Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #3-146

         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 3, Number 146

                  Thursday, 31 July 1997

Today's Topics:

                     Prodigy Quickie
       Songwriter's Delima and Open Mic Suggestion
                      Spookey Ruben
            Two real-life snatches of dialogue
                Sara Lee Once and for all
                     Fegmania in xtc
                       Gang Members
                     Re: Brett Milano
      "In my Guitar's defence" and other ramblings.
                  Dandy Dancey Partridge
       HiFi Geeks Stand Up, or Who Remembers Quad?
                         Sara Lee
               The simple pleasures in life
                   Review of Upsy Daisy
                   What a great idea...
         Just Another Asshole Talking About Andy
                      Re: TR is OK!
                      Unknown Rarity
                    Re: In Like Flynn
         Vinyl, Six Degrees, Pop and Bonus track
           T-shirt sighting and surround sound


To UNSUBSCRIBE from the Chalkhills mailing list, send a message to
<> with the following command:

        unsubscribe chalkhills

For all other administrative issues, send a message to:


Please remember to send your Chalkhills postings to:


World Wide Web: <>

The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

Chalkhills is digested with Digest 3.4 (John Relph <>).

And I see nations war about whether right is left and whether wrong is right.


Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 28 Jul 1997 17:24:20 -0600
From: Jonathan Christensen <>
Subject: Prodigy Quickie

Speaking of the Prodigy (I forget who actually was). The singer reminds
me of Viv from "The Young Ones". HA.


Date: Mon, 28 Jul 1997 19:48:44 -0500 (CDT)
From: James Dupuy <>
Subject: Songwriter's Delima and Open Mic Suggestion
Message-ID: <>

Hello Chalkhill People!

	I haven't but read the last two posts or so. Need to get back to
my morning coffee ritual. Is it true!!?? XTC has signed with an indy
label??!! It's about time!!
	A thought to Harrison Sherwood (and anyone who might care about
songwriting) motivated by:

>I don't for a minute suggest that that
>sort of analysis is going through Andy's mind while he's writing and
>arranging a song. That's for us, the discriminating listeners, to do
>later, if we so choose. That's why he's Andy and we're just a bunch of
>assholes sitting around _talking_ about Andy.

I believe there is a creative intuition that many good songwriters
might have but I have for some time now wondered if one could consciously
arrange really good works of art. I don't write much and have only just
got back into it. In highschool I wrote by feeling and by developing
progressions that I stumbled on by accident, but I have recently been able
to hear with my mind's ear where I wanted the progression to go in order to
accomplish the feeling. Is this "intuition and experience" that has been
developed through the years? For example recently I wanted in a
particular part of a song to walk the bass note of my chord
progression down four consecutive half steps. I built each chord around
it's particular bass note such that the chord effect would give the mood I
wanted in the song. It work pretty good. I don't want to sound like it is
anything profound. It may very well be a piece that only the originator
can stomach. But back to the movie. I also remember an interview with
Andy where he mentions finding a chord pattern and developing it to get
the arrangment that he was after.
	I guess my point is that it may be realistic for
someone to consciously create the awsome stuff that Andy has created.
I have always believed that Elvis Costello had a fairly good handle on
what he wanted to do musically. I guess I don't want to think that what
Andy has created is something that has been handed down by the gods or
muses or whatever they are called. I'm sure he may not be thinking that he
will write a song with a certain progression (or is he)but I believe that
he may, at times, know where he wants to go with it.
	BTW, Harrison (is that what you go by?) I love the musical
analysis that you have posted. Please keep them coming, my way at least.
	Changing gears. I always thought that an accoustic guitar
version of Pink Thing would sound awsome. To get a similar effect as
the cd with one accoustic guitar should be a challenge and I think would
be fun. I have been wanting to try it for some time now but have been
really busy lately.
	Can't wait till the new CD comes out. Does anybody know what we
might expect from Colin on this one(s)?

Jim Dupuy

"There's lots of waste and razor wire and no one gives a damn about the
land, we just stand round and stare like you folks do." (Scarecrow People)


Date: Mon, 28 Jul 1997 13:51:03 -0400 (EDT)
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Spookey Ruben

Ed (steady eddy) wrote:

has anyone heard of
'spookey ruben'? he's a canadian guy who does a song called 'these days are
old' and it's SO xtc that it's scary. his voice...everything. if you can
get it, it's a fine album all the way through.

