Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #3-61

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 3, Number 61

                Thursday, 19 December 1996

Today's Topics:

                  Re: More Holiday Hits!
              XTC gets Guitar Player mention
                     The Kick Outside
                Continuity: What a Concept
                   Listen to to this...
                   Most Frequent Albums
                      To wit: DeWitt
                        Band Names
                        Re: Sundry
                    Grass & stoned sex
                    What in the World?
                     You cheer me up
         A complicomplicomplicatedcomplicated...
                    Thanks For Beatles
                        last words
                       XTC thoughts
                   Re: Chalkhills FAQs
        I know this is even more pathetic, but...
                     Radios In Motion
                     A Western Front
          More Fun with messages...the REAL one!
                      12 Days of XTC


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6 days!


Message-Id: <>
From: J Ross MacKay <>
Subject: Re: More Holiday Hits!
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 1996 09:47:28 -0500 (EST)

In Chalkhills 3-59 Ira Lieman <> shared review info on
the Rhino release _New Wave Xmas_.  Take note that in addition to selections
by Squeeze, Los Lobos, etc.,  the disc opens with "Thanks for Chistmas"
by The 3 Wise Men, and also includes "Christmas at K-Mart" by Root Boy Slim.



Date: Tue, 17 Dec 1996 08:28:30 -0800 (PST)
Subject: XTC gets Guitar Player mention
Message-id: <9611178508.AA850840037@FINSMTP1.FIN.GOV.BC.CA>

  The January 1997 issue of Guitar Player just hit the stands.  One of
  the articles is "Discs of Destiny:  30 Years of Breakthrough
  Albums". Six of the GP editors compiled a list of the "single most
  important and influential" guitar album from each year from
  1967-1995.  They also give the runners-up in each year.

  While some of the choices were predictable (Hendrix "Are You
  Experienced" in 1967, the first Van Halen album in 1978 -- remember,
  this is guitar hero territory), other selections took me by
  surprise.  1980 was one such year:  the top-rated album was the
  debut Pretenders album, and XTC's BLACK SEA made the runner-up list
  ... this in a year with famous albums by certified guitar heros
  (Rush, Eric Clapton, and Paco/John/Al).

  This recognition is heartening ... Misters Partridge and Gregory are
  great guitar players who use their technical skill in support of
  those wonderful songs.  And Colin Moulding's playing would (or
  should) get one or more of XTC's albums onto a similar Bass Player



Date: Tue, 17 Dec 1996 11:50:28 -0500 (EST)
Message-Id: <>
From: jes <>
Subject: The Kick Outside

William Wisner" <> pointed out:
>Kate Bush's debut was, as were all her UK releases, on EMI.  David Gilmour
>is credited with discovering Kate Bush and was indeed instrumental in
>getting her signed to EMI, but they assuredly were not lovers.

My mistake.  However, the early release of "The Kick Inside" was indeed on
Harvest records, with a different cover.  And, if my memory serves
correctly, it wasn't called "The Kick Inside."  I could be wrong there....
Harvest, I might add, was distributed by EMI, which is why the early Pink
Floyd catalog was re-released in America on Capitol records, which is/was a
branch of EMI.

Joshua Hall-Bachner <> suggests that one can make
Beatles/XTC comparisons?

>ES Sgt. Pepper (or, depending on the fan, The White Album) Hmmm....

English Settlement equals Sgt Pepper/The White Album?  No way.  The White
Album would have to be "Take Away/The Lure Of Salvage" and Sgt Pepper would
have to be "Skylarking."  English Settlement seems akin to "Magical Mystery
Tour" to me.  If you want to take this ludicrous comparison to it's
illogical extents.....

Monkees?  I would heartily recommend the new Monkees studio album, easily
one of the top ten albums of 1996.  But 1996 hasn't been a good year, if you
ask me.....


Message-Id: <v01550100aedc9c1c10b6@[]>
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 1996 13:09:46 -0600
From: (Insane Boy)
Subject: Continuity: What a Concept

My Third To Last Post (most probably):

>'Cuz it seems to me that EVERY XTC album since Black Sea
>(certainly including the Dukes' stuff!) has had wonderful continuity.

Yeah well, Todd's just a big egotist, and he was the one who
supposedly dreamed up the song order and all that, so he thought
he'd put his name on it one more time.

