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Subject: Chalkhills Digest #10-55


         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 10, Number 55

                 Sunday, 28 November 2004

Topics:

                  RE: This Little Ziggy
                 OK, I'm SMiLING already!
                        Arse Farce
                  RE: The Capitol Smiles
        Perhaps there is something wrong with me.
                   Uninformed rhetoric.
                   January 24, 1980 DVD
                        Tattoo Me
               Courtesy of Anders Lundquist
                   Re: Andy's Cornhole
                 Court and Mervyn Sparks
                 Wonderfalls on dutch TV

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----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: Wed, 24 Nov 2004 15:43:45 -0500
From: "Krys Olsiewicz" <kolsiewicz@hotmail.com>
Subject: RE: This Little Ziggy
Message-ID: <BAY1-F25A7A0B3365597974AA721DFB80@phx.gbl>

>>Jim <jim@groovedisques.com> wrote:

I should probably get back on the Jangly list for the following
comment, but may I state here that Martin Newell's memoir, This Little
Ziggy, is a work of clear-headed brilliance about not so clear-headed
days that a few of you, like myself, may vaguely recall. I'm sure a
lot of you dig the man's music and are at least familiar with his
writing. If you haven't read this book, I encourage you - no command
you - to run out or log on and pick up a copy!

<<

I concur.  It's a fantastic read whether you know Martin's music or not.  A
survivor's tale.

Cheers,
Krys O.

------------------------------

Date: Wed, 24 Nov 2004 14:09:47 -0800 (PST)
From: Jim Smart <jimsmart1@yahoo.com>
Subject: OK, I'm SMiLING already!
Message-ID: <20041124220947.51599.qmail@web13524.mail.yahoo.com>

Jeff wisely wrote:

"As a symbolic gesture from his fans at Chalkhills
it'd seem to me to be a good "team present".  I'm sure
he'd love it to bits.  And we should get one for
Colin, too."

And don't forget Dave Gregory, who thinks enough of
SMiLE to have recorded his own version of Our Prayer
all by himself. As if there weren't already enough
amazing things about his resume.

I've enjoyed all the SMiLE talk here, though I cringe
a bit waiting for the inevitable crackdown on the
non-XTC content. Since that hasn't happened yet, I'll
throw in my tuppence.

Although I'm one of those who had tried to make his
own version of Smile from various sources, and as
someone lucky enough to have seen Brian perform
recently with the fine musicians supporting him these
days, I hadn't really been following the latest news.
The first I heard of this new SMiLE was on an NPR
radio short just a week before the thing was released.

I was in my car, and I just had to pull over and let
my jaw drop as this information washed over me. I had
thought Smile was dead and buried, and that Brian had
no wish to deal with it. I don't mind saying that I
was near tears as I learned about how they re-recorded
everything, and how they got Van Dyke Parks involved,
and so forth.

It never would have occurred to me to re-record the
whole thing. I assumed "doing Smile" meant sorting
through the old tapes and using them to make it. I
think the story of how this 2004 SMiLE came together
is beautiful and fitting.

It ranks up there with other great works of the 20th
century. It stands apart from the psychedelic era in
which it was written. It goes so far beyond the
boundaries of rock.

When I made my own version, I had read so many
conflicting things about how it would all fit
together. Was it all about the 4 elements (fire,
water, wind, earth)? Was it a teenage symphony to God?
Was is just a trip through Americana? Was it a
backwards look at life from death back to childhood?I
could never see how those would connect.

But of course. Three movements, one for each idea.
Perfect.

So many assumptions have fallen. Brian will never tour
again, Brian will never let Smile out of the bag, blah
blah blah. Brian Wilson is a survivor, and I salute
his spirit and his creativity. Just thinking about his
story makes me

SMiLE,

Jim

------------------------------

Date: Wed, 24 Nov 2004 14:47:16 -0800 (PST)
From: Al LaCarte <allacarte@yahoo.com>
Subject: Arse Farce
Message-ID: <20041124224716.34941.qmail@web50304.mail.yahoo.com>

All:

Mervyn wagged:

>and that awfully unfunny
prelude to "That Wave" <

Odd.  I found that to be one of the fuzziest warbles.

Oh well, maybe Dom will pull over, hop out of his motorcar and get
some exercise again.

That would be awfully funny.

