Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #4-75

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 4, Number 75

                    Friday, 1 May 1998

Today's Topics:

                     Re: Dave's Gone
                   Hardly the end .....
                     Francis Dunnery
                 random thoughts re Dave
                       Re: Chuffed
                1st post & Dave's leaving
                     Chris Difford ?
                 In Loving Memory of Dave
                      dave's leaving
                  thoughts in gratitude
                      Chuffed again
                        new opps?
             EC and XTC and record companies
                     Dave's Departure
                       Re: What if?
                  The End of the World?
                RE: Andy a bad guy? (fwd)
                 Come hither, scrivener.
                     This STILL sux.
                The Years Take Their Toll


    To UNSUBSCRIBE from the Chalkhills mailing list, send a message to
    <> with the following command:


    For all other administrative issues, send a message to:


    Please remember to send your Chalkhills postings to:


    World Wide Web: <>
		or: <>

    The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

    Chalkhills is compiled using Digest 3.6 (John Relph <>).

I don't want to hear you've been trying to revive it.


From: Davejh5 <>
Message-ID: <>
Date: Wed, 29 Apr 1998 20:29:35 EDT
Subject: Re: Dave's Gone

With Dave Gregory leaving, the band should call it quits. It is now a duo,
that does not tour, disappears for 6 years, is hurting for cash. Are we
better of with the band splitting up? Solo albums from Andy would be a
given. I personnally would like to see Colin put 15 songs together for solo
record.  Colin will only have 2 or 3 songs on the new album. How much
material do you think he has written in the last 6-10 years. I have given up
hope they will ever tour. By separating hopefully more material will
recorded.These guys are not getting younger, they must be in their mid
40's. Its time to move on and stay busy. It would interesting to see what
collaberations each would come up with. I want a band not some computer
generated crap.

     Frankly I'm surprised Dave didn't leave earlier. Not touring must of
hurt him bad. Good Luck Dave Gregory and thanks


From: "Frank McDonnell" <>
Subject: Hardly the end .....
Date: Wed, 29 Apr 1998 21:37:27 -0400
Message-ID: <>

        In a number of ways I am happy to hear that Dave has flown the coop.
Why should he continue to be restricted by Andy's clearly dominant position
in the "band"?  I hope Dave latches on with an act that he can truly spread
his wings with.  For that matter, I would not be upset to see Colin do the
same thing - either a solo album or a new band.  Again, it must be
aggravating feel like a session player within one's own band.  I am very
curious to hear how the bass parts on Firework compare to Andy's demoed
versions of the new tunes.

       Don't get me wrong - I am not an Andy basher.  In fact, his latest
demo tape was the best "album" I obtained in 1997.   I am sad to hear that
the XTC I came to love in the late eighties has changed, but the music will
continue to flow (we hope).  The whole of XTC is greater than the sum of
it's parts, but I'll take solo Andy, Colin and/or Dave over 99% of the
drivel being released today.

        Frank McDonnell


Message-ID: <>
From: Martin & Jamie Monkman <>
Subject: Francis Dunnery
Date: Wed, 29 Apr 1998 20:47:32 -0700

Anyone care to comment on Francis Dunnery's new album, "Let's Go Do What

Here's a couple of eye-catching quotes from the Wall of Sound
( review, dated April 28/98:

"Although fans of cerebral power pop in its purest form must wait a little
longer for the next XTC album, Francis Dunnery's latest, Let's Go Do
What Happens, should help tide them over."

"Dunnery hits a home run with the lead single, the sweeping, XTC-ish "My Own

Sounds like Pepsi Cola -- not quite the Real Thing, but quite acceptable if
that's all your host has in the fridge.



Our homepage:


From: STakesh <>
Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 00:32:32 EDT
Subject: random thoughts re Dave

Some random thoughts re. Dave's Departure -

Oh, shit!  Scheiss!  Mierda!  Mirda!
Sorry, sorry.  I hope all of you got that.

Questions to be answered later:  will Dave rejoin for a tour?
How can Andy and Colin perform the catalogue material with
a replacement guitarist/keyboardist?  I don't mean that they
couldn't actually just do it -- but how could they?  XTC without
Dave will be missing much of its heart and soul.

