Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #3-31

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 3, Number 31

                 Friday, 15 November 1996

Today's Topics:

                XTCTMBGEC (But no REMCTD)
            Spooky Reuben / Martin Newell CDs
           Snowing Angels, covers, mondegreens
         You're going too fast! I can't keep up!
          Embarrassing songs and taping methods
      Oh no - E6 again! (I didn't start the fire...)
                      Whoaa  there!
                    A matter of matter
            re : Quick Notes & Noise Reduction
                Baby, You're a Wretch, Man
             Random bits and pieces of aside.
           Colin, me, and some other stuff....
              A Shabby Doll in a Small Town
           I'll call you chickenhead if I want!
                   Re: She's so square
             Paul Fox, Alleged Garbage, etc.
                    Re: Andy's rhymes
                       XTC finances


Y'all talk too much.  Listen to the record!

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.

Won't bite the hand that bleeds me.


Message-Id: <>
From: "Simon Knight" <>
Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 11:21:33 +0000
Subject: XTCTMBGEC (But no REMCTD)


Dear god - I love the line: "If there's one thing i don't believe
in... it's you".  He's singing to someone he says he doesn't believe
in, but he must believe in god to be addressing him directly.  I
love the paradox.  The doubt in Andy's voice is great.  The lyrics
sound like those of a frightened child inside a man, which is why
the first verse being sung by a kid is just SO perfect.  I wonder if
it was Andy's or Todd's idea?

They might be giants - another link.  Reflex magazine had split
flexi-disc around the release of "nonsuch" with XTC's Rip Van Reuben
backed by TMBG's "Moving to the sun".  Of course which one was the
b-side depends on which band you liked better.  I preferred to look
at it as a double A-side.  (RVR for the Bootleg Album???  Hint,

> #> EC's "Hurry Down Doomsday [...] I like this CD, but what the #>
> hell is this track?

Elvis doing Tom Waits. And really well too (thanks to the help of Jim
Keltner - Tom's drummer).  One of my favourite "Rose" tracks.


Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 14 Nov 1996 18:09:49, -0500
Subject: Spooky Reuben / Martin Newell CDs

Greetings from uranus! The Spooky Reuben CD _Modes Of Transportation_
is great! Yes, very XTC-ish as well as Beach Boys on acid, dash of
rundgren, even a pinch of Queen (well, noone's perfect...). Catalog #
TVT 5410. I have some Martin Newell _Greatest Living Englishmen_ CDs
available at $10.95 if in need. Also Testimonial Dinners for those
who have been fasting. A couple of Fossil Fuels left. Full CD listing
available. Anybody else out there like the Pursuit of Happiness? They
have a new CD out in Canada-- would love to hear about it. I hear AP
has now recorded 237 demos... hopes to have new XTC record out by the

"Colin adds the perfect parry for Sir Andy's perpetual thrust..."from
my review of O&L.


Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 15:54:22 +1300 (NZDT)
Message-Id: <v01540b06aeb241bcfc92@[]>
From: (James Dignan)
Subject: Snowing Angels, covers, mondegreens

>I might be wrong, but i think Angels is a Loving Spoonful pastiche.
>Compare "It's snowing angels" to The Loving Spoonful's "Daydream" and
>you'll see what i mean.

I definitely hear this, but I also hear Donovan's "Mellow Yellow". I think
it's a pastiche of the two together.

>If you like that other band's (the one that is mentioned more than XTC in
>recent postings) original version of
>"Yesterday", do you go & buy all the other versions of it? (I may be
>wrong, but
>I believe that track is the most covered
>song ever).

True, it was. And no, I don't collect them... but I'm trying hard to get as
many different versions of Tomorrow Never Knows as possible! Beatles, 801,
Mission, Freak Brothers, Chameleons, Beaker People, Phil Collins (a
surprisingly good version!)... I believe there was one in a film soundtrack
earlier this year, but I haven't tracked it down yet...

>PS-For anyone who's interested, there's another book of misheard lyrics
>out called He's Got the Whole World In His Pants, from the author of
>'Scuse Me While I Kiss This Guy, in which the Dear God chunky stew
>reference can be found.

hmmm. I have no xtc ones, but there's a Van Morrison song on Astral weeks
(could even be the title track) with the line "I got a home on high"... I
always used to hear it as "I've got a hormone high"...