Yes!!  I just bought _Modes of Transportation, vol 1_ and it's
very impressive, and definitely reminiscent of Andy Partridge
(particularly the song "These days are old").  My favorite is
"It's not what you do, it's you" followed closely by "Wendy McDonald".
Spookey shares some of the quirkiness of AP.  My only minor complaint
is that he is a bit heavy on his synth use.

       - Mark

Prof. Mark E. Glickman         tel: (617) 353-5209
Department of Mathematics      fax: (617) 353-8100
Boston University    


Message-ID: <>
From: "Witter, Karl F" <>
Subject: Two real-life snatches of dialogue
Date: Tue, 29 Jul 1997 16:04:06 -0400

Scene one...
Me (idly, while watching someone flogging those Cat-in-the-Hat
hats at a fireworks): "Some folks on the XTC list mentioned
a live-action Dr. Seuss movie. How's that for hallucinogenic?"

My other (a Dr. Seuss fan): "What's it called?"

Me: "The 5000 Fingers of Dr. T."

My other: "Hey, I've seen that! It was some nightmare
with a young boy being forced to play piano by an evil
music teacher."

And I didn't even get to say "It's high on Andy's film list".
I was duly impressed.

Moral: Enjoy the little surprises.

Scene two...
Coworker: "Page Vendor X, Karl."

Me: "Okay." Boop-beep-beep-borp-boop-borp-beep (Dialing phone).

Then, *two minutes* later: Coworker: "Karl, the help desk wants
to know if Vendor X has a status on that."

Me, spontaneously and exasperatedly: "Tell the help desk,
you can lead a horse to culture but you can't make it drown!"

Moral: "Telekinetically forcing someone to answer a page" is a
desired job skill which I should have taken in college.

Today's quiz: Which other writer, besides Andy Partridge, did
I plagarize above, and what's that writer's original quote?

Mission's been scrubbed, my brains were washed,


Message-Id: <>
From: "J. D. SMX" <>
Organization: Access Tucson
Date: Tue, 29 Jul 1997 14:05:41 -0700
Subject: Sara Lee Once and for all

Hello Future Swindonians,

I, for one, saw Sara Lee in all three of these bands.
League Of Gentlemen, Gang Of Four (X3), and the B-52's
in that order.   GOF was by far the best, live; but she seemed to
have the most fun in the B-52's.

I do believe that Barry Andrews formed Shreikback AFTER LOG.
And Barry's solo EP came out BEFORE LOG on Virgin.

The only other person I ever saw in three different bands was
Tommy Bolin.

Lee L.,, you are mr. mello by definition.  I think Elton's picture is
in the dictionary by the word mello.  Prodigy ROCKS. Consider the
fact that all the backing tracks are created by one person and they
pull this off live.  I'm not knocking EJ, he's a talented songwriter.

Ralph DeM.,, The Large Utopia was a great and progressive group.
The smaller, pyramid-laiden Utopia was a boring and redundenant
group.  Neither was techno-crap, you must be thinking of Nektar.
I'm not knocking TR, he's a talented songwriter.

Love and Rockets played David Essex' Rock On on their Sweet FA tour
last year.  It was perfect too.  Andy would've loved it.

Covering my arse,   SMX


Message-Id: <>
Date: Tue, 29 Jul 1997 17:47:53
From: Keith Hanlon <>
Subject: Fegmania in xtc

>any other Robyn
>Hitchcock fans out there?

Fellow feg, right here!

I, too, wonder why his name isn't often brought up on the Hill. Perhaps his
typical subject matter and Barrett-esque singing doesn't appeal to
everyone. He's more than just flesh and floral, folks! If you're a fan, you
should check out the Fegmaniax mailing list (a VERY open mailing list -
lots of discussion about anything remotely related to Robyn. Very fun).

Nothing XTC-ish to add. Damn, we need a new record.

I might as well bring this up now- flame me if you'd like - Check out my
band's website and download some tunes! New CD in the fall...

	  Norton's Orchestraville Homepage


Message-Id: <>
From: "Mark Strijbos" <>
Organization: The Little Lighthouse
Date: Tue, 29 Jul 1997 23:52:53 +0000
Subject: Gang Members

Hi Chalkers,

I tried to get some Martin Newell cd's in the Amsterdam sale but they
were all sold out :(
But I was surprised to find the Upsy Daisy Assortment cd at just a
little more than 12 US dollars...extremely cheap for an import.
I do like the packaging very much - it's pastoral and tacky at the
same time. And the silkscreened disc is also pretty nice IMHO.

