Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #414

              Chalkhills Digest, Number 414

                  Saturday, 4 March 1995

Today's Topics:
 Survey smurfup correction and Andy's _O and L_ comments
                Earn Enough Awards For Us
                Re: Chalkhills Digest #413
             Steve Krause: Live 105 Interview
            Re: How Many English Settlements?
         New Member and Re:CD Shopping, Part Deux
              it's all coming back to me now
               No letting out just what we
                Re: Chalkhills Digest #413
                Re: Chalkhills Digest #413
                   The Usual Potpourri
              Always Winter Never Christmas
                      Re: 2/3 of XTC
                  "Pink Thing" solution


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When he cuts with sticky silver snippers...


Date: Mon, 27 Feb 95 14:41:18 EST
From: (Patty Haley)
Subject: Survey smurfup correction and Andy's _O and L_ comments

Hi everyone:

When I was over at my friend's house last weekend watching those
XTC videos he showed me a copy of the _Oranges and Lemons_ press
release.  It has comments on each song from Andy.  I am slowly
working my way through the back issues of the digests, but I'm
at a point in time where it would have been posted, so I figured
I'd go ahead and type 'em in for your enlightenment.

One thing afore I get on business:  I just noticed that I asked
you 20 questions on the survey (just like the parlor game) but
mentioned later in the survey about question #17 being tabulated
after numbers 1-16.  I added on questions after I wrote the
survey, so #17 is now #20 (the essay question).  Also, can you
*please* have all survey answers in to me before March 15th so
I can do run the stats through the thingy in our lab that week?
Thanks again for your help.  Lesson learned:  never post a survey
to a list without getting at least a half-decent night's sleep.

OK, here's the Andy comments (reproduced without permission, mea culpa):

Andy Partridge recently talked about XTC's ninth official album and
fourth on Geffen Records [boo! hiss!  -Patty], _Oranges and Lemons_,
a two-record set produced by Paul Fox and recorded in Los Angeles during the
summer of 1988.

"Garden of Earthly Delights":  "Here I'm introducing children to the
world:  'This is your playpen.  Enjoy the place.  Come and be responsible
and do great things in life.'  It's very optimistic and hopeful and a
nice fanfare to open the album with."

"The Mayor of Simpleton":  "This started out as a reggae thing, sad and
forlorn.  Then I scrapped that and rewrote it and hit on this chiming,
droning musical figure.  It fitted better the lyrical idea that you don't
need vast academics to be a feeling individual.  Emotion is worth more
than bits of paper."

"King For a Day":  "This is one of the three songs Colin (Moulding)
wrote.  All of them are rather down and dark but put to jolly music,
which makes them even more poignant.  The song's about ass-licking and
making a fool of yourself just to get fame and riches and success.
The song's a commando knife, dark and cutting.  That's a guess at what
it's about but I have seen the files and photographed them with my
bow-tie camera so it's an educated guess."

"Here Comes President Kil (sic) Again":  "When I walk the dog, I get
ideas, and the pace I walk determines the tempo of the song.  This
one's like people chanting a nursery rhyme.  As for the lyrics, well,
I didn't vote.  I feel it doesn't do anything because the people you
vote for climbed up the ladder like in 'King For A Day.'  When you vote,
you hand over power to them and so then they can kill in your name.  It
becomes ironic that the scum rises to the top and your vote keeps them
floating up there.  You vote one out and get in another."

"The Loving":  "My first idea was if 'the loving' was a product in a box
that you could buy.  But it got watered down and the lyrics grew.  Now it
simply says that you need to give it and get it.  We made the music grand
and large to underscore that this means _everybody_.  It's 'all you need
is love' in another form."

"Poor Skeleton Steps Out":  "It's a silly idea that the last ethnic group
to be liberated are skeletons.  They're unfailing in their support of
human beings but have to wait until we die to achieve their freedom. In
the song, the skeleton gets a night out."

"One of the Millions":  "Colin here pinpointed who want to do things than
they are capable of doing.  So they fall back into the ordinary, everyday
things.  Ties to the mundane are so strong.  You have great designs in life
but they don't amount to anything.  Home and hearth are too comfortable."