Date: Thu, 14 Nov 1996 21:51:53 -0500 (EST)
From: Natalie Jane Jacobs <>
Subject: You're going too fast! I can't keep up!
Message-ID: <>

Kee-rist!  The Chalkhills are whipping by like scenery in the windows of a
moving car.  I think I've managed to glean enough stuff to post about,

Someone mentioned liking Freedy Johnston's cover of "Earn Enough for Us."
I love it.  He makes the song sound like one of his own - a plain-spoken
working-man's lament - which, if you like Freedy Johnston, is just fine -
and I do.  I especially like his voice, a high, almost vibrato-less tenor.
I'm a sucker for unusual voices: Kristen Hersh, Elvis C., Andy, etc.

Though I highly disagree with Jason Phelan's opinion of "Humble Daisy," I
do like his idea for posting positive stuff about XTC.  Maybe people could
post their rationales behind their Desert Island tunes.  My positive
thought of the day is my discovery (or re-discovery) of some fine Colin
tunes on "Rage and Bone Buffet."  Someone was ragging on "I Need
Protection" but I really like it - it's sort of a goofy version of
"Travels in Nihilon."  I also really like "Looking for Footprints" and the
already-lauded "Blame the Weather," a song I never paid much attention to
before but is actually really good.  "Angry Young Men" is excellent as
well - very nice guitar solo - and no, I don't think it's embarrassing.
I'm starting to grow out of the Angry Young Woman phase myself (at the
tender age of 24) so I can relate.  I've always had a bit of a blind spot
when it comes to Colin's songs - I don't find them immediately accessible,
possibly because Colin's voice doesn't grab my attention, and the songs
are usually lower-key than Andy's - but thanks to y'all I'm beginning to
overcome my handicap.  Thanks again.

Yes, "Everything" is a gorgeous song.  The way Andy's voice cracks up an
octave on the word "memories" gives me the shivers.  There's a song that
should go on the Bootleg Album, no doubt about it.

AMANDA of the capital letters, don't stop posting.  Your unabashed
adoration of Mr. Gregory does you proud.  You go, girl.

I'm afraid I can't see much merit in the Christmas songs.  Though "Thanks
for Christmas" is very catchy and has that nice jangly guitar bit, I can't
get into it for the simple reason that I don't celebrate Christmas - I'm
Jewish - and vaguely resent the lyrics' suggestion that everyone loves
Christmas (how can you love an event which doesn't exist for you?).  Still,
I'd rather hear "Thanks for Christmas" in the mall than a Muzak version of
"Silent Night."

Sorry for the bit of negativity there.  Now I will go.

Natalie Jacobs
Visit the Land of Do-As-You-Please!


Message-Id: <v03007805aeb18e569fd2@[]>
Date: Thu, 14 Nov 1996 22:57:10 -0500
From: Ira Lieman <>
Subject: XcTtCd?

>Ira...I've been an XTC fan since 1978's GO2 (I thank my older brothers
>at every chance for introducing them to me), and I first heard of the
>Crash Test Dummies when "Superman" came out in 1991.  I wasn't told at
>the time that liking both bands was mutually exclusive, but I guess you

Well, Patrick, I didn't remember saying anything like that either. Let's
rehash what I said, shall we?

>This is where I draw the line though. How do you come up with such a
>blatantly wrong statement? Everyone who was into CTD first, please raise
>your hands. The first I heard of XTC was probably around 1986, and the first
>I heard of CTD was the "Mmm" song in what? 1993? And I still turn the
>I'm not saying people shouldn't like the band CTD, but get real. Most people
>on this list have been XTC fans for at least the amount of time CTD has been
>around (save anyone here who was still in diapers in 1990) and even if they
>weren't, XTC has had slightly more of an effect of us than CTD anyway.

What I said, in simpler English, is "I don't like CTD, and that's OK. But
here, we're generally all XTC fans first." NOWHERE did I insinuate it was
mutually exclusive. I appreciate you taking notice of my post, but I would
appreciate more if you didn't misrepresent what I said.

I don't mean to attack people for disagreeing with me, hey -- that's what
this list is about. But please don't mis-state what I said or put words in
my mouth. It's happened other places before and it wasn't appreciated then

For the record, I like "All You Pretty Girls" from TD. Let's let this
thread die.


"If toys are quarreling amongst themselves,
 What hope is there now for the world?"


Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 16:36:58 +1100
Subject: Embarrassing songs and taping methods
Message-ID: <>

 #> From: Joshua Hall-Bachner <>
 #> I didn't say ['Strange Tails...' and 'Officer Blue'] weren't
 #> clever. I said they were embarrasing. Which they are.

How is a song embarrassing?  I don't understand that.  They could
be embarrassing to the writers but they'd have to admit they were
embarrassed by them [I'm sorry if they have and I missed it].  I
don't see how they're at all embarrassing, and I most certainly
don't get embarrassed listening to them.  In any case, it's an
entirely subjective matter, and just because [I assume] you find
them embarrassing doesn't mean they *are*.  Horses for courses.

