Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #3-77

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 3, Number 77

                Saturday, 1 February 1997

Today's Topics:

                  a newell clarification
              Dukes - Stratosphear and Lemon
            Petulance and Contagious Melodies
                All Apologies (in advance)
                        Guitar Tab
                   Calls And Responses
                     A Topical Entry
                 Lurkers of the world...
                     Dukes and God...
               sorry to disturb you but....
              And some more repsponses.....
                Just a bit about Dear God.
          Silly me, I forgot to ask my question!
                   Pop song '83 and '86
               That share-music thing again
                   a concerned response
                    I'm So Embarassed
         Callow Youth and the Missed Opportunity
                 A River Runs Through It


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Message-Id: <>
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 15:29:18 -0500
From: David Pardue <>
Subject: a newell clarification

I really like the Martin Newell/NewImprovedAndy Partridge "Greatest Living
Englishman" album, but have always had a question about it.  At the end of
the song "The Jangling Man" someone is heard saying things like "We were
number one in the album charts in the States for most of '68" and "It was
like a hamster wheel -- the pressure got to much for Dave, and Steve died"
etc.  Who is this?  Is this Martin Newell?  Nigel Tufnall?  Is this made up
or what is it referring to?




Message-ID: <>
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 22:13:55 -0600
From: John Mietus <>
Organization: Uncle Twitchy Enterprises
Subject: Dukes - Stratosphear and Lemon


This is another long one, and I apologize beforehand...

I have to retract a portion of my previous analysis of the Dukes
inspiration sources, as Dave Gershman <> pointed out
and I should have remembered that "You're My Drug" sounds much more like
"So You Wanna Be A Rock And Roll Star" than "Eight Miles High," which I
knew and I spaced and God bless.  Thanks, Dave, take a bow.

Thanks to all who pointed out "My Love Explodes" is reminiscent of "Over
Under Sideways Down" by the Yardbirds.  Though I am familiar with the
tune, I *regretfully* do not own any Yardbirds and therefore they're not
a band that springs fresh to mind. wrote:

> "in The Year 2525" was by Zager & Evans.  Did you really need to know that?

No, I didn't (intense sarcasm directed at myself).  It was on the tip of
my tongue, and got swallowed before I could show it to everyone (as
pleasant as that metaphor is).  Thanks, though.

> "Vanishing Girl" - The Hollies all over, right down to that bands three
> trademarks - piercing harmony vocals, jangly trebly Rickenbacker guitar,
> walloping sloppy (but exciting) drum fills

Well, yes and no.  Again, all these are trademark Beatle sounds from the
same era (which, of course, is why Lennon *hated* the Hollies more than
he hated the Stones music from the same period), but though there are
"piercing harmony vocals" in "Vanishing Girl," to me they sound more
Beatlesque than the Hollies - after all, the Hollies were dependant on
heavy three- and four-part harmonies, which are not really that strong
in "Vanishing Girl."  And don't you just love that jangly, trebly
Rickenbacher sound? I do.

> "Jackie" - very Syd Barrett (again) to my ears

Yeah, very Syd.  More his solo stuff, like "Octopus" rather than
anything off of _Piper_.  Which reminds me, does anyone else think that
some collaboration with Robyn Hitchcock and XTC would just absolutely
kick?  To hear Robyn and Andy collaborate, well, it'd be Lennon and
McCartney and Syd Barrett all in one, now, wouldn't it?  Just a thought.

I truly sympathize with, to wit:

> Finally , am I the only one here whos never heard a single second of the
> Dukes of Stratosphere ? I have tried to get a copy of "...Chocolate
> Fireball " but as the shop ordered it for me, Virgin deleted it and
> there was not a single copy to be found. A friend in the U.S. has tried
> to find it and again no luck. I even advertised in Loot but no response.
> Anybody have any suggestions ? I'd be eternally grateful for any help.
> Til next time , Pete.

As far as I know, it's still available in the States, though I haven't
tried getting it since I bought it back in '90.  A friend of mine said
he was able to get it a couple of years ago.

Has anyone heard any of the Lemon Dukes demos?  I have "Snowing Angels"
and "Candymine" on a tape a friend made for me, but I have no idea where
he got them.  A pity they never got around to doing that one.

Before I sign off, I just want to say that before you all think I'm
totally Dukes happy, I would have to say my favorite XTC album is
_English Settlement_, although _Big Express_ and _Oranges and Lemons_
are close seconds.  Didn't someone say a while back they wish XTC would
do a Glam pastiche?  I think _Big Express_ has moments that harken back
to mid-70s Queen and Bowie...

