Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #2-44

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 2, Number 44

                 Friday, 1 December 1995

Today's Topics:

                 XTC and Richard Thompson
                       Sunny James
 Conny, H&C, Antheap, Chills, B-words and divers alarums
                  Lizard Music, the La's
                      Various things
                      previous post
                       Oops x 10^6
         re: Conny Plank (yep, he's dead alright)
                        XTC poster
         Re:XTC-like bands & My re-occuring dream
                MST 3K and Mitchell Froom
                     Misheard lyrics
               Re: Chalkhills Digest #2-43
                    the band to watch
                       Spent Poets
                     Misheard Lyrics
                        Sonny Jim
                    2:07 am boredom...
                 Millions and millions...
                      T-Shirt Update
                 Help needed with project


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Can't find the wound from where I'm bleeding.


Date: Tue, 28 Nov 1995 16:18:05 -0800
From: (Timothy Chi Him Chan)
Subject: XTC and Richard Thompson

In the last Chalkhills, Al Curtis ( laments
that there isn't a Richard Thompson or Tom Verlaine mailing list.
I don't know if there is a Verlaine one but there is a Thompson
one at the following address:

You have a choice of the digest or regular version if you sign

Good to hear that Richard Thompson was flattered to be mentioned
in the same sentence as Andy Partridge.  Maybe he could appear
on A TESTIMONIAL DESSERT?!  By the way is that project in the
future or is it just an idea that us Chalkhillians are throwing
around?  Actually, I'm surprised that the Posies were not on
A TESTIMONIAL DINNER--I know that they are huge XTC fans.

Tim Chan


Date: Wed, 29 Nov 1995 22:06:58 -0500
Subject: Sunny James

>(Sunny Jim) Aint no such person Doug.  It's an old fashioned English term of
>address usually spoken in mock antagonism.  eg: "And what do you think
>you're doing spending all day reading Chalkhills when you should be
>working, Sunny Jim?!"
> So now you know.

I assumed that it would have been mentioned by now that probably the
earliest citation that American audiences, anyway, will find is in a
certain black and white Richard Lester comedy from 1964 in which a bemused
manufacturer of shirts remarks to a young moptop by the name of
Harrison,"That pose is out, too, Sunny Jim - the new thing is to care
passionately and be right wing."

...Simultaneously hoping I got the  citation right and wondering to what
better use the brain space devoted to that fudge could have been put,



Date: Thu, 30 Nov 1995 15:36:45 +1200
From: (James Dignan)
Subject: Conny, H&C, Antheap, Chills, B-words and divers alarums

>*Now* we're talking.  Is Conny Plank still around?  He's got to be getting
>pretty old -- as I recall he was associated with Cluster in the early 70's.
>I'd be concerned about his hearing (like Steve Lillywhite) at this point.
>In fact, I though I heard he died some years back...
>Unrelated question [...] does anyone know how to get hands on a copy of the
>A&M release of "Hunters & Collectors" circa 1983?  I'd love to hear
>"Tow Truck" again.

Conny died about four years back, sadly. As for H&C, their early stuff is
still available in these antipodean parts - on CD even. If you want more
info, contact me by private email and I'll see if I can find out more


>     References to the Beatles as the B-word (or B*****s)? Yikes! The
>     Beatles were the greatest rock band of all time. It's barely
>     subjective.

yeah! as THE B-word. Not just any old B-word like Bowie, Bragg, BeeGees,
Beck or Bon (as in Jovi or even Simon le), but THE B-word. Same as XTC are
THE X-word. Unlike, er, um XC-NN? Xmal Deutsch? X-ray Spex?


>I don't know about any of you, but the ONE song I can keep listening to
>over and over and over (and I *HAVE* done this in the past week) is Across
>This Antheap.  Just thought I should let the whole world know.

I recently listened to this song and really listened rather than juist had
it on in the background while I worked. It's amazing! So much happening,
all fitting into place, just like an antheap. And great lyrics too!


