Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #3-6

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 3, Number 6

                 Thursday, 3 October 1996

Today's Topics:

                     XTC in Germany?
                   Desert Island Survey
            Desert Island survey, continued...
             XTC vs. They Might Be Adam Ants
              Paul Fox / Oranges and Lemons
                       Mervyn Peake
                      nursery rhymes
                       Kids and XTC
              Castaway on a desert island...
                  Re: Oranges and Lemons
                       Re: Paul Fox
                  Olivia Tremor Control
                         Paul Fox
                  Musicians' Corner P.S.
                      XTC on Firefly
                Mind-frig's and c-c-c-cola
                 Nonsuch LP and Question
                About The Partridge Report
                     aw gee! (blush)
              Random ephemerea from Chicago
        This sounds like The Disappointed!!!!!!!!
                  XTC Vinyl for Sale...
                      couldn't do it
                   XTC to play live ??
                Vergen preesentz ecTeasee
                     Dutch FF release


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The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

About the baby and its umbilical...


Date: Mon, 30 Sep 1996 19:58:36 +0100 (MET)
Message-Id: <>
From: (Andrew Notarian)
Subject: XTC in Germany?

I've been in Germany about a month now (I'm the Chalkhillian
formerly known as, and I have seen nothing of XTC
except Fossil Fuels, in Trier, which is near the border with
Luxembourg and France.  The price of Fossil Fuels was about the
same as you would expect to pay for a single length CD here.  And
I must confess I've only been skimming the issues, but I will
add my 2 pfennigs about the Sugarplastic..  I like them.  I hear
one song and always think of what I believe are the bonus tracks
on Mummer.  I also hear similarities to TMBG.  And is that
Transmodal whatever operator song a computer program? :)  Thanks
to that guy from IUMA who wrote to me a year ago to look for
BTEIR before it was even released...

Andrew Notarian
Frankengutstrasse 12
95447 Bayreuth               011-49-921-56531


Date: Mon, 30 Sep 1996 16:07:58 -0400 (EDT)
Message-Id: <>
From: Joshua Hall-Bachner <>
Subject: Demos...

Dave (who has yet *another* new e-mail address :) sez:

>As for Mitch the insider's post about the demo ethics, I would
>have to say the ones who need to be the most discreet are the
>folks with the high-quality copies and not Joshua Hall-Bachner,
>who got his from the same person I did. The sound quality of
>another generation dub is not going to be even bootleg quality,
>really. The accumulated tape hiss becomes a big factor at this

Actually, I got half of it *from* you, so it doesn't even sound as good as
yours does. The only problem is that the bootleggers would be happy to put
out a cheap crappy sounding CD because people would still buy it. And, about
the people with good copies...I've never seen anyone with anything but nth
generation copies...where are the secret people with the good copies? Are
they some sort of hidden society? Hmm? Heh. Anyway, about the demos: for one
thing, there's at least one tape (JVS and Bull) that Andy *wants* us to
hear; he released the songs on there just so all of us could hear them. And
some others (notably, Demos 1-8) Andy doesn't really care about either
(according to those who know him) because they've already been bootlegged
and therefore "lost." The ones we really need to "worry" about are the ones
that haven't been bootlegged yet. Thus sayeth Mitch Friedman. :) Who has
just posted the absolutely delicious news that the band may go back and
re-record some of the old demos...oh joy. Oh rapture. Oh happiness.

/---------------------------Joshua Hall-Bachner---------------------------\
|   |
| "The few surviving samurai survey the battlefield. They count the arms, |
\--the legs, the heads, and then divide by five." - They Might Be Giants--/


Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 30 Sep 96 17:36:00 -0500
From: dgershmn <>
Organization: AMS
Subject: Desert Island Survey

Yes, Fellow Chalkhillians, it's the moment you've all been waiting for...


After repeated reminders to send in the Top 5 XTC songs you'd want to have
with you if shipwrecked on a desert island, I was able to elicit a total of
102 responses, slightly surpassing the goal I had set to get a somewhat
meaningful poll. Naturally, the "meaningfulness" of this poll at all is
arguable, but it certainly was fun to compile. Though it doesn't speak for
all Chalkhillians, I think it gives something of an indication of what we
consider the cream of the crop of the almost pure cream that is XTC's music.
Interestingly, 127 (!) different XTC songs were chosen, meaning that on
average, every respondent responded with at least one song no one else had
chosen...certainly this indicates the huge number of the band's songs that
strike a chord with us (no pun intended). The fact that approximately HALF
the band's catalog would be required listening if this entire group of
respondents was shipwrecked together somewhere (wouldn't that be something!)
would seem to suggest that if the other 900 subscribers had responded,
nearly every other song of theirs would also have been chosen. We need our
XTC! But of course, we all knew that. And for the record, nearly all of you
stated how difficult, if not impossible, a task it was to whittle it down to
just 5 songs. I felt the same way when choosing mine, but for the sake of
the survey, thank you for giving it a whirl.

