Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #4-20

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 4, Number 20

                Saturday, 1 November 1997

Today's Topics:

              My Dream Is You (and IDEA too)
   Re: Senses and self deprecation and lack of XTC CDs
                   What Zoot Suits You
                which demos for new album
                 XTC under investigation
              From the John Linnell chat...
     Re: ball 'n' chain and a couple of other things
              They were a splendid live band
                 <no xtc> strong guitars
        Bridge - Middle 8 - confused - you will be
           RE: Don Quixote and Odyssey & Oracle
             Punch and Judy - point of order
                   Hello Records songs
           I'm getting stared at right now.....
                   Amazing Coincidences
              A map to better bridgebuilding
                   Guitars Guet Guirls
                   French Trombone Solo
                     a little quickie
                       New drummer
               Andy's 95 demo tape anyone?
                       Turn Around
                One hand washes the other


In case you haven't noticed, the recent free-for-all in Chalkhills
has forced me to take a slightly more active role here.

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The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

Chalkhills is digested with Digest 3.5 (John Relph <>).

And all the grownups try to drag her down.


Message-Id: <v03010d01b07eb294fbc6@[]>
Date: Thu, 30 Oct 1997 17:30:36 -0500
From: Gene Yoon <>
Subject: My Dream Is You (and IDEA too)

My monitor had a short and derived my computer (and email) completely
useless for two months.  It was blissful, but boy did I miss the big
headlines!  Along with my new A/V 15" I get news of the impending re-return
of XTC.  Nothing short of wonderful.  I know this was probably mentioned,
but can anyone tell me about the other musicians slated to be on the new
IDEA label?

Though my Mac was on vacation, the music did not stop.  I've been very
lucky.  The last three CD's I bought, all extrememly different, were each
purchased based on one song I heard on the radio (DANGEROUS!), but all
three turned out to be hands-down winners: Fleetwood Mac's "The Dance", The
Sundays "Static & Silence", and April Barrows "My Dream Is You".

The last being the most obscure, I'd describe "My Dream Is You" (1996,
Kokopelli Records) as modern-day romantic sentiments set to
30's/40's/50's-style jazz and blues, most songs originals penned by Barrows
herself, who has a milky-sweet voice and an awesome band backing her up.
If you're finding that "The Big Express" just doesn't muster the right
atmosphere for a romantic post-date interlude, bring April home.  You won't
regret it.


I'm no MD, but a few months of lithium or Zoloft is probably all it will take.


Message-Id: <>
Date: 30 Oct 97 12:35:52 -0800
From: "Ekrem Soylemez" <>
Subject: Re: Senses and self deprecation and lack of XTC CDs

In Chalkhills Digest #4-18 Pete wrote

>> The 'hey hey clouds are...' is definitely the verse bit. Duh.
>> The 'and all the world is...' is what I would call the
>> pre-chorus,
>> with the '1-2-3-4-5' bit being the actual chorus.
>> The 'And birds might fall from black skies' would be the
>> bridge.

That's how I always think of it, too, not that I am a songwriting heavy at
all. But somehow your listing of the parts and mild allusions to the content
made me rush over to the CD player for another listen. Ahhhh.

And Catherine Sweeney wrote
>> This is pretty piss poor XTC content.  I do apologise.

Not at all, Cath! It was one of the best reads I have had in a while!
Beautifully written. :-)

And on a note all my own... A friend recently lent me a bunch of CDs of
hers, which I kept for about a month. Ok, maybe two. After that, it came
time to return the favor. She, being a woman of good taste, asked for some
XTC. In a ferver of zeal I lent her the whole lot (except UD, since all
those songs are elsewhere, too). Ack! Now 3 weeks later I have not had a
listen to any XTC besides UD... Maybe I should go repurchase them all. :-)



Date: Thu, 30 Oct 1997 19:10:39 -0500 (EST)
Message-ID: <>
Subject: What Zoot Suits You

Rate the Zoot demos!

Here's how: In an E-mail message to me, list the Zoot demos (i.e., the
candidates for the next XTC album) which you have heard.  Give your favorite
demo a "10".  Give your least favorite a "0".  Then rate the in-betweeners.
It's that simple!


