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Subject: Chalkhills #94


                  Chalkhills, Number 94

                  Wednesday, 6 June 1990
Today's Topics:
                     Re: Johnny Japes
                     KFJC XTC Special
                  Re: Chalkhills Mailbag
                   "Homo Safari" Series
            XTC, KFJC, and The Lure of Salvage
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Date: Wed, 23 May 1990 16:09:51 PDT
From: John M. Relph <relph@presto.ig.com>
Subject: Re: Johnny Japes

Stewart (stewarte@sco.com), asks:
> John Otway (collaborator with XTC on the Jasper
>Japes single -- by the way, does anyone have that?  How is it?)

Yeah, Johnny Japes and his Jesticles, _Bags of Fun With Buster_
(that's Buster Gonad to you), straight from Viz Comics to your ears...
er, door.  It's pretty slow as far as songs go, pretty silly as far as
words go, and Andy's line at the end is pretty funny.  Not really
worth more than a few bucks if you see it used, but it is hard to find
considering it was mostly mail order only from Viz Comics in England.

	-- John

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Date: Mon, 4 Jun 1990 14:54:07 PDT
From: John M. Relph <chalkhills-request@chalkhills.org>
Subject: KFJC XTC Special

                         This is Pop Part II
                    KFJC XTC Special, 22 May 1990
                          Hosted by John Mav

  On Tuesday, 22 May 1990, KFJC presented ``This is Pop Part II'', the
KFJC XTC Special, hosted by John Mav.  (John Mav AKA Holden Caulfield
also plays A Fit of XTC during his Monday early morning show.)  The
program attempted to present a chronological history of the music of
XTC which highlighted B-sides and other hard-to-find material,
especially from 1982 onwards.

  I found the program to be very well presented and interesting.  In
fact, when I put it on cassette, I left in all of the DJ chatter
between tracks.  Most of the information presented was correct, only a
few mistakes were made, and the interview material included was very
informative.  Hats off to John Mav!

  Here's a list of some of the more interesting things that were played
as part of the Special:

    Agony Andy
    Too Many Cooks in the Kitchen
    I Need Protection
    The History of Rock and Roll
    Quicksilver
    Pearl
    Holding the Baby
    Snowman (BBC version)
    interview: ``Homo Safari Series''
    interview: Terry leaves XTC
    Young Cleopatra (demo)
    Happy Families (demo)
    Thanks for Christmas
    Countdown to Christmas Party Time
    Train Running Low on Soul Coal (acoustic)
    Moonlit Drive (demo)
    Broomstick Rhythm (demo)
    Fit of XTC: ``My Mother Called Me Andy Partridge''
    Skylarking Interview intro
    Skylarking Interview: Summer's Cauldron and Grass
    Skylarking Interview: Todd on Dear God
    Ra Ra For Red Rocking Horse (demo)
    Mayor of Simpleton (demo)
    interview: Paul Fox and ``Oranges and Lemons''
    Across This Antheap (demo)
    One of the Millions (demo)
    Living in a Haunted Heart (demo)
    Shaking Skin House (demo)
    Obscene Procession (demo)
    Merely a Man (demo)
    Gangway Electric Guitar (demo)
    medley (live at WBCN, 15 May 1989):
      Senses Working Overtime
      Grass
      Love on a Farmboy's Wages
    interview: Touring
    Little Lighthouse (demo)
    interview: Dukes oddities
    Drunken XTC does Led Zep
    This is the End (demo)

  I really like "This is the End" -- it really should have been the last
track on _Oranges and Lemons_.  "Agony Andy" is quite funny -- Andy
attempts to help people with their problems.  "The History of Rock and
Roll" (from the _Miniatures_ album) is hilarious and very short.  The
live at WBCN medley is from the _Acoustic Radio Tour_ tape.

	-- John

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Date: Wed, 6 Jun 1990 11:11:27 PDT
From: John M. Relph <chalkhills-request@chalkhills.org>
Subject: Re: Chalkhills Mailbag

Som time ago, Rick Rockershousen (rar84@ihlpf.att.com) said:

>Also, since I've been reading Chalkhills, I've not noticed too
>discussion on XTC's views on religion.  Are they (Andy in particular)
>agnostics or atheists?  They sometimes seem to be saying contradictory
>things about religion/god, for example "Dear God" and
>"Thanks for Christmas"  (as The Three Wise Men).  Anybody want to
>enlighten me?