>M. Penn's "March" - absolutely.

I have a friend who likes Michael Penn and whose girlfriend likes
Aimee Mann.  One day, he thought "Hey, they sound kind of complementary!"
"They're dating," I informed him.  [neat, huh?]

As the day of my Departure draws near, I must say that it's been
quite fun and a lot of time in the computer lab (when I should've been
doing other things, but hey, I'm graduating next semester!).  Good
thing I have this ZIP disk, b/c when I get back I'm going to have
a bit to read, I suspect.  I'm going to San Antonio for 2 weeks,
then...Vegas & El Lay!  My girlfriend's from Vegas so that should
be interesting.  Oh my...what XTC should I take?!   I know
"New Adventures In Hi-Fi" will not Leave my side...

Til next time,
Jason Garcia


From: "Knut S. Helstad" <>
Message-Id: <9612171945.ZM6999@mailhost>
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 1996 19:45:40 +0100
Subject: Listen to to this...

Band : Last James
Titel: Kindergarten
Ref. : XTC and Dukes of Stratosphear

The newspaper reads:
If you are into XTC, Dukes of Stratosphear with a fling to Neil Young and
the Beach Boys, you are now running to your local recorddealer by the speed
of time.

This record is produced in the same manner as 25 O'Clock and Ps.Ps., and has
a very distinct XTC-Beach Boys sound to it.  For more information, wait
until January.

Knut, Norway

Knut S.Helstad
Sydnesgaten 10
5010 Bergen


Message-Id: <>
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 1996 14:50:20 -0500
From: David Pardue <>
Subject: touring

There has been mention (a few issues ago, I think.  I swear, every time I
think I've caught up, I'll go to check my new mail, and a buttload of new
Chalkhills come flying in.  It's Sisyphus' mailing list) of major bands/acts
which don't tour, with Steely Dan & Harry Nilsson gaining mention.

Well, its always been a major bummer for me that two of my favorite artists
of all time are XTC and Kate Bush and the chances are rare that I'll ever
get to see either of them live.  Add to this the fact that I've barely
missed seeing P. McCartney, B-52s and, for various stupid reasons, the Cure
THREE times, I think I'm snake-bit when it comes to concert-going.

I have, however, been lucky to see TMBG no less than three times (twice
free), and Paul Simon in Czechloslovakia (as it was at the time).  I
shouldn't complain.



ps. thanks to Peter Fitzpatrick at Microsoft for his answers to my questions
about the demos.  Please don't forget to ask Mr. Gates if he's put me in his
will yet...


Message-Id: <v01540b00aedca27312c5@[]>
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 1996 15:34:31 -0400
From: (Kevin P. Kelly)
Subject: Most Frequent Albums

Good thread! Off the top of my head, without physically counting among my
3,000+ collection, the most frequently occuring artists:

1. Fab Four
2. Frank Zappa
3. XTC
4. David Bowie
5. James Brown

(This is not including classical music, otherwise Mahler would win hands down.)

If they ever get their new contract, XTC will catch up.


If you ever reach total enlightenment while you're drinking a beer, I bet
it makes beer shoot out your nose.


Date: Tue, 17 Dec 96 16:35 EST
From: Trent Turner <>
Subject: To wit: DeWitt
Message-Id: <54961217213545/0005727836ND2EM@MCIMAIL.COM>

DeWitt Henderson <>
Subject: Parts are Interesting

Hi folx - once again, I must say you guys are the greatest.

Evan Chakroff:  The answer is, GET ALL XTC CD's! NOW!

tt>  Amen

"Mayor of Simpleton" and "King For a Day" in Muzak?  That's hideous!
tt>  But I really love the opportunity to sing in public places, usually
     stores, "Everyone's creeping up to the money gods, putting tongues
     where they shouldn't ought to be"

Insane Boy complained about acronyms.  Yeah, please, let's keep the
acronyms to a minimum.  I'm a programmer, and I can't stand it when I'm
in a meeting and people only occasionally throw in an actual WORD.
tt>  Acronyms, wtf, I thought they were language!