1) Worry not about rating a demo "0" or "10"!  We're ranking the new demos
against one another, not against Hootie or earlier XTC.

2) Worry not if you haven't heard all the new demos.  Just rate the ones you

3) Send me an E-mail within a week of this Chalkhills.

I'll post the results in a week.  Thanks!

	 [ Please send your messages DIRECTLY to <>.
	   Do not send them to Chalkhills.  Thank you.  -- Ed. ]


Date: Thu, 30 Oct 1997 20:05:34 -0500 (EST)
Message-ID: <>
Subject: which demos for new album

Long time, no post!

I've been reading everyone's opinion on which demos should make the new
album and which shouldn't.  I've been most surprised by the general
consensus that "River Of Orchids" should make the cut.  I actually like this
song, but I don't think it's strong enough to be on the album, mainly
because the backing music is so minimalistic.  Andy sets up a cool
orchestral pattern, and then repeats it over and over and over and over,
with only slight variations.
 Also, I have a problem with the lyrics.  Andy's sentiment is that the world
would be a better place if we got rid of automobiles.  While I will agree
that this could produce a lot of positive benefits, there are other factors
to take into consideration before you turn all the roads into gardens.  One
is that without roads, you can't have trucks, and without trucks, your life
and my life would be VERY different.  Andy would most likely not have the
equipment to record his wonderful demos if a truck hadn't delivered it to
his shed.  I'll leave it up to your imaginations as to what you would have
to do without in Andy's Utopia.

The second surprise to me is the mass appeal of "Church Of Women."  I can't
help but smile when I hear this song, because on one shallow level, I can
see a video for this song where Andy is on all fours with a dog collar on
being whipped by a dominatrix.  It does have a great guitar solo!

Quick observation: the guitar break in "Wonder Annual" reminds me a lot of
Adrian Belew, and the snare drum that follows sounds a bit like something
Bill Bruford would do.  In fact, the aforementioned guitar solo in "Church
Of Women" has a disregard for standard rhythm that reminds me a lot of
Robert Fripp.  I know that Adrian and Pat visited Andy when King Crimson was
touring in England.  could there be a connection?

The one song that I actually hope doesn't make the album is "I Can't Own
Her."  I'm not saying this song isn't beautiful, because it is, but Andy has
already done "Pale & Precious" and "Chalkhills And Children."  The critics
would use this as an excuse to rip the whole album, in my opinion.

The one song that seems to meet the absolutely positively standard is
"Easter Theatre."  I think everyone is in agreement on that one.

No matter which songs amke the new album (and I'm going to call it "Fred"),
I hope Andy puts out a companion CD of all the demos.  He had planned on
doing that for "Nonsuch," but as we all know, that fell through.  It would
make everyone on this list exceedingly happy, and would provide a second
source of income for the lads.

J.D. Mack


Date: Thu, 30 Oct 1997 17:51:02 +0000
Subject: XTC under investigation
Message-ID: <>
From: (Patrick M Adamek)

In Chalkhills #4-18, Rob Hill wrote:

> XTC as a live band is a great metaphor for their post-concert music.
> They don't reach out to include you. You have to enter their world and
> investigate, armed with headphones and a lyric sheet, and frequently an
> encyclopedia.

Thank you for this comment.  I asked the question "Why is XTC not as
popular as they should be?" (In relation to the underqualified and whiny
Oasis) a few issues ago and really wanted a way to express my frustration
in XTC not getting more respect ( that would equal
what they have meant to me as a music fan.  The above is actually quite
good.  As I have tried to turn on 100s of people to XTC over the past 8
years, they all pretty much had that same response...."You have to try
too hard to understand what they're saying" (said with a whiny voice like
someone with their nose plugged up).  I can recall reaching for the CD
booklet  many times (and once a thesaurus) as my victim (?) strains to
understand the lyrics.  What I love about XTC is that yes...the lyrics
are worth investigating and understanding, but the beat, the melody and
the energy are simultaneaously enough to keep me listening!