After opening up a can of worms,



Date: 30 JAN 97 15:15:58 DST
Subject: Petulance and Contagious Melodies
Message-ID: <>

Todd Bernhardt asserts in 'Hills # 76, that some long-time subscribers had
left the list "petulantly".  Perhaps you're right, Todd, but allow me to point
out:  I announced that I no longer wanted to contribute (even though here I am
doing just that) in a VERY conciliatory and polite tone.  Petulance is not an
adjective you can ascribe to my "departure".  Also, as you can see, I haven't

Moreover, apart from my coterie of Chalk-friends (they know who they are), I
doubt if anyone else gives a rat's arse whether I post to this list or not.

It's ad that Simon Knight chose to leave. He was a regular contributor with an
enthusiasm about XtC and music in general that is staggering.  I hope Simon
can find happiness elsewhere and that we may see his opinions grace these
pages again sometime, cos he often had something worthwhile to contribute.
And, I gather,  Daniel Prendiville has some compelling reasons too, to no
longer dwell here.

But come on, to almost *flame* people for leaving the list is beyond the
pale.  Stop it!  It hurts!  Let people do what they want!

I'll be back when I've got something to say.  You're not rid of this little
black duck yet!   (But is it any wonder people get the shits sometimes with
this list???)



Message-Id: <v01550101af15d67bcbe1@[]>
Date: Wed, 29 Jan 1997 23:20:03 -0600
From: (jason garcia)
Subject: All Apologies (in advance)

Oh man, the XTC content is really wanting this time...

>I have never heard this original uncut version and I would gladly
>give my left arm in exchange for a listen :)

Too bad I can't help you, 'cause I'm sure I could make quite a
profit from a certain member of Def Leppard...

>I've had 3 kids since the last XTC album.


> John was stating an indisputable fact:  The Beatles WERE
>more popular than Jesus Christ.

"Christianity will go.  It will vanish and shrink.  We're more
popular than Jesus now... Jesus was all right, but his disciples
were thick and ordinary.  It's them twisting it that ruins it
for me."

If memory serves, the above is the exact quote as it appeared
in Maureen Cleave's interview in Britian.  I don't want to get
totally off-topic with this (even though I already am), but
from what I remember, John was saying that rock and roll, or
the culture of rock and roll, was fast usurping the role of
Christianity in the day's youth.  That young people thought
rock groups were basically their gods, in a way, which was a
strange thought at that time.  It was a very valid point that
deserved attention, but unfortunately not the attention that
it got in America.  No offense to anyone, but in my opinion it
just proves the frightening extremes to which religious groups
can go when their ideas are in any way questioned, especially
by someone like John Lennon, whose opinion should have in no
way really mattered to them. They were just looking for an
excuse to burn their kids' Beatles records.  It seems like
people then really were afraid of rock and roll.  Now what do
we have?  ZZ Top and beer commericals.  Elvis, we're proud of ya

Man, I am RAMBLING!!

AMANDA spewed:
>Dave Gregory and all the
>other diabetics out there would not be alive today if it hadn't been for
>animal experimentation. And if Dave wasn't alive, where would XTC be right

Who cares?  I myself wouldn't be alive to appreciate their next album!!!!

>If we aren't supposed to eat animals, how come they're made out of meat?

I laughed out loud; then I realized you might not be joking.

>Well, I have now listened to the Cd by the Suarplastic a few times, and,
>except for one annoying song about teeth, it is really good.

Oh, but the really cool bit is where the twelve-string comes in @
the end.

Re: Davy Jones' musical ability (or lack thereof):
> (though Davey *did* learn to play a mean tambourine

But he plays GUITAR now!!  If you want to see one of the coolest
things I have ever seen on the Net, go to this site:

Okay, I'm now going to go watch the Man That Fell To Earth with
David Bowie.

Jason Garcia


Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 09:09:48 +0100
Subject: Guitar Tab


Anyone know any good sites to get some Xtc guitar Tab?



p.s. Hi to Simon


Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 10:50:56 GMT
Message-Id: <>
From: Simon Sleightholm <>
Subject: Calls And Responses

Amanda wrote :-

>Where else can you find a 19-year old...well, in a week,
>actually....who listens to British pop (XTC) 60's music (Monkees) death
>metal (Danzig), new age (Hearts of Space), and rap (The occasional 2 Live
>Crew, believe it or not.)???)

I should imagine there'll be one or two on any urban street in the UK. Sorry
and that.