And I have to agree of course with my belearned friend
Simon 'The Smartest Monkey' Sleightholm who noticed it is a much more
cheerful affair than the Fossil Fuel box thingy.

The cd itself is a good introduction to XTC for the novice and a
complete waste of time & money to everybody else but the most hardened
& crazy collectors who just want to HAVE IT ALL! Like me :)

Marshall Joseph Armintor asked:

>  Didn't Sara Lee also play for awhile in Gang of Four? I don't have my
> Trouser Press Guide in front of me here...
Me neither but she definitely did play in the Gang Of Four for a
while - i saw her play with them.
Methinks this was during their "I Love A Man In A Uniform" period;
when they almost went "big in the States" but didn't quite make it
But their first album is still a new wave classic IMHO anyway...

BTW: I have put an ecstatic (nudge nudge, wink wink) Sound Scheme
for Windows on my Website. Download the sounds and your desktop will
never be the same again :)

yours daisy,

Mark Strijbos
at The Little Lighthouse; the XTC website @
===> The Random XTC Quote <===
For a heart without love is a song with no words


Date: Tue, 29 Jul 1997 23:10:54 -0400 (EDT)
Message-ID: <>
Subject: Re: Brett Milano


Catching up with XTC

by Brett Milano>>

   I used to be pretty good friends with Brett in the mid-80's. We haven't
been in touch for about ten years, but we shared some musical interests at
the time, XTC being among them; when he did a phone interview with Andy just
before The Big Express came out, I was one of the first to know about it. We
actually met indirectly through a mutual friend(and XTC fan who effectively
turned me onto XTC) who had a huge unrequited crush on him, and after hearing
Nina gush about him for a couple of years, I was mighty curious to see what
the fuss was about. Turned out a housemate I was living with was good friends
with him, and one afternoon a big guy who looked like a shaved bear came over
to visit her, and we got talking without my knowing who he was at first.
Fortunately I didn't say anything embarassing before Sarah addressed him by
his first name, and I guessed correctly who he was.
  Good to see Brett's still an XTC fan; some things never change, fortunately.



Date: Tue, 29 Jul 1997 12:32:47 -0700
From: "Macdonald, Robert" <>
Subject: "In my Guitar's defence" and other ramblings.
Message-id: <BF4081FF169CD0118C4600805FBEEAE90AB44A@BCBCMAIL>

	Hello all.

	It might be a little late but I must defend my little Italian
made Vox Spitfire.  What is a Vox Spitfire you ask.  Well actually I've
never seen another one before, but basically it looks like a Fender
Mustang.   I bought it for $100 bucks about ten years ago and I still
use it a lot of the time over other guitars I have.  It's bright red,
has a great humbucker pick-up that someone added at some point, a nice
whammy bar and it always stays in tune!  What more can you ask.

	Re: the Sugarplastic.  I personally don't think I could listen
to them without thinking XTC right away.  I played it for a friend (XTC
fan) and he asked if these were the new demo's (Andy's) I was telling
him about.  A couple other friends couldn't really get into the disc
(Bang...) because they felt it was just too much of a rip-off.
Personally, I don't feel that way.  Yes I hear the similarities, and I
think it would be ridiculous for the band to deny them.  Even so, I
think it is a very good pop record with some great moments.  I look
forward to their next one.

	Re: Idea.     Although I'm sure there are lots of other similar
examples the only one that I could think of is Telegraph Records.  This
is the label started up by the three former members of OMD.  They have
released there own album under the band The Listening Pool and have also
signed some other bands (China Crisis if I remember correctly was one of
them).  I assume they as well have also set up a world-wide distribution
deal.  The Listening Pool cd was distributed by KOCH in Canada anyway.
Telegraph Records have a fairly well done (if somewhat out of date) web
site if anyone is interested.  I don't know how successful these guys
have been going out on there own but it is an example.  Would I
recommend the cd?  Only if you are in a particularly nostalgic mood as I
was when I got it.

	Re: Cooking Vinyl.     I own several records on this label
including The Oyster Band, Malcom's Interview, Rory McLeod.  All of
these are UK "folk" artists with rock cross-over appeal.  These were all
bought in Canada so distribution for them here has always been good.

	To paraphrase Ben Gott,  "Can't wait until the weekend
comes...(Damn it it's still not here yet!)"


	Rob Macdonald
	Victoria, B.C.