What I've concluded is that myself and other XTC fans care enough about
the material to give that effort.  I suppose others don't want that much
out of their music.

Go Go2     P


Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Oct 1997 22:30:06 -0500
From: Adam Tyner <>
Subject: From the John Linnell chat...

Straight from John Linnell (of TMBG)'s chat on People Online:

Bentrumble presents the speakers with question #107 from Mike_wood:

  Have you gotten any feedback from Andy Partridge regarding the song "XTC
Vs.  Adam Ant"?

John_linnell says, "I haven't heard anything. Flans was in touch with him
when he contributed his "Hello" CD. I hope he took it the right way."

The home of He-Man, "Weird Al", Yoo-Hoo, Killer Tomatoes, and more!           O-         MiSTie #67,326


Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 00:05:57 -0600 (CST)
From: Marshall Joseph Armintor <>
Subject: Re: ball 'n' chain and a couple of other things
Message-ID: <>

](Anybody ever comment on the similarity between the opening strains of
]"Getting Better" and "Ball and Chain"? I'm sure it's a "quote" thing,
]not a "ripoff" thing.)

  Yes -- I did, about five months ago.  Nobody seemed to find this
particularly interesting, or not at least as interesting as I do.
Everytime I hear it, I'm brought back to my first XTC experience,
listening to ES while cleaning dorm rooms for shitty wages in '89.
  I don't get the beef with Oasis.  Their songs, if derivative, fill a
void on the radio left by, say, The Outfield.  I also like the fact that
the brothers Gallagher can't play a show without getting into fisticuffs,
kinda like the Kinks tour of America in the mid-60's. If it brings more
people TO the Beatles, long as Whitney Houston, the most
wretched singer in the Western world, isn't flooding the airwaves,
and Paul Simon, someone I despise for no good reason at all, sticks to
writing Broadway musicals I'll never attend, things are okay with the
world in my book.


n.p. Guided By Voices, _Alien Lanes_
Marshall Armintor/ Dept. Rice University/
Fondren IT Student Guy x5338 <<Je fixais des vertiges. - Rimbaud>>


Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Oct 1997 22:31:20 -0800
From: Jason Kirkman__Carol Kawase <>
Subject: They were a splendid live band

Hi, everybody,

This is not a flame, but I just had to say something.  Rob Hill suggested
that maybe:

>They were a cruddy live band. (Hold it, put down that brick and
>listen for a sec.) Judging from live footage, Andy is spastic and the
>others are constipated.

I saw XTC perform live twice.  Cruddy they were not.  I remember their
performances as energetic.  I saw them open for the Police, and XTC
definitely did not pale in comparison.  Musically, I remember them playing

Again, no flame intended.  Everyone's entitled to his or her opinion.
Mine's based on firsthand observation of the genuine article.  Others on
the list have seen the band live--what have you got to say?

Jason K.


Message-ID: <31510B652669CF11BA1D00805F38219E033F8747@DUB-04-MSG>
From: Peter Fitzpatrick <>
Subject: <no xtc> strong guitars
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 01:58:58 -0800

Mr. Relph our wonderful moderator spake thus :

>>I must admit that in 25 years of playing guitar I have, in fact, used
>>my musical instrument to try to pick up women.


that's some strong guitar. . . . .



Message-Id: <>
From: "Stephen Clarke" <>
Organization: NOP Research
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 10:58:11 +0000
Subject: Bridge - Middle 8 - confused - you will be

All this talk of song structures has gently nudged me with a large
hammer into forwarding my own observations on the subject.