:Al

------------------------------

Date: Thu, 25 Nov 2004 02:21:59 +0000
From: "WAYNE KLEIN" <wtdk12@msn.com>
Subject: RE: The Capitol Smiles
Message-ID: <BAY3-F7FE0A86EDA6EA2696573ACAB90@phx.gbl>

Jeff wrote

>And because the sacrifice is so evident, I fervently hope that the
people at Capitol or wherever who have been working on the old Beach
Boys stuff will now feel the impulse to go and put together a good mix
of the Beach Boys "Smile" material (like the attempt started in 1988).
Otherwise, I guess I will have to do it by myself -- although a lot of
the stuff I have is "39th tape copy" quality.  But versions of almost
every bit of the record are available either officially or on
bootlegs, it *was* pretty close to completion.

Jeff, reportedly Capitol is going to do this (maybe I read it here first) as
they realized they had gold buried in their vault. Evidently "SMiLE" is
doing pretty well that along with The Beatles' "Capitol" boxed set made them
take a look at the BB version of "SMiLE"

------------------------------

Date: Wed, 24 Nov 2004 23:23:05 -0500
From: "Bram and Bill" <bramnbill@rcn.com>
Subject: Perhaps there is something wrong with me.
Message-ID: <FHEEINHIGKCGCIPNKMMIOEGMCGAA.bramnbill@rcn.com>

Fellow Chalk Folk,

For the past few weeks I have been reading gushing review after gushing
review of Brian Wilson's SMiLE. I have listened to it, and frankly, I don't
quite get it.  I should say that I have never been a fan of the Beach Boys
or Wilson.  Yeah they have nice harmonies, and Wilson throws in interesting
instrumentation here and there, but it's far from consistent.  It doesn't
hold my ear and never has.  It could be that the subject matter of their
songs bores me to tears normally.  (In fact, the only XTC/Dukes song I
ALWAYS skip over when I'm spinning Psonic/Chips is "Pale and Precious".
That Beach Boys tribute does not belong on that disc! It's totally out of
place.)
I would never, in a million years put Wilson's work on par, or even close to
par with Lennon and McCartney, or that wonderful song-writing "arse" Andy
Partridge and to a lesser extent Colin Moulding.  Jason Falkner is another
great songwriter that comes to mind... Those guys write songs that have made
me float on air for decades!
I guess there is something wrong with me.  There is, after all, no
accounting for taste.

JWSEED

(PS I do like "Good Vibrations".  Good song.)

------------------------------

Date: Thu, 25 Nov 2004 12:56:41 +0000 (GMT)
From: STEPHEN JACKSON <planet_skaro@btinternet.com>
Subject: Uninformed rhetoric.
Message-ID: <20041125125641.2467.qmail@web86601.mail.ukl.yahoo.com>

Mervyn wrote

>>Does anyone know another band/performer who refuses to go on stage?

Carly Simon? Kate Bush? And, to some extent at least, the Beatles when they
stopped touring in the mid-sixties (rooftop gigs excepting)

>>And I don't buy that stage fright crap either. Lots of performers suffer
stage fright, some to the point of being physically sick prior to going on
stage. But so fucking what? They get on with it, they get used to it and
they overcome it.

This only demonstrates a rather simplistic view of mental illness. I'm sure
all the people who suffer from bipolar disorder, agraphobia etc. would
really benefit from "getting on with it"... I don't know much about AP's
health, but I do know that he was on prescription drugs for mental
illness. Besides which, I think the ridiculous sums of money that have been
offered to XTC to tour would have persuaded AP to tour, if he was really
capable of it.

>> The stuff I hadn't heard and which must have been considered not good
enough to grace an album carrying the prestigeous XTC logo was there in demo
form only. What is the point of that?

Well that's unbelievably obvious isn't. If it was selected to appear on the
album, it wasn't recorded. That's why you get the demo. It's the demo or
nothing. I'd rather have the demo.

>>Now imagine an XTC Nationwide Tour.

Why? It's not happened for 22 years, so why start wondering now?

Steve

------------------------------

Date: Thu, 25 Nov 2004 09:43:53 -0500
From: "Chris & Melany" <ellaguru@comcast.net>
Subject: January 24, 1980 DVD
Message-ID: <000901c4d2fd$386f3eb0$c16f2a44@Sony>

http://www.easytree.org/torrents-details.php?id=15505

I put in quite a few hours cleaning this one up for you kind folks here.
Enjoy!