Classic Rock:  hey, there's nothing wrong with all of that music (OK, I
grew up on it), but I agree with someone's point - it's only a piece of
the pie.  I like stuff over the entire past 30+ years.
tt>  ZZ & Yes are ok, but I have beepelipsy attacks whenever I hear
     BadCo, Foreigner, Journey, Kansas, etc.  They weren't that good
     15-20 years ago.

Preachy songs - I really don't understand what seems to be a lot of
people's complaints against them.  Isn't one of the attractions of XTC
the fact that most of their lyrics are not endless noodling on love,
relationships, etc., which some artists/bands can't seem to do anything
BUT?  Maybe I don't mind 'em also because I agree with practically
every 'political' song I've ever heard, whether it's XTC, Jackson Browne,
Springsteen, or whomever, but I still don't get the complaints.  After
all, you don't have to adopt their views.  It's a SONG.
tt>  The fact that Andy & Colin have the ability to draw out such emotions,
     as we have ample evidence in the archives, is demonstrative of
     their high caliber of artistry!  That's the whole point of art,
     evoke emotion! Good, bad & Ugly. e.g. Maplethorpe  ;-)

     If you think it's preachy, then that's jes' your reaction it's
     not the art.

     Most of our boys songs are great because they deal with volatile
     issues: Suburbia, Religion, Race, Politics, War.

     DeWitt's on the right track.  It's just a song, if you have a
     problem with the song, then it's INTROSPECTION TIME!

Demographics survey - whoever brought that up - It's been done already.
Check the back issues of Chalkhills, or maybe whoever did the survey
can forward the results to you.

tt>  WM, 40, prof, zen, USA, etc.

Trent Turner
...the man who sailed around his soul


Date: Tue, 17 Dec 96 16:36 EST
From: Trent Turner <>
Subject: Band Names
Message-Id: <80961217213608/0005727836ND2EM@MCIMAIL.COM>

>Radios In Motion
>This is POP!
>Or... Another Roadside Attraction.  Any comments?

I like the last very sounds very cool, doesn't pigeonhole the
band...I say go for it. The first two, though, being recognizable song
titles, are a bit too "restricting" of what your band could be. I'd go with
the last. (I also like "Nature's Sunken Wreck.")

tt>  If you are leaning towards Robbin's, how about "Jitterbug Perfume"?


Message-Id: <v01540b05aedcb1e3ed95@[]>
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 1996 13:39:57 -0700
From: (E.B.)
Subject: Re: Sundry

Some folks wrote:
>>Andy Partridge liked Ash.
>I heard one of their CDs at Tower and just thought, "crap; typical
>distorted power pop."  Am I wrong?

I heard the new Ash disc, and it was so incredibly derivative that I could
barely get myself to focus on it. It was like listening to '50s oldies
radio or something -- been there, done In addition to obvious
ripoffs of recent Britpop bands, Sonic Youth, etc., there's a song near the
end that BLATANTLY steals melody from Frankie's "Strangers In The Night."
If you've heard the song, you know what I'm talking about. I kinda enjoyed
the "puke track," though.  ;)

Along the lines of the Mummer/Murmur coincidence, does anyone else find it
intriguing that Sonic Youth released Bad Moon Rising and Husker Du released
New Day Rising in the same year? Also, continuing in the Bob Mould vein,
Sugar's Copper Blue, Michael Brook's Cobalt Blue and the Jazz Butcher's
Condition Blue all came out in 1992....

Regarding TMBG: I like Apollo 18 the most, and John Henry the least.

>From: "Sawyer, Keith" <keith.sawyer@FMR.Com>
>*Holiday* - Ready, Steady Go!:  Varied instrumentation lends a little
>flesh to their character studies

Boy, that album made me ill. There's wimpy, and then there's WIMPY!!  ;)



Date: Tue, 17 Dec 96 16:44:34 CST
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Tidings

        Merry Christmas to all you wonderful people. If I could give you
     all a gift I would give you ONE cd with evrything XTC ever recorded
     including demos on it so you could put it on repeat and listen to it
     all year.

        Well, I'd like that.

     Merry Christmas,

     Jason Phelan


Message-Id: <l03010901aedce55acd25@[]>
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 1996 19:12:37 -0500
From: Gene <>
Subject: Surveyed

Damn clueless fool I am....

Yes, well, I have been on Chalkhills for three years now, except for three
months between July and October when I was recovering from a broken jaw
(mouth wired shut, liquid food, nothing fun), and in that interim there was
a Chalkhills demographics survey, as Tim Kendrick informed me.