Andy P. is a master of songwriting structure. He toys devillishly
with the medium. As a songwriter myself of more modest abilites, I
have on countless occasions slapped myself on the cranium after
listening to an XTC song uttering "Damn I wish I'd thought of that
particular melody / lyric /  instrumentation /  middle 8 / guitar
chord I have to break my fingers to play / etc etc". this became more
apparent to me recently after I'd spent weeks writing the MIDI file
for "chalkhills and children". Usually with most songs, if you pull
them to pieces and reconstruct them using computer software, the
first thing you notice is how simple they are. with "chalkhills"the
reverse was true. There was layer upon layer of musical and
structural subtlety. That particular excercise was a truly humbling

Back onto the topic of middle 8s - A favourite 'trick' I've noticed
AP using is to slow the middle 8 down to half speed and use it as an
intro. Two songs that use this device are "respectable street" and
"across the antheap".

for 'prechorus' or 'build' I've always used 'verse b' (after using
'verse a' for the verse proper. My favourite build / prechorus /
verse b is the 'jason and the argonauts' - "seems the more I travel"

now back to months of lurking
toodle pip

Steve C.


Message-Id: <>
From: Jonathan Monnickendam <>
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 10:24:25 +0000
Subject: RE: Don Quixote and Odyssey & Oracle

O what joy !

First we have the 450th anniversary of Miguel Cervantes birth  ;  what a
man, what a book.

Then we have the news of a Zombies box set with all sorts of stuff. Their
masterpiece, 'odyssey and oracle' is a beaut and similar in feel  to
petsounds. The earlier stuff has the same sweet gaucheness as gene clark's
early stuff such as  'you showed me'. Yippee

As for oasis and the beatles i always think of glam rockers (mott the
hoople) whenever i hear an oasis anthem. I don't think the beatles were
worried about writing that sort of stuff. Noel & Patsy will be doing 'music
for two virgins' ?

over and out


PS my babble about BAB and those guitar solos.
I think that guitar stuff at the end is not very interesting but sounds
worse than it need to because of the unhappy/leaden sound of BAB which is
exacerbated by the choice of drummer, a man of no subtlety and whose heavy
handed  directness adds to the 'so what feeling'.

As for following Jerrry Garcia on guitar I think these days it is best done
in a canoe. Even easier is on a banjo as JG was a so-so banjo player using a
hallucigenic guitar, ironic then that the best selling bluegrass album, old
& in the way, has features a banjo player who clutches at the notes rather
than going with the flow.

Sorry if some of this is is a bit out of date but i am catching up.
The views expressed are of the individual, and do not
necessarily reflect the views of The United Bank of Kuwait PLC.


Message-Id: <>
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 12:24:56 +0000
Subject: Punch and Judy - point of order

Go and find your copy of Punch and Judy. Play it. After the line "Cos who do
we know dear who acts like that?" does Andy sing "Oh-oh-oh-oh!" or

Yours, TOTALLY relevant for once, Andy

PS. I know it says "oh-oh-oh-oh!" (or something) in the lyric archive, but
I'm not convinced.


Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Oct 1997 22:51:48 -0500
From: Adam Tyner <>
Subject: Hello Records songs

I recently got a CD in the mail with Andy's 4 songs on Hello Records, and I
was wondering what all of you think about them.  :)


The home of He-Man, "Weird Al", Yoo-Hoo, Killer Tomatoes, and more!           O-         MiSTie #67,326


Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 08:55:07 -0600 (CST)
Subject: I'm getting stared at right now.....
Message-id: <>

Maybe it's because I'm the only girl in the library dressed in all black and
wearing blue lipstick. Don't ya just love Halloween? Anyhoo, enough of

Drum roll please....RESPONSE TIME!

First off, where did some of my last post go? Some of it was missing, part
of the discussion about Colin's bass playing on Letterman, and damnit I
can't remember what I said!!!!

Simon-Apology gratefully accepted, no harm done. And if XTC ever played in
the back of the truck, I think I'd be right on there with them, trying to
get my hands on You Know Who. (Yeah, they'd carry me off to the loony bin.)

Per-I'm throwing in a short two cents on the vinyl thing....Black Sea sounds
better on vinyl, but that's all I'm gonna say.

Speaking of that, let me ask a quick question....I recently got English
Settlement on vinyl, and was actually a bit puzzled by the running
order. The cd's running order made it sound much more..not necessarily
coherent, but....  a bit more pieced together. Ending on Snowman was a good
idea. But the record ends on All of a Sudden, which was very anti-climactic,
IMNSHO. Comments?