Message-Id: <>
Date: Tue, 29 Jul 1997 20:46:05 +0100
From: Simon Sleightholm <>
Subject: Dandy Dancey Partridge

 From Aj

>Err...Prodigy over Prefab??  How surreal that someone would post this on a
>mailing list dedicated to a band who's strongest asset is melody.

..along with energy and joy, both of which seem to be left under the mixing
desk during the Prefab sessions.  What can I say? They simply don't move me...

"Swoon" had the biggest effect on me merely because I noticed it when it was
playing.  Didn't like it though. Some of the bubblegum elements of "Langey
Park To Memphis" were fun (but I expect that these are to Sprout fans as
"Sgt Rock" is to XTC fans) and "Jordan" didn't alter my pulse even a little.
I have tried to like them, really I have - in much the same way I have tried
to really like the Beach Boys - I *know* there must be something there
because so many people have such respect and admiration for them, but I just
don't get it. Sorry, like.

>(who doesnt give a *damn* what people think of his musical tastes)

I don't give a damn what people think about *my* musical tastes either, but
I do give a tiny bit of a damn about what musical tastes might be attributed
to me or inferred especially when they run wholly contrary to my actual
tastes.  I wasn't really angry, you know, I was only playing with my friend

So, it comes to my attention that Andy is keen to work with arch dance bods
the Dust Brothers.  Yowza!  I always wondered about this kind of thing; Andy
is so rhythmically inclined, even within his melodies, and we've seen some
wonderful dance/rock collaborations recently - Noel Gallagher/Chemical Bros,
Crispian Mills/Prodigy and John Lydon/Leftfield - so I think they could
bring something special to the mix.  I know Andy's always said he disliked
"dance music", but there's dance music and there's dance music.  On the one
hand you have artists like Portishead, Orbital, Prodigy, Goldie, Tricky,
possibly even Robert Miles (as well a many others not so well known) who are
flexing their own particular envelopes, and on the other you have the
anonymous bleep merchants who aim for a maximum wipe-out BMP dance
experience. Thrilling in its own way, of course, but not truly for
"listening" .  Some of Andy's own dub work has wandered into areas now being
poked by some of the great new drum'n'bass artists, some of whom seem to be
hitting almost neo-Beefheart grooves.  "Prince Of Orange" is, if you're at
all up on the current state of dance music, an amazingly prescient bit of
work - the sliding piano runs, almost cacophonous in places.  It has a
wonderful mix of the arcane and the (breathlessly) contemporary. And it's
almost three years old now.

The borders are blurring.

An XTC resource - "Food for the thinkers..."


Message-Id: <>
Subject: HiFi Geeks Stand Up, or Who Remembers Quad?
Date: Wed, 30 Jul 97 00:57:00 -0500
From: Della & Steve Schiavo <>

Michael Myers reported:
>I found the following reference on CNNFN that could impact us all soon.
>Time to save your currency for a new system, because it sounds like we'll
>have XTC in surround sound with room to spare for lotsa bonus tracks and
>other media.

I haven't seen the specs, but the DVD audio standard will likely be the
5.1 format (5 channels plus subwoofer) used in home theater.  The
"surround sound" might be great for getting "room sound" from live
recordings, but I
can't figure out what they're going to do with it for the typical studio
pop recording.  (Artificial room sound, maybe?)

The neat thing about DVD audio is that it should provide a 96K sampling
rate and 24 bit word length (rather than the 44.1 (?) and 16 on CD).
Thus, much better sound.  Of course, this will require a new DVD player
(which will also play CDs).  To avoid the problem of having two formats
for retailers to stock, it's being advocated that audio DVDs also include
CD level information (in some of that extra space).

Audio engineers, please feel free to correct me.

Ready to buy XTC on DVD -



From: kraig olmstead <>
Subject: Sara Lee
Date: Tue, 29 Jul 97 13:20:00 PDT
Message-ID: <>

Sara also played with the Indigo Girls for a time, if I'm not mistaken.



Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 29 Jul 1997 14:11:33 -0400
From: Ira Lieman <>
Subject: TMBG/XTC...

> From: Andrea Rossillon <alr@UDel.Edu>
> > From: Ira Lieman <>
> >
> > I'm currently listening to the Paul Fox-produced "John Henry" by They
> > Might Be Giants. And someone else tell me that "Destination Moon" and
> > "Garden of Earthly Delights" have some production similarities? I might
> > be going crazy. The "over-the-topness" of both of those songs are
> > uncannily similar.
> Well, I mean, both John Henry and O&L were produced by Paul Fox (who also
> did _Cereal Killers_ by Too Much Joy, if anyone out there listens to them
> as well).  Silly Ira.

