Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills #377

                  Chalkhills, Number 377

                Sunday, 18 September 1994
Today's Topics:
                Re: hello recording club??
                     River of Orchids
                    questions answered
                     Re: XTC TRIBUTE
                     Various Tidbits
                     XTC and America
                        1967 comp
                   Re: a thousand quid?
            XTC video, commercially available?
                    Live XTC Recording
             Re:XTC on stage with The Police
                    Introducing myself
                Neophyte XTC fan signs on
                   Hello to this group.
              real Dukes influences (links)
                    Oranges and Lemons
                 Re: introduction to Paul
                 Radio One and On and On


Date: Tue, 13 Sep 94 13:52:08 PDT
From: John Relph <>
Subject: Re: hello recording club??

"Neil Oliver" <> writes:

>Did Andy's Hello Recording Club release ever come out?  Would someone
>who belongs to the club tell me if any of the other releases are any
>good (I fear I have asked this before but maybe someone will answer)

The release has not come out, but the latest rumour is that it will be
the October 1994 Hello offering.  Most of the Hello CDs I've received
are, in my opinion, shit.  However, I have received some real gems as
well.  The Portastatic CD was excellent!  The Nelories CD was pretty
good.  The Hello (the band) CD was fairly decent.  I don't remember
any of the others as standing out...

>I hate to bring up Blur again

Yeah, me, too.

>  I think the only
>things that really sound like XTC are the woo-woo backing vocals on
>"Tracy Jacks" and the skronky, out of tune guitar on "Magic America."

Agreed.  One note: the middle eight in "Tracy Jacks" sounds like The
Jam to me.

> But we're not here to talk about Blur, are we?

No, but I am really beginning to like _Parklife_ quite a lot!

        -- John


From: "Allan Blackman"  <>
Date:         14 Sep 94 09:38:49 GMT+1200
Subject:      River of Orchids

Gidday all
Further to the new XTC track "River of Orchids" - according to the
Virgin NZ rep it is from a forthcoming XTC album to be released next

Remember, you heard it here first :-)


Allan Blackman, Department of Chemistry, University of Otago, Dunedin,
New Zealand.                        e-mail

Marge on innocence/guilt  " my uncle used to say, shoot them all
and let God decide...."


Date: Tue, 13 Sep 94 23:00:30 BST
From: Toby Howard <>
Subject: questions answered

"Wesley Wilson" <> said:

> Also, in re: TGLE, I have the following ?s:
> 1. What are "sodium lights"?

In the UK, electric streetlights with an orange glow. I don't think they
use them anymore in towns, but there are still millions about.

> 2. "Cheap old wine, a thousand quid or two" (What would be the equivalent in
> American money?)

A 'quid' is a pound sterling (in olden times a quid was actually a guinea
-- 21 shillings, one shilling more than a pound -- but its usage
changed). But I don't know what today's exchange rate is...


PS Sorry John, no time to trim my .sig :-)

	[ What sig?  -- John ]


Date: Tue, 13 Sep 1994 19:35:17 -0400 (EDT)
From: Peter Pumpkinhead <52LESSARD@CUA.EDU>
Subject: Re: XTC TRIBUTE

Hi!  My name is Patrick, and I've been listening to XTC since Skylarking
came out.  I've just subscribed to this list and I have to agree with a
previous post, this mailing list is a haven for intelligent discussion on the
net.  So I thought I would throw my two cents on the rumored XTC tribute.

>Date: Tue, 13 Sep 1994 17:08:01 -0400
>From: "Paul Myers" <>

>(snip)...HERE ARE MY SUGGESTIONS, maybe others could send us
>theirs. Sinead doing Dear God, why not? Soundgarden doing Travels in
>Nihilon?  Depeche Mode = Somnambulist, John Linnell of They MIght Be Giants
>singing Ladybird in a polka rhythm. WHY THE HECK NOT!

Hmmmm....why stop there?