On to the results...

There were a number of ties, which are grouped together under the "chart
position" (in alphabetical order within each group); the number in
parentheses is the number of votes the songs received to reach that
position. The half points are a result of people arguing that you couldn't
separate, say "Ballet for a Rainy Day" and "1000 Umbrellas," which I
responded to by giving each a half point. In one case, the songs weren't
connected, but rather the person pleaded that the songs were in a dead tie
and had to be taken together. Sympathetic to their plight, I split the vote.
 So, without further ado, here they are:

THE XTC DESERT ISLAND TOP 48 ( was a good breaking point...)

1. Senses Working Overtime (23)

2. Jason and the Argonauts (16)
   Yacht Dance

3. Mayor of Simpleton (15)

4. Chalkhills and Children (14)

5. Burning with Optimism's Flames
   Love on a Farmboy's Wages (13)

6. No Language in Our Lungs (12)

7. Respectable Street (11)
   Then She Appeared

8. Making Plans for Nigel (10)

9. All of a Sudden (9)
   Ten Feet Tall

10.Funk Pop a Roll (8)
   Train Running Low on Soul Coal

11.Another Satellite (7.5)
   1000 Umbrellas

12.Complicated Game (7)
   No Thugs in Our House
   Wake Up

13.Dear God (6.5)

14.Across This Antheap (6)
   Beating of Hearts
   Earn Enough for Us
   English Roundabout
   Generals and Majors
   The Man Who Sailed Around His Soul
   My Bird Performs
   Seagulls Screaming Kiss Her
   This World Over
   Towers of London
   Wrapped in Grey

15.Grass (5.5)

16.Roads Girdle the Globe (5)

17.Ballet for a Rainy Day (4.5)

18.Books Are Burning (4)
   Dear Madam Barnum
   Desert Island
   Everyday Story of Smalltown
   I Remember the Sun
   The Meeting Place
   Rocket from a Bottle
   Sacrificial Bonfire
   Travels in Nihilon

19.Summer's Cauldron (3.5)

And, the rest of the responses...

(3 votes each)
Extrovert, Garden of Earthly Delights, In Loving Memory of a Name, It's
Nearly Africa, Life Begins at the Hop, Pink Thing, Rook, Scarecrow People,
Scissor Man, The Smartest Monkeys, Statue of Liberty, That's Really Super,
Supergirl, Tissue Tigers, When You're Near Me I Have Difficulty, You're the
Wish You Are I Had

(2 votes each)
All You Pretty Girls, Collideascope, Crocodile, Deliver Us from the
Elements, Heaven is Paved with Broken Glass, Helicopter, Holly up on Poppy,
Humble Daisy, Jump, Living in a Haunted Heart, Living Through Another Cuba,
The Loving, Meccanik Dancing, Melt the Guns, Outside World, Pale and
Precious, Paper and Iron, Poor Skeleton Steps Out, Season Cycle, Sgt. Rock
is Going to Help Me, Thanks for Christmas, This is Pop, Toys, The Ugly
Underneath, The Vanishing Girl, Wait Till Your Boat Goes Down, You're My

(1 vote each)
Always Winter, Never Christmas, Are You Receiving Me?, Ball and Chain,
Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead, Battery Brides, Big Day, Blame the Weather,
Blue Beret, Brainiac's Daughter, Bungalow, Day in Day out, The Disappointed,
Don't Lose Your Temper, Down in the Cockpit, Dying, Easter Theatre, The Good
Things, Great Fire, The Green Man, I Am the Audience, I Bought Myself a
Liarbird, King for a Day, Looking for Footprints, Love at First Sight, Me
and the Wind, Merely a Man, Mermaid Smiled, Miniature Sun, Mole from the
Ministry, My Love Explodes, New Town Animal, One of the Millions, Punch and
Judy, Red Brick Dream, Reign of Blows, River of Orchids, The Somnambulist,
Take This Town, Wonder Annual, Wonderland, The World is Full of Angry Young

LEAST SURPRISING RESULT: "Senses Working Overtime" at could see
that one coming a mile away.

BIGGEST SURPRISE: "Yacht Dance" tied for #2...this song was on my own Top 5,
but I had no idea it was such a vastly popular tune. It's a wonderful one,
so I shouldn't be TOO surprised -- I guess it's a result of my having
started out many years ago with the American pressing of English Settlement
that left the song off. As a result, it took me a few years to get over
thinking of it as a bonus track that fewer people would be familiar with.
Goes to show ya...

MOST LIKELY TO SUCCEED: Their next album...already, a few of those new demos
are among people's favorites. Just imagine how we'll feel about the entire

Stay tuned as I deduce the favorite XTC albums, as indicated by the above
song vote!!

--Dave Gershman


Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 30 Sep 96 17:36:00 -0500
From: dgershmn <>
Organization: AMS
Subject: Desert Island survey, continued...