From: (The Estimable) Natalie Jane Jacobs <>

>In response to someone who asked, rhetorically, how many of us actually
>listen to Explode Together regularly - I do.  In fact, I listen to it more
>often than I listen to the Dukes of Stratosphear.  "It's the rotary!"

Wonderful isn't it? It's a great album to drive to as well. I listen to it a
lot, too. In the dark, with a beer. But not when driving, obviously. It
seeps atmosphere. The Martian kind. It's like the "feely" boxes we used to
make in school when I was but a tot. You get a cardboard box, glue household
items to the inside and cut a hole in it. People put their hands in and have
to identify the objects by touch alone. (A curious and potentialy
distressing experience, considering the kind of household items that
fascinate small children). Slipping "Explode Together" into rotation amongst
the regular albums makes for a rare treat not offered to many music fans
(unless you count the live reworkings perpetrated by the likes of Dylan,
Costello and Morrison). You get to hear familiar sounds being bent into a
new shape, I find it startling and exceptional.

I'm not sure how well it stands up as a work in it's own right though, away
from the regular XTC catalogue (and my immersion in the regular stuff
precludes me from ever knowing). I suspect the real joy is to be found in
hearing familar songs driven straight off the road. One or two tracks do
career straight into trees, but the majority leap the ruts and hit new

From: (T8903545)

>BTW, Mark Owen is to hit the road soon; does
>anyone know, if Dave is to play in his live outfit?

He was on the UK lottery show last week with a band - I think he was singing
live, but I don't think the band were playing live - anyway, Dave did not
number in the line-up. I have to say, even though his voice is a little
weak, the single "Clemetine" is far better than I ever expected it to be.

From: Stormy Monday <>

>When you are not religious, you often
>don't realize that your comments may be construed as offensive or

Excellent point, Stormy. And it's also proper to point out to those who do
have a faith of any kind, that we who do not believe can get pretty damn
offended by YOU and what YOU say at times. It's not all one way.

From: "Todd Bernhardt" <>

>Maybe his "attitude problem" stemmed from the fact that he was the only one
>who knew anything about music and could actually play his instrument (though
>Davey *did* learn to play a mean tambourine  :^p  )

Yay Todd. I never liked the Monkees TV show much, but its saving grace was
the deadpan Nesmith ("acting" I think, not "attitude") - not hammily mugging
up to the camera like the others. Musically, of course, he left the others
playing with their bricks in the sand pit. The music the "Monkees" (which
ever session musicians were passing when the new song arrived) made was
great and there are some clasic pop songs ascribed to them, but I think the
only member to emerge with any credibily was the genuinely talented Nesmith.

>Just as my wife Chrissie Hynde is very understanding about my afPhair with
>Liz...  :^)

Eek! You're messing about with *MY* Liz?!!

Straight Outta Trumpton,

No Thugs In Our House, only XTC.


Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 07:15:37 -0500 (EST)
Message-ID: <>
Subject: A Topical Entry

Hey all,

I think Chalkhills is a FANtastic group.  Even when it goes off-topic!
 Coming to know (through their digressions) the variety of forms of the XTC
fan is interesting.  Except when discussion wanders off to politics (which
has always bored me), I read each issue through and through.

So let me now go off-topic to say that "Sunburnt", by Martin Phillipps and
the Chills, with Dave Gregory playing bass, is well worth the praise it's
been getting in our circle.  Very melodic and individual and pastoral.  Every
album Dave plays on lately has been sublime!  What a guy....



Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 20:16:33 +0800 (CST)
Subject: Lurkers of the world...
Message-ID: <Pine.SOL.3.91.970130194249.12053A-100000@ms10>

Dear Chalks:

Making a "Red Wigglers" posting a few issues back has emboldened me to
pursue an issue that's been bothering me for as long as I've received the
newsletter.  It's simply this:

	I'm pre-O & L but post-Go 2.  And I mean it sincerely, without meaning
to offend.  To take matters further, I have trouble with Express and
Mummer.  For me D & W, Black Sea, and Skylarking are gospel, and if the
boys hadn't made anything else they'd still be pop monoliths in my starry
eyes.  (Wait a minute.  Can't forget the Dukes, now, can I?  But then
again, they're a different band...  ;-)

	Why am I afflicted thusly, you may ask?  Well, I'll never forget
seeing the "Mayor of Simpleton" video, which was the first time I heard
anything off of the new album that I'd been waiting for since SKYLARKING,
and wondering what the aitch Andy was doing prancing around with that
girl in the black leather.  It spoiled everything for me, and with
resignation I assigned XTC to the has-been dustbin of my pop music
lexicon.  Hearing "Pink Thing" made it worse, and then a few years later
I chanced upon hearing "Bungalow" at a party.  That did me in
completely.  I mean, I don't profess to "Marxisizing" everything I see and
hear, but a guy rhapsodizing over a cottage?  Yoikes!