Morrisey can sing "The Disappointed".
Billy Bragg can cover "Paper and Iron (Notes and Coins)".
Michael Jackson can go for "The Big Day" or "I Set Myself on Fire"
Sonny Bono on "Mayor of Simpleton"

And as a person in the 18-25 demographic category, I hope they call it:
Generation XTC  (-:

The possibilities are endless...but if this does come to pass, I hope that
whoever is on it doesn't do a hack job on XTC's music (including
_The Big Express_  ;-)  )



Date: Tue, 13 Sep 1994 17:57:31 -0700 (PDT)
From: Jay Nelson <>
Subject: Various Tidbits

Just back from vacation to find a bunch of new XTC discussion in my
mail box...

I saw Trip Shakespeare live in Mpls in 87 or 88 before they signed
a record deal.  I thought they were great.  Didn't buy the recording
though, I don't think it was released in Canada.

There is a band here in Vancouver called Dear God who are rumoured
to be headed for bigger and better things.  I believe they have admitted
on the record to naming themselves after the infamous song.  I don't
find that the XTC influence is very prevalent in their music.  Incidentally,
The Odds are also from Vancouver.  They paid the bills as the house
band at a popular club downtown playing cover tunes for a number of years.
I only heard a few of their songs - rockin' and poppy.

The comment about Mr. Partridge appearing to be pushing Sting off the
stage in the _Urghh..._ movie bring back a vague recollection.  I recall
reading an interview with Andy from the early '80's (during the Police/XTC
tour) where he seemed to have a bit of disdain for Sting (in particular
that young girls seemed to be eager to perform sexual acts with him).
Is it common knowledge that he didn't like Sting?  I, too, regret missing
that tour, particularly since I have no excuse for not going.

Finally, there is a short review of Blur in the latest _Guitar Player_
magazine in which they liken the sound to early XTC.  Personally, I'll


Jay Nelson


From: "Patrick Flynn" <>
Organization:  University of Sydney - Examinations
Date:          Wed, 14 Sep 1994 11:52:15 +1000
Subject:       XTC and America

I have recently read the Twomey book, and it leaves me wondering
about the status of XTC in America.

In terms of their career, they feel that after years of hard graft and
a lot of bad luck - the success they deserved [which went to such limp
lettuce leaves as The Police etc.] was never realised.

Now what I am wondering, is that with the release of the completely
brilliant Nonsuch, and the fact that they still exist, having
outlasted their contempories - have XTC through a rare combination of
perseverance combined with brilliant songwriting, achieved the
Supergroup status they desire by coming in the back door - so to

By saying the back door, I refer Andy's refusal to tour and the
general lack of a decline into stadium pomposity that usually befalls
such aged pop groups [Simple Minds, U2, Big Country] resulting
in hugeness in America.

So how big are they in the USA?

Pat  %-\


Date: Tue, 13 Sep 1994 22:32:54 -0700
From: Kevin Carhart <>
Subject: 1967 comp

Whooppee, I found the 1967 comp with Strawberry Fields covered by Colin's
Hermits!  (Which is Dave playing the instruments and Andy on vocals.)
This is like the last of the special tracks that i've known about for a
long time.. like the songs on the Crown-Shaped Box, and the ones on the
Meeting Place single, all those little instances of a song here and a
song there.
Of course, some day XTC will release "Reagan Bon Bouffe'", a collection
of all their extra tracks that weren't on Rag n Bone Buffet, and then all
the people who bought an import (like this) will be made redundant.  But
oh well, it's worth it.

So does anyone know about the other bands on this comp?  I recognize the
Shamen, Mark Burgess, Death of Samantha and the Bevis Frond, and these may
be pseudonym-bands like Colin's Hermits are, but how about A Witness,
Dave Kusworth & the Bounty Hunters, The Bomb Party, The Thunderbirds,
Spiral Jetty, What? Noise, Styler & Baldwin, Onion Head or the Endorphins?
Are they Imaginary recording artists?
Where does Alan Duffy find these people?

(The comp, by the way, is cool.  This is probably all in the discography,
but the songs covered are Strawberry Fields, Break on Through,
I'm Your Puppet (Box Tops), For What it's Worth (Buffalo Springfield),
20th Century Fox, My White Bicycle, 7 &7 Is, Strange Brew,
Slip Inside This House (13th Floor Elevators), Sunshine of your Love,
Gentle on my Mind, Power Possession (Iron Butterfly), You Only Live
Twice (Nancy Sinatra), and The Beat Goes on (Sonny & Cher.))
Lots of cool variation in how the versions are done.