"Scarecrow People":  "This is my favorite song on the album.  Humans are
the most deadly, uncaring, devious and destructive creatures on the planet.
So I invented a Scarecrow Land and the aliens from there fly in and want
to know how we make war and mess things up because humans are so brilliant
at it.  They admire all the bad things we do and are as dead as we are
 from the neck up.  It's a world-turned-upside-down song.  There's an
American folk flavor to it also.  We had a big sheet of paper tacked to
the wall of the studio that said "needs sense of Idaho."  [Not bad, eh,
John? -Patty]

"Merely a Man":  "Someone at the record company in England asked me to
write a banal hit single.  I said, 'Right.  I'll show them.'  It was a
challenge.  So I wrote some sexist nonsense.  But it wasn't me.  I was
lying.  And I scrapped it.  But I liked the riff and the title.  I
rewrote it in a very boastful way about not following leaders, certainly
religious ones.  They're only people.  The most anyone can offer you is

"Cynical Days":  "This concludes Colin's cynical trip.  And it's his
darkest one, his moment of pain.  The world is getting him down and he
doesn't want it to.  It's blunt and honest.  Frankly, I wish I'd written

"Across This Antheap":  "This song's been around for awhile.  It started
out bluesy and swampy but the music didn't fit the lyrics.  It's a list
song, listing what humans do.  There's a relentlessness about it, of
people swarming everywhere."

"Hold Me My Daddy":  "Most boys/men can't talk to their fathers or show
affection.  It's not what we're supposed to do.  It's okay to say 'Love
you, mom' but it's taboo to say, or at least it's not easy, to say it to
your dad.  I played it for my father and he wondered what the hell it was
about.  It was a bit touchy.  Maybe he was embarrassed.  It was a very
difficult song to write."

"Pink Thing":  "It's either about a penis or a son.  Whatever you hear
first, that's what it's about.  The penis idea is obvious.  The son part
might not be.  But you can interpret the song as a father talking to his
son about girls.  The titele comes from the fact that my wife and I used
to call our first child 'the pink thing.'"

"Miniature Sun":  "The first half goes up--a love song, how great it is.
What great things the sun does for life.  Then something happens in the
middle.  He's been rejected.  And the other half is all down.  He's upset
and angry.  And the sun is cruel.  As far as I'm concerned, this song
didn't come out Mel Torme enough."

"Chalk Hills (sic) and Children":  "This is largely about my rejection
of the rock 'n' roll lifestyle.  I'm mundane.  I like to gravitate toward
the kids, privateness (sic).  I'm not into fame at all.  When I get a
slightly swelled head, it's nice to be punctured and drift down to earth
and become stable again.  Show business is really a dream and not what
life's about.  Life's about the glorious everyday.  It's not really me
when I'm treated like a famous person.  This is real-life.  Earth-colored."


So there you have Andy's comments.  There are four pages' worth of press
release blahdeblah that I can enter later on (maybe as a thank-you for
answering the survey :-)), but I thought Andy's comments were most interesting.
He doesn't vote!!!!!  Or at least he didn't in *that* election.  Bad boy!
I'd really like to find out what he'd feel if we *couldn't* vote, as I'm
sure he'd be screaming for it then.

As far as his comments about "Chalkhills and Children" go, I can't help but
still have that distasteful feeling come up whenever I think about some of
the comments he made on that MTV "120 Minutes."  I was listening to "Down
a Peg" yesterday (thanks again, Jason) and thought that Andy (and we) are
*much* better off with a jes' plain folks Andy.  That comment he'd made
to the effect of his music being his "feces that's for someone else to
play with" really made me angry!  I'm not into buying shit, even if it's
Andy's.  I think his ego was really on overdrive for that show, even though
some of the things he said were totally on-target and well said.  May he
revel and stick to the glorious everyday.

One thing about _Oranges and Lemons_:  I was amazed to see it slagged off
so heavily in the digests when it was released.  This album makes me feel
so good whenever I hear it.  I've been going through some heavily "cynical
days" of late, and this album can still pull me out of a funk.  There are
such moments of beauty:  "The Loving" is a truly beautiful song, and brings
Andy's humanist nature to the forefront.  I really love it.  And the first
three songs!!!!  Yow, stronger than the first three songs I can think of
on *any* album, XTC or no.  I have never been a real Graham Parker fan, but
I do remember that in 1990 I saw him say in a magazine that _Oranges and
Lemons_ was the best album of 1989.  I gained respect for the guy tenfold.