 #> From: (Jason Phelan)
 #> One [_Nonsuch_] track that I thought was extremely beautiful and
 #> still stays with me is one of those. It is 'Humble Daisy'

That's definitely my favourite track on that album.  Some of the
most beautiful harmonies and melodic hooks ever committed to
record.  I'd be flabbergasted if someone owned up to disliking this

 #> From: (Gary)
 #> "What do you mean you've run out of vodka?!" - me talking to the
 #> barman at about 3.00 am this morning
 #> "Lots of hot chilli sauce please" - me speaking to the man
 #> serving me in the kebab shop at about 3.30 am this morning

I watched Men Behaving Badly last night.  Are you that Gary?  :)

 #> From:
 #>   Side A  boooooooooooooooooo-----e
 #>   Side B  eoooooooooooooooooo-----b

I record all my tapes like this.  Why have I replied in
Chalkhills?  Because I want to offer this to all readers as an
altervative to the clumsy way of ramming what you can on a tape and
leaving big blank chunks to wind through.  :)

It's a great way to record *everything*.  With a <45 minute album
you can put it on both sides and just flip the tape when one side
finishes, and with a >45 minute album you can split it down the
middle and put just over half on side A.  You get more music and
less winding.  Anyway, you'll only be interested if you're a
completist like me...

 #> From: "Christopher R. Coolidge" <>
 #> XTC songs I find thoroughly annoying(the very few!):
 #> Dear God

I'll bite.  How can it be *annoying*?!  That's like saying Enya's
'Caribbean Blue' is thrash metal.  I'm not knocking your opinion, I
just... don't get it.  :)


On the music box:  Jamiroquai, _The Return Of The Space Cowboy_


Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 01:06:24 -0500 (EST)
Message-Id: <>
From: (Michael Kearns)
Subject: Oh no - E6 again! (I didn't start the fire...)

A Chalkhillian's well-intended post actually confuses more than it clears up
things. He writes:

"A sixth chord, in terms of music theory, is neither equivalent to the
relevant minor, nor is it dissonant by any definition."

I begin by nitpicking... Jim, of course you mean 'relative' minor... but I
agree with your point: just because the chords contain the same tones does
not make them interchangeable... in my mind that's like telling someone
"just think of GOD as DOG" - what's the point? A student should learn to
identify chords for what they are, as well as useful 'equivalents' such as
compatible scales, substitutions, and rootless voicings. Also, IMO, by
discussing the chord's interval content you effectively support your
statement that E6 is 'inherently consonant.'

"This chord is often times thought to be dissonant by the listener because
of its tertian nature. That is, chords built by extended thirds (6th chords,
9th chords, 13th chords) can sometimes be considered dissonant if the
tones in them are dissonant."

Your term 'extended thirds' is not familiar to me, so I assume you are
speaking of extended tertian harmony. And I wish to clarify as to _when_
tertian harmony would normally imply dissonance to a listener: Not with a
pure 6th chord (e.g., E - G# - C#) which is an Ionian construct -
'inherently consonant' as you say, and totally positive in mood. Perhaps
with 9th and 13th chords, which are Mixolydian (dominant) constructs also
known as 'tall chords'. However, although their tensions can be quite
vibrant, any semblance of dissonance in them is limited to the mild, but
yearning tension of the 7th, and mild tension of the 9th. Altered dominants,
however, are inherently dissonant.

"For example, a 13th chord has a perfect second in it at the ascending
octave, thus making it sound slightly "off" to the Western ear."

There's no such thing as a perfect second, much less one 'at the ascending
octave' (what does that mean?) - nor are there any seconds in a 13th chord,
or any tertian chord - abstractly speaking (i.e., voiced in closed-position)
- unless it's a Sus2 or Sus4 chord, or where the 6th is _added_ to a chord
(as opposed to simply replacing the 5th.)

"The sixth chord, however, is tertian but *not* dissonant."

I agree, and would like to add something to clear this up...

The emotional qualities of the intervals are as follows (where T=tritone;
P=perfect; M=major; m=minor) : m2 & M7 = extreme tension; M2 & m7 = milder
tension; m3 & m6 = negative mood; M3 & M6 = positive mood; P4 = temporal
suspension; P5 = power; T = instability; P8 (octave) = definition; PU
(unison) = strength. Intervals larger than an octave retain the quality of
their lower siblings (i.e., M9 = M2) though the greater distance weakens the
effect. Subtle adjustments of these qualities also occur where
out-of-tune-ness or other contextual ironies exist (including the ears of
the beholder, eh? So much for trying to be absolute).