Charlie-Great idea about XTC being on Sessions. I would LOVE to see that
happen.I don't think Andy would have any least I HOPE he

Ben-I'd rather the smell of new MAGIC cards than new cd's. It takes so damn
longto get the wrapper off that by the time you're done all you want to do
is pop it in the cd player.

I think the ending to Hold Me My Daddy sort of sucked a bit...too much of a
change to me.

I also think the best album opener is Runaways-the guitar, keyboards and
cymbals mixed together like they are are great. Worst-Peter Pumpkinhead.
There's nothing as uninteresting as hearing a guy plugging a guitar
in. (Even if it is Dave.)

Till next time, have a ghoulsih Halloween. I'm looking very forward to going
to work dressed as the Grim Reaper.

XTC song of the day-Runaways
non XTC song-Radio Radio-Elvis Costello


Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 09:47:41 +0000
Subject: Amazing Coincidences


So, has anyone come up with a flick that an XTC album syncs up to (he
said, trying to start up a potentially non-destructive thread)?

Someone on here asked what 'Chalkhills' means... I don't know if this
was a serious request, or if they got the answer if it was, but it
refers to the geography of certain parts of England; there are hills
that are made up of a kind of soft rock, what basically looks like chalk
(hence the name); at least one of these hills has the shape of a running
horse carved out of the grass(?) covering the hill, something done long
ago (see the 'English Settlement' album cover), called the Uffington
Sorry for taking up bandwidth, Tschalkgerz... I know about
99.99999999999999999999999999999999999% of you know all this, but I
hadn't seen a response to this question posted here. My apologies if
it's all for naught.

I just had a "DUH!!" alert, here... the Genesis album 'Abacab'... is
this song structure stuff what this title is all about? (DUH!!) Go
ahead, razz me - it just dawned on me... ROFCMAO ('C' for 'cringing')

>>Dave in San Francisco, re: "Bumper Cars":
>>>I'm at a loss to understand why no one, besides the two of us,
seems to like it.<<<
>>Do I make that three of us?<<
>At least four of us.<

Do I hear five?

>I've also just found out that my favourite country singer
George Jones doesn't write his own songs.<

I think a fair number of artists don't write all of their stuff... ever
heard of a guy named Bernie Taupin? :-)

>I saw XTC at the Oasis in about 1980...<

There's a scary cross-connection...

> There's keyboardists who are equally guilty of being "masturbatory".<

Yeah - ever heard of 'tinkling' the keys? HO-HO! HA-HA!

Sorry. :-]

Eating future and shitting past...

	[ See question #8 in the Chalkhills/XTC FAQ. -- Ed. ]


Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 12:32:19 -0500
From: Rob Hill <>
Subject: A map to better bridgebuilding

>"And all the world..."would be the pre-chorus. The bridge never
>precedes the chorus. The bridge would be the part with the
>infamous line "And busses might skid on black ice." It
>almost always comes in after at least two verses and choruses
>and provides contrast and variety.

I have nothing to back me up on this, but wouldn't a bridge be anything
which BRIDGES? A pre-chorus could be considered a bridge if it wasn't
strong enough to stand on its own were it not sandwiched between a hefty
chorus and verse. The middle eight, on ze other hund, rarely bridges
anything. Its purpose is usually to alleviate potential monotony. Andy's
been known to introduce songs with (pre-)echoes of the middle eight
(Across this Antheap, for one). Would music linguists (those fiends!)
allow a bridge to open a song? Leave it to Andy to build a bridge with a
steep drop at one end.