I'm afraid my formatting may have freaked out, so I'm going to slip out
while I still can.  Hope you can read this....


From: (Andre A M De Koning +31 35 87 4927)
Date: Wed, 14 Sep 94 09:41:05 +0200
Subject: Re: a thousand quid?

Wesley Wilson (with his white Santa beard on) had a few ?'s, among which:

>2. "Cheap old wine, a thousand quid or two" (What would be the equivalent in
>American money?)

Shouldn't that be "Cherry wine, about a quid or two" ? A quid is slang
for a pound, so he's talking about real cheap wine here! This one almost
got me laughing out loud on my way to work (in the bus).


Date: Thu, 15 Sep 1994 17:10:54 +1200
From: (James Dignan)
Subject: XTC video, commercially available?

I have for considerable time been trying to find out if any commercially
available XTC videos exist, but (at least in New Zealand) none appear to
be. Have any ever been compiled? If so, are they still available?
what are the chances that they are available in NZ (Allan Blackman, are you
receiving me? Do you know of any???)

It seems odd that none are around, considering haw enjoyable the song clips
are (from Generals and Majors to All you pretty girls to Mayor of Simpleton)

Anybody got any info?



Date: 15 Sep 94 05:57:00 -0500
Subject: Live XTC Recording

          I have an excellent quality live tape of XTC from 4/81 at Emerald
     City (wherever that is, Ohio?), containing 20 songs circa Black Sea
     tour. A truly inspired performance (and I know I've heard several
     different live tapes). Anyway if you are interested in obtaining a
     copy, via trade or otherwise let me know...Oh yeah I forgot, two
     Chalkhills ago I mentioned a recording by XTC under a psuedonym on
     a tribute album to Jimi Hendrix but I neglected to mention the title.
     This could be old news to all of you but anyway, the album was called
     IF 6 WAS 9, and XTC played "Third Stone from the Sun" under the
     moniker of David Dreams. They did an excellent job.

     He could diffuse any bombshell!


Date:         Thu, 15 Sep 94 16:20:32 EDT
Subject:      Re:XTC on stage with The Police

Melinda's mention of Andy and Sting being on stage together made
me wonder... What do XTCers generally think about the police and Sting?
Obviously XTC and the Police had some things in common for a while,
not the least of which was Hugh Padgham.  Do you folks like the The
Police?  Or Sting now?  (The most annoying thing is you always have
to say "The Police and now Sting," or something like that.)


Date:         Fri, 16 Sep 94 19:14:17 +0200
From: Balazs Brena <KANTOR@URSUS.BKE.HU>
Subject:      Introducing myself

Hi everybody on this Chalkhills mailing list!

I'm on this mailing list almost purely by accident. I live in Hungary
and until cca. a month ago a didn't know anything about XTC (and their
The story is the following:

In 1984(85?) I visited one of my friends who had just returned from
England and he had brought a record with him as a souvenir. I looked
at the cover and there was something 'English Settlement' scribbled
on it. On closer examination I convinced myself that the thing deserved
a listening, so I put it on the player...and immediately fell in love
with it!

The record became one of our local favourites at that time, you know the
music was nothing like I had heard before...and the lyrics was really
great (although I couldn't understand it just by listening, I always
had to look at the lyrics on the cover, hey is that some kind of accent
or a deliberate attempt?). Even the (lyrically ) pedantic and obvious
tracks like 'Melt the guns' had a twist that made them totally enjoyable.

I think my fave songs were 'Senses working overtime', 'English
roundabout' and 'Winter love(?) *** ok I have forgotten the title ***,
I asked everyone about the band and nobody knew anything about this
band...well looking back at it, no wonder as I thought at that time
that the name of the band was 'English Settlement' and that was their
debut album (no kidding, really!).

So years passed by and totally forgot about the accident...until
just a month ago I happened to put my hands on a music book, and lo and
behold! what I see on a page is band named XTC and one of their LPs
is 'English Settlement'...the rest is history...