Greetings again,

 Based on your above song selections, I decided to try to deduce the "Desert
Island"-ness of each of the XTC albums. To do this, I added up the total
number of votes received by each of the songs on any given album, and then
divided that sum by the number of songs on the album, thereby rewarding
albums that had a higher proportion of songs voted for in the survey and
somewhat penalizing albums that had a larger number of songs that didn't get
any votes. This equation comes up with what I have dubbed the "Desert Island
Quotient"(TM) of each album (basically, the average number of votes each
song on that album received, chosen in the survey or not). The albums are
ranked from the highest to the lowest DIQ. I'm sure this method has plenty
of shortcomings, foremost of which being that most of us like/love ALL their
albums, but please, don't bother letting me know what they are. This isn't
meant to be taken too seriously, and ultimately, as in the above survey,
it's really just for fun and doesn't make any difference in the overall
scheme of things.
 For the sake of argument, I have done the DIQ for both the original album
release and the CD version (with the additional songs stuck in). For some
albums, this doesn't apply, and of course, I haven't done it for differing
versions that may have been released in other countries. I mean, hey, I'm
only human...
 So here it is (drum roll, please):

1. English Settlement               6.3
(The fact that the top 3 songs were from ES must have tipped you off on this

2. Black Sea                        5.7

3. Skylarking (w/"Dear God")        4.43

4. Mummer (original version)        4.40

5. Skylarking (w/"Mermaid Smiled")  4.0

6. The Big Express (original)       3.8

7. Drums and Wires (original)       3.67

8. Oranges and Lemons               3.5

9. Mummer (CD version)              3.25

10. The Big Express (CD)            3.1

11. Drums and Wires (CD)            3.0

12. Nonsuch                         2.8

13. Rag 'n' Bone Buffet             1.9
    (Hard to judge, as it contains songs found on other albums as well)

14. Psonic Psunspot                 0.9

15. Chips from the Choc. Fireball   0.7

16. White Music (original)          0.5

17. Go 2                            0.4

18. White Music (CD)                0.33

19. 25 O'Clock                      0.33

Right about now, I hear a lot of you saying, "Geez, he must really have a
lot of free time on his hands..."  The answer to that is not really, just a
passion for all things XTC. Can you blame me?

Thanks for your time,



Message-Id: <v01540b01ae75f0082e3d@[]>
Date: Mon, 30 Sep 1996 17:59:14 -0400
From: (Derek Miner)
Subject: XTC vs. They Might Be Adam Ants

Just thought I'd drop in a quick note since I saw a *mention* of the new
They Might Be Giants song "XTC vs. Adam Ant", but nobody had heard it...

The new song doesn't really take a side. The lyrics go pretty much like:

XTC vs. Adam Ant
Content vs. fun
Fighting for a place in rock and roll
There is no right or wrong

Just when you think it's finished
With XTC on top
Ant Music like a phoenix
Flies back up the charts

XTC vs. Adam Ant
Only one will survive
Beatle-based pop vs. new romantic
History will decide

XTC vs. Adam Ant
I can't tell you why
(Couldn't make out the next two lines)

(At this point, there's a great Skylarking-ish string solo, a la "Dear God")

XTC vs. Adam Ant
Time is marching on
XTC vs. Adam Ant
There is no right or wrong

Now, on the advance CD, "XTC" does happen to be bold and twice as large as
"Adam Ant" in the song title on the back cover... that's gotta count for
something. CD in stores October 8. If you like the Giants, the new one
takes a bit getting used to, but it has quite a few winners.

I also picked up the new Fossil Fuel limited edition at (what I thought
was) a dirt cheap price (I work at the record store!)... Evidently cost
from the distributor was $25, and I got it for $28. I've seen it advertised
for LESS! I'm very surprised... I did a comparison of "Science Friction"
and "Senses" just to see how the new mastering helped. It felt like the
sound was a bit brighter and less "constricted" or "compressed" (It's hard
to describe such aural sensations)...

= Derek Miner =


Message-Id: <>
From: "Simon Knight" <>
Date: Tue, 1 Oct 1996 09:18:39 +0000
Subject: Paul Fox / Oranges and Lemons

A few things from the last Chalkhills:

>I'm curious to hear more from this guy.  Anybody else stumbled across any
>Paul Fox productions they liked?

I can only think two offhand - and they're both killer bee!

10,000 Maniacs - Our Time In Eden
Great songs and lots of delicious string arrangements.

They Might Be Giants - John Henry
A lot of TMBG fans disliked this album as it's a more
"straight-ahead" rock album, but it's hardly Bon Jovi!
(Their previous album Apollo 18 was mixed by Langer and Winstanley

He wasn't the reason why i bought the albums though, just a lucky
added bonus!

and Sara Lloyd wrote:

>No, I had never heard the "oranges and lemons" rhyme before, and I don't
>want to speak for the entire US, but no one that I know has ever heard
>the rhyme either, so my guess is that it is not widely known in the US.
>This is why I assumed the source was _1984_.