This I know. I know they were both producded by Paul Fox, but I never
REALLY paid attention to the similarities in the feelings of the songs.
Yes. Paul Fox has been described as "over the top" in the past. But it's
VERY obvious if you listen to both of those songs together.

Song of the day: "Snowman" -- which I am currently playing for the 9th
time today.

-ira, who has "welcome" written on himself.


From: Cheryl <>
Date: Wed, 30 Jul 1997 16:02:07 GMT
Subject: The simple pleasures in life
Message-ID: <>

Hello Chalkies!

I've finally let myself out of my self-imposed exile.  I had banished
myself from those little pleasures in life in order to complete a
huge project( I'm so easily distracted).  These little pleasures
included e-mailing( not a complete banishment there, mind you, I
managed a few break outs!) and listening to my CD player.  Finally,
after weeks of no XTC I put those head phones on and felt like I had
just returned from a long exhausting trip.  It was good to be
home. : )

I guess those little breaks are good  because they help me to
remember why I  truly love this band.  It was like discovering them
all over again.  That wonderful voice of Mr. P's coming through and
the rich sound of the accompanied music.  *Sigh*  I was in heaven and
still am.  I just want to listen to everything but that is impossible
to do with a battery powered CD player.  BUT!  I have the chance to
house sit for a family and the thought hit me that I can bring my CDs
and I will get to listen to them on a HUGE STEREO with GREAT BIG
SPEAKERS for three whole weeks.  I'm just giddy with happiness.  For
a time I will not be forced to screw those little earphones into my
ears and listen to XTC in my head.  No!  I can crank up the volume
and play it for the neighbours, well that may be pushing it, but you
get the idea.  Speaking of...

Okay here I go in my fumbling way again, but people have been
discussing the idea of contributing to the promotion of XTC.
Wouldn't it be better if they went the route that David Bowie took of
having people invest in the band?  I hope I'm getting that right.
It's like people have stocks or shares in his company(?) or is that
what you people are getting at?  My brain is mush from so much paper
work of late.  Seems there is another musician or actor that has that
same scheme going.  Wouldn't that be interesting, shares in XTC.

I just want to correct one little thing.  I almost thought I could
let it go but I just can't do it.  Mitch! I'm not a Brit like you
supposed.  I, too, am American.  As much as I want everyone to think
I'm some English Rose just wallowing in the English-ness of England I
just can't deceive people like that.  I must be honest to the end!
How horribly boring of me.  : )

Pardon my meandering ways,


Date: Wed, 30 Jul 97 12:44:33 CST
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Review of Upsy Daisy

     This is from "Gallery of Sound"

     Upsy Daisy Assortment

     XTC needs out of their debt-ridden contract with Virgin Records U.K.
     So much so they've refused to make an LP for the last five years-the
     longest exile of their storied career-since the enjoyable Nonesuch,
     their 10th studio LP. (This somewhat average XTC LP was better than
     reviews indicated.) Finally sensing the now-two-decade-old band was
     not, in fact, bluffing on their "strike," Virgin finally relented and
     let them go, under terms that insisted that the band agree to a "best
     of" for them. Poof! Upsy Daisy sprouts. Do you really need to know why
     such "overview" discs often sally forth?

     Admittedly, no, particularly with such an embarrassment of riches as
     this. Ignore leader Andy Partridge's recent disparaging comments on the
     track-listing: I defy any fan to compile a sample more representative
     for the uninitiated, who are, after all, the only folks who will buy
     this. Firstly, since the band is no longer fond of the first two LPs
     that predate key-contributor Dave Gregory's membership, White Music and
     Go 2 are ignored here. Fine. Surely the hyper-new wave "Barry Andrews"
     era bears no resemblance to the subsequent array of tuneful post-punk
     (three classic LPs, '79-'82) and unbelievably luscious,
     Beatlesesque/Beach Boysesque gilded-pop ('83-'92, including the
     immortal Skylarking). True, Mr.  Partridge, this chronological
     collection leans heavily on singles, and could have been just a second
     "singles LP," perhaps picking up where Waxworks ('77-'82) left off.

