Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #2-21

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 2, Number 21

                 Friday, 3 November 1995

Today's Topics:

                  RE: Likes and Dislikes
               Thomas Dolby/Andy Partridge
                   Sting & hearing loss
               Re: Chalkhills Digest #2-19
                  Colin v. Andy v. Blur
               Re: Chalkhills Digest #2-20
                  New Testimonial Dinner
                   Re: TD volume five!?
             More replies to more this & that
                      Bunch o' stuff
                    XTC cover versions
                         oops :-)
       Budd-Partridge-better than a sleeping pill.
                  Testimonial Burrito EP
                  Prelude to 'The Teds'
                        demos  cds
               Obtaining Testimonial Dinner


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The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

In Port Lligat, liked his Gala...


Date: 02 Nov 95 13:32:49 EST
From: John.J.Pinto@Hitchcock.ORG (John J. Pinto)
Subject: <>

I had an opportunity to take a quick look at the Spin Guide. At first I
thought that it was another attempt to rewrite rock history but on closer
examination it was informative if perhaps suffering from a hipper than thou
bias. Seemed as if it would be a good source to answer the question "If I
was to buy one albumn by... e.g. The Violent Femmes, which one would it
be?".  I should add that their XTC entry was off the mark.



Date: 2 Nov 1995 13:57:19 -0500
From: "Ken Salaets" <>
Subject: RE: Likes and Dislikes

It's interesting that Todd W. named "Ballad for a Rainy Day" as one of his
XTC dislikes.  That's the first song I ever heard by the band.  A local
small-powered FM station played that, then "1000 Umbrellas" and finally
"Season Cycle."  By the time they wrapped up, I was in the parking lot of a
local Kemp Mill Music store, checking my wallet for my credit card, etc.

And it's not disrespectful to NOT like every song by a band, even XTC.
That's just the way it is for most folks.  Prolly why they designed
programming capabilities into CD players as well.  :>

Testimonial is a worthwhile investment.  I think Sarah did a great job, so
add me to that camp.  I think Ruben's effort would have been better with less
percussion.  It could've passed for the theme song of one of those Dean
Martin detective throwaways from the 60s.  Personally, I think the Terrys'
effort is by far the best...



Date: Thu, 2 Nov 95 14:04:47 EST
From: (Patty Haley)
Subject: Thomas Dolby/Andy Partridge


So I finish listening to _Oranges and Lemons_, and switch
over to _Retrospective_ by Thomas Dolby.  I've been a TD
fan ever since the very beginning--even saw him in concert
for _The Flat Earth_ tour (must-have album, by the way).
Flipping to the lyrics for "Europa and the Pirate Twins,"
I see our man Andy listed in the credits for not only this
song, but for other songs as well.  I check the XTC discography,
and sho' nuff, there it is.  For as long as I've been a Thomas
Dolby fan, which has been as long as I've been an XTC fan (or
almost), I never knew this connection existed.  If anyone has
information on how their collaboration came to be, please holler
my way.  Private email is fine.  I'm danged if I recall reading
about this in any of the old Chalkhills, although there's a
chunk of the archives I've still yet to get through.  If anyone
wants to share their wisdom on this, I'd appreciate it, as I'm
pretty darn intrigued.



From: Ben Gott <>
Subject: Sting & hearing loss
Date: Thu, 02 Nov 95 14:05:00 est

John Barber writes:

>I saw on VH1s news caption one morning about 2 or 3 weeks ago that Sting is
>losing his hearing from some degenerating disease. Anyone else hear that?

Yes, John. It is a midrange hearing loss, which is from listening to music
too loud for too long. Apparently, Sting has been undergoing therapy - by
listening to classical music...



Date: Thu, 2 Nov 1995 17:57:13 GMT
From: Martin Wilson <>
Subject: Re: Chalkhills Digest #2-19

> From: (James Dignan)
> Subject: XTC/Hitchcock like groups
> Okay - someone mentiuoned the Jazz Butcher as someone to listen to if you
> like both XTC and Robyn Hitchcock. I'm going to chip in another name for
> you to hunt for (if you can find it - they're a New Zealand band, but have
> made small ripples overseas). That name is the Muttonbirds.

