Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills #378

                  Chalkhills, Number 378

                Tuesday, 20 September 1994
Today's Topics:
                     Re: Twin Towned
                        Open offer
                   Re: Chalkhills #377
                   Re: Chalkhills #377
              Colin is better than Andy, no?
                       police / xtc
              Be gentle - its my first time.
                    Oranges and Lemons
                       I'm new here
                 What are they doing now?
                        XTC Videos
                Re: Chalkmarks in the Sand
                 Re: An introduction ...
                    Your favorite song


From: (Andre A M De Koning +31 35 87 4927)
Date: Mon, 19 Sep 94 09:57:28 +0200
Subject: Re: Twin Towned asked:
>Another question.. what does "twin-towned" mean?

In Europe, some towns from different countries 'twin' with each other
(and this is mentioned on the sign when you enter the town/village).
This is mostly on a cultural basis, like school-classes that visit each
others towns, special weeks with art exhibitions, etc. Something to get
to know each others countries and cultures better.

Those who haven't found out yet, Andy writes the following in 'Across
This Antheap': "A sign goes up to say hey we're twin towned." also wrote:
>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!

I always thought of it as a sort of joke, not a rip-off. A friendly poke
in the side, know what I mean, eh? eh? ;-)
 -- Andre de Koning


Date: Mon, 19 Sep 94 04:46:47 EDT
Subject: Open offer

Hi there!

I keep seeing letters from people who live in XTC-deprived parts of the
world.  In my own attempt at creating world peace, I'd like to make an offer
to anyone on the planet who cannot buy XTC CDs:

I will send you any XTC disk for its cost (between $10 and $15 US, usually),
plus shipping charges (around $4).  All you have to do on your end is find a
way to get a hold of some US money, and a safe way to get it to the US.  I
don't know how much such a disk would cost in, say, Hungary or Zimbabwe, but
probably more than I'm asking.

While I hope that someone will take me up on this, the offer is extended to
individuals who want to hear more XTC.  I don't want someone asking for 20
copies of Nonesuch and selling them on the black market in Russia for $100

E-mail me if you're interested.

Curtiss Hammock, Atlanta, GA, USA


From: Dames The Wonder Dog <SPXDLF@CARDIFF.AC.UK>
Date: Mon, 19 Sep 1994 10:31:18 GMT
Subject: Re: Chalkhills #377


> me wonder... What do XTCers generally think about the police and Sting?

I love The Police and (especially) Sting.  The Police wrote some
pretty good tunes, but for me Sting really came into his song writing
maturity on his own.  The songs on Ten Summoners Tales have that
quality and everlastingness to them that is present in XTC's songs.
Well, that's my bit.

Dames TWD


Date: Mon, 19 Sep 1994 10:32:44 -0400 (EDT)
From: Stu Shea <>
Subject: Re: Chalkhills #377

On Sun, 18 Sep 1994 <> wrote:

> 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,

DAve Kusworth was (is?) part of the Jacobites, along with Nikki Sudden. Good
stuff, at times sounding like a cross between Fairport Convention
and..umm..the Faces?

> Spiral Jetty

From Hoboken, New Jersey.

Stuart Shea

I thought "I'm Your Puppet" was by James and Bobby Purify, and not the Box


Subject: Colin is better than Andy, no?
Date: Mon, 19 Sep 94 12:07:32 EDT

   Does anyone else find Andy P. just a bit obnoxious? Don't you prefer
the more laid back Colin to the random Andy? If not, have you ever seen
any early XTC videos? Andy's really pushes his nose out at you, begging
to have it swatted.

   Thought I'd start a little war. Enjoy!

- John White   CIS Manager   Electrical South Inc.
"I've forgotten more than I ever knew." - someone else, I forget who.


Date: Mon, 19 Sep 1994 12:17:39 -0500 (CDT)
From: "my world is spinning..." <LEACH@AC.GRIN.EDU> (Arlo B Leach)
Subject: police / xtc

hey there-

after mentioning the police / xtc rivalry, someone asked what we all thought
of the police and sting.  well, here's my view:  for a long time i never
listened to sting because i thought his name was really dumb and...passe.
but then i finally listened to something of his, the _ten summoner's tales_
album, when it came out, and i really enjoyed it.  so now i've been working
my way back through his stuff.  i think he's a really fine songwriter.

how's that for eloquent?

a story:  the police's _synchronicity_ was the first cassette tape i ever
bought, when i was about 10 years old.  but before i could even take it out
of the wrapper, my dad made me return it to the store.  he's a pretty crazy
fundamentalist type, and didn't think i was old enough to be listening to
that kind of stuff.

and (sniff) i've been trying to recover from that blow since then...
(sarcastic smile).