     But are there really LP tracks that should have appeared instead of,
     say, the edgy, cantankerous yet longing "Making Plans For Nigel?" Or
     the belligerent brilliance of "Dear God" and "The Ballad of Peter
     Pumpkinhead?" Or the lush forestry of "Grass?"  Moreover, the LP tracks
     are spot on, from the sardonic crack of Black Sea's "Respectable
     Street" (am I the only one who's noticed that super-fans Blur have
     ripped this song off three times already???!!!!), to the pristine
     wonder of Oranges and Lemons' "Chalkhills and Children," to the
     Revolver power-pop homage of Skylarking's "Earn Enough For Us," to the
     fear of rejection freeze of the oddly included "Seagulls Screaming Kiss
     Her Kiss Her" from The Big Express.  An assortment like this that
     serves up XTC's strengths, touches all their treasures, and conceals
     their few missteps, is what a best-of is for. Now if only those Gideon
     folks stuck this in hotel drawers.

     Jack Rabid


Date: Wed, 30 Jul 97 12:54:31 CST
Message-Id: <>
Subject: What a great idea...

     Dear Chalk-o-philes,

     So. Their own record label. A multitude of output a la "The Artist" is
     expected now from the Farmboys to make some wages.

     I wonder if they will be looking for bands to sign. Mitch, if you know
     where I should send my demo, let me know.

     I am hoping if Andy does eventually do something with Adrian Belew
     they do it here in Nashville where Adrian has his own studio and home.

     That Terry Chambers, what a guy.

     I hope if I am ever in Swindon, I can sample some of the local "grass"

     Tira misu, espresso and The Big Express... now that's a way to spend a
     stormy sunday afternoon.

     I like Mummer as much as the next guy, but what's with those extra
     tracks messing with the flow. It's enough to make you scratch them off
     the cd!

     That Colin Moulding, I know about wife problems!!

     Larry King


Date: Wed, 30 Jul 1997 17:34:10 +0400 (EDT)
From: Thomas Slack <>
Subject: Just Another Asshole Talking About Andy
Message-ID: <>

Harrison Sherwood wagged thusly:

>But the topic's worth pursuing, don't you think? Andy &
>Colin's songcraft? Doesn't get talked about much here,

Too true. I wondered if an addendum to Harrison's extensive examination
of the Pure Pop Diamond that is Mayor of Simpleton may be what Andy did
_not_ do, which is to add a quirky bridge or coda that departs from the
overall feel of the song. (Yeah, there's a bridge, but it fits in well
and leads perfectly back into the verse.)

Last week, while having friends over, "Wrapped in Grey" came on the radio.
(Normally, I would jump up and down, screaming to the world that I heard an
XTC song on the radio, but WYEP is a pretty cool station that plays XTC
on a fairly regular basis, so it wasn't a huge surprise. I did hear Peter
Pumpkinhead on World Cafe, which is more of a national production. How
far off-topic can I get before adding the closing paren) Anyway, we were
all caught up in the mood of that song, a fairly poignant moment, similar
to other descriptions I have heard of listening to this song. Then the coda
came on at the very end of the song, which seemed to me a complete
departure from the feel that had built up, and which just kind of leaves you
hanging. I really wished it had been left off.

I know the "quirky" character of Andy's songwriting is part of the
appeal, makes it impossible to label any of his songs mundane, and
often fits the theme. But sometimes it seems like an intentional monkey
wrench thrown into the groove machine. I notice that Colin does not seem
to fall prey to the same impulse. This is not criticism (how can you
criticize one of the greatest songwriters alive), just an observation.



Date: Wed, 30 Jul 1997 16:14:50 -0400 (EDT)
Message-Id: <>
From: John Leith <>
Subject: Re: TR is OK!

It bothers me a little to see all the Todd bashing here as well. I am a huge
XTC fan but must admit to being an even bigger Todd fan. I have pretty well
everything he has ever put out and feel (like XTC) that he is one of the
most underrated artists of all time! I also subscribe to Todd's Awizard list
& notice that quite a few T.R fans also like XTC. Very little Andy P.
bashing on that list! Skylarking was a great record & I think it should be
left at that!
John L.

At 09:37 AM 29/07/97 -0700, Ralph D. wrote:
>TR is OK!
>For the
>life of me, I cannot figure out why I have read so much Todd R. bashing
>in Chalkhills in the past.