I didn't mean to cut down your theory - it still is a great one,
gives added weight to the personal / political nature of a lot of the
songs and is the sort of thing that makes this list interesting
reading.  And who knows, maybe Andy did have that in mind.  Maybe he
was reading 1984 and came across the rhyme and remembered the game.
I was  just explaining how common "Oranges and Lemons" is in England and
Australia, as a lot of people on this list seemed to be unaware of
it and i thought they might find it interesting.  I hope i didn't
sound like a know-all, i just thought people might be interested.
Please feel free to post whatever you wish.

>But if it was written in the Little Express that the title for O&L was
>indeed taken from the nursery rhyme, where does that leave our hypothesis
>about it being taken from the lyrics of Ballet for a Rainy Day?  Do you
>think those lyrics were also taken from the nursery rhyme and then
>extended to the next album?  Or Andy was following along with his fruit
>theme for that song and then later came up with the album title-nursery
>rhyme thing?

I've always just wondered if it was a coincidence.  "Oranges and
lemons" is REALLY that common, when the raincoats tumble like "fruit
tipped from a tray" the first two to pop into most English or Oz
people's heads would be "apples and oranges" or "oranges and lemons".
The latter sings better, and harks back to the nursery rhyme.

As for "nonsuch", well, we all have words that frequent our language,
and Andy might just use that particular one frequently - even though
he obviously didn't know what it means:

"Some nonsuch net holds me aloft" - Chalkhills and Children

In this song he thinks the net is "nonexistent".  On the release of
"Nonsuch" he found out the word actually means "unrivalled".  One
more of those perfect mistakes, (thought some people would argue
"nonexistent" describes the band better now).


Message-Id: <>
From: "Mark G. Cuevas" <>
Subject: Mervyn Peake
Date: Mon, 30 Sep 1996 17:14:39 -0700

A warm fuzzy thank you to Brookes and to Natalie for their recommendation
on The Gormenghast Trilogy by (the prolific) Mervyn Peake.  I scooped it up
as soon as I read your recommendations (some time ago, now) and have been
wading my way through it ever since.  I say wading because the da*n thing
is 1200+ pages -- and I don't have that much free time.  It's that pesky
*work* thing . . .

I can see why Andy likes this guy so much.  The way he creates mood and
describes situations (sometimes in excrutiating detail) ranks him up there
with the best of them (IMO).  His insights into human quirks and
idiosyncracies are delightful -- and timeless.

I've long been a fan of P.G. Wodehouse, who is a different type of writer,
but tops in his own right.  If you get inspired check out his work on
Jeeves, or Lord Emsworth.  He's a brilliant writer and da*n funny.

P.S. Instead of listening to XTC, I was reading P.G. while in UK.  Next
time I'll give Natalie's recommendation a try.


Message-Id: <v01540b09ae7649b0880e@[]>
Date: Tue, 1 Oct 1996 16:13:14 +1200
From: (James Dignan)
Subject: nursery rhymes

>As for other "Nursery Rhyme" references, "Soliders, workers, slaves and
>farmers, etc." from "Antheap" might draw from "Tinker, tailor, soldier
>sailor," and, of course, there's those little between-track "Alice"-style
>snippets on "Psonic Psunspot".

a couple of people emailed me to ask me why I suggested "Love on a
farmboy's wages" as being another song inspired in part by a nursery rhyme.
Compare the following nursery rhyme and XTC lyrics:

"I've got sixpence, jolly jolly sixpence,
I've got sixpence to last me all my life
I've got tuppence to spend,
And tuppence to lend,
And tuppence to take home to my wife"

"Shilling for the fellow who brings the sheep in,
Shilling for the fellow who milks the herd,
Shilling for the fellow with a wife for keeping
How can we feed love on a farmboy's wages?



Date: Mon, 30 Sep 1996 22:24:20 -0700 (MST)
Subject: Kids and XTC
Message-id: <>

Someone mentioned something about kids and XTC, well, I watch my neighbors
kids alot, and one time, I was hanging outside with my neighbors, and was
playing an XTC cd (which one I don't remember) and their 3 and 2 year old
was inside dancing, and they decided they liked it so much, they decided to
turn the volume up all the way! She knew that there would be a severe
consequence to that actionb... I'd have to say it was worth it though... :)


Message-Id: <>
Date: Tue, 01 Oct 1996 02:13:03 -0400
From: Matthew Jason NeSmith <>
Subject: Castaway on a desert island...