In general, the 'tension' and 'instability' intervals are classified as
'dissonant', while 'mood' intervals and all the other types are tagged
'consonant'. Poetic and literary definitions may of course take a different,
even diverging course altogether (see Bernstein's "The Joy of Music" p.15)

Even with the voicing of E6 as it appears in LOAFW, it is an extremely
positive, consonant chord, given the M3 (G#) and M6 (C#) from the root E.
However, the lack of prominence of the P5 (power) and the feeling of
temporal suspension between G# and C# (P4) give it a uniquely ambiguous
feel. IMO, only poetic license allows this chord to be termed 'dissonant'.

I apologize to all for my long-winded, esoteric, serious and picky post.
However, I don't feel it's out of place with small handfuls of other posts
_I've_ scrolled through - though I must add I am heartily entertained by
Chalkhills much more often than not. I guess I'm a bit of a 'muso' as the
British say (BTW, is that a derogatory term?). Anyway, for those who did
read this I hope I am not perceived as attacking or show-offy; my purpose
was to help clear up errors in a pseudo-technical thread that had surfaced
in this digest, and respectfully identify literary/poetic usage of musical
terminology as a thing apart from the words' actual meanings. And why not?
The guys in XTC are evocative masters of both expressive realms. And
Chalkhillians seem to me to run the gamut: musos, collectors, literary
minds, professional musicians, humorists, seekers... "all sorts of people
you might wanna know" (The Band)

Thank you - and goodnight. Back to lurking I go. (using my work email because AOL email chokes on large


Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 09:36:02 -0500 (EST)
From: Allan Hislop <>
Subject: Whoaa  there!
Message-id: <>

     Holly UP On Poppy,

     <Whoops sorry no more punctuation commas exclamation marks question
     marks or brackets are allowed  Weve been told havent we>

     Have we?
     By who(m)?
     If you're referring to my little line:
     (And where would I be without my brackets, CAPITALS and "apostrophes"
     - not to mention my dashes and exclamation & question marks!?).
     I was taking the piss out of my own typing style, before anyone else
     Or am I now getting on my High Horse?

     <So we should all just keep our mouths shut so we won't offend someone
     who admittedly doesn't care about the subject? I don't know if that
     was your intention, but it's certainly the way you came off..>

     Not my intention at all.  I said I wanted to know about the existence
     of demos, but in my mind it just seemed that some people who owned
     these "secret" recordings were just using it as an excuse to brag.
     Perhaps I'm wrong here.
     I was then saying that I would much rather hear the definitive
     versions of songs that XTC feel deserve to be released.  If Andy &
     Colin don't turn a demo into a "proper" track or release a demo as a
     b-side, or whatever, then there's probably a good reason for this.
     (Not withstanding record company problems, natch).

     <I, personally, collect demos for two reasons. First, there are a lot
     of songs which never made it to record and, without this proposed
     "Bootleg Album," never would. Some of these songs are EXCELLENT -- far
     better than many of the songs that *are* on the albums. And second,
     the demos of released songs can give me an idea of how the song has
     evolved and become what it is. If they don't interest you, fine...but
     why slag on those who find their enjoyment of the band's work is
     increased by listening to the demos?>

     Well that's fair enough, but I would still prefer to hear an
     officially released compilation.  I feel VERY strongly about
     bootlegging and piracy, but this is not the place to discuss it in
     I love XTC to death and I want to pay them for the pleasure of
     listening to them.  Hence I would welcome an official "Bootleg
     Album", but I'd rather wait for the "proper" songs.
     If XTC feel their demos deserve release, then hopefully they'll
     sign to a record company that will allow them to do that.

     Hey, it's still individual tastes and all that, which is why I
     didn't attack anyone personally.  It's just a personal opinion, in
     this wonderful diverse world of ours.

     <So we can't discuss anything that's not XTC, and we can't discuss
     anything about XTC that's been discussed before?  There's nothing
     left.  There'd be no digest.  Then I'd be bored.  That's just silly.>

     No it isn't.

     I'm getting a daily Chalkhill posting, sometimes 2 a day.
     I would rather get one a week if it didn't contain most of these
     unrelated topics.
     There's still a lot of excellent XTC related discussion in the
     mailings, it's just that you often have to plough through a hell of a
     lot of unrelated stuff to get to it.

     Besides, there should be more XTC stuff coming along soon (and there's
     a lot of discussion on this, too).  Any new releases will soon explode
     things along nicely.  I'm prepared to wait.
     I'm a patient man.  Christ - I've had to be with XTC!
     I'm just overjoyed that they hadn't split up, which I thought their
     silence had meant over the last few years.