>Way cool. Good to hear the Chills are back and have ex-XTCers up to bat.
>^Soft Bomb^ is still one of my personal fave albums of the 90s. Hope this
>one lives up to advance billing. Wonder what our regular NZ contigent

zz..zzz...wha', urg, hmph, somebody call? :)
I can't wait to hear this album!!!



Date: Thu, 30 Nov 1995 01:01:06 -0500
Subject: Lizard Music, the La's
From: Rogier van Bakel <>

Sorry if someone mentioned this before. I've only been on this list for a
short while.

Another XTC soundalike: Lizard Music. Four-piece American band that
released a (debut?) album earlier this year called "Fashionably Lame"
(label: World Domination).  The group thank about 25 people in the CD
notes, among them a few lads whose names sound sorta familiar: Colin
Moulding, Andy Partridge, and Dave Gregory (the Rutles and, uhm, Sammy
Davis Jr. are also mentioned. Go figure).

The 13 songs on the CD are mostly quite good; a few of them even approach
excellence. But it's hard to get past the derivative nature of the music;
there's XTC in every hook and crannie (typo intended). Even worse, the
album was "recorded" (= produced) by that vastly overrated and hopelessly
undertalented bumwipe Steve Albini, with the usual result: everything
(especially the drums) sounds strangely out of balance and insanely
unpolished -- more like a well-intended demo than a fit-for-release CD.
This rambling, my-god-aren't-we-unspoiled-and-charming type of production
invariably exposes some ugly bumps and cracks in the musicianship,
especially with these guys, who are obviously still learning their way
around their instruments. And yet, this could be a band to watch. They
write some remarkable songs, and they're young and bound to get better.
Hopefully they'll get it right next time.

More info:

And now for something completely different: I've always heard a bit of
XTC (and a lot of Beatles) in that fanTASTIC, STUNNING CD by the La's,
which must be some six years old by now. Anyone know what happened to



From: 7IHd <>
Subject: Various things
Date: Thu, 30 Nov 1995 15:06:17 +0000 (GMT)

Catch up time... the subject is going to jump around a bit, sorry...

# From: Jeffrey Langr <>
# Subject: Ian Broudie?
# From: Scott Taylor <>
# ST>> How about Ian Broudie?
# Hmmm...  The last thing XTC needs is a slick producer who will make them
# sound like the Lightning Seeds or Journey or Asia or any typical
# MCA-overproduced recording.  Methinks they need a bit of bite, a shot of
# snarl, a nibble of noise.

This I agree with. But note that both Ian B and Andy P have worked with
Terry Hall, and at around the same time too; they might even have met. Does
anyone know?

Incidently, I saw the Lightning Seeds and Terry Hall in a combined gig just
over a year ago - when Terry came on and played 'I'll paint an orange' (or
whatever it's called - you know, one of the co-written with Andy ones), that
was the one song which made the most impact on me at that gig. Fine stuff.

Someone whos name someone else deleted wrote:
# >we could assemble some questions to send <Andy> as an email "interview"

I suspect anyone called Andy Partridge on AOL is not in fact our Andy
Partridge - either a fan, or someone with coincidentally the same name. I
seem to remember this subject coming up before, apparently there is more
than one AOLer going under that name.

Just a thought. I'm sure if Andy P wanted an email account, he'd go somewhere
other than AOL. Maybe even somewhere in the UK? And I bet he wouldn't use his
real name either.

# From: Natalie Jane Jacobs <>
# Subject: Isms
# I personally think Andy is a total naif when it comes to anything
# political.  He just blurts out whatever he thinks - hence the
# mind-boggling ... unintentional (IMO) racism of
# "Millions" (a song I can't listen to at all because it offends me so much
# - and I'm not a PC wuss, either).  He's spot-on with social satire but it's
# probably a good thing he doesn't vote.