And while we're on the subject of bands down under, check out the
excellent Frente!  Very XTC in parts (No Time, Accidently Kelly
Street, Ordinary People).



From: (Steve-O Lutz)
Subject: Colin v. Andy v. Blur
Date: Thu, 2 Nov 1995 11:55:39 -0800 (PST)

> I don't mean to open a Pandora's Box, but I'm wondering if there are any XTC
> songs that people *don't* like. Even though I like almost every XTC song
> ever written, I don't like "Fly on the Wall" and "Big Day" (notice that my
> dislike is equally balanced between Andy and Colin...) Anyway, do any of you
> have XTC songs that you just want to like, but can't?

	I'm sure this will be pointed out a few dozen times in the next
issue, but both Big Day and FOTW are Colin tunes.  Which brings up an
interesting point, since I find most of the tunes I dislike are
Colin's.  But I think he provides a necessary counterpoint to Andy,
and an XTC album wouldn't be nearly so eclectic or relistenable without
Colin's contributions.

	Strangely, I also think that several of the XTC songs I like the
best are also Colin tunes.  Weird.

	Also, regarding the matter of AP producing some of the tracks on
Blur's "Modern Life is Rubbish", I heard/read/dreamt that the reason
they parted ways so suddenly after three tracks was that Andy was such
a bear of a guy to get along with in the studio.  They got along with
him great when they'd go down the pub, but in the studio he was simply
too hard to deal with.

	While on this thread, Damon Albarn also mentioned something about
the song "It Could Be You" on Blur's new album being ~"basically Statue
of Liberty along with the opening to Respectable Street"~.  So I'd
say, yep, XTC was an influence.

	-- Steve-O


Date: Thu, 2 Nov 1995 13:42:40 -0800
From: Kevin Collins <>
Subject: Re: Chalkhills Digest #2-20

I Said:
>>I think AP has mentioned very decidedly that he does not believe in God.
>>When the song came out, I remember him saying as much and saying that
>>(paraphrased- it's been awhile): 'we are all worm food in the end and that's
>>about it, really'.

And James Poulakos <> followed up with:

>Nevertheless the persona relating "Dear God" speaks to God--as if
>struggling with the dilemma [believe or don't]. It shouldn't matter to us
>what we know about AP, since we have no guarantee that AP is the persona
>speaking to God in the song. AP created this persona who says "X" but
>that doesn't mean AP also says "X." Could be irony, in some cases.

Wellllll, you know, I am thinking, why should it not matter when an author
of an allegorical (or similar) work, be it poetry, a novel or a pop song,
makes statements (there were others) about the work in question about it
being his own true feeling? Doesn't that become a bit presumptuous? That's
when I think that analyzing literary work gets into mushy teritory and
people have a great tendency to put thier own spin or even thier own
thoughts into the author's head on it despite what the author says. Maybe
even putting thier own belief structure to make what may be an unpalatable
topic more tolerable, or acceptable. If I was a Christian (or had a strong
belief in God) who liked XTC, I can imagine I would have a real problem with
Dear God, and depending on how strong my beliefs were, I may even think it
was blasphemous. I might even reexamine my whole reason for liking the rest
of thier music. But that's ok, I accept that and it's no big deal. But I
think the author should always have the last word in his own work. May I
paraphrase a bumber sticker into my thoughts on to what an author may say
about his own work? "Andy said it, I believe it, and that settles it!" : )


Too much information
driving me insane.


Date: Thu, 2 Nov 1995 18:20:04 -0500
From: (Gerald Wheeler)
Subject: New Testimonial Dinner

Hello friends:

As you all have heard by now, TD is superb.  Do not be mislead into
thinking that the CD is unsatisfying simply because everybody is already
compiling fantasy TD II artist/song combinations before the HMV bag hits
the garbage can.  The new "Dear God" is divine and the Rembrandts are true

I can't resist joining the TD II fantasy bandwagon, so here are my picks for
the next collaborative effort:

STING............................MAYOR OF SIMPLETON
MADONNA..........................RESPECTABLE STREET
CYPRESS HILL.....................GRASS
VANILLA ICE......................KING FOR A DAY
ELP..............................ITS NEARLY AFRICA
ELTON JOHN.......................PINK THING
PRINCE...........................IN LOVING MEMORY OF A NAME


Date: Fri, 3 Nov 1995 13:27:54 +1200
From: (James Dignan)
Subject: Re: TD volume five!?