Natalie Jane Jacobs' remarks about "beautiful york" reminded me of my own
induction into XTC music.  My family was living in Germany when O&A came
out.  My only connection to pop music at that time was Rolling Stone,
heaven forbid.  It took a close friend of mine to make up my mind to buy
it.  The family was just about to embark on a van trip up the east coast of
GB, up into Scotland, and down the west coast, and I needed new music for
the trip.  I purposefully saved it for the van ride.  I brought a case of
30 cassettes with me, but I didn't really pull any of them out.  I just
played O&A over and over again.  England seemed as magical as I'd always
imagined it would be as experienced through the filter of XTC. I only
stopped playing it long enough to buy Lincoln by They Might Be Giants,
another great band I discovered on that trip.  My strongest memory of York
was the mideval museum/amusement park where they try to simulate the
"smell" of Olde England.

>I had a similar revelation while listening to a Brian Eno compilation on
>the train.  I'd never much cared for Eno but all of a sudden, listening to
>this lovely remote music and looking at the British countryside, it all
>made sense.

Brian Eno's "Music for Films" is also a pleasurable experience while
surrounded by forest and horses.  Mothers love it, too.  It's as close as
you can get to halucinating without actually rearranging your DNA

Paul Fox of O&A fame also produced the last real Sugarcubes' album,
ironically titled Stick Around for Joy.  It's not great, but has plenty of
enjoyable songs.

Jason "Buffy" NeSmith

"There are bricks in your garden; go and throw them at your neighbors."
-Ron Geesin


Date: Tue, 1 Oct 1996 10:49:07 +0100 (BST)
From: Chris Clee <>
Subject: Re: Oranges and Lemons
Message-Id: <Pine.OSF.3.91.961001104512.10211B-100000@manta>

Oranges and Lemmons is one of the oldest nursery rhymes I know, I'm sure
that this is the more probable source for the album title and had given
it no though to it being otherwise being very familliar with the old
rhyme. Sometimes one need look no further than the end of ones nose after

Life is sometimes nice and simple after all.........

take care



Date: Tue, 1 Oct 1996 07:39:56 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Christopher R. Coolidge" <>
Subject: Re: Paul Fox
Message-ID: <>

  Other Paul Fox productions: Phish(Hoist), They Might Be Giants(John
Henry), and The Wallflowers(their first album of a couple of years ago).
Also was a mixer or engineer on at least one Mr Mister album, which would
explain how Mr Mister's drummer wound up playing on O&L. Can't have been
because XTC were Mr Mister fans...

"Take these chicken wings/And Learn to fry again/ Learn to fry oil-free."


Message-Id: <>
Date: Tue, 01 Oct 1996 16:34 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Sawyer, Keith" <Keith.Sawyer@FMR.Com>
Subject: Olivia Tremor Control

While attempting to keep hyperbole's temptation at bay, I'd like to point
you towards a new band that I was pointed to recently.

The name of the group is Olivia Tremor Control, and their 1rst album is
'Dusk at Cubist Castle' on the Flydaddy label.  It's filled with all the
silly and fun psychedelic pop trappings you'd expect from an overly florid
album cover.   Almost every song seems to mutate into a different sound by
the time the end comes around.  While the texture is generally light, the
album erratically overflows with inconsequental background noises.  However,
the lyrics are understandable.  To mitigate this flaw, songs 12-21 all have
the same name.

If you have any sort of irrational compulsion towards the Dukes material,
this is highly recommended.  If you don't trust me, call your local college
station during their alt.rock hours and ask them to play a cut for you
(Courtyard, Not Growing, or Holiday Surprise 1,2,3).  It is a cheaply priced
2CD set (I found the instrumental CD to be inconsequential).


P.S. They play Cambridge, MA on the 19th

"Underneath us the grass is slowing down on its way up to the sun"  -the
Apples in Stereo


Date: Tue, 1 Oct 1996 17:27:01 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Mike Rose, from Totonot" <>
Subject: Paul Fox
Message-ID: <>

	On the subject of Paul Fox, he co- produced, of course, the They
Might Be Giants album "John Henry", which I think has a certain resonance
reminiscent of Oranges and Lemons.  Also, thru all the talk of Testimonial
Dinner which I have been privy to (only been on here for a month or so)
I'd like to say I think TMBG's version of 25 O'Clock is right on.
	Newest XTC find: a limited edition Canadian 12 inch of Senses
Working Overtime b/w Blame The Weather and Egyptian Solution, in mint
condition.  Nice.
	If anyone wants to know about my pretty amazing TMBG experience of
the past weekend, let me know.  Thanks.  By the way this is my first post.
XTC co-exist with They Might Be Giants and King Missile in the pantheon of
musical greatness for me.



Message-Id: <v01530505ae76c7390fca@[]>
Date: Tue, 1 Oct 1996 14:27:12 +0100
From: (John Wedemeyer)
Subject: Musicians' Corner P.S.