Date: Mon, 19 Sep 1994 13:00:45 -0600
From: (Tom Keekley)
Subject: Polixtce

I just sent this to the sender before i got to the posting asking about the
opinions of the Police and Sting. (then i added some more . . . )
>a lot of bad luck - the success they deserved [which went to such limp
>lettuce leaves as The Police etc.] was never realised.

I agree that XTC deserves MUCH more credit for their brilliance, but The
Police were equally as deserving. If anything, the success of a band like
the Police, built on songwriting, musicianship, and with a timeless sound
would enhace the respect for XTC . . . :-(

>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.

OOOF. Comparing U2 with Simple Minds and Big Country? I would say U2 has
maintained a level of integrity and creativity that, WAY LONG AGO, had left
the other two bands where they belong . . .

(added for you all) I think of the Police as complimentary contempories of
XTC rather than rivals. Both bands brought punk into a fun and accessible
forum and then twisted it into their respective sounds. The notion that
there were personality conflicts at times shouldn't be a surprise - I'm
sure Andy P. and Sting (and Andy S. and Stewart) were punky, bratty pricks
back then. :-)

I like Sting now, too. But it certainly is not an extension of his Police
days. (In terms of content, not quality) '. . . Nothing Like the Sun' and
'The Soul Cages' are fantastic albums, and I doubt he will ever lose the
ability to pen a classic. I just wish Andy Partridge (& CM) classics were
played almost as often . .

 Tom Keekley - Minneapolis, USA, Earth


Organization: Edinburgh University
Date: 19 Sep 1994 19:03:04 +0000
Subject: Be gentle - its my first time.

Dear Hill Dwellers

I'm Alan Boyd, and I've been an XTC follower since the mid-80's when I was
given a copy of Mummer by a friend and the Waxworks cassette by my brother
(the same brother who got a handwritten Dave Gregory reply to a letter about
Rickenbacker guitars and then lost it [its true - I saw it myself]) .  Later
I bought Skylarking when it came out, and then Nonsuch when it came out and
that's when I bought as much as possible of the classic XTC (i.e. with Dave
Gregory), plus some earlier stuff.  Then I subscribed to The Little Express,
and now this - a widening spiral of addiction.

I've been reading the archives for a few weeks now and finally I thought I'd
subscribe so as to increase representation from the UK, and from my age
group (ie quite old:  by my calculation I'm exactly one year older than Andy

Anyone heard Gideon Gaye by The High Llamas?


Date: Mon, 19 Sep 1994 13:11:53 -0600
From: (Tom Keekley)
Subject: Sammy

>>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.

I have a cd single for 'Baby, I Can't Please You'

 Tom Keekley - Minneapolis, USA, Earth


From: Stewart Evans <stewarte@sco.COM>
Subject: Oranges and Lemons
Date: Mon, 19 Sep 1994 15:05:19 -0700 (PDT)


->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!

The backing vocals at the end are certainly Zulu-ish.  But if it's
a rip-off of anyone, I'd say it is of Ladysmith Black Mambazo rather
than Paul Simon...they were singing like that before Paul came to
town, you know.

->Another question.. what does "twin-towned" mean?

I think for two towns to be "twinned" is the same as what's
called "sister cities" hereabouts...that is, they have some
kind of a goodwill agreement & the mayors send each other
bits of local produce, or whatever.

-- Stewart

"All the wrong notes are right."
                               -- Charles Ives, to his music copyist
/* is Stewart Evans in Santa Cruz, CA */


Date: Mon, 19 Sep 1994 21:51:34 -0400 (EDT)
From: Brandon K Snavely <>
Subject: I'm new here

  Hello.  I'm Brandon Snavely, and I just joined the XTC mailing list
today.  I'm currently an undergraduate student at the University of
Pittsburgh, and live in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.  I've been into XTC
since the Oranges & Lemons era, and my favorite albums are, in no
particular order: Nonsuch, Skylarking, Mummer, and Chips from the
Chocolate Fireball by the D.O.S.