SO, please 'scuse my previous offer to do another one, and if anyone wants
a copy of the survey results you can email me and I'll resend Tim's



Message-ID: <>
From: Paul Haines <>
Subject: Grass & stoned sex
Date: Wed, 18 Dec 1996 11:19:48 +1000

Chalkhills people,

With Grass referring to Stoned sex, oh yes, I completely agree. I
thought that this was what the song was about when it first came out.
What was I 16 or 17? At that age I'd been stoned before, but sex was
another year or two to come. Hey, wait that's getting too
no no I'd been having sex for ages! Yes, that's it, ages!

Boo Radleys:
Man, I thought these guys were the new XTC. Sometimes I still think they
are. They are fucking amazing.

They MIght Be Giants:
I'm a big fan of John Henry & Flood, and have seem them live and thought
they were amazing. I've heard two songs of Factory Showroom, and didn't
realise it was them. I thought the songs were bad too, one sounded like
Prince (Sexxy?). Disappointing. Anyone else disappointed with the album,
or am I hearing the shit tracks?

Fossil Fuel Cases:
Well fuck me! I bought this cd for my little sister, not the flash
limited edition mind you, and guess what? The tabs that hold the cd are
all broken. I live in Australia. Someone really fucked up, and now my
sister is getting a broken case. (It's xmas, aint no time to return it
and post it to New Zealand!)



Date: Tue, 17 Dec 1996 19:53:23 -0500 (EST)
From: Philip M Adamek <adamek@ACSU.Buffalo.EDU>
Subject: What in the World?
Message-ID: <>

Dear Chalkies:

    	I've lurked for a few weeks and here is my first post:

     I think that XTC are at their best as Dukes.  Perhaps they are so
because, as Dukes, they no longer have to pretend that they are writing
about anything "in the world."  XTC has often seemed more like science
fiction than it has convincing, direct social commentary.  All of
Partridge's political songs seem hollow and dated (e.g, "Reign of Blows,"
where Stalin and Uncle Sam are targeted, "Melt the Guns," whose empty
phrase-mongering sounds less like a political statement than a symptom of
ineptitude); just the same, his 'heart-felt' love songs sound
embarrassingly flat and contrived (e.g., "The Mayor of Simpleton," which
sounds like a crabbed and confused retake on the old, "Don't know much
about history...," pop theme) .

     As Dukes, by contrast, the band is set free to explore all their
lyrical and melodic genius without having to worry about securing
passports to the real world.  The band can remain where they are most
comfortable--in the dream world heroically constructed in the bygone era
of the Beatles, Kinks, Lemon Pipers, etc.  (I find Skylarking a remarkable
exception, due in part to the paring down that the producer effected when
he, for instance, threw out of consideration all the demo tracks Partridge
had given him that had to do with politics.)

     That is why, in fact, I find Oranges and Lemons so disappointing:  it
is as if the band had not decided to keep being the "Dukes" or to take the
more troublesome route of reassuming their XTC identity.  The result: a
mawkishly Yellow Submarine rip-off of a cover image; painfully weak lyrics
and bratty sounding guitar work ("I'm Merely a Man"), and other
shamelessly Beatles-patented nonsense (e.g., the trumpet bit in that last
piece).  The band's musical genius preserves them from the perils of their
identity crisis on a few tracks ("Chalkhills and Children," "Pink Thing"),
but all in all, I think that they'd be better off running for cover in

     Of course, what I say here certainly can't be held to for the entire
career of the band: let it just be said that, after Drums and Wires and,
possibly, Mummer, the band withdrew from the contemporary, madly
capitalistic world in a very real way (taking firm root in Swindon), but
also, however imperfectly, they withdrew their sympathies : now, it is
only time that they stop trying to address this world to which they no
longer belong, and of which they are at best poorly familiar.
(Interestingly, the song on which Patrick Adamek commented, "Funk Pop A
Roll,"  defines this very threshold for the band--thinking of the song as
a genuine, biting statement on the music industry means thinking of it as
the last believable statement that the band ever made on contemporary
experience ("Liarbird" would, in this sense, be no more than a repetition,
a variation on a theme); however, thinking of it as a hollow, misplaced
track (as another Chalkhills commentator did) means thinking of it as the
first sign of the band's impotence vis-a-vis the real world.