    Ian Dahlberg wrote;

>        I've figured out most of "Farmboy" on the regular tuning without
>much difficulty.
    I must agree...."Farmboy's" is most definitely in standard
tuning...(you can NEVER really rely on those darn videos for accurate
finger positioning!).
    By the way, I am simply IN LOVE with the final chord in that song and
would like to offer it up for anyone who wants to grab a guitar and get a
quick XTC-type thrill:it's basically an inverted E6 chord, which amounts to
a C#m7(4th position) over an open E. Low to high the notes are:
E,C#,G#,B,E,G#  Play it and TRY not to smile!
    Ian, keep up the great work!! You never cease to amaze me. Working out
XTC guitar transcriptions is no easy task!! Now then....any thoughts on
"Roads Girdle The Globe??!! YIKES.......
    Well, I'm gonna get back to transcribing the "River Of Orchids" string
arrangement for guitar...wish me luck!!
           Kind Regards;
              John W. (

XTC chord of the day; oh yeah......see above


Date: Tue, 1 Oct 1996 18:04:41 -0400
Message-ID: <>
Subject: XTC on Firefly

I tried out Firefly today (, a service that suggests records
and movies you might like based on your preferences and the preferences of
other Firefly members. You can also search for info on specific artists. A
search on XTC yielded a  very complete discography (bootlegs included). 6333
members had rated the band with an average rating of 4.6 (4 being average).
There is also a list of similar artists (Squeeze, Robyn Hitchcock, Jam, Elvis
Costello and Talking Heads) as well as member reviews and a link to
Chalkhills. Select an album and you get another page with the album cover and
some info. Some albums have Realaudio files (O&L had King for a Day).

As far as the recommendations go, I listed as my favorites: XTC, Self, Lost
Tribe, Spot (thanks to the Chalkhillian that recommended this one), King
Crimson, Nine Inch Nails, Infectious Grooves, Sugarplastic and The Police.

Firefly suggested: John Zorn, Mozart, Lene Lovich and Janis Joplin.

I guess eclectic begets eclectic.

Maybe if we all sign up and list XTC as the greatest thing more people will
receive it as a recommendation.


Message-Id: <>
Date: Mon, 30 Sep 1996 18:09:25 -0400
From: jes <>
Subject: Mind-frig's and c-c-c-cola

This may end up sounding like a flame but I took a bit of offense at AMANDA
OWENS using the phrase "How many people can you mind-f*** at once?", and
attributing it to "Mr. Partridge" as her "XTC quote of the day."  No, I'm
not a prude, nor am I the kind of man who hasn't allowed the F-word to
escape my lips at least once an hour.  My objection is based on these
feelings and beliefs and facts:

1.  Where on earth is this "quote" found?
2.  What possible context could it have in this newsgroup and what did it
have to do with her message other than to give her and all of the other
Beavis' and Buttheads something to snicker about?
3.   We find ourselves, as a group who trades ideas on the Internet, to be
in a precarious position of wishing to protect our freedom to do so, and
messages like this only give ammunition to those who would like to shut down
our freedom.

Better watch out or well end up with Tipper Gore monitoring our newsgroup.....

As for the issue regarding Colin singing the words 'c-c-c-cola' as opposed
to endorsing the famous Atlanta product, allow me to express my ignorance
and ask.... aren't the British fond of drinking Pepsi, without ice?
Wouldn't that make the idea of drinking a "coca-cola" somewhat unlikely?


From: Keith Hanlon <>
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Nonsuch LP and Question
Date: Tue, 1 Oct 1996 19:03:30 -0400 (EDT)

Hello folks! Let me publicly say that we are LUCKY. Mitch's Andy updates
make this list a thrill to receive. Not many lists can say they're this
close to the artist. I'm still amazed.

A local store has "nonsuch" on imported vinyl for $10. Email me if you
want me to pick it up for you.

Lasty, can anyone post a listing of all the Geffen CDs and their retail
price? I want to order some of the budget-priced CDs but I'm not sure
which ones are which... BETTER YET, don't post it. Email me and I'll
summarize to the list (right John?)




Message-Id: <l03010501ae776a8d3c86@[]>
Date: Tue, 1 Oct 1996 20:27:07 -0500
From: David Ferguson <>
Subject: About The Partridge Report

Dear Mitch,

> I talked to Andy today and he had lots to say about a whole bunch of stuff.

Cool! I don't know how well you influence Andy, but if you have his ear to
tell him how so many of us feel about old material and new material, then
perhaps you can persuade him and XTC we are as enthusiastic to hear these
terrific songs as we are their next full length album of NEW songs!

> He wants to know if anyone would be interested in the idea of XTC going
> into the studio and doing some very low budget full band recordings of
> songs that were discarded from the past but the band and its fans still
> really like in demo form. It would be called "The Bootleg Album" and
> maybe they'd put it out on a small indie label.