     <There has been a fair amount of non-XTC discussion going on, enough
     to make me wonder if this list hadn't mutated into the Beatles
     mailing list overnight. I don't mind these non-list related topics,
     though, as long as they're minor diversions and die out in a matter
     of three or four issues.>

     See, I'm not the only one who thinks that!

     It was the breadth & depth of the unrelated topics that I was
     slagging off, not the fact that they were there at all.

     Am I being oversensitive here?

     Hey let's discuss some songs.

     My favourite XTC/Dukes tracks are:

     Shake You Donkey Up - I've never seen this wonderful track mentioned
     in the mailings.  (Although I am a fairly recent subscriber so
     apologies in advance if I'm wrong).  Does anyone else think it's the

     Collideascope - Wonderful pastiche of a song.  (But who does it sound
     like?.....ho..ho..ho...the irony!)

     Songs I just can't get into:

     The Man Who Sailed... - sorry I know I've said in the past that I've
     got a broad taste in music, but I was lying - I hate jazz, especially
     soft jazz sounding tracks.  I can't believe how popular this song is.

     Train Running Low... - Ooh another contentious issue.  I'd better stop
     before I get lynched!

     Merry Christmas everybody!




Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 10:19:56 GMT
Message-Id: <v01510102aeb1ed8d4f3a@[]>
From: (Mark Fisher)
Subject: A matter of matter

Craig E. Canevit asks about the origin of Oh Dear! What Can the Matter Be?
According to my (American) children's song book, it's a Scottish folk song,
though like previously mentioned XTC children's references, it's widely
known throughout Britain:

Oh Dear! What Can the Matter Be?
(Em, A7)
Oh Dear! What Can the Matter Be?
Oh Dear! What Can the Matter Be?
(Em, A7, D)
Johnny's so long at the fair
He promised to buy me a basket of posies
(Em, A7)
A garland of lillies, a garland of roses
He promised to buy me a bunch of blue ribbons
(Em, A7, D)
To tie up my bonny brown hair

There's also a school playground corruption about someone getting stuck in
the lavatory (She was there from Monday to Saturday/Nobody knew she was

- Mark


Message-Id: <>
From: "Peter Fitzpatrick" <>
Subject: re : Quick Notes & Noise Reduction
Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 11:57:38 -0000

I Promise ! I'll make sure there's some XTC content here.
Just thought I'd share a little information......

>"Heather" is Paul and I believe Donovan around the time of the "White
>Album", maybe recorded in India. It is a pretty song, done acoustically.
>It runs about two minutes.
Heather was recorded during a session at Abbey Road. It's available on
several Beatles
bootlegs. The most common being "Abbey Road NW8".
An interesting session. It also features "Blackbird".
If anyone really cares I'll look through my books and find out when the
session took place.

>"Child of Nature" is an early version of "Jealous Guy" with different
>lyrics.  The version of I have sounds like one of John's homemade demos.
The Child of Nature demo is from the Esher demos (Esher being G.Harrison's
house) that
took place before the WhiteAlbum sessions proper.

>Has anyone ever heard "Peace of Mind" from around the Sgt. Pepper era?  It
>isn't even listed in the "Beatle's Recording Sessions".  I have a really
>hissy version of it.  Kind of "Trippy" like "Tomorrow Never Knows", but
>very different then any other track.
Peace of Mind is not the Beatles. Definitely. Absolutely not.

>> And as for the "Goodbye" demo, I can't for the life of me figure out why it
>>wasn't included. It's a great song that would have been worthy of inclusion
>>on one of their original albums, and I was certain it would turn up on
>>Anthology 3. Go figure.
Goodbye was not a Beatles recording. That's why it never made it onto A3.
There was apparently some wrangling over the inclusion of "Come & Get It"
in A3, since that is strictly speaking a non-Beatles recording.

Now : XTC Content.
Has anyone out there played with noise reduction (meaning "DINR" or
"SoundForge") on the demos ?
I've been doing a little experimentation - care to share notes anyone ? My
results have been very encouraging.

now listening to : XTC "Fab Foursome in Philly"


Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 15 Nov 96 08:50:00 -0500
From: dgershmn <>
Organization: AMS
Subject: Baby, You're a Wretch, Man

Dearest Chalk-Full-o'-Nuts,

Ted Harms wondered, Harm-lessly:
>Aside: When the Desert Island songs were posted was there a least favourite
>song category?  (Gosh, only 29 1/2 years old and my memory is shot
>already.)  Though I hear it's the second thing to go..)  If there wasn't,
>I nominate the poor wretch who compiled the first list to do it again but
>with the most hated song instead.  (What would you call it?  A Crowded
>Island selection with the hopes of driving everybody else off the island?)