Phil (a.f.k.a 7IHd<>) said:

>And I think The Hight Llamas, Pulp, REM, Shriekback, Stereolab, Paul
>Weller, Suzanne Vega and Yo La Tengo should be on there, but I'm stuck as
>to which songs.

I would love to hear Ms Vega sing "In loving memory of a name"...

--- (Jim Kee) wrote:
>Steve Kilbey            What In The World?
>Marty Willson-Piper     Respectable Street
>The Church                      Travels In Nihilon

I detect another Church fan here, don't I, Jim?


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)


From: 7IHd <>
Subject: More replies to more this & that
Date: Fri, 3 Nov 1995 00:45:10 +0000 (GMT)

# Your love was so big.

You made new York look small.

Blasphemy to delete this quote, sorry, couldn't bring myself to do it, so
I had to finish it off instead. The first bit looked so lonely on its own.

# From: (Stuart McDow)
# Subject: Re: XTC songs I *don't* like
# But sometimes, it doesn't work, at least not for me. Instead of a
# break, the song seems to take a 90 degree turn, leaving me crashing
# into the embankment.

I think you should buy 'Through The Hill'. No nasty sharp bends on that
one <g>

<Someone who's name I accidently deleted but it appears below> wrote:

# What's going on in the lyrics of "Towers of London?" It seems to
# celebrate a sordid history and condemn it at the same time. Since the
# stories of this song are almost all foreign to me, I confess I don't
# understand it as well I wish.
#                        James Poulakos

Well as I see it, in a nutshell, it's saying look at how we glorify all
these nice old buildings and bits of tradition and heritige, when in
reality they were all instruments of torture, but we find it convenient
to forget that bit.

# From: Ben Gott <>
# Subject: Andy & Colin sounded so much alike...
# Sorry...I made a mistake...A very helpful Chalkhills subscriber informed me
# that "Fly on the Wall" was by Colin. Oh, well.
# (I lost my English Settlement insert on the day I  bought the CD, so I kinda
# guessed - hope no one is deeply offended...)

Not offended by the mistake, but I'm deeply hurt that you could *lose* the
insert and *not*even* buy an *entire* replacement CD at once...

<just kiddin' ya> :-)

Personally I tend to like Colin's songs the most, if for no other reason than
they add a bit of spice and contrast into the procedings.

# From: (Richard Pedretti-Allen)
# Subject: Drums & Wire Playlist
#   >My copy of Drums and Wires (which is an import) has a (some) flaw(s). On
#   >the insert, 12 songs are listed. On the CD, 15 songs are listed. And
#   >when you put it in the player, 14 songs are indexed.
#   I do believe this has been covered several times but I was listening to
#   Scissor Man when I read the comment above... so...
#   CD (Virgin CDV2129): When I boot up my cd, the display indicates 14
#   songs.  CD printing and inserts indicate twelve songs.  There are three
#   adds and Life begins at the hop is missing.

<list snipped>

Now I knew there were several versions, and I knew they screwed most of
them up big time, but I never knew it was *that* screwy... My copy goes
like this:

On the outer sleeve (12 tracks):
  making plans for nigel / helicopter / life begins at the hop / when
  you're near me I have difficulty / ten feet tall / roads girdle the
  globe / reel by reel / millions / that is the way / outside world /
  scissor man / complicated game

  Note blatant typo in 'Real by Reel' (OK I admit it, I only just noticed
  this!). Also, how much did it cost to get a typewriter with no capitals
  on the letters a-h and j-z? ('Huh?' I hear you say). :-)