I'm really not sure what you're getting at with 'Millions'. Admittedly I
don't have the lyrics in my copy of D&W so I'd never given it much thought,
but a quick check on the Chalkhills web site gives me this as the end of
the last verse:


Surely the only race/culture Andy is getting at here is the so-called
'civilised' Western culture to which he belongs? He's saying 'look at
our mistakes - don't follow us'. I personally think that he should be
congratulated for raising an issue which I for one certainly hadn't
given much thought.

Thant's my spin on this one anyway.

# From: (Ira Lieman)
# *Note: I used to be (in a past life) Remember me?

Yep. How's life on the Billy Joel newsgroup, BTW? No sign of a CD reissue
of 'Hour Of The Wolf' yet, I suppose? *sigh*

# From: (Ira Lieman)
# Subject: PERFECT producer
# And whaddaya all think of John Flansburgh? From They Might Be Giants? I
# don't think John would stifle the Swindonians' creativity -- I mean, look
# at TMBG!

At first I thought 'no way', but actually - this might just work! It would
certainly be interesting. Note that TMBG got Paul Fox (of O&L fame) to
produce their last one thought, and a mighty fine record it was too.

<someone who's name I accidentally snipped> wrote:
# > I nominate Mitchell Froom who has done fantastic work on R.T.'s last
# >4 albums (with drummer Dave Mattacks, BTW) as well as with Crowded
# >House and keyboards with Elvis Costello. I submit that his studio
# >savvy seems to bring out the best in all involved. Whaddya think?
# They desperately need someone who will bring out their verve.  It seems
# to me that there are basically two kinds of XTC albums-- the "in your
# face" variety and "seductive" ones.

# What was so cool about O&L was that it was in your face at a time when
# one might have expected mellow, introverted material.  Hopefully we're
# in for another in your face album.  Although Nonsuch is a solid
# recording, another one like it would do more harm than good because it
# would somehow signify a pat, staid mold that they have grown content
# with.  XTC's strength has always been an ability to reinvent itself
# with every album.  The next producer should be sensitive to this.

A valid assessment, I feel.

If we're in for an in-yer-face album, I go with Mitchell Froom, actually.
He'd certainly make a newt job of it - listen to the first three Crowded
House albums for an example.

However, if it's going to be a quiet album with lots of strings and stuff,
I've said this before and I'll say it again - Ian Caple. As well as some
fine work with Shriekback (there's a connection for you) over the years,
he has done a simply _awesome_ job with the second Tindersticks album, an
LP which nobody should be without (unless a manic depressive, in which
case don't even consider it!). So I nominate him on the basis of that.

One final thing, I inadvertantly picked up a copy of the 'USA 1980'
bootleg CD the other day - the one that is in fact the same as the BBC
concert but minus the first two tracks - thinking it was something else.
Since I have the BBC disc I'm not over-fussed about keeping it, so I'll
sell it at cost price (+postage) to anyone who wants it. It cost me 8
pounds (UK), that's roughly US$12. If anyone's interested, email me. I'd
prefer to do a straight swap (+/- cash adjustment?) with one of these
  XTC - Mayor Of Simpleton  - 3" UC CD single
  XTC - Gribouillage        - French CD free with 'Nonsuch'
  V/A - 1967 Through The Looking Glass
  V/A - The Adventure Club Sessions
  Or all manner of XTC bootlegs.

If you want a swap, mail me. If you want to just buy it and have nothing
to swap, mail me anyway. UK trade will be easier but replies accepted from

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


Date: Thu, 30 Nov 95 09:51:45 CST
From: "Bernhardt, Todd" <>
Subject: previous post

    Oops! Did I say Dave could sing "Taxman" if the boys covered "Rubber
    Soul"? I realized in a flash of clarity this morning that, of course,
    that's on "Revolver." Sorry, those albums always run together in my

    Maybe a double-album cover ...?


From: 7IHd <>
Subject: Oops x 10^6
Date: Thu, 30 Nov 1995 17:00:28 +0000 (GMT)

I think I inadvertently forgot to quote from 'Millions' in my last message,
thus rendering my comment on the song useless...

Here's the quote I intended to include:

  "I saw you asking for western thinking
  I say it's poison that you'll be drinking
  Stay as Wast, as far away as dreams will let you be."