     I think both ways of thinking of this song are valid; this
paradoxical reception is what allows the song to define the threshold of
which I speak--the threshold between contemporary experience and the
artistic space, or cosmology, which was invented in the 60s in part as the
result of studio innovations (multi-track recording, synthesizers, etc.)
more than it was of drug use.  Woe be the day that John Johns begins to
complain about the music industry, injustice, or truly lived relationships
with members of the opposite sex; let him never even mention proper names
known to contemporary existence : to do so would be to invite metaphysical
confusion into the artistic space that the Dukes had marked off for
themselves.  The Dukes had done this ingeniously, for themselves alone,
precisely by donning the disguises that would preserve them from the
charge of lifeless retro-aestheticism at the same time that it would
empower them as ironic commentators on an artistic space of whose spirit
they had become the privileged voice.

      Never could we imagine the Dukes confidently confronting their
audience underneath the London Bridge (as XTC had done in their video to
"Towers of London"): in such a scenario, the Dukes would simply be in a
foreign land (to use, paradoxically, one of Partridge's favorite metaphors
for alienation--which itself speaks volumes about the band's relationship
to cosmopolitan existence).

     Now, as XTC fans (sceptically?) await songs by Partridge about his
divorce, and possibly others about 'contemporary' politics, isn't it time
that someone stood up and cancelled once and for all the Dukes passports
to the world as "we" live it?  If such administrative action would seem
like excessive intervention, perhaps some of the Chalkhills enthusiasts
could at least pool their money to buy three bicycles that would allow the
band members to attempt another bikeride to the Moon (since, after
all--the band should first be reassured--it has been many years since the
Sputnik threat has subsided).  It is time, in any case, that the question
of questions be asked: What in the World is XTC doing?

Philip Adamek


Message-Id: <v01540b00aedcf839dbd9@[]>
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 1996 19:49:54 -0600
From: (Debutante)
Subject: You cheer me up

Hi everybody!
Well, I'm at home sick, missing free food at an office party, but at least
I have a Chalkhills to cheer me up.  Now if only it came with a cough

>From: DeWitt Henderson <>

>Preachy songs - I really don't understand what seems to be a lot of
>people's complaints against them.  Isn't one of the attractions of XTC

You know, I have to side with DeWitt here.  I have never felt like I was
being preached at by *any* XTC song, and a lot of their more overtly
political ones are among my favorites (Scarecrow People comes immediately
to mind).  And maybe this does reflect to a large degree my own personal
political leanings, but hey, all of my opinions are mine to keep, so I
guess I just wanted to add my voice to the non-complaining crowd.  Typing
is better than coughing.

>Demographics survey - whoever brought that up - It's been done already.
>Check the back issues of Chalkhills, or maybe whoever did the survey
>can forward the results to you.

Hmm, but mightn't the demographics have changed since then?  How long ago
was the survey done?

>From: "Witter, Karl F" <>

>>if all we keep hearing on the radio are regurgitated classic
>>rock-style songs. The whole point of classic rock was attitude
>>covering up for lack of quality.
>Gotta say Yeah, and can we add "regurgitated grunge-style" to that!
>Just waiting for the next genuine thing to breakout so hundreds can

I've been pondering this since this thread appeared, and maybe the flu has
inspired me to be more philosophical, so here goes: is *any* music really
new anymore?  Now I will say right here and now that I am *not* in any
sense of the word a music theorist, and there is a considerable possibility
that I do not know what I am talking about, but upon reflection it strikes
me that a lot of "new" musical styles which have appeared in this century
were in some way derived from some other pre-existing style, usually with
new bits appended or some kind of twist(s) which then made it "new."  From
what I understand, for example, rock & roll was originally derived from
R&B, which came in part from blues, whcih came from....and on and on.
Along the way different artists combined different styles or came up with
their own and the style was born.  Sort of.  Again, I could be wrong, and I
would appreciate any corrections, but gently, please, as I mean no harm.
My main point, which I seem rather slow in getting at, is to ponder what we
mean when we talk of "new" music. Are we really looking for a different
interpretation of an existing form (as I find XTC to be a differing and
altogether pleasing variation on pop music), or do we want something really
and truly "new?" And is that possible?