As a listener of their music I think that is GREAT! A full band rehearsal
recording of some of their "cutting room floor" material would not only
give us versions of songs we and the band KNOW are good, but put a little
money in the pockets of the guys as well!  As a video editor, I have an
idea of how much work can be put into a DEMO piece before it is even
decided to be included in a project. So band members brought a song they
liked to the table, maybe even put MORE work into it, and then decided for
various reasons that it would not make it onto their lateast album. Many
reasons having nothing to do with the quality of the songs make them "scape
old songs". It may have been that the song didn't fit in with the theme of
the record, or because too much material was available and SOMETHING had to
be lost.
All of the songs on your list would sound terrific if performed in a studio
and recorded with or even without overdubs, and I am sure you will hear
about everyone's favorites until it will include all of their old material.
( Like Young Cleopatra, for example, hint hint).
I say, do it Andy, if these songs will never make it onto your new labels
first XTC album, then collect them up and distribute them yourself. I'd buy
it. Probably be more popular than Fossil Fuel.


Boil that dust speck!


Date: Tue, 1 Oct 1996 22:20:38 -0700 (PDT)
Message-Id: <v01510100ae77472a0797@[]>
From: (Mitch Friedman)
Subject: aw gee! (blush)

It's Tuesday night at 10 pm and only 48 hours since I sent my latest news
from Andy to Chalkhills. Thusfar I have received *78* messages, ALL in
favor of the bootleg album idea.

I wish I could write each one of you back and individually thank all of you
for your very kind words for both me and XTC. It's my pleasure to serve
you! :^)

In a day or two I'm going to head to the post office and send Andy a
printout of every message I've received on the subject. Hope no one
objects; I said I would pass it on directly to him. Boy will he be
overwhelmed with enthusiasm for this project. I'll do whatever I can to get
an update and influence him even more as soon as I can.

Oh yeah! Two bits of info I forgot to mention . . . He also wanted to do
"Goosey Goosey" for the bootleg thing and Dave has a drummer friend who
lives in Salisbury, England who wants to play on the album. I believe Andy
mentioned that they could record the drums first and then possibly finish
the songs in his shed. Very low budget!

Thanks again to everyone out there. You people are great!



Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 01 Oct 1996 06:15:08 -0500
From: Thomas Durkin <>
Organization: Cat Press
Subject: Random ephemerea from Chicago

To Chalkies far & wide:

	I guess this is my official delurking post, after months of
creative lurking (if one has nothing to add to the fray...).  I'm a fan
from the Windy City, and have grown in my fandom in strange stages
(admire/revel in/surprised by/revel again/amazed/find other fans, revel
together).  The Dukes material is amazing...

	Anywho, I just have some random comments/questions/favors to ask of

	--I recently obtained the MFSL gold disc of _Skylarking_ .  This
may be old news, but is anyone else among the disappointed at how similar
it sounds to the conventional version?  MFSL usually makes its gold discs
worth your while (Floyd's _Wall_, Joe Jackson's _Night & Day_, just to name
a couple); XTC just wasn't incredibly altered.  Is this because a)
_Skylarking_ is near-perfect already, or b) are we to blame MFSL?  Needless
to say, I prob'ly won't be getting _O&L_ on gold disc...

	--I once read here in these very digests something from someone
intimately involved with "Carmen Sandiego".  Is Greg Lee himself a Chalkie?
Does anyone know how to get in touch with him thru cyberspace?  My
girlfriend is a big fan; as for me, "any fan of XTC..." .  Any info greatly
appreciated; please privately email me at Much obliged...

	--I had the chance to see Sugarplastic on the Loud Family concert
here in Chgo, and of course noted the _Drums & Wires_ sound.  It mmade me
curious to know what Chalkies think of these other fine examples of
XTC-influenced artists:
	++Spookey Ruben
	++The Lovely Lads

	--Finally, does anyone know of a website where I can find a JPEG of
the _Skylarking_ album cover?  I'd love to get it for my wallpaper, but for
some odd reason, my computer is balking at the GIF of it I captured from
the Beatown page. Odd...

	Once again, thanks for any and all info...

Summer chased by autumn,
Thomas Durkin

NP: _Nonsuch_


Date: Wed, 02 Oct 1996 08:36:29 -0600 (CST)
Subject: This sounds like The Disappointed!!!!!!!!
Message-id: <>

The tilte track of Crash Test Dummies new album, A Worm's Life, is in the
exact same tempo as the Disappointed. I couldn't help but sing the song
whilst the other one was playing.

BTW-Andy Partridge is thanked in the liner notes of A Worm's Life.....for
what,Idon't know. As far as I know, he didn't actually have anything to do
with the recording process. Maybe just a thanks for inspiration.........


Get in, sit down, hold on, and shut up.



Subject: XTC Vinyl for Sale...
From: (Wesley H. Wilson)
Message-Id: <>
Date: Wed, 2 Oct 96 13:40:19 -0400

I'm selling two items:

1. "Love on a Farmboy's Wages" (UK 12-inch "wallet" single) This one
includes live tracks that never made it to CD (Burning w/Optimism's Flames,
Scissor Man/Cut It Out) - $15 firm, very little wear, a nice item

2. "Towers of London" 2-pack, sleeve, 7-inch UK, includes live tracks not
available on CD - $12 firm, some ring wear on outer sleeve

Postage/packing is extra - $2.00 per item. U.S. sales only, please.