I still haven't heard anything else from XTC...anyway I have the
discographies and the lyrics (thanx!), so I try to make up for the lost know it is not so easy to get records here in Hungary (well
to get them at a reasonable price anyway)

XTC to everyone!

Keo   (Balazs Brena)


Date: Fri, 16 Sep 1994 14:12:45 -0500 (CDT)
From: neidorf shawn marie <>
Subject: Neophyte XTC fan signs on

Hello, folks.  My name's Shawn Neidorf and I'm from Chicago, though I'm
at the University of Illinois in a little city 2-1/2 hours South of Chgo.  I
don't have a terribly big XTC collection (only Oranges and Lemons and
Nonsuch) so I'm looking for suggestions for additional recordings to pick

For those interested in live tracks, a Chicago radio station-WXRT,
93.1-put out a collection of live stuff from shows and iterviews they've
sponsored and conducted respectively.  On the first volume of the
collection (presumably, Vol. 2 will be released in Dec.) is an acoustic
medley (sp?) of three XTC songs from an in-studio interview. Shamefully,
I cannot remember the songs' names right now, but one is about the five
senses, one about "the things we did on grass" and another is about
farmhands' wages.  The name of the album is "ON XRT: Live from the
Archives, Vol. 1."  Though it was a limited release to raise money for
children's Christmas toys and an AIDS service agency, I'm sure there are
still a few copies in Chgo. music stores.  Calling XRT by phone is
probably the best way to find out; they kept track of which stores had
the thing last winter so fans could find it.  The album, overall, is
ecclectic, but very very good.  It includes pieces from John Lee Hooker,
John Hiatt, Melissa Etheridge, The Replacements, Gin Blossoms, Michael
McDermott, Robin Hitchcock, etc.

What is the song "Poor God" about and where can one find it?  Also, would
anyone care to share his/her takes on "Peter Pumpkinhead"?  A lot of my
friends (and, to a certain extent, myself) are Christian leftists and
love stuff that comes down on their (our) side.




From: "Phillips, Gary" <>
Subject: Hello to this group.
Date: Fri, 16 Sep 94 15:59:00 edt


The message welcoming me to this group asked me to send a brief note to the
saying hello.  Hello.  I bought a copy of 'Black Sea' in '81 after seeing
'Urggh! A Music War'
for the first time.  I have been in love with the band ever since.
 Favourite songs are way too
numerous to mention, but my favourite albums are 'English Settlement',
'Mummer', and 'The
Big Express'.  Liked 'Drums and Wires', not really fond of 'GO2' or 'White
Music'.  Liked parts
of 'Skylarking' but thought 'Oranges and Lemons' was really disappointing
(except for 'Scare
crow People', 'Poor Skeleton Steps Out', and especially 'Across This
Antheap'; they are among the
best stuff they've ever done).  Really liked 'Nonsvch', not the least of the
reasons being because
'Oranges and Lemons' had scared me into thinking that they were starting to
decline.  Glad I've
found this group and its archive because I'll finally learn the lyrics to
'Travels in Nihilon' after all
these years (the only line I ever understood was that bit about '...there's
no youth culture, only
masks they let you rent ...').

Anyway, as I age ungracefully, the bands of my youth fall by the wayside
(anybody want
to buy a couple of Gary Numan records?); but there are still a few bands who
I actively listen
to and appreciate, and XTC are one of those few groups.  (I'm also a HUGE
Richard Thompson
junkie, but that's for another group).  So there.  Hello.


Date: 17 Sep 94 17:12:21 EDT
From: Steve Levenstein <>
Subject: real Dukes influences (links)

   ...and now to continue with The Little Express's interview...

L.E.: How about all these little links?

ANDY: This little girl who does most of the links is called
Lily Fraser, her real name is Emily but she insists on being
called Lily, and she did most of the narration. I just wrote down
this nonsense, and I thought the Puffin was a kind of Alice In
Wonderland type character, and she talks to him while he's
sipping his herbal tea, cause they're usually doing something
like that, smoking a hookah or drinking tea or whatever; and he
just says "You cant get the buttons these days" which is the sort
of thing an old Victorian Puffin would be worried about, they don't
make buttons like they used to and buttons being a very Victorian thing.