Catherine Wheel World Wide Web Home Page:
"Isn't it a shame you kicked that girl?"
"Isn't it a shame she kicked you back?" - "Shake You Donkey Up" - XTC


Date:         Mon, 27 Feb 95 15:54:04 EST
From: "Gene (Sp00n) Yoon" <ST004422@BROWNVM.BROWN.EDU>
Subject:      Earn Enough Awards For Us

Spike Burnett said:
> I want somebody to tell me why XTC has never recieved any
> kind of Grammy or some other kind of award besides praise
> from music lovers.

As everybody knows, Grammies are awarded not on the merits of talent or
musical ability but on sales, AKA the promotional talent of the record
company [ semi ;) ].  And anyway, Andy Partridge is a party pooper when
it comes to these things, like when he refused (again) to lip-sync "Dear
God" at a modest Canadian radio awards ceremony after the song was voted
a favorite by Toronto listeners, and he prevented XTC from even showing
up to the MTV awards when the same song was nominated for three awards.
But then again, awards ceremonies are annoying and pointless, right?

p.s. it's a shame about Jo.


Date: Mon, 27 Feb 95 16:48 EST
From: Jeffrey Langr <>
Subject: Growing...

From: Reifel Edward M <>:

EMR>During my years of collecting their albums, there were some that took
EMR>getting used to. I have found, however, that the ones that don't strike
EMR>me right off the bat are the ones i like the most. I don't think any of
EMR>their music is bad though.

I agree wholeheartedly.  I didn't even listen to the second side of Drums &
Wires more than once when I first got it, until I actually bought and
over-listened to all of Black Sea.  I hated Big Express and Mummer when
they were released and now they're the albums that I actually listen to
more than any others.  I did like Nonsuch when it first came out; now much
of really bugs me (except Then She Appeared); the whole thing sounds way
too much like Oranges & Lemons.

Great music grows on you and takes some time to fully appreciate, I suppose...



Date: Mon, 27 Feb 1995 17:16:51 -0500
Subject: Re: Chalkhills Digest #413

>The Buggles
>"Age of Plastic." The song titles remind me of old Helium Kidz' titles: "I
>Love You (Miss Robot)," "Astroboy (and the Proles on Parade)," etc.

>I'm here to tell you
>that there is a group of boys in Athens, Ga who call themselves Helium Kidz...

What is the connection here or lack thereof?  Those Athenian Helium Kidz
dressed up in newsprint suits like on Mummer and played a frito joint for
*free*!  It was crazy!  I heard at least one guy speculating as to whether
these were indeed imposters.  As to the above I'm now wondering if I
understood him correctly.


Date: Mon, 27 Feb 95 14:42:13 PST
From: "Patricia A McFadden" <pamcfadden@EFANW.NAVFAC.NAVY.MIL>
Subject: Steve Krause: Live 105 Interview

Steve Krause mentioned a live 105 radio interview of XTC and I too had
somewhat of a flashback...I was returning to the Bay Area and had been
driving for almost four hours when I tuned to that station.  I was thrilled
when I heard the interview, but grew increasingly aggrevated when the hills I
was driving betwixed and between would alter the reception.  I considered
stopping on the side so I could hear the rest of the interview, but was weary
enough of being in the car.  Luckily I came out of the hills in time to hear
the last half hour or so.  I recall them being quite humorous and got the
feeling that they were mocking the types of things, like guest radio hosting,
even a band like XTC has to do to market themselves in today's music market.
Ahh...memories...thanks Steve.

I'm interested in hearing people's opinion of Explode Together, the live dub
sessions.  It seems that it can be a test of an XTC fan.



Date: Tue, 28 Feb 1995 13:29:58 +1300
From: (James Dignan)
Subject: Re: How Many English Settlements?

From: (Jessica Pumpkinhead)
>In Chalkhills #411 a buncha people kept saying
>that English Settlement had all these kool extensive
>liner notes w/lyrics and other stuph.  I was wondering
>if there is more than one version of that album, or
>if they were talking about the LP, because I have the
>CD and all that's there are the names of all the songs
>and who wrote them.  Can anyone explain this?