On the CD and booklet (the latter a cheapy affair, so thin you can read
the track list backwards through the front cover and (*sob*) no lyrics)
(15 tracks):
  making plans for nigel / helicopter / day in day out / when you're near
  me I have difficulty / ten feet tall / roads girdle the globe / life
  begins at the hop / chain of command / limelight / real by reel /
  millions / that is the way / outside world / scissor man / complicated

The 15-track list is in fact what's on the CD. Note that 'Life Begins at
the Hop' got shoved along a few tracks, plus 3 tracks inserted. I must
admit that this is one time I don't mind the bonus tracks being stuck in
the middle, I really can't imagine this album *not* finishing with
'Scissor Man' and 'Complicated Game', they just finish it off so well.

Well I'm stuck now, the CD has mysteriously transported itself into my

# From: (Jim Kee)
# Subject: The Bride Of TD
# The Wonderstuff         Have You Seen Jackie?

Too late, they've called it quits. I think it was last year sometime.

# Just so ya know, I spent alot (too much) time on this one.
# But it would be a great cd.

So did I on mine, it was 5am when I finished and I only finished then
because the server rebooted. :-)

Before I go, a quick question. Who is it that says 'Is this the right
tempo we're at at the moment?' at the start of 'Officer Blue'?

Also, trivia quiz time: In which song(s) does Terry get his name mentioned?
(I've only noticed one, but I suppose there could be others, hence the (s)).

Finish off with out-of-context quote, chosen specially to confuse some
(but by no means all) people as to its origin, as per tradition:

"My, the world looks good from where you paint from."

 |_)|_ *|
 |  | )||


Date: Thu, 02 Nov 1995 18:03:28 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Bunch o' stuff
Organization: SUNY at Plattsburgh, New York, USA

Date sent:  2-NOV-1995 17:52:51

Just going to respond to a few things that have been said lately...

*I don't think that the Mission or SoM should be let near any XTC song; I
like 'em fine, but they're not right for XTC material. I would like to say
that I think Blur could do a wonderful version of Sgt. Rock (I can even
hear Damon singing the chorus right now... :) --oh by the way, Blur have
been using strings since like, their second album, along with a horn
section called The Kick Horns, so that's not anything new (somebody alluded
that it was).

*Least favorite song--well, I've already said this, but I absolutely,
positively, cannot stand to listen to Dear God. I don't care in who's point
of view it's supposed to be; the lyrics make me ill and that's that. Like I
said before, if I had never heard Mayor Of Simpleton, I'd still hate XTC
because of that one song. And I think we should kill the whole Dear God
thread right now; this list has been around for quite a while, and I assume
that that old members must be sick of the discussion.

*The t-shirt thing--I'm not volunteering myself, but if somebody was
inclined to make one, why not use the chalkhorse and the word chalkhills
for the front, and then maybe come up with some clever little quote by AP
on the back? That's just a suggesstion, I have no means to make the shirts

*While listening to No Thugs In Our House the other day, I was reminded of
Morrissey's (I love the guy, personally) National Front Disco. Anybody else
see the connection?

Well that's it for me, must go to dinner.


"Start the world, I want to get back on"
                    --Carter USM


Date: Thu, 02 Nov 1995 21:10:43 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: XTC cover versions

I was not impressed with Testimonial Dinner. There are a few good tracks,
though I am afraid they do not make up for several boring, uncreatively
reproduced tracks which lack any imagination or interesting flavor:
Such as "Earn enough for us", "Senses...", and one of the worst: "All
you pretty girls".

This CD is, for me, a mere novelty. Some of the songs are reduced to
absolute mediocrity. Which has me realizing even more that XTC have a
very real MAGIC about the way they do things. If you can't inject a
special flavor into these songs, leave them alone. The thought of
another TD is beyond me...I dont think I would bother buying it.

Unless of course Terry and the Lovemen did them all !! Now that was a

OK, Ruben, Sarah, TMBG, Joe did Ok. The others should go into the song
demolition business. Production: ordinary.

Thanks for listening.