I believe that Andy would consider himself an agnostic.  But he might
actually be an atheist.  You might even call him a "secular humanist".

Here is a snippet of interview from the _Acoustic Radio Tour_ tape:

    DJ: How did you react to the public reaction to Dear God?

    Andy: Well, I was kind of a mixture of delighted that people
    were playing it but quite upset that they found that such a
    simple sentiment, and not a brand new sentiment -- I'm not
    the first person to suggest there may not be ``one'' up
    there, and people really got upset by it, but then again
    you're in the dodgiest of areas, of human belief, what a
    mess that is...  Funny that if you say anything against the
    possibility of God you're called a blasphemer but there's no
    sort of bad word if you think there is one.

Here's a portion of the Geffen Records press release for _Oranges and
Lemons_:

      ``Dear God'' became the band's biggest hit in America, yet
    Partridge almost wishes the song hadn't been included on the
    _Skylarking_ album -- not because of the brouhaha it caused
    but because it was too ambiguous, it wasn't blunt enough.

      "I was surprised that anyone could get so upset.  The idea
    that religion is about people wanting power and using adult
    fairy tales to keep other people in line is age-old.  As far
    as I'm concerned, if there is a God, he or she or it has
    nothing to do with religion.  If it upset people, it serves
    them right for listening.  What bothered me was that some
    people thought the song meant I believed in God.

      "It should have been more poisonous.  But it's tricky
    being honest.  You have to dress it up so people can take it
    in and swallow it.  You have to coat it in sugar and make it
    bite-size.  The problem is that to do it in three-and-a-half
    minutes you have to edit out a lot of bones.  You take it
    down from dinosaur bones to chicken bones, and hope one
    sticks in their throats."

And a little something from John Mav's XTC Special from 22 May 1990:

    Andy seems to feel that they should be playing Christmas
    music -- he loves Christmas music -- he thinks they should
    play Christmas music 364 days a year.  The one day they
    shouldn't play Christmas music is actually on Christmas,
    because by that time you've heard too much of it.  He thinks
    that it's great stuff.

I would think that Andy doesn't necessarily believe in the birth of
Christ and the whole Christian Christmas thing, but rather that he's a
proponent of the loving Christmas spirit, of sharing and friendship.
Here's a snippet of lyrics from ``Thanks for Christmas'':

    It's such a shame it's only one day every year
    Three hundred and sixty-four days full of doubts and fear
    You've been saving your love up, giving it out, 'cos Christmas is here

	-- John

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Date: Wed, 6 Jun 1990 11:12:18 PDT
From: John M. Relph <chalkhills-request@chalkhills.org>
Subject: "Homo Safari" Series

Here's a bit concerning the ``Homo Safari Series'' from the KFJC XTC
Special:

    John Mav: On the Homo Safari series: I heard a previous
    interview where you talked about it and you said you had
    forgotten [number] five, was it, ... , or was it four?

    Andy Partridge: Number four, I think, we just forgot to do
    number four.

    J: Briefly, what's the story behind [the homo safari series]
    ... ?  I think you said you did not like ... number five, or
    number four.

    A: I didn't like ...  number four.  Number four was really
    ...

    Colin Moulding: Which one was that?

    A: That was ``Mantis on Parole''.  That was really kind of
    cobbled up very quickly on the merest whim.

    J: After I listened to that, 'cause I heard you said you
    didn't like it, I thought oh this would make a great little
    short film music or something like that

    A: That riff had been lying around for ages, a fake bebop
    riff.

    C: It's like, you do your riff, and then I'm going to do
    mine.

    J: Were you guys pointing at each other?

    A: Basically, it was all played live.

    J: Is that right?

    C: He switched on the tape.

    A: Just switch on the tape [and] start the fun!

    J: Is that what a lot of studio sessions were like, are you
    guys just fooling around in there sometimes and see what you
    come up with?

    C: Andy thought it was about time he got another ``Homo''
    out, you know.

    A: Don't want to start any rumours here.

    C: So we had some spare time at a Top of the Pops fake
    session, and so we thought we'd do another Homo.

    J: Has it been completed?  'Cause you put them all on the
    back of the ``Dear God'' CD.

    A: The original one was given a joke title, ``Number one in
    a series of six'' just as a joke, and then we came up with
    another piece of music we couldn't put anywhere so we said,
    ``Hell, we might as well do the whole series'', and number
    two happened and number three and so on.

    J: But you didn't worry about it at the time, do another
    record and let's think about it?