Comment etc. as in previous message.

Sorry for any confusion,
 |_)|_ *|
 |  | )||


Date: Thu, 30 Nov 1995 14:54:26 -0500 (EST)
From: John Lorch <>
Subject: re: Conny Plank (yep, he's dead alright)

	yes, unfortunately Conny Plank is dead.  I don't think I ever
heard how he died, but he wasn't too old at the time.  I think his wife
is running the studio now.  (maybe I read this in the book about
Kraftwerk - that sounds right).  I can think of many groups I'd like to
hear him produce - he was one of my faves.

John Lorch
International Student Advisor			phone 410-455-2624
International Education Services, University of Maryland Baltimore County


Date: Thu, 30 Nov 1995 14:19 -0700 (MST)
From: "Daryn C. Tufts" <>
Subject: XTC poster

Hi all,

I recently found an LP version of Go 2 in a used store and was both shocked
and pleased to see it in such great shape.

Anyway, inside was an original poster of XTC. It's about 1' tall by 2 1/2'
wide and is of the four guy's heads standing next to each other.

Would anyone be interested in bidding for this? I am very open for a trade
(I still haven't gotten the XTC Anthology yet)

Those interested can E-Mail me privately.


Date: Thu, 30 Nov 1995 16:32:42 -0500
From: (Arthur James Virgin)
Subject: Re:XTC-like bands & My re-occuring dream

        Anyone who digs The Grays or XTC for that matter should also check
out both Aimee Mann albums, "Whatever", and "I'm With Stupid".  (Most of
you know DG played with AM on her last tour)
        Both albums were produced by Jon Brion (from the Grays).  The
latest "I'm With Stupid" (had it imported..$29 bucks..YUCK..but a bargain
at $100..available in the States around January) is an EXCELLENT album that
would appeal to a lot of sensibilities I've seen grace this fine list.
This album features Tilbrook & Difford (from Squeeze) on backgrounds
(almost every song),  Buddy Judge on guitar (also from the Grays), and the
incredible Michael Penn playing 2 tasty solos on the last track..YUMMY!

        Anyway, referring to the post someone made about "One man's garbage
is another man's treasure..." , then said he didnt like Skylarking and
traded it in.  Well, your garbage is MY treasure..That (along with O&L) are
consistently my favorite XTC albums..That is one of my favorite things
about this band: their extensive catalog!  Which is also why I still have
that re-occuring dream every once in a while (spawned from the picture in
Rolling Stone a while back when Andy jumped on stage to play with Aimee
Mann I think....)    My dream:  I am looking through the paper on a sunny
morning and stumble across an ad for XTC playing LIVE in an arena near
me... Wow!  What will they play?  Look at that catalog!  Then I wake up and
realize the closest I will get is Drums & Wireless....


"Skylarking was like a summers day
   baked into one cake" - Andy Partridge

Visit my Quality Music Page!


Date: Thu, 30 Nov 1995 14:09:33 -0800 (PST)
From: Laura Parent <>
Subject: MST 3K and Mitchell Froom

I once saw an awful movie on MST 3K that had music by Mitchell Froom.
Both the movie and the music were really BAD! Made me question whether MF
just lucked out by getting to produce Crowded House (now how hard can it
be to get THAT band to sound great!).


From: Ben Gott <>
Subject: Misheard lyrics
Date: Thu, 30 Nov 95 17:16:00 est

>how about people relating XTC lyrics that they've misheard over the years?

Lordy, lordy, lordy...there have been a few, and the only one that I can
remember off the bat is from "Nigel":

"...He must be happy in his world..." (instead of "work").

I won't relate specifics, but I've misheard lyrics from:

Jump, All of a Sudden (It's Too Late), Melt the Guns, Humble Daisy, Earn
Enough for Us (that whole "now you're saying that we're gonna be three/now
a father's what I'll be" part), Ten Feet Tall, Leisure (in fact, I misheard
most of the song!) and more.