  I have an affinity for live music, and I really love the BBC1 Live CD
from the Black Sea tour, as well as the bootlegs from XTC's 1989 radio
tour.  I'm still hoping that Andy will relent and get his butt back up on
stage soon.  The 1989 tour almost proves that he CAN do it, but I just
think he is stubborn and doesn't want to go back on something he said he
would NEVER, ever do again.

  My other favorite bands include Depeche Mode, Pink Floyd, The The, The
Smiths, King Crimson, The Cure, Matthew Sweet, and many others.

  I look forward to hearing from other XTC enthusiasts!

                                       Brandon - "Freeze"


Date: Mon, 19 Sep 1994 21:54:57 -0400 (EDT)
From: Brandon K Snavely <>
Subject: What are they doing now?

   What are XTC doing now?  Is there anything coming out soon.  I've
heard of a new song on a Carmen Sandiego compilation album, but I haven't
actually heard the song yet.  I also heard a pretty sad rumor a few
months ago that Andy and Marianne have split, and that Andy is frustrated
with XTC's lack of commercial prosperity and is close to giving up pop
music all together.  Any info???

                                          Brandon - "Freeze"


Date: Mon, 19 Sep 94 23:16:48 PDT
Subject: XTC Videos

>From: (James Dignan)
>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?

I don't know if this is still in print, but I have a Japanese videodisc
titled "Look Look."  It's on Virgin/Pioneer, and was released in
1982.  Running time is 45 minutes and it contains the videos for:

        This Is Pop
        Statue of Liberty
        Are You Receiving Me
        Life Begins at the Hop
        Making Plans For Nigel
        Towers of London
        Respectable Street
        Generals and Majors
        All of a Sudden (It's Too Late)
        Ball and Chain
        Senses Working Overtime

 Steve Schechter          | Sybase Professional Services New York
 212-596-1156              | "In all matters of opinion, our adversaries   |             are insane."  -- Oscar Wilde


Date: Mon, 19 Sep 94 20:39:15 PDT
From: John Relph <>
Subject: Re: Chalkmarks in the Sand (James Dignan) asks:
>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?

  Yes, one (count 'em, one) commercial video has been compiled, called
_Look Look_, here's the info:

Look Look: A Video Compilation
       Collection of promotional videos, includes some interview
       footage. This is Pop? (single version); Statue of Liberty
       (edit); Are You Receiving Me? (edit); Life Begins at the Hop;
       Making Plans for Nigel (edit); Towers of London (edit);
       Respectable Street (single version); Generals and Majors
       (edit); All of a Sudden (It's Too Late); Ball and Chain; Senses
       Working Overtime (edit).
       + VHS-PAL, Virgin Video UK, VIRV 013D, 1982.

       Best Hits
       Japanese issue of Look Look.
       + Beta-NTSC/CAV?-NTSC, Virgin Japan, ?, 1982.

Long out of print.

neidorf shawn marie <> writes:
>What is the song "Poor God" about and where can one find it?

  That's "Dear God" and it's on _Skylarking_, which you should find
immediately.  My other fave is _The Big Express_.

>  Also, would
>anyone care to share his/her takes on "Peter Pumpkinhead"?

  About a pumpkin rotting on the fence.  The main character is any
charismatic do-gooder, offending those in power, who then need to have
him (or her) killed.  Can't have any uprisings now, can we? writes:
>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?

  No, because XTC were doing faux African music since 1982.  Listen
carefully to _English Settlement_.  "It's Nearly Africa" was included
on the WOMAD (World of Music and Dance) album, released to enlighten
people to musicks of other (read "non-western") cultures.

>  Chris Twomey actually
>called it a gem.  I found it embarrassing!

  Perhaps that is why the song is powerful.  It certainly gets a

>Another question.. what does "twin-towned" mean?

  I always thought it meant a city with a "sister city".  Many cities
have "sister" cities somewhere else in the world.  And I always think
of Minneapolis - St. Paul in the US.  Somehow the city considers
itself more important when it's "twin-towned".  I just like the mixing
effect on those two words...