	Seguing my way a few steps over past the high horse to the CD
rack, the thought occured to me that I might share my favourite CD's of 1996.

	There's just one.  Officially, I mean.


	I love these guys, in spite how much a friend says I shouldn't,
as they've been over-deified by the critical thinkers at SPIN magazine.
I don't know what they say on those pages, but for my never-sufficient
portion of money the selection "Don't Stop Now" is a defining moment in
rock guitar music.

	Unofficially, my no. 2 choice would have to be the first disk
that Le Mystere des Voix Bulgares sang on, but that was released ten
years ago.

	I'm a slow learner.  Tabernac!

	But the question is, can I learn to like the bookends of the XTC
discography?  Or am I lost?  One thing I'm sure I am, if I'm reading the
Chalkhills thing correctly, is that I'm a "tweener".  At thirty years of
age, I'm way too ancient for the kids here with university e-mail
accounts, but at the same time when D & W broke I was only thirteen and
had only just graduated from a foolish fixation on Toto (the shame of
it!) to a slightly more respectable teenage idolatry of Max Webster.  I
was hardly prepared to accept Nigel into my home save for on the more
benign air waves received by my tiny AM radio.  It wasn't until my first
year of university, in 1985, that I was ready to leave The Jam behind and
dive headlong into D & W and Black Sea.

	This is a confession.  Be gentle.  Best ignore me, even.



Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 07:29:06 -0600
From: Thomas Durkin <>
Organization: Cat Press
Subject: Dukes and God...

Thought I'd poke my head up just for a second...

> Finally , am I the only one here whos never heard a single second of the
> Dukes of Stratosphere ? I have tried to get a copy of "...Chocolate
> Fireball " but as the shop ordered it for me, Virgin deleted it and
> there was not a single copy to be found. A friend in the U.S. has tried
> to find it and again no luck. I even advertised in Loot but no response.
> Anybody have any suggestions ? I'd be eternally grateful for any help.

	Hmmm, I got mine not too long ago (6 months ago) here in the US,
still in print from Geffen Rec's.  Try CDNow or some other webservice...

>BTW, I've been wondering. Are most Chalkhillers
> non religious? I guess I sort of assumed that, since I feel this song, one
> of the best and biggest hits, is so anti-God/religion (That, and the way
> Peter P. showed the Vatican what gold's for)

	Hmmmm, just re-listened to "Dear God" (on gold CD, no less), and have
to say he makes a very good defense of his (non-)beliefs, even a good
case for it.  I dunno...I somehow am that dichotomous being, the XTC fan
who still has a strong faith in God (although it isn't a "religious"
faith, but a deeply spiritual one).  The song in no way offends me, just
reminds me that despite all the points Andy raises, I still believe in
God as an ultimately good God.  As far as the Vatican bit, that's just a
slam against Catholicism, and its less-than-perfect historical
reputation.  Nuff said; any further discussion would belong in
alt.godspeak, or somesuch other forum, no?



From: McGREGOC <>
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 14:25:13 GMT
Subject: sorry to disturb you but....
Message-ID: <>


>From Stormy Monday:
>John was stating an indisputible fact...

Yes, I realize this but my point was to the fact that he made this
statement and it was misread by a large portion of the public....
just like Dear God was.  Thanks for helping me to clear up my

I always like to hear the opinion of others and their interps of
songs.  Thats interesting that you look at it as an indictment of
humanity, Mr. Stormy Monday.
 My view like I had stated somewhat, is
this disbeilef of the horrible things going on in the world and the
frustration that nothing can be done, we sit by as it happens.  And IF
there was a God how could he let this happen?  Thats how I personally
see the song.  I have no idea(having not met the man personally) what
Mr. P. really believes on the whole thing.  Meaning if he believes in
a god or a higher spirit, but it is interesting the perspective that
he used for that song.

Dear God always leaves me emotionally drained when I listen to it.  I
really "feel" the anguish that I interperate the song to be about.
Now, my question to you folks, if this doesn't delve to deep into
your souls, what songs affect you emotionally?  There have been times
where I have cried in frustration listening to Train Running Low on
Soul Coal.  What songs draw you in emotionally and take you for a ride?