Just some light thoughts for your thinking pleasure.

I may have had too much Nyquil.
Or not enough.  ;)

>We have Kris, the NPR mogul ;-) in west Texas is fighting the noble
>fight, and there's someone from Auntie Beeb here too (who, I forget)

Why thank you very much, do I get a raise with that title?  Actually, I do
what I do because I am very emotionally involved in it, mainly because you
have to, since there's not really any $$ in public broadcasting.
Incidentally, this is also why I listen to XTC (how's that for a tie-in?).

Since I seem to be writing a novel already, let me just add that:
*Ira Lieman is a SUPER cool guy!!!!!*

Not only did he ship me several boxes of my favorite junk food in the
world, but he dubbed me 3 XTC videos!!!!!!

Ira, you are toooooooooo cool!!!!!

Just thought all of you should know that!

Well, I'm off to see the wizard,

"She came from Planet Claire,
I know she came from there..."


Date: Tue, 17 Dec 1996 22:47:56 -0500 (EST)
Message-Id: <>
From: Joshua Hall-Bachner <>
Subject: A complicomplicomplicatedcomplicated...

>I'm going to put on "Get Happy" w/my headphones!!!

The first time I read that, I thought it said "I'm gonna get happy with my
headphones." Whooeee, I need some bedrest.

>Preachy songs - I really don't understand what seems to be a lot of
>people's complaints against them.  Isn't one of the attractions of XTC
>the fact that most of their lyrics are not endless noodling on love,
>relationships, etc., which some artists/bands can't seem to do anything

That's not the point, though. I appreciate it when artists have enough
talent (or whatever) to do that (although, you must admit that XTC have more
than their fair share of relationship songs...) The issue is "issue" songs
which make their point in a clever, interesting, witty, or just plain
well-written way (Real By Reel, Paper and Iron, Nihilon, Ball And Chain,
Complicated Game, etc...) vs. ones that just preach at you, in an
uninteresting and heavy-handed way (IMHO, Monkeys, President, Guns, etc.)
The difference is in how the song is written and performed. The annoyance is
the same as you feel when someone preaches to you in real life -- make it
interesting or I don't like it, no matter how much I may agree with you.

>The emphasis on new artists seems to be like
>strip-mining, making that one big commercial kill (Spin Doctors, Candlebox,
>Hootie, Alanis, etc) and established artists' latest efforts aren't burning
>things up (Tom Petty, Rod Stewart).

Exactly. Artists like R.E.M. have done quite poorly this year with new
albums (compared to their previous albums, at least...:) because at the
moment long-standing artists are out of fashion. Don't worry,'ll
swing back the other way before you know it.

>I've come to the conclusion that I'm only going to bring two XTC CD's

If you have it, I'd suggest Fossil Fuel -- some of XTC's greatest stuff,
spanning their career, on two CDs. Otherwise, *I* would probably go for
Nonsvch and The Big Express, but that's just me... :)

>I'm sorry, I seem to be JHB/AMANDA-ing lately

So it's official, then...AMANDA is a verb as well. Hmmm. :)

>The connection's tenuous at best.  We're merely talking periods in
>the bands' respective histories here, right?

Yes, but in that sense the correlation is almost identical, and the
similarity between the ending tracks (not in any sort of stylistic way, but
just in the kind of innovation they represented) is too great to ignore.

>(who, unlike Mr. Hall-Bachner, is done with school!!!)


/---------------------------Joshua Hall-Bachner---------------------------\
|   |
|"We all have our idiosyncracies -- maybe thinning hair, or gum disease." |
\---- Kowanko, "Will You Come To?" ------ Thank You, And Goodnight. ------/


Message-ID: <>
Date: Wed, 18 Dec 1996 10:48:31 -0800
From: Stormy Monday <>
Subject: Thanks For Beatles


I've been in Dallas TX (actually Irving) for the last two weeks on
business, and there is a radio station (104.9) that plays nothing but
Beatles, solo Beatles and remakes of Beatle songs, with no DJ's or

Tonight, I ate in a Mexican restaraunt called Tia's, and they played
McCartney's "Wonderful Christmastime", and I thought, "Wouldn't it be
cool if they played 'Thanks For Christmas' ", and they did!  My opinion
of Dallas is improving ...