cr

------------------------------

Date: Fri, 26 Nov 2004 20:58:54 -0500
From: "Bram and Bill" <bramnbill@rcn.com>
Subject: Tattoo Me
Message-ID: <FHEEINHIGKCGCIPNKMMIIEHCCGAA.bramnbill@rcn.com>

i really did not think that I was the only person on earth with a chalkhorse
tattoo, now, thanks to the don device posting, i know of three others.
there is no way in hell that my wife would get one too however.
mine is on my left arm, barely visible below my short sleeve shirt sleeve.
i happen to be a park ranger at one of our nation's (the united states')
national parks.  it is one that is highly visited by folks from all over the
world. so, if you find yourself some spring/summer (for that is the only
time i wear short sleeves) in a national park and you see a ranger with a
chalkhorse peeking out from under his arrowhead patched sleeve, introduce
yourself.
BC

------------------------------

Date: Sat, 27 Nov 2004 04:52:55 -0800 (PST)
From: Michael Versaci <michael_versaci@yahoo.com>
Subject: Courtesy of Anders Lundquist
Message-ID: <20041127125255.25633.qmail@web20426.mail.yahoo.com>

Folxtc,

>From John Relph:

>> I found a mention of Andy Partridge and XTC in Aftonbladet, a Swedish
publication.  There appears to be a paragraph concerning Mr. Partridge
and Olivier Messiaen.  However, my Swedish is not so good.  Would
anybody care to try their hand at a translation?  (Babelfish doesn't
do Swedish to English yet.)

  http://www.aftonbladet.se/noje/kronikor/klass/klass000816.html

<<

I met Anders Lundquist on the Kevin Gilbert "Last Plane Out" list.  He
is a music journalist from Sweden, and a very cool guy with impeccable
taste in music.  I fowarded John's request to him and he was kind
enough to send the translation.

Michael Versaci

 "All music comes from the crotch". I grew up with that rule,
encouraged by excited rock critics who kept saying that "music is
sex".

But the music that turned me on rushed right up to my brain and
electrified my body from there. My penis was down in the darkness and
didn't hear a thing.

So, early on I started to swear in Rock Church. I loved Debussy just
as much as The Cramps. Still the rocksexy ideology has given me
prejudices, one of the worst being the one against "religious
music" - something which I have seen as the opposite of sexy
music - ihbitated and boring. And I have kept thinking that with my
head full off Prefab Sprout, Stravinsky and soul. But Prefabs paddy
McAloon studied to become a catholic priest before he filled his pop
music with theology, and look att all of the 20th century's black
popular music: salted with sex but rooted in religion.  Yep, all
musical orgasms are spiritual.

Listening to The cramps without beoing aware of the religious heritage
of rock'n'roll is as empty as watching porn.

The catholic composer Olivier Messiaen (1908-1992) only spoke with
God. But his music is still among the most excitingly modernistic you
can hear. From Stravilskys rhythmics and Schonbergs twelve-tone
theories he created a super-sensibe science fiction-musical world that
also included aincent greek poetry, indian music, jazz and -
birdsong. Where normal bord watchers were content to just telling what
kind of bird it was, he noted the singing in detail and incorporated
it in his work.

In the last art of "Des canyons aux etoiles", the orchestras
play exact melodies from (seven different birds whose names I dont
know the English words for). It sounds insane and insanely beautiful.

The 43 year old pianist Pierre-Laurent Amiard has specialised in
Messiaen, after having studied for him and his wife Yvonne Loriod for
several years. His new interpretation of the piano cycle Vingt Regards
is the strongest piece of music I've heard this year.  A lot of the
magic of the music is built on the magic of chords, and I am reminded
of an experiment that Andy Partridge in XTC did ten years ago: he
chose his most complex favorite chords and sampled them, so that each
chord was on a single key on his keyboard. Then he played full chords
on his keyboard, each finger playing a full chord. The end result,
however, was not close to Messiaens manic, hymn-like labyrinths of
chords, "palindrom rhythms" and layer after layer of scales.

Often, the different musical blocks take various dramatic shapes, like
a heavenly version of the animated Snoopy movies where all grown-ups
are "played" by musical instruments. Because, of course Nessiaen
was sexy, too. Vision de l'Amen he wrote for two pianos: a steaming
sexually ritualistic thelogogical tango he only wanted to play with
his wife.

------------------------------

Date: Sat, 27 Nov 2004 12:47:09 -0800
From: "Neil Oliver" <neiloliv@hotmail.com>
Subject: Re: Andy's Cornhole
Message-ID: <BAY1-F815F0091563B0FFE38BF5DDBB0@phx.gbl>

Mervyn:

If listening to Andy's home recordings doesn't really interest you and you
think the Fuzzy Warbles project is a waste of your money, that's fine. It's
not for everyone, and personally, I wish he had been a little more selective
with the set myself. But what's the point of attacking him personally in
this way?

"The irritating instrumental experiments and ditties and that awfully
unfunny prelude to "That Wave" made me think that Andy had finally copped
out."