Ted, you ignorant slut,

"Poor wretch"? Well, uh, I guess that would be me. [It wasn't really THAT
unbearable to tally up the results.] But no, there wasn't a "least favorite"
category, and I'm afraid if such a thing is going to be determined it will
have to be by someone else. I don't suspect there would be as much variation
in choices for "Crowded Island" as there were for Desert Island picks, so I
wouldn't be quite as interested in doing the legwork myself. And in the
current climate I have a feeling something like "Countdown to Christmas"
would "win," which hardly seems fair to such a lighthearted song. But hey,
feel free to go for it...and you can start by putting me down for "Cross
Wires"...or, on second thought...I'll second the "Don't You Dare Call Me
Chickenhead" vote...or maybe you could combine the two: "Don't You Dare
Cross My Chickenwire."  :)

Yers truly,

Dave Gershman


Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 08:15:14 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Random bits and pieces of aside.
Message-id: <>

Okay, I promised myself to level off...I guess I really AM a postaholic!

On the vid for Life Begins At the Hop....I wouldn't call it very
embarrasing. It really looked like they were having fun in it. Those are the
videos I enjoy the most, that and The Mole From the Ministry. The videos
where they looked like they could care less whether they were there are not,
like Wonderland, are the ones I tend to find difficult to watch. (Mind you,
back to LBATH for a moment, Iwould much rather be watching the band than a
bunch of flashy women.)

On Washaway....Ah, it's alright. It's not my fave, but it's not bad either.

On not being able to fully respect other bands if you truly understand
XTC...mayI add another "bullshit" to that remark. That's a pretty myopic
view of music there.

On this being an XTC list only...I totally agree with just about everything
thathas been said so far. (I especially agree with...I forgot who said it, I
don't have the option of marking certain phrases to reply to on these stupid
school computers...but whoever said the thing about if you're at a wedding
and someone is talking about something other than the wedding, you don't
throw them out. I think we need something to fill gaps here since it's been
awhile since Nonsuch came out!)

And ONE FINAL THING ABOUT CTD, then I refuse to talk about them
anymore....if you don't like them, that's fine, more power to you. If you
do, same thing. Justrespect other people's tastes.



Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 08:33:53 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Colin, me, and some other stuff....
Message-id: <>

So you wanna see my would I! I haven't gotten it yet! But it's
worth$700 Canadian, so I'm sure it's doozy.

What's this about Skylarking containing Colin's worst body of work? Grass is
one of his best songs, and Dying's not that far behind. IMHO, Go 2 has one
of his worst bodies of work there.

There's nothing wrong with Wait Till Your Boat Goes Down. It's the kind of
thing you sing when you're very drunk late at night. (At least my friends

Another song from Nonsuch that nobody ever mentions is My Bird
Performs. It's one of Colin's most beautiful songs. (And after hearing the
demo, I'm glad he changed the lyrics to the second verse.)

Somebody wanted to know why I like XTC.....well it goes like this. As I
admittedearlier, my inital reason for purchasing Oranges & Lemons was
because I have a huge teenybopper crush on Brad Roberts, and I figured that
anything he listens to must be pretty good. So before I actually bought it I
listened to two songs that were floating around in my house, Dear God from
an MTV compilation, and Happy Families off the She's Having a Baby
soundtrack. I liked what I heard, which fueled my interest in the band a
little more. So I went and bought the O&Ltape and played it, and King For a
Day got me hooked. After that I went out and got Skylarking, then Mummer,
then Black Sea, then White Music (I think I just randomly picked one up and
bought it, I didn't work my way up from 1977.) So what is the attraction to
their music...well, Andy and Colin are both the most incredible lyricists. I
like the way that their songs sort of compliment each other. One of Andy's
songs may go way off the rails, and then a rather grounded song of Colin's
will be next. Plus they're both unique singers, and I can't leave Dave out,
he's a great guitar/piano player. (Besides which, he's an incredible musical
forger, as he showed when he played a few well-known songs on his
Rickenbacker 12 string on Play At Home a few years back.)

And that's all folks! I am now addicted to XTC. (I even have that written on
the inside flap of my biography: In case this book is lost, please return to
the above address. I am an XTC addict and will suffer severe withdrawal

On the subject of the biography, it was posted a bit back that someone
thought the book wasn't detailed enough or something. I think tool much time
was spent from birth to 1982. It made up a good 2/3 of the book. 1986-1992
was greatly condensed. And I don't think enough time was spent on Dave.