L.E.: Did you enjoy doing the Dukes again?

DAVE: Yeah, I think so. It wasn't quite as much fun as the first
one because the novelty had worn off. In a way it was like going
over old ground as we'd covered most of the tricks in the first
one, but I enjoyed working on these songs more because I think
they're better songs.

ANDY: Yeah, I think the songs are generally better quality songs.
It's not as effect-y as 25 O'Clock, it's straighter, maybe more
1968; they're sobering up a bit.

DAVE: I think the piano could have been better, personally.
I'm a bit of a rough kind of player as it is.

ANDY: It sounds dead authentic, it's not TOO good!

COLIN: I think I enjoyed it just as much as the first, it's always
difficult when you're going to do something "two".

L.E.: Will there be anything on film?

ANDY: We've been asked to do a video for "Albert Brown".

L.E.: In a pub?

ANDY: Well, we have to come up with something that feels authentic
and cheap, Virgin says it's gotta be cheap. So maybe we'll go into
a pub, get very drunk, and film it.

   (At this point, Andy and Colin had to leave, so I'll make
    this the end of my transcription. Should I find more stuff
    about the Dukes in other ancient Little Expresses, I shall
    continue...)                     ---> Steve


Date: Sat, 17 Sep 1994 15:49:06 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: Oranges and Lemons

speaking of lemons..
does anyone else think that "Hold Me My Daddy" was musically a rip-off of Paul
simon's South AFrican sound of that year?  Chris Twomey actually
called it a gem.  I found it embarrassing!
Another question.. what does "twin-towned" mean?



Date: Sat, 17 Sep 94 21:27:17 EDT
Subject: Re: introduction to Paul

Hey folks

Per your first letter I am writing to introduce myself and give a very short
of my association with XTC

I am a musician originally from Florida where I discovered XTC in 1981
through my girlfriend (now my wife of 11 years!)

I lived in LA for 10 years and now am in the great Northwest.

I am an artist signed to Warner Brothers in Europe and want nothing more
before I die than to record with the lads from Swindon!!! (And to converse
with Andy about God of course)

My attitude is that XTC are the greatest living pop songwriters and should
get far more recognition than they do. I have every CD and of course love
each and every song!.

So hey if Andy Colin or Dave ever check in tell them I need a producer for my

I'm off to the UK next month and hope to get to Swindon to pay homage
(Actually I've got gigs in Scotland and London and probably won't have time)

See ya



Date: Sun, 18 Sep 94 19:38:22 PDT
From: John Relph <>
Subject: Radio One and On and On

James Robert Campbell <> asks:

>>>                 ~XTC -THE RADIO 1 SESSIONS~
>Does anyone know if this is the same type of stuff the was on the end of
>the _Acoustic Tales_ bootleg??

Yes, possibly even the same recordings.  Recorded for BBC radio.  Like
"Another Satellite" on the _Rag & Bone Buffet_.  I actually like these
BBC recordings because although they sound mostly the same as the
album versions, often they are somewhat simplified because of the
constraints of recording for the BBC in a short time.

"Gene (Sp00n) Yoon" <ST004422@BROWNVM.BROWN.EDU> continues:

>Anybody else
>disappointed that this "new" XTC album is entirely composed of old BBC

Personally, I don't think this is the "new" XTC album, rather it is an
interim offering to pacify us, the relentlessly hungry fans.

"Wesley Wilson" <> asks "Too Many Questions":

>I understand "Golden Cleaners" is still available on CD. Does the music on
>this CD sound anything like The Greatest Living Englishman? (i.e., derivative
>of the classic 60's British bands?)

Yes, but mostly better.  Recorded with a real drummer and a couple of
talented associates.  Some excellent music on this CD.

>3. Has anyone gotten the new Chalkhills yet? I changed my address, so I hope
>my copy gets forwarded.

Chalkhills?  Or did you mean _The Little Express_?

>5. Were there ever any American CD singles from Sam Phillips' "Martinis and

As far as I am aware, no.  There was a promo CD single from the album,
but it had only album cuts.

        -- John


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