Date: 31 JUL 97 13:46:42 AST
Subject: Unknown Rarity
Message-ID: <>

Record Collector Magazine #214 of June 1997; page 95:
The Music & Video Exchange is advertising the following item:

XTC:   "This Is Not The New Album"  catalogue number PROCD4396.

Would seem to be a US promotional item.  They're asking 7 pounds for it.

Can anyone shed any light on this item and its contents, please?



Date: Wed, 30 Jul 1997 21:47:30 -0700
Message-Id: <>
From: John Relph <relph>
Subject: Re: In Like Flynn

Our good man Ralph DeMarco <> writes:
>>Am I wrong or was Andy being his
>>usual clever self by changing it to "in like flint"
>John Relph responded:
>>You are wrong.  Derek Flint was the main character of at least two
>>James Bond type spy films, _Our Man Flint_ (1965) and _In Like Flint_
>>(1967).  Flint, played by James Coburn, had a knack for breaking in.
>>Thus, "In Like Flint".
>Really?  What am I wrong about?  I simply asked a question, which you
>failed to answer.

Hey!  Don't get yer panties in a wad!

Yes, you simply asked a question.  I answered the question you asked,
which was in two parts: the first being "Am I wrong?" and the second
being "Was Andy being his usual clever self by changing it to `in like
flint'?"  The answer to the second is: Andy didn't change it; "In Like
Flint" is an existing phrase which Andy used.  That implies that the
answer to the first question must be: you were wrong.


However, I was also wrong.  I must apologize for that.  I had never
heard the phrase "In like Flynn".  Many thanks to those of you who
knew that this phrase was extant long before our man Flint
appropriated it.

	-- John


Message-Id: <>
From: "Matt Keeley" <>
Date: Wed, 30 Jul 1997 22:35:04 +0000
Subject: Vinyl, Six Degrees, Pop and Bonus track

Hallo... back to normal subject lines... well not the normal bizarre
non-sequiturish ones I usually do but, hey....

> From: (Ben Gott)
> is a huge XTC fan), and see what happens. Maybe I'll come armed, tape in
> hand, screaming "Look! They sang 'Happy Families!' From your damned movie,
> Kevin!"
Oh yeah, Kevin Bacon was in that movie... but then, Kevin Bacon is in
every movie...8)  Someone should send in the XTC to KB to that Six
Degrees list... XTC provided a song for "She's Having a Baby"
starring Kevin Bacon!  (I suppose that there's a way to go through
JFK like most of the ones on that list... let's see, the video for
"Peter Pumpkinhead" was compared to the movie JFK with Kevin Bacon...
well, that one's kinda cheap...)  Well, Kevin Bacon's pretty cool
anyway, but he'd be even cooler if he did some XTC.  (SONGS!  I mean

> From: (James Dignan)
> >And does anyone (like, our English readers) know if 'Whirly Bird' is a
> >common name for a Helicopter in England? That's what those things are
> >called in Legoland, Windsor (I've been all over that beautiful country, it
> >seems)<
> don't know if it's a *common* name for them, but if you say "whirlybird"
> then people will know what you mean. I think it started off as slightly
> derogatory R.A.F. slang for them, much like I think "chopper" may have
> done. Don't know about Britain, but the term whirlybird is known in New
I don't know... I've heard whirlybird quite a bit (not as common as
"chopper" but...)  Of course, I seem to pick up a lot of bizarre
slang, so... maybe that's why I never get the new slang... like Homer
says, "Whenever I learn something new it pushes the old stuff out"...
and I seem to be picking up a lot of the obscure slang recently...

> From: steve mcallister <>
>    Anyway, I hope the new record is out soon soon soon.
>    Any word on producer? (My vote is for John Leckie).
Nah, how about Todd Rundgren?  8)

Seriously, I'd say either John Leckie, Gus Dudgeon or Hugh Padgham.

> From: Chaos Harlequin <>
> >Also, just out of curiousity, is the single version of This is Pop a
> >different recording, or just a different mix?
> It's a different recording. The production is more thick-bodied and full
> than the album version; it sounds "hi-fi" compared to the album. The
> performance itself is also far improved -- it's jauntier, catchier, more
> driven. It's also got some great Barry Andrews keyboards, a bizzare Andy
> vocal, and *much* better-sounding guitars than the album version.
That's what I thought... The White Music version seems so
keyboard-heavy, and the guitars sound too... quiet.  I thought it
might be a remix though, because it doesn't seem likely that they'd
re-record a single version... You see, with Respectable Street, they
just played with the vocal track to get "sex position" to sound like
"proposition"... it's amazing what they can do with computers back
then...8)  Also, it should have been a tip off that the White Music
version was produced by John Leckie, but the single was produced by
R.J. Lange....

