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From: chalkhills-request@presto.ig.com
To: chalkhills@presto.ig.com
Subject: Chalkhills #56


                  Chalkhills, Number 56

                 Friday, 8 September 1989
Today's Topics:
                       The Liarbird
                   Re:  Chalkhills #55
              Chalkhills is now on Automatic
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From: sco!stewarte@ucscc.ucsc.edu
Subject: The Liarbird
Date: Wed Sep  6 13:25:54 1989

I recall reading about XTC firing their manager & having some legal dispute
therewith back around '82/'83.  I imagine this to be the inspiration for
the song on The Big Express.  I don't remember exactly what happened, but
I think it involved him skimming royalties or some such...anyone remember?

And for Mark's continued XTC explorations, I second John's recommendation
of Black Sea, but I'd recommend English Settlement over The Big Express.
Also, let's not forget Drums & Wires, their second-most guitary album
(after Black Sea)...but this is rapidly turning into the "short answer"
that John gave...

-- Stewart
   "went to see if this biz was just as bongo as the liarbird made out..."

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Date: Wed, 6 Sep 89 15:24:06 mdt
From: Michael Schoonover      <michael@hpfcma.hp.com>
Subject: Re:  Chalkhills #55

John M. Relph <relph@presto.ig.com> asks:

  I listened to _The Big Express_ in my car on the way home the other
  night, had a wonderful drive (as wonderful as 45 minutes in a car in
  traffic can be), and came up with a couple of questions.  I left out my
  conjectures so I wouldn't affect other people's answers.

   1) Who or what is the liarbird?
   2) What actually is happening or has happened in "I Remember the Sun"?

  	-- John

I've mused about this myself.  Question #2 is easier for me to answer,
so I'll start with it.

2) "I Remember the Sun" is about life after a nuclear war, seen through
the now-useless eyes of a young person (maybe a child) who witnessed it
>from far enough away to survive but close enough to be blinded by a
nuclear fireball.

   Squinting at the sun through eyes screwed up by a fireball.

It's been a while since the war, though probably less than a year.
Life is chaotic.  Fires still rage, though maybe not from the war
itself.

   Tarmac on the road is soft, chaff burns in a smoke wall.

He is reminiscing about the days before the war in which the
"superpowers" (US,USSR,GBR,etc) destroyed eachother.  He misses
being able to see the sun.

   Hot as golden sand in fields, we whiled away the hours.
   I'm thinking of the days we had enormous superpowers.
   Yes, I'm sleeping, my mind's on the blink,
   I thought a page like it's written in ink.
   When I remember distant days,
   I remember many things,
   But most of all I remember the sun.

The sun is a symbol of better days--of mental, physical, and spiritual
health, of natural beauty.  But the nuclear war blotted out the sun.

   Yes I weeping, a teardrop attack.
   I give emotion at the drop of a hat.
   When I remember days at school,
   I remember many things,
   But most of all I remember the sun--
   Sun that worked on overtime,
   Fueled our bodies, kindled fire in our minds.

The bad part isn't so much the physical injury...  it's the permanent
loss of this beauty.

   Burning scars soon disappear,
   Like heat that hangs like water on the road.

   But most of all I remember the sun.

It's a great song.

1) This one isn't as clear to me, but I think the "liarbird"
is a (pop?) music agent.  Key phrases that make me think this:

  all he would say is "I can make you famous... just like a
  household name is"

  ...sharpened my guitar and went to look if this biz was
  just as bongo as the liarbird made out

What I would like to know is how does this connect with the following
lyrics (probably not quoted perfectly) from the same song:

  Methinks world is for you,
  Made of what you believe,
  Whether it's false or if it's true,
  You can read it in your bible,
  Or on the back of this record sleeve...

-Mike Schoonover
 michael@hpfcma.HP.COM
 (303) 229-3552

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Date: Thu, 7 Sep 1989 23:46:51 PDT
From: John M. Relph <chalkhills-request@chalkhills.org>
Subject: Chalkhills is now on Automatic

Yes, it's true, Chalkhills is now running on automatic pilot.  If you
have any problems, send a message to chalkhills-request.  Don't expect
prompt response, however, so please PLEASE Be Patient.

I will try to check in from Manchester, for a report from the XTC Music
and Friends Convention on the 16th of this month.

Until late October then.

	-- John

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