Deep in thought,

Currently playing on the broken record in my head:
that song that goes
"Hot dog! Jumping frog! Al-BU-querque".  I have no clue what band
this is or what the title of the song is but in my head it is!


Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 08:47:09 -0600 (CST)
Subject: And some more repsponses.....
Message-id: <>

Well I guess I can't say anything more about animal rights, as JH-B JH-B'd
to me in a letter. So I'll drop that topic like the hot potato it is.

Onto the subject of videos: I had always wondered what the hell Colin was
doing while Andy was walking away from the car in LBATH. AND, did anyone
notice that Dave never had both feet on the ground at the same time during
the whole video?  He seemd to be doing aerobics or something.

Grass-Dave's only in it twice? That sucks. Although I did notice when Andy
was crawling across the grass and everyone was jumping over him, that dog
that ran by him nearly stepped on his head!

Question: Is the bird with the blond hair in LBATH (In the very funky gold
foil looking dress) the same one who was in the Nigel video?

Dear God-Conceptually, it's a stunning video. It would've been nice had they
been able to put Dave and Colin in there SOMEWHERE!

Staying on the topic of XTC-I have yet to be on any mailing list that sticks
to absolutely one topic with every letter. Like I said, it's been five
years, so we can't rehash the same things and re-ask the same
questions. (Although a question did pop into my head last night, I'm not
sure I should ask it....oh I will, but later.) Besides, with the whole six
degrees of separation thing, you can talk about Dave or Colin or Andy, then
branch off into a jillion different subjects. But I generally find that
while everything on the list isn't direct XTC material, the majority of it
is somehow connected to them. As far as those three unsubscribing? C'est la

XTC song of the day: Heatwave
non XTC song of the day: Let's Go All the Way-Sly Fox
AMANDA's movie of the day: Time Bandits
And finally, the wit and wisdom of Agony Andy......
(Two girls have written in saying they are obsessed with David Gahan and
Martin Gore of Depeche Mode)
"It seems these two are obsessed with those from Depeche Commode."


Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 12:22:17 -0500 (EST)
Message-Id: <>
Subject: Just a bit about Dear God.

I am not a religious man but do find a sense of wondrous awe when I look at
nature, or simply the workings of the human is truly an
incredible machine. Now to go from that to GOD is quite a leap. My take on
Dear God is that it is about religion, man made attempts to keep large
bunches of people somewhat civilized. I think religion served an
important social function at different times, a function that is not quite
as necessary now. I am personally happy to be an ex-catholic. No more Pope
for me thank you.
But, seen in a larger context, what about the sentiments of Seasons Cycle,
where our beloved AP expresses great wonder at hills ayonder, the baby and
his umbiLIcal etc. I have always heard that as a spiritual song, clearly
there is wonder and amazement at the beauty of life in AP....and what about
The Garden of Earthly my book those are all spiritual songs
, just not right wing evangelical realigious tirades.
I guess the point of all this is that I have never seen anything
controversial in the song. Besides, I think AP thought it a very limited
expression of his ideas about God wich I think he said would take three
albums to discuss (poor memory if the facts are hazy).
And if there really was a God, HE/HER wouldn't have made Dear Gor the most
famous XTC song, at least it gave the lads some exposure.


Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 11:07:56 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Silly me, I forgot to ask my question!
Message-id: <>

This is a very banal, asinine, general question that came to me whilst I was
watching some Weird Al videos I have on tape. The question is...if Weird Al
were to cover an XTC song, what do you think he'd do? Which XTC songs do you
think he could poke fun at?

Just a question, another in a long line of idiotic queries from the mouths of

"I'll take 'Where are they now' for $500 dollars, Alex."
"The answer is, this British pop group led by Andy Partridge had their biggest
selling US album with 'Oranges & Lemons' in 1989."

PS-My personal answer to the question, I could see him doing something with
Making Plans for Nigel. (We're only making pants for Nigel.)



Message-ID: <c=US%a=_%p=AETNA%l=AETNA/AETNA/>
From: "Witter, Karl F" <>
Subject: Pop song '83 and '86
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 13:08:00 -0500

>[] By the time the new album comes out XTC will have
>missed the whole Seattle grunge scene.

Still looking for the downside here ;-).

>[Jim Smart] Are most Chalkhillers non religious?

I'd probably call myself non-religious. However, my opinion has never been
to totally equate God (or any supreme being) with one's own spirituality,
nor either with organized religion.

Andy's songwriting reveals some tug-of-war issues, but a spiritual nature
also.  Consider "Human Alchemy", for example. "Do your slave trading now,"
he says "but in the long run you have no clue as to what it'll cost you."
That doesn't mean to roll over and be a kigmy, but there is more to life
than getting that crowd-cheering violent payback like at the end of an
action movie.