Psst. Zoot suits me, but would it suit Andy? (Well someone had to say


Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 12:41:39 -0500 (EST)
From: Ted Harms <>
Subject: drummer
Message-ID: <>

Hey, maybe the band should dump Prarie Prince and bring on Bill Berry

Ted Harms                     Library, Univ. of Waterloo          519.888.4567 x3761
"I am human and nothing human is foreign to me." Terence


From: "JH3" <>
Subject: Guitars Guet Guirls
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 12:15:07 -0600
Message-ID: <01bce628$eb43ca20$>

To my earlier posting about guitarists (including members of XTC) treating
their instruments as sex objects, both Mssrs. Relph and Sleightholm
correctly pointed out that Andy P. and many others (including myself, natch)
throughout the history of the instrument have used guitars to get girls. (I
wonder if female players ever use them to get guys? Or girls, for that

What I really meant was that normally people don't treat the guitar *itself*
as an object of gratification -- in other words, sure, guitar players might
use the instrument the same way you'd use a nice aftershave or an expensive
haircut, as an attractant; but generally you wouldn't achieve orgasm just by
picking one up and playing it. If that happened you'd have to leave the
stage after every long solo and change your trousers, which would make the
audience restless and bored. Not to mention the public reaction if
photographic evidence of your "problem" (i.e., the trousers) were to be
published in a major media outlet. And if you use "Guitar Player" magazine
the way most guys would use "Penthouse," then you have a problem.

It's sort of interesting because I have a taped interview in which Andy P.
was talking about a tour of Japan, and his being struck by the intense
fascination the Japanese seemed to have with their guitars -- taking photos
of them at all sorts of angles, etc. He called it "guitar pornography," and
the way he said it led me to believe that he thought it was kind of weird.
Kinky, even. But who knows, maybe it gave him some ideas.

I don't really know why I'm prolonging this thread by writing about this,
it does seem that some people have this preconceived image of
"wanker" guitarists who are all full of themselves, and I don't think that's
fair. Certainly Dave Gregory represents the very essence of decency and

--John H. Hedges


Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 13:55:04 -0500 (EST)
From: Kevin Keeler <>
Subject: French Trombone Solo
Message-ID: <>

Loquacious (prolly spelled *that* wrong) Music wrote:

> I've also always liked the trumpet solo at the end of "My
>Bird Performs."

Actually, it's a trombone solo.  I remeber those things cuz I used to play
trombone.  As ugly as it can be, I't's a great instrument when done well.

I havent posted in a couple weeks.  I've sorta been trying to hold back
in order to prevent myself from inadvertantly throwing some acetylene on
the fire.  I refuse to mention any names (cept the one above) To keep from
angering anyone

This whole state is a larger metaphor for something...I just don't know

Aie.  Also. in response to anyone recieving demos from me.  The payments
have begun arriving in the mail, and will be shipped asap.  School has
been veryhectic for me lately and my dad stole my RAM (note: *my* RAM, not
HIS RAM bought for me), So I've been doing the burning at a friends house

And a note to JHussa:  youre _.-=~ 3 ~=-._ CD's will be going out in the
mail late tonite or tomorrow in the morning

If anyone is still interested in getting themselves a copy (final
production cost with shipping and packaging: $6), mail me and I'll see
what I can do.  If you have a good trade to offer in exchange (i suppose
that is what a trade is for, by nature), you can mail me with tha too.

I still think I get the award for youngest member on the list:  15 when I
first joined and posted, 16 now.  HA! beat that! heck, maybe someone can
		and I think i havent even been an arse yet.  hmmm

That is all from me.  I think.


From: "KIMBERLY MARTIN" <KMAR0971@Mercury.GC.PeachNet.EDU>
Organization: Gainesville College, Univ Sys of GA
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 14:19:25 EST5EDT
Subject: a little quickie
Message-ID: <575A8911DA@Mercury.GC.PeachNet.EDU>