        -- John


Date: Mon, 19 Sep 1994 21:44:20 -0700 (PDT)
From: Francis Owen McDonnell <>
Subject: Re: An introduction ...

        Hello, my name is Frank McDonnell and I have benn an XTCphile for
the last seven years or so.  I can thank my ex-humanities prof, Chris Zinn,
for letting me know about this service.
        I first heard the wonders of XTC from a girlfriend's brother, and
the rest has been history. XTC's music has never failed me, though I must
confess an initial dislike for _Skylarking_ (a problem which was soon
after remedied by intense listening). Every song has some component which
reminds me of their colective genius.  This is probably why the title of
my radio show for the past two years has been "Andy Partridge is God!"
(not ment as a slight to Colin or Dave).  It is refreshing to know that
there are so many XTC fans hidden in the woodwork across the globe.
        I did notice that a question was asked in Chalkhills #377 about
whether or not XTC fans enjoy the Police and/or Sting as a solo artist.
I will chime in with my two cents and say that I enjoy both The Police
and Sting.  _The Soul Cages_ is a superb album. Granted, it can't touch
_English Settlement_, but who could!

        A pleasure to be on board,

                        Frank McDonnell


From: Kevin Carhart <>
Subject: abomination
Date: Tue, 20 Sep 1994 00:48:33 -0700 (PDT)

For you Dukes completists, I found that "go f--- yourself with your atom
bomb" song.  It's by Tuli Kupferberg,who used to be in the Fugs!  Maybe this
is already known, and no longer a mystery.  The atom bomb song isn't very
good, but TK has another song on his album that's pretty cool: Are you going
to Vanity Fair... Conde, Nast, something, and something.
It's on his album on Shimmy Disc.


separated at birth: John Relph and Garry Trudeau?  From my sole meeting with
JR, I think they look vaguely similar.  Something to mull over.......


Date: Tue, 20 Sep 1994 22:31:00 -0400 (EDT)
From: Greg Langmead <>
Subject: Your favorite song

I thought I could get us all out of the rut of talking about _other_
bands, and back on track with some good ol' XTC discussion by asking every
subscriber the following questions:

1) What is your favorite XTC song?  I.e. if all XTC songs but one had to
be destroyed to save humanity, which one would you pick to listen to as
your sole memory of the boys?

2) If you had to give a friend a song recmmendation for XTC, that is, you
had to suggest one (and only one) song that, in your opinion, best
represented what XTC's music is, so that person could judge from that song
whether he or she liked XTC, what would that song be?  If this song is
different from the first, why do you think that is so?  Do you understand
them so well that more obscure songs sound better than representative ones?

3) XTC Lemons.  Is there a song, or whole album, that you listen to and
say to yourself, "Self, where the hell did this come from?  What were they

I think that "Senses Working Overtime" answers the first two questions for
me.  I just adore this song, and think it perfectly encapsulates XTC's wit
and genius.  On CD, on a good sound system, man is it great!  It has a
mixture of electric and acoustic sounds in it, which is appropriate and
illustrative of their music.  The lyrics are poetic and poignant.  'nuff
said on that point.  Question number three brings up "Human Alchemy."  I
have never warmed to this song, and don't quite understand why Andy says
that it is his personal favorite (at least right now, it could change
tomorrow, he said in something someone posted here.)  The chanting is
cheesy, I think, and the message is trite.  Slavery was ended over a
century ago in most of the world!  Why harp on it now?  Electronic
gimmicks like heavy echo on the "Oooryabah" bits don't make this
underproduced song any better, either.  I just don't think it says
anything, and it says it in a boring way that sounds cheap.  Much on
Mummer has this very thinness of production as its strength, like
"Ladybird" or "Love on a Farmboy's Wages."  Or even the B-sides like
"Jump" and most of all, "Desert Island" totally blow "Human Alchemy" away.

You may also want to either add questions, or bring into doubt whether the
questions here can be fairly answered at all.  To single out one song as
good does not short shrift other songs, in my opinion.  It merely
indicates that you think the boys were on the ball that day, more than
other days.  That's to be expected, I think.

Anyway, I really wanted to throw this issue out there, if for no other
reason than to give myself something to read besides discussions of Blur.
I'm all in favor of trading band faves here, but I don't think that
extended discussions of any other group besides XTC really belong.  Just
my humble opinion

Greg L.


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