Date: 15 Nov 1996 14:57:31 -0000
Message-ID: <>
From: "G.M. Quinn" <>
Subject: A Shabby Doll in a Small Town

Babes in the Chalky Undulations,

I've just returned from a pilgrimage to the old hometown (Wagga Wagga -
don't laugh) armed with a tape of all the XTC bits and bobs which a
dear friend gave me.  On that note - I have been singing 'Jump',
'It's Nearly Africa' and 'Toys' non-stop for a week.  But more on that

I had to catch up with heaps of posts and I can't remember who said
what, but here are my snippets:

For a start, I know little of Jeff Lynne's producing efforts outside
of ELO, but could we remember that, despite the alleged shortcomings
behing the desk with others' works, Lynne is an extremely talented
songwriter?  'Tightrope', 'So Fine', 'Laredo Tornado', 'Twilight',
the list is substantial.  He swings between excellent craftsmanship
and utter shite, but I think the former far outweighs the latter.

As for this quote (anonymous due to my leaky brain):

>"Scarecrow people" And them what t'aint you (God I get gossebumps!)

What's the apostrophe for?  'Taint' I think you'll find is the lyric.
That's at least what my pressing of O&L reads.  But I hope you haven't
already been vilified.

RE:  The unorthodox pronunciation of UMBILICAL in 'Season's Cycle'

As an English student, writer and Literature major, Andy most
definitely uses a bit too much poetic licence.  As Griff Rhys Jones
said, "Yes, it's charming, and completely wrong."

RE:  C.Coolidge finding 'All Along the Watchtower' "thouroughly

WHAT?  With that magnificent harmonica solo and the most deliciously
eccentric and effective vocals on display?  The urgency is
overwhelming and has limitless appeal to my twisted mind.

And lastly - Twomey's biography.  This was a present on my last
birthday from a remarkably astute friend.  I read it the next day,
constantly interrupting friends, family and casual passersby to
read them passages.  Two important points though...enough of the
exclamation marks and asides in parentheses in the text.  So
much for objectivity in biographies.  And secondly, the abysmal guess
at the spelling of one of the biggest airlines in the world.  It's
QANTAS not QUANTAS.  So much for research.

Any queries or comments, e-mail me.
Any quibbles or insults, please be kind.

Yours quite perversely as an REM, ELO and (mainly) XTC admirer,

GMQ of the kingdom of three initials and eccentric grammar.


Message-Id: <v01540b00aeb234c1cbec@[]>
Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 08:00:32 -0700
From: (Kevin Collins)
Subject: I'll call you chickenhead if I want!

Ted Harms <> complained that:

>2) Vote for worst song: '(Don't you dare call me) Chickenhead' from
>the Golden Guts tape.  This song has NO redeeming value (and I've looked
>for it).

How about... *really* funny?!

and he also commented:

>This is my free-associaton session on the song 'Then She Appeared' (an
>utterly beautiful song from the much maligned album, Nonsuch):

Who's been maligning Nonsuch? I'll kill 'em!


Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 16:18:55 GMT
Message-Id: <v02120d03aeb233a2bf48@[]>
Subject: Re: She's so square

In Chalkhills #3-29, Erich Sellheim Wrote:

>>sorry to bring this up again, but recently someone asked if there has
>>ever been a case of rude language in an XTC song. I didn't know until
>>recently, but at the end of She's So Square (the noisy part) Andy can
>>be heard saying "Fuck you". It's rather unintelligible on the released
>>version, but I recently heard a 1978 concert which featured this song,
>>and there it's perfectly clear.

I've never heard a live version of this song, but I must admit that's what
I thought too, although my interpretation is a slight variation of the

I never like to include the use of vulgar words in my postings, but, as I
am quoting alleged words of an XTC song, I feel it can be justified.

During the noisy part is sounds to me like "Fucking" and then after the
last chord is struck the world "Hell" comes out in a deep voice.

I'd be interested to hear what the official line is for this song.

While we're on the subject of the Science Friction/3D EP, can we keep the
campaign alive to have the Goodnight Sucker track issued on a future CD
release before it gets lost and forgotten forever?

One final thought. If you have a copy of the Science Friction 7 inch single
in Mint condition, it's worth around 75 pounds nowadays. (120 US Dollars!)
Well that's how much someone in November's Record Collector is asking for
it, anyway...

Bye For Now
Stephen Varga <>


Message-Id: <v01540b00aeb2446c7e18@[]>
Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 10:33:50 -0600
From: (Spiritual Generation, etc.)
Subject: Paul Fox, Alleged Garbage, etc.

