Puffer


Date: Sun, 9 Jan 1994 15:56:03 -0500 (EST)
From: "Jennifer L. Barrett" <>
Subject: Introduction

I was asked to tell a little bit about myself so here it is. I found out
about Chalkhills though a friend of mine and I started listening to XTC,
since I saw Mayor of Simpleton on Mtv a few years ago.

Jennifer L. Barrett


Organization: SLAIS, UBC
Date:         10 Jan 94 14:01:22 GM+5
Subject:      worst XTC song

This digets has been far too complimentary lately, so let's talk bad
XTC songs.  There are a few, you know.  I'm sure this comes up
evry few months, but here we go anyway:

1) Bungalow (just plain ridiculous)
2) Millions (tuneless)
3) That Is The Way (awkward)
4) X Wires (I don't like anything much on White Music, but this is
the worst)
5) Cynical Days (hokey)
6) War Dance (chorus reminds me of Spinal Tap's "Hell Hole")
7) Blue Overall (pointless dissonance)
8) Roads Girdle the Globe (ditto)
9) Deliver Us From the Elements (pompous arrangement)
10) The Somnambulist (somnolent)

I'd also include Countdown to Christmas Party Time if it weren't so
obviously a joke.  Sorry there's so many Colin songs.


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