And of course, all I know is his songwriting, which I won't make into his
strict biography. One can't write a 4 minute pop song encompassing that--or
even God & humanity, someone once said.

>[Mark Strijbos] The original version of Travels In Nihilon had a very long
>instrumental/drum intro lasting almost 2 1/2 minutes.

I'd gladly give your left arm too. But now it's gone (the 2-1/2m intro to
TiN, not your left arm), and it could have been put on the CD.

Now they talk about absorption (sic) in cosmopolitan proportions,

PS Amanda: Regardless of tone, some might take exception to you getting your
opinion out, then quelling debate by saying you weren't trying to start
something. This isn't the venue for responding to your chosen subject, IMO.


Message-Id: <>
From: Trent Turner <>
Subject: That share-music thing again
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 11:22:49 -0700

From:	"Todd Bernhardt" <>
Subject:	A response or five

Unfortunately, I think you're right. The only thing working in the artists'
favor will be that people will still need a portable medium for listening to
music, and the CD does a pretty good job of that. Now, if we all end up with
recordable CDS, then they're in trouble...
Trent responds:
We probably will all have recordable CD's within the next 3-4 years.  Unlike
DAT, the music industry (which is a hammer to keep you pegs in your holes)
will be unable to stop this technology.  Right now you can grab one for
US$500.  Next year it will be US$250, then they will become ubiquitous!


While I appreciate that many of the fans wish to simply recompense the boys
for the material, it's not really practical / possible.  If Andy wants this,
he can always release the tapes through Chalkhills or The Little Express,
much like the previous tapes.
Trent responds,
I fundamentally disagree.  It is practical and possible to distribute music
digitally, network or CD, and provide a return mechanism for funding.  As
the technologies behind computers and sound reproduction (and other
technologies) continue to converge, it will become more practical and

As Nihilon points out, it has already been done with tapes released through
Chalkhills or The Little Express.  That practice just needs to be updated,
ala shareware, and ensure that any copies include a description of how to
recompense the artist for the copy one possesses.

Check out the Feb97 issue of Wired magazine for a brief discussion of this.
We can either help the band, or continue to enjoy the fruits of their
labor/love/literacy/etc. without them knowing how much we care!

Trent Turner
800-427-0783  voice, fax, page

Is this a great time, or what? ;-)

I'm a (40) year old puppy doing what I'm told,
And I'm told there's no more coal for the older engines!


Message-ID: <c=US%a=_%p=KPS_Group._Inc.%l=KPSINF-NT040-970130183800Z-333@kpsinf-nt040.KPSGROUP.COM>
From: "Purnell, Vernon" <>
Subject: a concerned response
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 12:38:00 -0600

I'm fairly new to this list, and I was completely taken aback by Amanda
Owens' offensive attack on the deeply-felt personal beliefs of others.
I certainly hope such intolerant attitudes are not prevalent on this
list; ignorance and intolerance are not appealing characteristics of any
discussion group.  XTC has impressed me over the years with the ethics
they've displayed and relayed through their music (not a specific value
system, mind you, but certainly an open-minded attitude); this list
should follow their example and do the same.  They, and we, deserve it.

Sincerely (and concerned),


Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Jan 1997 18:37:51 -0800
From: Stormy Monday <>
Subject: I'm So Embarassed


In Chalkhills 3-76, I mis-quoted a Kevin Gilbert song.

>"Zoraster and Valhalla, and Moses hang around"

should have read "Zoraster and B'h'aula ..."

I believe that "Valhalla" is from Viking Mythology and it refers to
Viking heaven.

"B'h'aula" was a prophet that showed up about 150 years ago.

Anyway, I think that "Joytown" is a really great song, and I hope that
in death, Kevin is dwelling there.

On the "Dukes" thread, I don't beleive that each song is meant to be a
direct paraody of one particular song.  Sure, I hear "Only a Northern
Song" in "What In The World" and "I'm Only Sleeping" in "Shiny Cage",
but as I've already stated in a earlier C-hills, I think that "My Love
Explodes" sounds like an early "Who" song, but not any one in

"I'm sick of hearing about sadness
I'm sick of violent crime
I'm sick of angry militant lesbian feminists
I'm sick of imperfect rhyme"

>From "When You Give Your Love To Me", by Bill Botrell and Kevin Gilbert.



Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 31 Jan 1997 00:48:32 +0000
From: (
Subject: Callow Youth and the Missed Opportunity

Dear Chalks,
In 'Digest' #3-76 , I was be-moaning the fact that I had never witnessed
the great XTC 'live' experience. That isn't to say, however, that I
haven't had THE chance.........
Back in the days of the English punk rock explosion, I was working for
British Gas ( a sister company to British Steel , as in " ...he has
his future in-a British Steel ...." ) and one of my colleagues was a guy
called Keith. ( Stay with me, it'll all make sense in the end ! ).
One morning in 1977 , Keith asks me if I fancy going to see his cousin's
band play ( in London ). They were a totally unknown act even for me ,
and I had a very good knowledge of the music scene . I asked what they
were like and Keith made some vague reference to "punky" and I said
"thanks, but no thanks". You see, I was slightly too old - by a couple
of years - to fully appreciate punk rock. Energy , yes. Passion, yes.
Tunes ? No chance ! And the name of this band was...? I will insult your
intelligence now because , yes indeed, it was the fledgling XTC whose
line - up included  Farfisa basher extraordinaire and cousin-of-Keith ,
Barry Andrews !! So , in a nutshell , I turned down a spot on the guest
list , a backstage pass and an almighty booze-up with my ( later-to-be )
fave band . Not to mention the once in a lifetime opportunity to see the
first blossoming of one of the great British bands of all time. Regrets
? I have a few......!
To tell the truth, I was very slow picking up on XTC . Yes , I really
liked ' Towers of London ' , ' Sgt. Rock ' , ' Nigel ' et al , but what
finally got me to buy an XTC album was hearing 'Senses Working Overtime'
for the first time . What a song ! So ' English Settlement ' did it for
me in a big way . It is still my 3rd placed XTC album . #2 is 'Oranges
and Lemons' and at #1 its.....'Nonsuch'. I think its incredible - no,
totally unique - that a band that has so many years and albums under its
belt can produce its best work right NOW ! Roll on the next one , Andy .
Sorry to have gone on so, yours, Pete .


Date: Fri, 31 Jan 1997 00:30:12 -0500 (EST)
Message-ID: <>
Subject: Sundry

<<I must concur here, to a certain degree. Revolver is, indeed, an excellent
album, clocking in at about 35 minutes. *But* ... I don't know how including
the contemporary single, Paperback Writer/Rain (also quite excellent) could
have done anything but improved the album. Unfortunately, I don't own Past
Masters 2, so I can't give it a try...>>

Funny this should come up.  Years ago, in the days before CDs, a friend of
mine INSISTED on two rules about the album Revolver.

1)  You needed the European version (in the UK, Parlophone) which included
"I'm Only Sleeping," "And Your Bird Can Sing," "Doctor Robert," and I believe
one other Lennon song ("She Said, She Said?") that the North American
versions clipped (Capitol made a habit of nicking Beatle songs off of each
album in order to paste together ANOTHER album at a later date).

2)  That the definitive Revolver listening experience was only complete when
you TAPED said version of the album on a cassette, and tacked on "Paperback
Writer" and "Rain" at the end of the tape.

For years, this is how I heard Revolver, and I can say that it is indeed a
great experience!  This is NOT to suggest that Revolver doesn't stand up
alone without these songs.  In fact, there is something to be said about
going out with "Tomorrow Never Knows."  That said, the addition of PBW and
Rain round out the view of The Beatles circa 1966 in a way that, for me,
suggests they were at the top of their game.  Pepper, for all of its glory,
beauty, and influence, is not as enjoyable as Revolver if for the simple fact
that the innocence was lost once Pepper was released.  The "Charm" of the
Beatles, if you will, vanished after Revolver, and some of us like that
aspect of the Fabs.

I could go on about Revolver, but isn't this the XTC list?

<< I believe because of technology, the golden age of the rich recording
artists will be over.  Revenue will come from live performances and (shudder)
product endorsements and merchandising.>>

In all fairness, this has ALWAYS been where bands make their money- more so
than record sales.  Anyone ever seen the Monkee's Kool-Aid commercials? :)

I could go on about bands and how they pay the bills, but isn't this the XTC

<<Once the downloading technology becomes available to the masses at a
reasonable price, what is to stop people from copying?... since it will be
possible to make exact copies of recorded music, it will be difficult for the
artist to control the distribution.>>

Always a sticky issue, and one the recording industry has NEVER been able to
solve.  However, have you noticed that many commercially available video
cassettes now have a code built in that thwarts copying?  DAT tapes have a
similar code.  Trust me, before the days of downloading music are here (and
they will be), they'll find a way to code the suckers too.