Greetings, sweet Land of Chalk,

> Even as
>early as their remake of "Please Mr. Postman", John sounds like he is in
>agony waiting for the letter from his girlfriend.

I love that, definitely. I like John & Paul's voices for different reasons
("Yesterday" is so awesome!)

>Someone reminded me that Paul Fox produced TMBG.  So???  If Paul Fox
>produced a Bob Seeger album, it would still be garbage.

You couldn't see what TMBG had in common with XTC.  Knowing I
probably couldn't point out musical merit (it's all subjective)
I figured you wouldn't be able to argue with a common *producer*.
Guess I was wrong.

>_Lincoln_ used to be my favourite, but I listened to it the other
>day and got extremely bored with it.

Oh, but the *melodies*!!!  (I can't even go into it, except to say:
"Anna Ng", "They'll Need A Crane", "Where Your Eyes Don't Go", etc., etc.)

>If you don't want to read it, skip it.

Rock on.

>Stormy---these and the other comments you made showed you are
>a very enlightened listener of music.

Dunno...that R.E.M. comment was far from anything resembling
"enlightened"-- sounded like you were still in the dark to me!
(see earlier digest)

> Partridge's 1980 collapse in Paris

Revisionist history, anyone?  Partridge collapsed in 1982 after the
release of "English Settlement".  Good thing too, otherwise we might
have had "Mummer" right after "Black Sea" (who's rewriting history

Sorry this is just kind of a response thing, I'll try to come up
with some valuable insights in another post.  The inspiration just
isn't there today (a gray day).

Jason [he had his be-er...BEEE-EEER...BEEEEEE-EEEEEEEEEEE-YER...]


Date: Sat, 16 Nov 1996 02:08:24 +0900
Message-Id: <>
From: Tetsuya Shimizu <>
Subject: Re: Andy's rhymes

Hello Chalkies,

"Ekrem Soylemez" <> says
>On the bright side, I think Andy's rhyming has improved much since Skylarking.

I basically agree your idea. However, regarding ironic or funny rhyming,
impressive lines appeared before Skylarking rather than after, IMHO.
And I prefer the former.

"Science friction"
It ain't the aliens at the foot of my bed
It's more the ale inside my head

Yes, as Andy feel shame, this song is poor in content. But I like this

"Paper and iron"
I'm still a proud man
Won't show anybody's else my wage
a blend in the crowd man
is this anybody's golden age
or am I dreaming of a golden cage

This twisted reversal or the incisive critical rhyme in "FPAR"
is where he is at his strongest, IMHO.

It is a little bit disappointment that the phrase like this
does not appears in his recent works.

Maybe almost all people here have the other opinion.
Also I would have other idea if I can completely understand English.....

Tetsuya Shimizu /


Date: Fri, 15 Nov 1996 12:28:03 -0500
Message-Id: <>
From: "Michael D. Myers" <>
Subject: XTC finances

This all started when my wife, my son and I were at a diner in NJ for
breakfast last Sunday....

All of a sudden, I got this strange look on my face because "King For A Day"
(Muzak version) started playing.  You know how they boil a song down to its
barest elements and use some passionless orchestra to perform.  Anyway, I
thought of the fact that the boys do get revenue from licensing when the
restaurant plays their music, so I figured, "Oh crap, XTC on Muzak, but at
least they get a few pennies in their pockets..."

Which makes me remember a vague fact that I welcome enlightenment upon:
don't the 3 of them have an arrangement where they split all songwriting
royalties equally no matter who writes the song just so they can eke out an
existence?  I thought I heard that in an Andy interview a few years ago; the
arrangement compensates the 3 of them equally.  As I understand it, it was
Andy's idea to make up for the lost income from touring.  As it is, I've
heard that Dave and Colin do things like drive rental cars from one agency
to another for cash.

Then, last night, I saw an article in the new Musician magazine about a plan
by the National Restaurant Assoc. (NRA) to petition Congress to eliminate
the requirement to pay royalties to artists when a song is played in a
restaurant, bar or diner.  They claim it's a burden to the owners of these
establishments, but in reality it only adds up to about $2/day for a small
place.  Of course, the organizations like BMI and ASCAP who distribute
royalties to their members have a different take on this issue: they say
that just as flowers or napkins (which must be purchased) add to the
ambiance meant to enhance the pleasure of an eating experience, so does
music, and the artist should get paid.

It would be a shame to further impoverish our favorite Swindonians.



End of Chalkhills Digest #3-31

Go back to the previous page.