Yes, I am that dim...

Also, another comment about the XTC vinyl... It's really cool...
especially looking over the liners to Drums and Wires.  If there's
demand, I'll post them to the list.  Bizarre thing about the Canadian
version of D&W too... on the sleeve it mentions having "Hop" instead
of "Day In, Day Out", yet the lyric liners include "Day"... messed
with my mind a little, but that's not saying much.

And finally... the bonus track.  After much deliberation and
procrastination (and even more words ending in -ation... no wait...
sorry about the Lumanian feel to that one... nothing like that is
intended...), I've decided to post "Dear Mr. Branson," with the
following disclaimer:

This song is the work of late night thinking.  I sat down at
approximately 11:45 PM PDT, sat down with my copy of Nonsuch and put
the 3rd track on repeat, and banged this out.  It is not the best
thing I've ever done, and hopefully not the worst.  Actually, having
only seen it once, I would say that there are a few things that are
worse than it, but the opinion might change as I'm typing it in...
Also, one man's parody is another man's poison, so become armed with
the PgDn key... it probably won't be pretty... Oh, yeah, I also
apologise for all factual errors, and they are probably glaring and
numerous, as I am not the brightest person in the world... and
without further ado, other than this statement saying "without
further ado, the song:", the song:

Dear Mister Branson
(Andy Partridge (the good bits)/Matt Keeley (the other bits))
Parody of "Dear Madam Barnum" by XTC
I pick up my guitar
And start with a few chords
The lawyers are queueing
I guess by now they know
So climb from your money
Piled from the floor
Dear Mr. Branson
I will play no more

You said we were the jewels in the Virgin crown
But now we're picking up
The cars as our incomes go down  (Not in the song:  Yes, I know that
     that is a  horrid  line... I couldn't think of anything better)

Our fans are weeping
As guitars reach the floor
Our limits are broken
As you mess with us more
If I'm not the sole fool
Who bends with trousers down
Then Dear Mr. Branson
I resign right now

You walk the thin line
Between y'word and lies
Your favourite waiters walked out
Much to your surprise

Ringmaster bit: And, ladies and gentlemen, on the payroll for the
very last time....
(Coarse version of the Ringmaster bit.. take your pick:  Get out the
Vaseline chaps, here he comes again!)

The band is on strike, love
The next disc can't begin
For this is the last time
We'll play for you again
If we're not the sole fools
Who bend with trousers down
Then Dear Mr. Branson
We resign right now


I apologise for that again... and especially for the lines of
questionable taste... As for possibly performing it on a cover
compilation, it will only happen if I a) get a four track, b) get
enough instruments that I can actually play, and most importantly,
c) get drunk or hopped up on Jolt enough to actually record this
piece of garbage...

Of course, I might just be my own worst critic on this...

Well, looking at it again, maybe not.

Anyway... I really like Jump from the bonus track section of
Mummer... And Toys is pretty good.  And I should really learn to stop
starting sentences with conjunctions.

And I'll leave as you're all wishing I'd go back to the incredibly
short posts of a few times ago...

Ah well, that's this world over...

     -=>Matt Keeley<=-
Living Through | Visit my home page
Another        |
Cuba -- XTC    | I used to be temporarily insane!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Now I'm just stupid! -- Brak
(ICQ UIN: 1455267, Name: MrMe)


Date: 31 Jul 97 10:07:00 GMT
From: (David McGuinness)
Subject: T-shirt sighting and surround sound
Message-Id: <"<309CE03381821573>309CE03381821573@GW.BBC"@-SMF->

Hi folks -

In the pub last night a friend remarked he's seen someone walking down Byres
Road, Glasgow in a green Chalkhills T-shirt, and it wasn't my wife.  Anyone
want to own up (e-mail me direct ...)?

Michael Myers wrote about the coming of 6-channel surround and stuff.  Well,
don't trash your stereo yet.  I was discussing the whole Dolby Surround
thing with a sound supervisor here in the BB of C yesterday, and he says
that after trying various experiments, what worked best was recording in
boring old stereo and then just turning the decoder on for playback.  So
stereo will not become obsolete in the foreseeable future!

Just thought I'd put your minds and credit cards at rest ...



End of Chalkhills Digest #3-146

Go back to the previous page.