Send me e-mail if interested.



Message-ID: <>
Date: Wed, 2 Oct 96 14:51:00 -0500
From: "McDonnell, Dan E." <>
Organization: RMT Inc.
Subject: couldn't do it

I have been offline for a few days and have not seen any Chalkhillisms since
Friday.  The last I heard, some folks were having trouble finding Fossil
Fuel.  Well, I found it (in South Carolina), but I could not bring myself to
make the purchase.  Even though it was the limited edition version, the
price was $35.99.  Now I'm just as hungry for new XTC as the next fan, but I
really had to think about this one.  Is it new because it sounds better?  In
the end I couldn't do it, but I did carry it around for 30 minutes while
browsing, and I got a real good feel for the grooves on the cover!

If anybody wants me to pick it up for them, let me know.  I need to do
something for the group so I can overcome the feeling that, alas, I am not
the collector I pretend to be.



Date: Wed, 2 Oct 1996 21:59:41 +0100
Message-Id: <>
From: (Ian Sutton)
Subject: XTC to play live ??

Just a quick post to report on comments by Andy on a London radio station
this evening.  When asked the usual question about touring, Andy said that
he had been speaking to Colin about an urge he has to set up with the band
and play live from the back of a lorry outside radio stations, and then just
move on when they'd had enough.  By the sound of it, it is something that
has been talked about recently.  I taped the interview and intend to
transcribe it somewhere or other in the near future.

Yours, living in hope



Date: Wed, 02 Oct 96 16:39:07 CST
Message-Id: <>
Subject: O&L/Tee's/SP

     I have some video of XTC, and part of it contains an interview w/ Andy
     Partridge after O&L came out. The Man himself says that the album
     title O&L came from a childrens nursery ryme.

     I saw a really cool chalkhills Tee Shirt at a SugarPlastic show the
     other night, whoever made those, are there more? will you make more?
     and if you do, will you make me an XXL? (Please EMAIL me privately)
     Sugarplastics were really excellent, very different live. If you
     haven't bought their new CD yet, do yourself a favor and get it
     today! The guys put on a really tight set including most of the new
     album and a few others ditties. The crowd responded and begged for
     more after their short 9 or 10 song set, to the suprise of the band
     it seemed. Spoke with Ben Eshbach (singer/guitarist/songwriter) for a
     few minutes after the show, he's really nice, very young, very
     accessable, and he's already quite a songwriter. Anyway, I can report
     to you that Ray Davies was one of his biggest influences, and he
     discovered (or rediscovered) XTC around 1990 when he started focusing
     on his own songwriting. That's all.



Message-Id: <>
From: "Simon Knight" <>
Date: Thu, 3 Oct 1996 10:23:18 +0000
Subject: Vergen preesentz ecTeasee

I was just looking at my Australian copy of "The Disappointed"
cassette single.  Someone at Virgin wasn't really paying close

On the actual cassette the song is labelled:  "The Dissapointed".

Is that how they spell that in their dictionary?

BTW, Does anyone know if Fossil Fuels is going to be released in
Australia?  I'm sick of the blank looks i keep getting when i ask the
shirty staff about it in record stores.


Date: Wed, 2 Oct 1996 23:56:12 -0400 (EDT)
From: kathryn lynne burda <>
Subject: anniversary
Message-ID: <>

One more "Big Day" we've forgotten about with all the demo/lyric/FF
discussions...ten years ago this month Skylarking was released.  For those
who love the album, it's time to celebrate.  For the rest, keep scrolling
and ignore this posting.


Message-Id: <>
From: "Mark Strijbos" <>
Date: Thu, 3 Oct 1996 18:56:41 +0000
Subject: Dutch FF release

Dear Chalkies,

Just a quick note to inform you all that I have discovered that
the Fossil Fuel compilation is available as a Dutch release.
And guess what? I couldn't control myself and bought it.
So now I have 5 copies (including the double cassette version).

The discs themselves are silkscreened with the ammonite shape and
'made in Swindon' but the colour is slightly different and the print
is eccentric ( not aligned properly...)

The booklet is identical to the UK release but (again) the colour is
not exactly the same. Ditto for the inlay card.
The inlay card also says "Printed in Holland" in the lower right
corner under the barcode.
And the match picture on the inlay card has been mutilated :)
only a small piece of the top (1/5th?)  is printed...

If there's anyone out there crazy enough to want a copy of this
particular release, email me privately and I'm sure we can work
something out.


Mark Strijbos at The Little Lighthouse

===> Mark's useless XTC quote for today <==
And all the media will fiddle while Rome burns,
acting like modern-time Neros


End of Chalkhills Digest #3-6

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