My biggest let down was thinking that, in "Train Running Low on Soul Coal",
Andy was saying "and I'm told that there's no more coal for the old
engines," instead of the proper "...for the *older* engines." It just
looses something, IMHO.

Ben (new & improved!)



Date: Thu, 30 Nov 1995 16:37:26 -0600 (CST)
From: Greg Singer <>
Subject: Re: Chalkhills Digest #2-43

Re: Andy & women, & "Omnibus" glorifying women as sex objects, I
>don't know... I think he's reveling in the glory of women, the "Garden Of
>Earthly Delights." Not objects; but beings different from us men-types

A first posting of me, a veteran fan of some 15 years and still going
as strong as ever.  I believe that "Garden of Earthly Delights" is
(the brillian) Andy Partridge welcoming his kids into life on this
planet. He is welcoming them into all life has to offer and supports
them to do anything that they want, "as long as they don't hurt
anyone". (how i live my life also, AP really has his head on

sidenote: everyone involved should be proud of  'Chalkhills'


Greg s
... prevention is better than cure, bad apples affecting the pure...


Date: Thu, 30 Nov 1995 17:14:10 -0600
From: (Chris Van Valen)
Subject: the band to watch

Hi Chalkdusters

The band to watch is an unsigned band from Toronto--Rob Torkelson's Armada
Featuring Herman Menderchuck. :-)



Date: Thu, 30 Nov 1995 18:52:13 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Spent Poets

Brian Moylan <> wrote:

>Anyone heard the Posies? They're a band from Seattle. I first bought their
>CD because I read a review where the writer compared the band to XTC.

I also once bought a CD based solely on a comparison to XTC.
The band is the Spent Poets, and to my knowledge, they only
have one album out: 'The Spent Poets'  Not even sure if they're
still around because this album is getting kinda old,--I think
it came out in '92.  Anyway, they are excellent, very highly
recommended.  Has anyone heard of them or know if they still
are around?  I have never met even one person who  knows of them,
although I have introduced many new listeners to the band.



Date: Thu, 30 Nov 1995 16:52:52 -0800
From: Christie Byun <cbyun@ocf.Berkeley.EDU>
Subject: Misheard Lyrics

Had to get this in in response to Todd Bernhardt's query if anyone had
any misheard lyrics to relate in this space.  Here's a couple:

In "That Wave", in the place of the line "I was in heaven, address cloud
eleven", I used to hear "I was in heaven, dressed up in leather."  Okay,
so I consulted the lyrics booklet, but I liked my mishearing.  Oh well.
Also "terrapin tears" in the place of "cherubim cheered" in "Then She
Appeared".  That's a pretty minor one, but I guess it fits better into
the framework of that song, than Andy dressed up in leather.



Date: Fri, 1 Dec 1995 20:44:03 +1100 (EST)
From: (j p horsam)
Subject: Sonny Jim

Sonny Jim....true, it's an olde english term of semi endearment/sarcasm.
Also check out the Goon Show, BBC radio comedy of the late 50's. There's
Little Jim (who lives in Eccles's boot) only ever line..'he's fallen in da
This note is probably incomprehensible to right thinking Americans... sorry
about that.

It's also fantastic to see Richard Thompson and AP spoken of in the same
breath. I was delighted when I saw Dave Mattacks' name on
favourite drummer of all time.
Mitchell Froom? Probably a great idea. RT's Amnesia is a great album
Song of My Week 'Ten Feet Tall'



From: Aaron Pastula <>
Subject: 2:07 am boredom...
Date: Fri, 1 Dec 95 2:24:12 PST

A few random comments:

> What's the scoop on the album, is it being produced, when's it due out,
> does anyone know anything?

I think maybe all we know, going from the liner notes of T.D., is that they
have established something with EMI??  Although I have also heard that
nothing has been solidified yet, and they are still in the process of
working out a deal...hope they find something soon...