Well bessica, um, jessica, I was equally surprised when I first saw that
some copies of the LP were a double album. My copy was a single album with
a lovely tan-brown inner sleeve with extensive lyrics and a piccy of the
band. Later pressing have several more tracks (lemme see... fly on the
wall, down in the cockpit, It's nearly africa, knuckle down and leisure,
 from memory - is don't lose your temper on there somewhere too?), a darker
cover, and various features of the band's name and the Uffington horse are
different, too. Personally, I prefer the single album, as most of the extra
tracks are pretty much filler.

Hope that helps


James Dignan, Department of Psychology, University of Otago.

Ya zhivu v' 50 Norfolk St., St. Clair, Dunedin, New Zealand
pixelphone / steam megaphone NZ 03-455-7807

   * You talk to me as if from a distance
   * and I reply with impressions chosen from another time, time, time,
   * from another time                     (Brian Eno)


Date: Mon, 27 Feb 1995 21:45:53 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Shamed

You're right, I am shamed for not taping that bunch of XTC video, but I
am the one has to look in the mirror every day. Oh well, catch it next time.

But surely you must be ashamed for creating that fictional character
"BassPlyrJo" just to get us all stirred up! :-)

Also, regarding the prices some people quoted for "Look, Look " video,
I think they were very inflated. The videos are available in Australia, and
i got mine for $10 (that would be $US7.00) at a sale. Check with Virgin
Australia is all I can suggest, but remember, they are on PAL system
incompatible with NTSC here in US.

Joe Ierano


Date: Mon, 27 Feb 95 20:05:52 PST
From: "Ekrem Soylemez" <>
Subject: New Member and Re:CD Shopping, Part Deux


I am a new Chalkhillian, and I seem to be pretty new to XTC by comparison (I
have only been listening for about 8 years :-). They are unquestionably one of
my favorite bands. I find that I will periodically go back become totally into
one of their albums that I have not listened to in months.  This has happened
to me twice since discovering Chalkhills a couple of weeks ago: when I saw the
Lyrics to English Settlement, and when I read the interpretations of "Pink
Thing" (a song that I had never before cared for too much). I hope that
reading Chalkhills will continue to inspire me to re-listen to these albums
that I love. :-)

On another note,
Wes wrote:
> I saw Shriekback's "Big Night Music" - would have included it as a second
> choice but wanted to ask around in here first before buying.

I highly recommend this album. Shriekback shares the mantle with XTC as my
favorite band, and I think this album is most similar to XTC. (Of the ones I



Date: Mon, 27 Feb 95 23:05:03 PST
Subject: Introduction

              I am an XTC fan.  I am also a musician who writes and records.
        The begining of my fasination with XTC started when a friend
         pointed out the similarities between XTC and the Beatles. The song
         that really peeked my interest was "1000 umbrellas".  I believe
         that XTC is music of high quality.  The songs I love are too
         numerous to mention here, but I love XTC becuase of the insight,
         warmth, depth, passion, and melody.  I would assume that many of
         you are musicians and even if your not I'm sure we will have
         plenty to chat about. I'm new to this kind of communication so if
         anyone has any tips I'm all ears.



From: Sean Bentley <>
Date: Mon, 27 Feb 95 17:20:58 PST
Subject: it's all coming back to me now

i hate to repopen the Producers thread but i was skimming the back
issues and suddenly remembered something that i don't think anyone
brought up at the time: wrote:

How about Clive Langer and Alan Winstanley, who produced parts of They Might
Be Giants' "Flood?"

        >>i seem to recall that Elvis Costello (and others) as being of the
opinion that Langer and Winstanley had ruined his album Goodbye Cruel
World and set him off on the wrong track for several albums. They did
pretty much overproduce and mooshify (?) that release, IMHO.
What about Martin Rushent. Is he still around? He did some work with
Pete Shelley but is most remembered by me for his work with Gentle
Giant, whom i sort of sling in the same very general bin with XTC and
"intellectual multi-instrumental pop."



Date: 28 Feb 1995 11:47:24 -0500
From: "Russell Shaddox" <>
Subject: No letting out just what we

John Relph <> wrote:

> Mr. BassPlyrJo wrote in to UNSUBSCRIBE and to say that we're all a bunch
> of fanatics with a lot of time on our hands.