(enter greeting here)-
I really don't even have time for this post, I really need to be
getting into my Halloween get-up and haven't even bought my black
hair spray (in case yer wondering, I'm dressing up at work as a
killer clown), I'm a bit pinched for time as it is, but ahh, I'll
forget what I want to post if I wait til monday; I just read the
latest digest and it's fresh in me mind...
    age vs IQ:  it was really cool, 1st of all, reading Mr. Relph's
post, probably the longest one I've seen from him since I've been on
this list.  That's a good idea about multiplying age by IQ, but
actually this still reinforces my point that AGE should not be the
primary factor in determining why someone says the things they do.
I, of course, never meant any disrespect for "old fogeys" :)
Actually, being my age and listening to XTC and other related music
can very easily isolate one from current popular musical trends
embraced by most teenagers.  I just can't "get" techno (repetetive
and a bit nerve-grating), or the gloom-n-doom, or all the anger and
hate so common in many of today's chart-toppers.  Why wallow in
misery?  Korn (tool, deftones, any band with overly-heavy guitars who
scream a lot about their pain) just makes me feel miserable.  the
mood of the music affects my OWN mood, and I don't ever WANT to be
unhappy, thus I don't intentionally listen to music which will damper
my mood.  XTC, to me, are "happy," as are a lot of the other bands I
like, and my generation seems to have an aversion to
anything you can't "mosh" to.  Admittedly, my generation does have
to deal with many problems not faced by previous generations, or
at least not to the same degree. But, I live in a sub-suburban
small town in north georgia and as a result am a bit sheltered from
some of the problems that are out there.  which is why I don't see
how all these white kids here who live in subdivisions or on
farms (and probably go to church, since I'm in the bible belt) can
possibly identify with gangsta rap.  Or how these same spoiled kids
can be so angry at the world, and express this thru above-mentioned
"heavy" angry music.  actually, I find most of this stuff whiny--if
yer depressed, get help, get happy--I can't stand to hear Trent
Reznor's sniveling--he makes billions, why, he oughta give ME (or
XTC) some of that money, he's gonna be miserable regardless.
    but, standard disclaimer, this is just my opinion.  I can say
these things, though, as a formerly very depressed person who DID get
help for it, altho I've always been into "happy" music for its
uplifting qualities, its celebration of sheer existence in all its
many facets. Plus, life just can't be taken TOO seriously, a cliche,
but so so true.  (ulcers, anyone?)
    damn, this wasn't short after all.
    uggh, i'm running late for work as usual...
    even though the fellow's entire post was dripping with sarcasm
(which I noticed before Mr. Relph's disclaimer, but maybe it was
needed for some who may take these posts, along with life, too
seriously), I liked the idea about the top 10 WORST XTC songs.  it'll
be sure to start many new flame wars, leading to philosophy about
what's good and bad until the yin-yang concept no longer bears any
meaning, but I still think it'll be fun.  I can't even think of 10
right off the top of my head, but here are some (in no particular
order) that still make me hit the skip button most times I get to
1.  shake your donkey up--  uggghhhh....
2.  melt the guns; altho the song itself isn't that bad, I do find
the lyrics a bit preachy and the entire end of the song where andy is
whelping and whining always just makes my heart rate accelerate (not
in a good, exciting, way mind you).
3.  speaking of song endings, I never listen to SCISSOR MAN all the
way thru either, altho I am quite fond of the first 3 minutes or so
of it.
4.  It's Nearly Africa--  I like it much better than I used to, but
for some reason it just sounds like something from Paul Simon's
"Graceland" album; I'm all for experimentation with different styles
of music from many different cultures, but there's just something
about the "african- ness" of this song that clashes strangely with
the very "anglo-saxon-ness" of XTC that makes it, TO ME, fall flat.
I always imagine white, pasty Andy dancing around in tribal gear
amongst African tribe members, all of them shaking their various
wooden instruments.  the image is so ridiculous it makes me laugh,
but sometimes (not to get into racial issue territory here, BUT--)
when white musicians attempt a very black style of music it just
SOUNDS a little ridiculous to me.  let me try again--the SOUL of the
original, ethnic musical style seems to be lost when attempted by
white musicians.  It seems to me that someone who's lived in, say,
England their entire life could not fully comprehend the power and
intensity of tribal, "jungle" rhythms, music inherent to a particular
people, culture, even climate; therefore the style may be intact but
the feeling is not.

    well, I think that that EXPLANATION just fell flat.  which is
where  I'M gonna be (flat, on my ass that is) if I don't get out of
here already and go put on my clown makeup...
au revoir


Message-Id: <>
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 20:33:35 +0000
From: Simon Sleightholm <>
Subject: Boom-da-da-boom


Just spoke with Neville Farmer again and passed on the few photo contacts I
had. He should be getting in touch with those who submitted stuff in a few

There wasn't much news to report:-

The guys are in the studio and, though the main interviews are done for the
book, there are still chats needed to cover the various side projects; as
the deadline for the book draws close you can imagine it was a vaguely
harassed Neville I was talking to.