Copped out how? These are bits and pieces that Andy recorded for fun. No one
is claiming that these are studio-quality, commercially viable pieces of
music. The discs are called "The Demo Archives." What were you expecting?

"The stuff I hadn't heard and which must have been considered not good
enough to grace an album carrying the prestigious XTC logo was there in demo
form only. What is the point of that? If the bare bones of "Merely A Man"
can be worked into a masterpiece, perhaps a little extra work and a sprinkle
of Partridge magic might have been able to do the same for, say, "I Don't
Want To Be Here". But it seemed Andy couldn't be bothered. Just like we have
to wait eons for each genuine XTC album. Too fucking lazy."

I don't even know where to start with this. Of course the songs are in demo
form - they're demos. What other form should they be in? The songs that Andy
didn't record with XTC are songs he didn't think were good enough or songs
the rest of the band weren't interested in recording. Not every song turns
out to be a masterpiece. It has nothing to do with Andy being lazy. You have
no idea how much work he may or may not have put into writing and recording
those songs. They're very polished recordings considering they're demos. But
sometimes a song just doesn't fly for whatever reason. Even so, Andy's
unreleased material is generally of a very high standard, something you
can't say for most artists.

"And I don't buy that stage fright crap either. Lots of performers suffer
stage fright, some to the point of being physically sick prior to going on
stage. But so fucking what? They get on with it, they get used to it and
they overcome it. Does anyone know another band/performer who refuses to go
on stage? (Ok, maybe Bananarama but that was because they couldn't perform).
It's Andy being an arse again."

Who are you to decide that Andy should have to perform if he doesn't want
to? It's his business. Clearly he doesn't enjoy it and he feels so strongly
about it that he has sacrificed all the promotional and financial benefits
XTC could have received from it. Andy doesn't owe you a live show or
anything else, particularly if you think he's a fucking lazy asshole.

------------------------------

Date: Sat, 27 Nov 2004 20:25:24 -0800 (PST)
From: Wes Long <optimismsflames@yahoo.com>
Subject: Court and Mervyn Sparks
Message-ID: <20041128042524.58272.qmail@web50804.mail.yahoo.com>

You've a right to speak your mind Merv, and if your
arrow was aimed at creating a swarm in our virtual
hive I imagine you've hit the center mark with your
ever-harsh post. If, however, you were aiming at the
truth...

Andy's a damn gracious chap, and a good friend too.
He's been shockingly open and generous with me over
the years. Now, I've never sat in the studio with the
man and attempted to sail one of his songs in a
direction of my liking... to this end he may very well
be an asshole. You're familiar with his music, how
great is it? Andy hears it a certain way and wants it
that way; thank your favorite potentate for that.

As a fan, I too am a bit frustrated that we won't get
to hear some of these Warbles in their full-blown
beauty, but I'd much rather hear 'em this way than not
at all. How about you? To say that Partsy is "Too
fucking lazy" is just over the top, Merv. You're not
finding fault with Andy's music, just with his life.
Andy Partridge's life is none of your fucking business
and it's nonsense like this that will most likely make
him fold up his tent for good at some point. Who the
hell would blame him. With fans like these, who needs
enemies?

To suggest that Andy's got problems because members of
the band have suffered a falling-out after years of
performing together is nuts. Are you at all familiar
with rock-n-roll, brother? Have you ever been in a
band? Hell, it's a miracle that *any* band can stay
together.

This part is what prompted me to post:

"And I don't buy that stage fright crap either. Lots
of performers suffer stage fright, some to the point
of being physically sick prior to going on stage. But
so fucking what? They get on with it, they get used to
it and they overcome it. Does anyone know another
band/performer who refuses to go on stage? It's Andy
being an arse again."

Holy shit, Mr. Compassion, Andy stopped doing
something that contributed in making his life a living
hell. He's a real prick for not considering your
feelings when making decisions about *his* life.

Your a cold-hearted prick and I hope like hell you
aren't in a position of authority somewhere.

wesLONG

------------------------------

Date: Sun, 28 Nov 2004 12:59:44 +0100
From: Andre de Koning <andre.de.koning@gmail.com>
Subject: Wonderfalls on dutch TV
Message-ID: <4aa9f832041128035935a83ec1@mail.gmail.com>

Just a short note to say that I just noticed that the Wonderfalls
series (13 epiodes) will be shown on dutch TV. Sunday 16:45 on Yorin
(uhh, that's today but you can tune in next week).

Andre

------------------------------

End of Chalkhills Digest #10-55
*******************************

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