I was saddened to see that Mr. BassPlyrJo bailed, particularly since I
was planning to send a post about how polite everyone is in this
newsletter (and using the responses to BassPlyrJo's post as an
example). The responses to the Colin's Lack of Fretless Bass post were
universally polite and good natured, which was heartening to me; after
all, everyone makes mistakes, and it doesn't mean you deserve to be
insulted or made to feel small.

Anyone who has snooped around some of the more brutal newsgroups out
there (alt.irc, for example, or any of the political newsgroups) has
probably been as shocked as I by the number of incredibly rude people
on the Internet these days. The physical distance separating all of us
must have something to do with this, since people are slam-dunking
their colleagues over the smallest of transgressions. It's as if a
group of self-appointed experts has decided that they're the toll
keepers on the infobahn.

That's why the only newsletter or newsgroup I subscribe to right now
is Chalkhills. No insults, no posturing; just a friendly, lively
exchange of info.  With a 11-month-old son, a full-time job and more,
I most assuredly do not have a lot of time on my hands. But what time
I can spare, I'm happy to spend talking with the ladies and gentlemen
of Chalkhills. Thanks for listening --

Russell Shaddox   ;6^n
You mustn't change the things that make you what you are ...


Date: Tue, 28 Feb 1995 12:23:46 GMT
Subject: Re: Chalkhills Digest #413

Dear All,

Several points:

I have NEVER seen any XTC in a bargain bucket in Britain.

I subscribed to the Robyn Hitchcock and the Elvis Costello mailing
lists for a while and they are unreadable.  Thanks everyone for
writing such interesting and (mostly) relevant stuff here.

I recommend  Martinis and Bikinis by Sam Philips with our lad Colin
on it.  It takes a while to get into it but it's FAB.  Definitely
deserved of the title of Tower's Pulse best album on 1994.  Go check
it OUT!  (I live 60 miles from Swindon so I know!)

Dames TWD

(Life is good in the greenhouse:XTC)


Date:         Tue, 28 Feb 95 14:46:45 EST
From: Peter <ST002436@BROWNVM.BROWN.EDU>
Subject:      Mummer

Last night I was listening to Mummer on headphones and the thought occurred to
me that Andy really sounds like a cow when he hits the line, "shilling for the
fellow who milks the herd" on Love On A Farmboy's Wages. Me And The Wind is
my vote for one of the most overlooked Andy songs. It has the perfect blend of
tweaked verse followed by unbelievably simple, soaring, gorgeous, perfect
melodic chorus. When he merges the two parts at the end the fit is so
unexpected and delicious. It almost hurts to listen to it.
     Also with the recent discussion of Thomas Dolby I thought I might mention
that he has   an e-mail address listed in the liner notes to the new "Mind's
Eye" disc but I sold my copy. Does anybody else out there know the address?
There's also a big article on him in the new Keyboard magazine. He doesn't
mention anything XTC-related but  he talks a lot about his new work trying to
score interactive video games.


Date: 28 Feb 1995 13:12:41 U
From: "Bob Sherwood" <>
Subject: None

     Ill met by netlight, brother mine.  Strange to gaze upon your words
after all these years apart.    Bad enough you disowned me after I spilled
beer on your original green paper "Black Sea" cover, destroying our fragile
family in the process and plunging mother into despair and madness...well,
despair, anyway.  Twice cursed you were when I found you'd taped the first
"Dukes" over my prized cassette of Syd Barrett home demos (took a while to
notice the change...).
     Strange that we should be reunited thus, across a void joined only by
fiber optics and Ethernet, in a forum populated by strange people who discuss
Andy Partridge's toilet habits at great, studious length.
     Strange again that upon reuniting we should be rent asunder yet one more
time by your peurile assertions regarding my interpretation of "Pink Thing"
(although the Noriega bit was a major laff).  I should like to _close_ this
subject ONCE AND FOR ALL, do you hear?  Never again shall we let our familial
strife and petty arguments clutter these precious meadows of discourse, these
eldritch moors of mystery and conjecture that happy others call Chalkhills.
Ah, these few...these happy few.
     Yet I digress, Harrison- you will dearly pay for your squirrulous (that
means _like a squirrel_) intimations regarding Moulding's sexuality.  That
will not be stood for here- here in this bastion of truth and dignity.
Better call him an eternal fretted bass player than question the roots of his
allegiance with  ANDYhood.
     "Pink Thing" is no simple political tract.  "Pink Thing" is NOT about a
baby.  Nor is it about Colin's, or Andy's or Dave's member, or the member of
any other member.  As is the case with every other worthwhile piece of human
artistic expression since the dawn of recorded history, it happens to be
about MINE.
     Oh, by the way-
     Put your vote on the left,
     Part your hair on the right,
     And put your world on the left.