Stormy Monday


Message-Id: <v01540b07aedd29ec4092@[]>
Date: Wed, 18 Dec 1996 16:56:42 +1200
From: (James Dignan)
Subject: last words

Also sprach JHB:
>Also think Black Sea = Revolver. Not only do both mark the "transition"
>period in the band's history, the beginning of their real "emergence," but
>they even end the same way -- Travels in Nihilon / Tomorrow Never Knows. I
>guess that would make Drums And Wires Rubber Soul, Nonsvch Abbey Road
>(think BaB!) and ES Sgt. Pepper (or, depending on the fan, The White
>Album) Hmmm....

nah! Mummer would be the White Album!

Oh, and the reason I included boots in that "5 that are the most in the
collection" survey is quite simple... say you're a big fan of Sugar - that
they are your no. 1 all time group. You have all of their albums. That's
what? 3 albums? If you include boots then you might get a fairer

James (see you in the new year!)


Message-Id: <>
Date: Wed, 18 Dec 1996 07:16:02 -0800
From: Ed and Pam <>
Subject: XTC thoughts

XTC songs to play loud:
- Respectable Street
- Red
- No Thugs In Our House
- Earn Enough For Us
- I Set Myself on Fire (live version)

First XTC song I heard  : Making Plans For Nigel

First XTC album I bought: Drums And Wires

Current XTC song I'm trying to learn on guitar: Living Through Another

Question I Would Ask Andy (if I could only ask one): just what IS that
first chord you play on Life Begins At The Hop, and which fret position?



Message-Id: <v01510105aeddcfc02390@[]>
Date: Wed, 18 Dec 1996 06:51:57 -1000
From: (Jim Smart)
Subject: Re: Chalkhills FAQs

As a relatively new listy, I'd like to thank you for the FAQs. I learned a
lot. What a great idea.

A couple of comments. I'd been reading the name Swindon in Chalkhills, but
had no idea which part of the UK it might be in. The explanation of the
white horse brought it all together for me, as I was in that part of
southern England this past March. Drove by the white horse on me way to
Stonehenge from Bath (Yeah, I know. Very touristy.) Maybe I drove through
Swindon. Maybe I drove right past Andy Partridge without even realizing it.

And, regarding:

"1000 Umbrellas"
     "Sunny Jim" was a cartoon character used to advertize a breakfast
     cereal, called "Force", many years ago. (Something like "Over the
     roofs jumps Sunny Jim, FORCE is the food that nourishes him" --
     hence Andy Partridge's line "Sunny Jim couldn't jump it".)

     Nowadays Sunny Jim is used as a slightly patronizing term for a
     young man (e.g., "Don't get lippy with me Sunny Jim"), and is
     usually followed by a punch in the face.

Any Chalkhillians fellow fans of Kirsty MacColl? I've noticed that many of
you are fond of wordplay, a form with which she often dabbles. She does a
song called Don't Come the Cowboy With Me Sonny Jim, or something like
that. She sings is as if she might punch "Jim" in the face at the end.

I was glad of the enlightenment.

Sonny Jim
Sunny Honolulu
.                                                          .
. "What kind of sycophant are you?"                        .
.    asks Cruella De Vil, in 101 Dalmations.                       .
. "Uh...uh...what kind of sycophant do you want me to be?" .
.      replies her servant fearfully.                      .


Date: Wed, 18 Dec 1996 17:57:40 GMT
Message-Id: <v01510100aedd689702ac@[]>
From: (Mark Fisher)
Subject: I know this is even more pathetic, but...

TV programme last night about people spending too much money in a posh
London shop. Footage in the kitchens. Chef is preparing sea food. "Like XTC
would say," he says, "Pulling Mussels from a Shell."

So there's a new twist on the recent thread about Squeeze.

- Mark


Message-Id: <>
From: "Mark Strijbos" <>
Date: Wed, 18 Dec 1996 23:47:42 +0000
Subject: Radios In Motion

Hi Chalks!

Yesterday i was enjoying a typical boring day at the office when
suddenly I heard that familiar trumpet intro from Thanks For Xmas
coming from the radio.
So I immediately rushed over, pumped up the volume and enjoyed that
beautiful little gem, with it's jingly-jangly guitars, Barocking trumpet,
Wall Of Sound (tm) production and everything else...
It was played on national Dutch radio so this also means some hard-earned
cash for our Heroes...