My guess is the purchase of music via download could happen as such:  Set up
a free access web site with front cover artwork and snipits of songs.  You
want it all?  Hypertext to another site that by hitting the link
AUTOMATICALLY charges your account.  The CODED material is then downloaded,
with extra liner notes, etc.  (BTW- Zappa proposed this idea of downloading
YEARS ago and actually had some prototypes in the works- ahead of his time,
as always!)

I could go on about music downloads in cyber space, but isn't this the XTC

<<"What In The World?" is another almost-note-for-note remake of the
Beatles' "Only A Northern Song," though the lyrical content is reminiscent of
"In The Year 2525" by...oh, hell, one of those one hit wonder bands.>>

Zager and Evans wasn't it?  John Mietus, is that YOU?  Fishy Fishy.

I could go on making internet contact with old friends, but isn't this the
XTC list?

<<Do any XTC fans on the list have a liking for Barenaked Ladies? A band that
I feel approaches songwriting with the same wit, intelligence, and musical
ability as XTC.>>

The Ladies are great.  I second that emotion.  Check out their debut, Gordon-
simply fab.  Anyone want to trade XTC demos for BNL tapes? :)

I could go on about the Barenaked Ladies, but isn't this the XTC list?

<<OK, there are times that the whole list should know about something, but
when 2/3 of the list postings in a given week have nothing to do with XTC and
everything to do with Joe Jackson, the Crash Test Dummies, and albums of
45:00 and under, something's got to give.>>

You're entitled to your opinion, and your point is well taken.  Here's my
opinion:  I have lots of interests that aren't XTC.  Do I enjoy everything
written about here?  Of course not.  I'd like a little more XTC content
myself.  That said, you all know your options- subscribe or unsubscribe.
 Simple, really.  "There are two knobs on all televisions and radios; one
that changes the channel and one that turns the F*#@in' thing off!" - George
Carlin.  "Life sucks, get a helmet" - Dennis Leary.

I could go on....




From: Bob Thomas <>
Subject: A River Runs Through It
Date: Fri, 31 Jan 97 10:30:00 CST
Message-ID: <>

From: "Todd Bernhardt" <>

>since I think this does involve everyone. I don't see much of a problem
>with "off-topic" discussions. I was rather amused that these people so
>petulantly announced their departures; it was like, "I'll show them. I'll

I am annoyed every time someone does that, as if to say "you people
aren't good enough for me!  I am going off to those of my own ilk!"  Its
priggish of them, I think.  But, I should try to be more like Todd and
find it amusing instead.  Thanks, Todd.

>I enjoy the collateral information I glean from this list. If a topic
>doesn't interest me, I use the page-down key. That's what it's for. At the
>same time, I've learned about a lot of great music (see Yazbek, above) from
>various posts, and it's been interesting to read about other people's
>points of view of . . . even if they're not always presented in the most
>articulate manner.

Hey! Just who are you referring to with that crack?  No, I,  uh, um agree
with you, and uh I like uh the uh about that uh collateral stuff you said
up there.  Just joshing.  I don't really talk like that.

Mr. Bernhardt is correct.  I recall one lister (Phil Corless?) recounting
his delight with all the new music he has absorbed as a result of his
association with Chalkhills.  I remember his post because most of the CDs
he listed also reside on my shelf.  Its been a fun ride.

I think we talk music here BECAUSE of our fondness for XTC.  Those who
would have us move the discussion to are missing the
point.  Has anyone tried to divide up their thoughts and ideas about
music into several music-related lists?  My brain will not work that way
(please refer your cracks about the workings of my brain to

I regularly receive another music digest for a pop artist who is not XTC.
 The participants  in that list are falling all over themselves to avoid
saying anything unrelated to the artist, his recording catalog, and his
apartment in Manhattan.  Boring.  When they timidly post something
without reference to the artist, they tend to limit they're entire post
to one line, and then apologize for three.  I prefer Chalkhills posts,
where folks boldly dump paragraph after paragraph, and then slip in a
"sorry about the lack of XTC," which seems to mean more "kiss my ISP."

You guys are good.  Well, on the whole, anyway.

>Yeah, it's easy to get frustrated with off-topic postings, but hey, XTC
>hasn't put out an album in quite a while,

No kidding.  There's your frustration.  I need to make my comments longer
than the snippet of post I am responding to so this sentence does that
for me.

>and it would be boring if we discussed nothing *but* the band, IMO.

OK so Todd B. anticipated my every thought.  He is right, you know.



End of Chalkhills Digest #3-77

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