Joe Ierano


From: 7IHd <>
Subject: oops :-)
Date: Fri, 3 Nov 1995 04:01:21 +0000 (GMT)

Just thinking about my previous message (see above), I might as well
do that 'trivia quiz' properly; Answers to me via email and I'll post
the results in a week or two. (Try to make the subject line appropriate,
just like mine to the list never are...)

To reiterate, in which song does Terry get his name mentioned?
  (If there are more songs than just the one I've noticed, feel free to
  submit them. If it's something I haven't got, i.e. can't verify, then,
  er, now I have an excuse to ask nicely for a tape <grin>. Otherwise
  I'll just bow down to your superior powers of observation).

To reiterate the rules: Send answers to me, not chalkhills. Ta.

The judge's decision is final. (i.e. if I misheard the song, tough!)

No prize. A genuinely trivial trivia quiz. :-)
 |_)|_ *|
 |  | )||


Date: Thu, 2 Nov 1995 20:44:14 -0800 (PST)
From: Laura Parent <>
Subject: Budd-Partridge-better than a sleeping pill.

Does anyone else out there really like the Budd-Partridge disc "Through
the Hill"? I swear it is the best sleeping music ever.

Does anyone know the history of their collaboration?


Date: Fri, 03 Nov 1995 00:32:22 -0500 (EST)
From: "Dave Hastings (" <>
Subject: Testimonial Burrito EP

First off, thanks to Mr. Yasbek for a job truly well done.  I
must admit to having some misgivings about the 'Testimonial
Dinner' project back when I first saw the list of songs and
artists (many of which are not among my favorites), but it
really works well.  Unfortunately, hearing it makes the yearning
for another offering by our lads even more acute, but that can't
be helped, I guess.

However, in the spirit of fun, here are my proposed entries for
the 'Testimonial Burrito' EP...if the next XTC release takes as
long to materialize as I fear, we could be buying TD boxed sets
in 1998 (six discs, 84 page colour booklet...just in time for

     No Thugs In Our House              Dance Hall Crashers
     Don't Lose Your Temper             Bob Geldof
     Then She Appeared                  Andy Sturmer
     Reign of Blows                     Machines of Loving Grace
     The Man Who Sailed Around His
          Soul (Drunken Captain Dance
          Mix)                          My Life With the Thrill
                                           Kill Kult
     River of Orchids                   Terry and the Lovemen
     All Along the Watchtower
          (Hidden track #69)            Bob Dylan

And in the end...the love you buy is cheaper than the love you rent


Date: Fri, 3 Nov 95 11:57:14 +0100
Subject: Prelude to 'The Teds'


Has anyone on this list been a member of the 'Hello' recording club in
1993 AND want to get rid of the Residents' contribution?
E-mail me, and maybe we can work out a trade. Thanks.


OB XTC: Andy also contributed. If anyone wants to get rid of THAT copy,
email me too!!! ;->


From: "McDonnell, Dan E." <>
Subject: demos  cds
Date: Fri, 03 Nov 1995 07:33

is anyone (everyone) aware of a series of XTC cds called DEMOS?  I have been
stumbling across several, I think the series goes to vol 4 or 5.  The one
 that really caught my eye is vol 1, which contains about ten or so Helium
Kidz tracks and three "early XTC"  (ie yabber yabber yabber,etc).

If I was a student I would have bought all of em by now, but my 18 month old
pink thing has me on a budget.  Does anyone have these  and recommend them?

I also found Drums and Wireless and a live boot "the fab four in philly".
 Drums and Wireless looks like a good deal, (to martin monkman -- please
finish your review, if only to post to me at DEM@RMTGVL.RMTINC.COM).

bye bye


Date: Fri, 3 Nov 1995 12:59:39 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Obtaining Testimonial Dinner

I live in Ypsilanti, Michigan (right next to Ann Arbor) and I have not been
able to find TD. Last night I went to a music store and the assistant there
told me that he has been looking all over Ann Arbor for it ,too, for
himself....with no success. Is anyone out there who lives in Ann Arbor that
knows where I can get it??
I can't wait until I move to California in the spring!!!!!


End of Chalkhills Digest #2-21

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