                                       Your e_strange_d brother,
                                             Robert W. Sherwood


From: Byron K Wright <>
Subject: Coverage
Date: Tue, 28 Feb 1995 23:03:11 -0500 (EST)

Where cover tunes are concerned, there exist two primary (though
neither exclusive nor exhaustive) archetypes: 1) the straight, or
faithful, cover, often used to honor genius; and 2) the
unrecognizable, sometimes mocking, cover.  XTC has performed
both, and I will use examples from the XTC catalogue to illustrate
how the two archetypes may ideally function.

XTC appeared on a Captain Beefheart tribute collection circa 1989,
I'm sure you will all recall, to which they contributed a perfectly
rote version of "Ella Guru".  It was easily the best piece contained
therein, precisely because XTC was the only contributor wise
enough not to attempt to "interpret", nor thus dilute, Beefheart's
effort.  Confronted with Beefheartian(!) genius, what other real
choice did they have?  Surely XTC understood the foolish vulgarity
inherent in any attempt to recreate such a brilliant song in any form
other than the original, and their cover of it adhered to the first
archetype above; perhaps it stands as an indictment of the tribute
album concept itself, unwitting or no.  Whatever the case, only
BAD songs are improvable - interpretive reinvention works only
when performed upon weak songs, which stand to benefit from

...Which brings us to the second cover-archetype, as exemplified by
XTC's remake of Bob Dylan's "All Along the Watchtower"
(attention "White Music" detractors: see close of side 1).  Not even
the considerable genius of Jimi Hendrix could make that song
listenable, because he failed to free it suitably from the constraints
of its original form.  AAtW remains virtually the only thing
Hendrix ever recorded that I thoroughly despise.  However, XTC
took the same song, bathed it in their own invigorating wash and
sneer, and emerged with a fully hilarious and wonderful gleaming
gem (almost) all their own, . Andy Partridge practically hiccoughs,
belches, and squawks the lyrics in marvelous and deserved
mockery.  XTC, in sum, took a BAD song and made it BETTER
(apologies to The Liverpudlians), exactly by rendering it nearly
unrecognizable.  Even if XTC were indeed die-hard Zimmerphiles,
as doubtless SOMEONE will bother to claim that they are/were, the
effective transformation and (in this case) implicit mockery remain.

Of course, covers of any kind are best left in abler and craftier
hands than those typically found on the likes of Crash Test
Dummies, which, if I'm not mistaken, in fact possess rather useless
appendages.  Nonetheless, while I don't care for the band's music,
I do respect their approach to covering "Peter Pumpkinhead".  If
you must cover it, do it as straight as possible - it's fine already.


     * * *   Pere Ubu like, ROCKS, man !!!   * * *


Date: Wed, 1 Mar 1995 00:12:55 -0500
Subject: Re: Chalkhills Digest #413

In Chalkhills #413, John R. wrote:

>Well, folks, I think we successfully scared off BassPlyrJo.  After
>everybody wrote in to say that Colin played doodooloads (thanks,
>Patty) of Fretless Bass, Mr. BassPlyrJo wrote in to UNSUBSCRIBE >and to
>say that we're all a bunch of fanatics with a lot of time on our
>hands.  I plead guilty (to at least half of the above).

What did this guy expect?  He claims to be a bass player, gets his information
 wrong, and is surprised that a number of people call him on it?  Oh dear!
Tsk tsk...

Of the odd ten or so lists that I subscribe to, the people on this list tend
to be of the most intellegent and concise that I have run across.  Fanatics
with too much time on our hands?  Good riddance, Mr. BassPlyrJo.

John L.


Date: Wed, 1 Mar 1995 13:45:50 -0500

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Hello there fellow XTC lovers! My name is Andrew J. Ricks, but I go by Andy.

I learned of your interesting organization through Netscape at the
Mansfield, Ohio branch campus of the Ohio State University. I have been
attending this campus in my hometown for five long and boring years.