And guess what? My co-workers liked it too!


Mark Strijbos at The Little Lighthouse

===> Mark's Random XTC Quote <==
Looks as if you're dropping mirrors by the gross


From: ERIC DAY <>
Subject: A Western Front
Date: Wed, 18 Dec 96 18:30:00 PST
Message-ID: <>

>that band that used to do the "respectable street" cover -- i think they
>were called "a western front."
>anybody remember them??  played locally around san jose, the bay area...

They were indeed called A Western Front.  I didn't know they did a cover
of "Respectable Street", but my wife used to be good friends with the
lead singer/songwriter.  I have some old self-made tapes the guy put out
that contain some very smart XTC-influenced pop.  Unfortunately, when I
saw them earlier this year at San Jose State University, they just seemed
to have degenerated into some type of grungy wall-of-sound thing.

 - Eric


Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 19 Dec 1996 08:58:01 -0600
From: "Adam J. Ostermann" <>
Subject: More Fun with messages...the REAL one!

Random comments that just hit me and didn't leave a scratch:

>"I love that ELO" - Hah!  I didn't know about that song.  Reminds me of
>Nick Lowe's "Roller Show" and his other one about Rick Astley ('Rick Astley'
>wrote a big hit song and it was ghastly' or something like that).

All you UK indie fans will remember another caustic Astley-inspired
ditty by the Wonder Stuff called "Astley in the Noose" ("and if you
must sing, sing an oldie and sing it quickly") he he he....  Oops,
that's Ashley, as in Jon, who was never that big in the US
anyway. Sorry....

>M. Penn's "March" - absolutely.  The second one's good too, but
>where the hell is a new one?!?!  It's supposedly coming, I think...

Er, RCA dropped him, and I think Geffen may have picked him up - his
old producer Tony Berg works A&R there.

>>Andy Partridge liked Ash.
>I heard one of their CDs at Tower and just thought, "crap; typical
>distorted power pop."  Am I wrong?

Got that disc yesterday ($5.99 on cutout at Best Buy, yay.)
"Goldfinger" is one of the singles of the year, but otherwise I'd have
to side with you there.

Which brings me to my XTC comment (and yes, I have one!)

Does Mr. Partridge by someone saying he likes Ash mean that he finally
listens to music put out nthis half-millenium? People who have seen
120 Minutes remember Mr. Partridge saying he doesn't listen to modern
music, only what he called "Early Music." It was a really interesting
answer, and sometimes I wondered if he just said that to get out of
naming current bands he likes. But he reiterated it in the "Big
Takeover" interview, so it must have had some merit.

What, then, do you think Colin and Dave listen to? Anyone know fer sure?

Oh, my top whatever of 96? If you're really interested, e-mail me.

Adam O.
currently listening to: Straitjacket Fits, ^Melt^ ($1.99 at Best Buy,
and I got ^Blow^ for the same price! Yeah!)


Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 19 Dec 1996 08:11:48 -0500
From: Tim Kendrick <>
Subject: 12 Days of XTC

   The 12 Days of XTC
   (sung to the tune "The 12 Days of Christmas)

 On the first day of XTC, my true love gave to me -
 An-dy Partridge in a pear tree.
 On the second day of XTC, my true love gave to me -
 Two demo tapes, An-dy Partridge in a pear tree.
 On the third day of XTC, my true love gave to me -
 three Affaire Louis Trio, two demo tapes, An-dy Partridge
 in a pear tree ........
                (and so on, until the final verse ...)

 On the twelve day of XTC, my true love gave to me -
 Twelve seagulls screaming,
 Eleven new label offerings,
 Ten Buzzcities talking,
 Nine moles ministrying
 Eight JBH postings,
 Seven pulsing-pulsings,
 Six new album delayings,
 FIVE MobileFidelity GOLD DI-I-I-I-ISCS !
 Four performing birds
 Three Affaire Loius Trio
 Two demo tapes

          Merry Christmas Everyone !

 I'll be away from email for the next week or so, but I'll be
 back with you all in the new year !

               Tim K.


End of Chalkhills Digest #3-61

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