The album is reportedly now scheduled for a release around September next
year, and the book (almost definitely available world wide through Hyperion)
will be released shortly before it.

There are NO extant recordings of "Terry Fuckwit's Christmas Song".

Neville gave me another insight into the book's typical style of content
when he passed on the following info:-

Drums and Wires was almost called "Boom-da-da-doom" (Andy was heavily into
the Dada movement at that time) because, while flicking through an issue of
UK comic The Beano, Andy stumbled across a picture of Gnasher the dog
playing the drums with the sound of the playing represented by the phrase
"Boom-da-da-boom". This nearly became the cover art for the album!  Neville
issued a challenge for someone to unearth that particular issue and behold
for themselves the rejected cover art...

Also, anyone who holds precious the notion of XTC being some humble rustic
collective, happy to play their merrie tunes in return for a wink from the
squire, ever pure in art and mind, may find some of the book's "farts and
all" revelations a little disquieting. It's the full Marti diBergi
experience - "the sights, sounds and smells of a rock group..."

Although the end of October was "officially" the closing date for picture
submissions, Neville is still keen to hear from anyone who may have

Bye for now,


-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-+-  (
An XTC resource - "Saving it all up for you..."


Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 12:38:16 -0500
Subject: New drummer

Chalkies and Chalkettes;

Yesterday, Bill Berry announced he was quiting REM, leaving to "find out
what else is out there". Well, heck, we know a band that could use a
drummer, right?  :-)  :-)  :-)


Message-Id: <v03007800b07f9a59cb7f@[]>
From: (David Friel)
Subject: Andy's 95 demo tape anyone?
Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 17:29:02 -0500

Greetings Chalkers -

Is there anyone out there who would like to trade a copy of Andy's '95 demo
tape (which includes Green Men, Church of Women, Dame Fortune, Wonder
Annual and other songs which, hopefully, will find their way onto the next
XTC album) for a videotape copy of the lad's appearance on Letterman in '89
doing "King for a Day"????  As the videotape is probably more expensive,
I'm happy to throw something else in to sweeten the deal (perhaps my
personal copy of a very rare recording of John Denver whistling Generals &
Majors in his experimental aircraft just moments before...well, you know -
truly tasteless, I know).  Please let me know.

- Dave in San Francisco


Date: Fri, 31 Oct 1997 22:33:22 -0500 (EST)
Message-ID: <>
Subject: Turn Around

>Any songwriting heavies out there?? My questions are:
>- Is there any other (more correct?) term than pre-chorus?
>- What would you call the 'doo doo doo doo...' bit? The turnaround?

  You mean the bit after the other bit? -Nick Lowe


Date: Sat, 1 Nov 1997 09:42:11 -0400 (AST)
Message-Id: <v03007803b08097fc88c2@[]>
From: Erich Walther <>
Subject: One hand washes the other

Well John, it depends on if your left or right handed, I suppose. I was
just wondering what the other hand was doing at the time - diddling dials?

The best opening track (or sound): 'Towers' is good, but what about the
sound of the jack being inserted just before "Let's begin!" on Nonsvch?
Although it's not my favorite album in the catalogue, I always get a kick
out of that CHK.

Seasonal songs: Fall is 'Bonfire' (some latent Guy Fawlkesian image?)
Winter is 1,2,3,4,5 (with black ice)
Spring would be 'Wake up'
Summer is cauldron
And grass is anytime you want

I seem to recall a Moody Blues album ('To Our Children's Children' or
somesvch) having as a second song something called "The Middle Eight" which
actually ran for over three minutes before going back to the main theme;
and didn't John P. Soussa write a MiddleMarch?

Erich in Ottawa, the sleeping city of civil servants


End of Chalkhills Digest #4-20

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