Unfortunately, there isn't much in the way of musical diversity in the
area, unless you consider the recent resurgance of "alternative" music, a
genre over which I have been curious since the early eighties. No one seems
to recall that R.E.M., for example recorded decent music before 'Document.'

I came across XTC about fall semester of 1988 when I was attending Ashland
College in Ashland, Ohio (apx 15 mis NE of Mansfield). Of course, this is
long after XTC got together and by this point had reached notoriety from

Am looking forward to correspondence, as I am very uneducated as far as
knowledge of the band goes. At this point I have only heard probably 50% of
their material.

zen man


Date: 1 Mar 1995 13:43:29 -0500
From: "Wesley Wilson" <>
Subject: The Usual Potpourri

For the newcomer: I have two XTC CDs for sale: English Settlement and
Skylarking. Both are American pressings in near new condition. $6 each plus
$1.50 for postage and handling per CD.

Sigh...I have yet to see the Terry Hall CD I ordered arrive in the mail. And
yet, someone in Chalkhillsland has it. What's the deal, I wonder?!

By the way, at lunch I went out again CD shopping at Tower Records. They have
a "60's" section now (oh boy!) and I saw a disc by a band named The Master's
Apprentices...something like 25 tracks on it on the RAVEN label. I was drawn
to it because there was a melting clock on the cover (really psychedelic) and
the song titles look interesting. Does anyone know anything about this band?
Were they any good? I ended up getting The Monkees' "Pisces, Aquarius,
Capricorn & Jones, Ltd.", which is a 60's closet classic! Surely their best.
Rhino does great rereleases. I love 60's music; heck, I even think late 60's
tracks by The Association were good!

Thanks to everyone who's written lately; sorry I don't have time to get back
to you all...60's psychedelic enthusiasts, send mail! I'd like to hear from

Finally, thanks to all who responded about Shriekback's "Big Night Music."
It's on my list of CDs to buy.


"Is there anything good inside of you? If there is, I really want to know."
(Zappa, "Andy")


Date: Wed, 1 Mar 1995 19:59:43 -0500 (EST)
From: "Jason C. Langley" <>
Subject: Always Winter Never Christmas

While watching "The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe" with my daughter, I
heard Lucy exclaim that the White Witch had cast an evil spell over Narnia
making it "Always Winter and Never Christmas".  Assuming Andy got the phrase
 from "The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe", the XTC song "Always Winter Never
Christmas" is a clever twist sprung from the phrase.

Translated for all you aspiring songwriters: Chrildrens books can be a
good source of inspiration.



From: (Andre de Koning)
Date: Fri, 3 Mar 95 12:07:19 +0100
Subject: Re: 2/3 of XTC wrote in Chalkhills #412:

>My advice to Colin and Dave......Kid, stand and snap your
>cord off.....'nuff said. 2/3 of XTC playing live is damn tempting, plus you
>KNOW they would perform some old stuff on tour....

Hope it will be better then in this recurring dream I have lately:

In it I visit a small and dark record store in Amsterdam where I finally
found Andy's latest solo record (not a CD). On the way back to the
railway station I see two guys playing music on the street. It sounds
familliar... it's 'King for a day' in a strange arrangement, played on
just an acoustic guitar and an upright bass! The voice sounds a lot like
that on the record, a bit rougher though. When I come closer I recognize
the faces: it's Colin and Dave! They look 'different' with their
three-day beards. Their clothes are shabby and dirty. It's cold. They're
wearing woolen caps and gloves without fingers. In front of them is an
old hat (kinda like one Andy used to wear) turned upside down. A paper
which has 'EX-TC' written on it is pinned on the hat. There's not much
money in the hat...

Don't know how it ends.
Just thought I'd share this with y'all.

-- Andre


Date: Sat,  4 Mar 95 04:24:00 UTC
Subject: "Pink Thing" solution

Well, the debate about whether "Pink Thing" is Andy's penis took a decidedly
odd turn with the suggestion that it is, in fact, really about Northern
Ireland.  This proposal coincides with a very silly argument raging elsewhere
on the Internet ( about whether or not the Cranberries'
"Zombie" is really about Northern Ireland.

I submit these two groups ought to get together.  They can happily agree that
"Pink Thing" is about Northern Ireland and "Zombie" is Andy Partridge's penis.


End of Chalkhills Digest #414

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