By the way, will someone please tell Freedy Johnston to SING OUT?  That guy
sounds like he's on an artificial respirator.  Personally, I think the only
decent things on that album are Sarah McLachlan and Ruben Blades, and of
course, XTC themselves.  The rest is, well, yawn zzzzzzzzzz.

> (By the way, you can sing the Rascals' song
> "Groovin'" slowly along with Grass... similar chord changes...kinda the
> same sweet summer mood, too.)

Actually, Andy does that on the recording from the acoutic radio tour that
was taped at KROQ in L.A.  It's not a bad record, overall.




Date: Fri, 1 Dec 1995 15:00:09 -0500
Subject: Millions and millions...

>I personally think Andy is a total naif when it comes to anything
>political.  He just blurts out whatever he thinks - hence the
>mind-boggling lyrical shallowness of songs like "Melt the Guns" and
>"Knuckle Down", and the equally mind-boggling unintentional (IMO) racism of
>"Millions" (a song I can't listen to at all because it offends me so much
>- and I'm not a PC wuss, either).  He's spot-on with social satire but it's
>probably a good thing he doesn't vote.

I don't think "Millions" is *racist* per se.  The message I read from the
song is that China should fight Western "cultural imperialism".  A plea for
cultural diversity...  what could be more PC than that?  Of course, the
images he uses to represent China are the picture-postcard variety, and he
overlooks the poverty that, by all accounts, a great percentage of the
population endures.  Ask some of those people how they'd feel about an
influx of Western technology, even if it means a McDonald's springing up in
every town...

None of which matters to me when I listen to the song.  When that guitar
part comes in, I just wanna do the snake wiggle...

Aside from that, your point about Andy's political naivete is well taken.
 I'd tend to agree with you.

Jeez, this is like the fourth straight digest I'll have a post in.  Maybe
I'd better shut up for a while...



Date: Fri, 1 Dec 95 14:58 MST
From: (Phil Corless)
Subject: T-Shirt Update

As of Friday, Dec. 1, I have received checks from:
Beckham, Peters, Wheeler, Brenner, Williams, Sattler,
Relph, Barton, Risch, Allen, Thierer, Jordan, Haefner,
Scott, Glass, Auerbach, Woiccak, Rhoten, Martis,
Thomas, Martucci, Day, Snyder, Reyes, O'Leary,
Vongkasemsiri, Hastings, Tomek, Sinclair, Isaacson,
Zemel, Wong See, Christopher, Mackay, Rutherford,
Whitmore, Brown, Rothman, McCormick, Bird,
Bessaguet, Anderson, Lewis, Rosedale, Gonsalves,
Canevit, Slack, Kearns.

I am still waiting for about a dozen more people who
promised to send checks.  I think I have severely
underestimated the traffic jam at the post office this
time of year, as some mail is taking over a week to
go across the country.  And some mail appears to
have just been lost altogether.  I won't even mention
the overseas mail, which I haven't seen at all save for
one speedy envelope from Australia!

This all leads me to conclude that these shirts probably
won't be Christmas presents after all.....  I won't be
ordering them until all orders are in and confirmed.
Hopefully you'll be wearing them in time for Valentine's

Phil Corless
Boise, Idaho


Date: Fri, 1 Dec 1995 18:10:21 -0500
Subject: Help needed with project

Hello. I had two little XTC projects I was working on and I was hoping for
some help from all the Chalkhills members. The first project involves
compiling a listing of all the regular and promotional XTC items that have
been issued over the years such as posters, press kits, promo stands, tour
programs, t-shirts, buttons, etc.. (excluding records, tapes, CD's...).

Secondly, I would like to compile a bibliography of XTC articles. If you
could, please send me the name of the magazine or paper in which the
article appears, date and issue number, number of pages, author of the
article, and if XTC is on the cover. Please exclude XTC reviews and

If you have anything in your collection that could be included in either
project, I would appreciate a personal e-mail detailing what you have. I
will send anyone who asks a completed listing when finished, or with John
Relph's permission I will ask him to include the info in the Chalkhills
archives.  Thanks for your help.


End of Chalkhills Digest #2-44

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