    A: What happens is these things are usually bits of music
    that were going to be songs, that didn't get the lyrics
    finished, or the lyrics weren't happening so that we just
    used the music, or they were kind of unusual riffs or pieces
    of music that were nagging.  We don't just want to throw
    them away.

    J: 'Cause they sound okay by themselves?

    A: Right right, so it goes into this special drawer marked
    ``The Homo Safari Series''.  I think we should start another
    series 'cause were always getting these bits of music that
    you never know where to put them.  It's like a filing
    system, you know, it's like the miscellaneous file.

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Date: Wed, 6 Jun 1990 11:14:48 PDT
From: John M. Relph <chalkhills-request@chalkhills.org>
Subject: XTC, KFJC, and The Lure of Salvage

  Lots happening here at Chalkhills Central, even if the volume of
posts within the last two weeks has been practically nil.  Must be the
end of the semester or something.  Many updates have been made to the
discography (see below for more details).

        -------

  The past two KFJC XTC Specials have contained some interesting
interview material.  Chalkhills will be trying to transcribe some or
all of this in the future.  The following is a list of subjects
covered, please let us know if you wish any of it transcribed sooner.

  Andy and Colin:
    Terry's departure
    Touring
    Helium Kidz
    why _White Music_ as a title
    _Go 2_ and _GO+_
    live from Dallas last year
    "Making Plans for Nigel"
    adding Dave Gregory to XTC
  Andy:
    _Take Away / The Lure of Salvage_
  Paul Fox:
    producing _Oranges and Lemons_

        -------

  We here at Chalkhills took a lot of time and finally incorporated
the section of the ``Bremerton'' discography about official XTC
releases into the Chalkhills XTC discography.  I got some mail from
the maintainers and they seem to be relieving themselves of the
responsibility of maintaining it.  I don't know what will happen in
the future.

        -------

  KFJC-FM (89.7 MHz, Foothill College, Los Altos Hills, CA, USA),
has been helping Chalkhills out quite a bit lately, even if only
indirectly.  First, of course, they put on the KFJC XTC Special,
``This is Pop Part Two'', and secondly, the ``Umpteenth (semi-)
annual KFJC Record Swap'' was held last Sunday.  While Chalkhills
did not find any interesting XTC recordings, we did find copies of
some official press releases, including photographs, magazine
articles, and copies of some early Canadian XTC Fan Club Newsletters
(the forerunner to _The Little Express).  Lots of interesting
information to be had, and we'll try to put much of it on-line as
soon as possible.  Chalkhills may be able to answer some of those
previously unanswered questions.

  Chalkhills also obtained a copy of ``X-plaining XTC Part 2'', a
detailed discography and recording history covering the period from
1979 to 1982, inclusive.  This history is filled with interesting
facts about the recorded works of XTC, including titles of unreleased
and demo'ed tracks, corrections to liner notes, catalog information,
release dates, and other details previously unknown to Chalkhills.
All of the relevant information from ``X-plaining XTC Part 2'' has now
been incorporated into the Chalkhills XTC discography.

        -------

The following, taken from ``X-plaining XTC Part 2'', is a list of the
tracks from _Take Away / The Lure of Salvage_ and their origins; all
original tracks are from _Drums and Wires_ except where noted:

    Signal Ad (Commerciality) - "Refrigeration Blues" (a _White
    Music_ outtake)

    The Day They Pulled the North Pole Down - "Heatwave" (B-side
    of "This is Pop?") slowed down

    The Forgotten Language of Light - the percussion track from
    "Millions", the Japanese couldn't figure out what Andy's
    scat singing was all about, so assumed it was an ancient
    Indian language (explained in Japanese on the lyric sheet
    that was included in their edition)

    Steam Fist Futurist - "Real by Reel", used as a prelude to
    this track in some live shows in 1980

    Shore Leave Ornithology (Another 1950) - "Pulsing Pulsing"
    (UK B-side of "Making Plans for Nigel")

    Cairo - "Homo Safari" (B-side of "Life Begins at the Hop")
    sped up, with Andy's wife Marianne handclapping

    The Rotary - "Helicopter"

    Madhattan - "That is the Way"

    I Sit in the Snow - bridge from "Roads Girdle the Globe"

    Work Away Tokyo Day - "Day In Day Out" sped up, plus Barry
    Andrews' saxophone track from all nine takes of "Red" (from
    _Go 2_) played simultaneously

    New Broom - "Making Plans for Nigel" slowed down

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