My favorite XTC moments are not simply Andy's best
bits, or Colin's, or Dave's, but those where they're all
working together so well, in a compositionally challenging
yet balanced and harmonious way.  (which happened so
often!)   And that extra dimension and depth that Dave's
presence has always added extends just as crucially to
their collective identity as a group, to their personal
chemistry at work and at play, and, so I've read here, to
their stage presence.  Dave is the gentleman and master
forger, whose guitar and keyboard lines alike are always
wonderful.  His playing combines sinuous grace with
dexterity in a decidedly intelligent manner.

This is not, in any way, like the departures of Terry and Barry!

And about their personalities:  in this respect didn't Dave
fill a calming, amiable George/Ringo role to Andy's John
and Colin's Paul? -- to use a very imprecise B***tles
comparison.  I mean, how much longer can Colin work
with or put up with Andy without Dave being around?
And how much will any final product suffer for Dave's absence?

What's left will be Andy and Colin; I don't know if I'll ever be
able to refer to them as "XTC" again.  He hasn't simply left the
band.  XTC is broken.  Not broken up; not completely, not yet.
But it is broken, nevertheless.  It's tempting to try to fix blame
(i.e., blame Andy's egomania), but some tragedies are...shit
happening, you know?  This could largely be the result of
artistic continental drift, of increasingly divergent interests.
But then, the fact that Virgin -Virgin/EMI screwed 'em over
all those years certainly contributed to the pressure they've
all been under, trying to forge ahead on the basis of their
own fledgling label and a distribution deal.

This is horrible enough already, for all of them.  They've
had a marvellous run.  And the things they've endured, from
without and from within, would already have proven too
much to bear for almost anyone else.  This is amongst
them.  If they can all honestly remain friends, that
would be their last great accomplishment together.

I wish I could honestly say that I'm looking forward to
hearing Firework, and whatever Dave comes up with next,
as eagerly as I looked forward to XTC's work before.  But
I haven't arrived at that point yet.

But if and when Dave reads this, I want him to know that the
last thing he should be feeling is guilt or concern over what we
think about this.  We all love you, Dave, and we always will.
We don't want you to feel obligated to wither away in a
situation that makes you miserable or that doesn't pay
enough to keep a gerbil alive.  We just hope that you
find your equilibrium and get to feeling like your old mellow
self again.  I'll confess to a bit of ambivalence, between
hoping you either rejoin XTC or land on your feet and quickly
re-establish yourself in rock.  But that's just dithering.  The
point is, I think we all just want you to be happy and
continue making music.

Stephanie Takeshita
"I know I have a heart now, because I feel it breaking."
        -  the Tin Man (Wizard of Oz)

My Top Ten List of Things Dave Gregory Should Do After This

10)  Go out and get seriously drunk.  (He's certainly
       done this already.  Perhaps we all should.)

 9)   Adopt a large but slobberingly friendly shelter dog
       and name him "Jimi" even if he's a she.  (This doesn't
       gel well with #'s  6, 5, or 3, though, unless he has
       several friends who are "dog-sitting worthy".)

 8)   Sell the one guitar that for some reason reminds him
       the most of Andy.  Not for the money, but for the
       exorcism.  He'll still have, what, two or three dozen others?

 7)  Get a little help from his friends in the Networking dept. -
       setting up a website, circulating his availability, scouting
       for gigs, anything.  Surely there's someone in the U.K.
       with an O.K.-but-soon-to-be-replaced computer?

 6)  Cash in his "good karma" chips and take shameless
      advantage of his fans.  Let our slobbering joy at being
       in his presence be his Get Out Of Swindon Free card,
       good for tickets, rides, room, and board, and whatever
       else he can work it for.    B )

 5)  Spend a couple of lucrative weeks each (January?  Feb.?)
      at a beachside hotel in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, working
      Rock `N Roll Fantasy Camp (this exists, and is modelled
      after the very popular baseball fantasy camps that have
      sprung up in the past decade or so).   Imagine - (ladies')
       thong bikinis, cocoa butter, swapping war stories with
      other veterans of the rock scene, and incidentally jamming
      with dedicated muso fans (like the folks who contribute to
      the CH tapes!) after helping them improve their technique.
      Imagine Dave getting paid to enjoy all of this, and sending
      a postcard or two back to Swindon.  Imagine yourselves
      coughing up a couple grand to go and jam with him!

 4)  Dave's a consistently good writer.  He should find ways
      of doing it more often.  Surely there's a market for a
      column or reviews of his.  And OF COURSE he can
      write songs, or at least team up with another lyricist.
      And has he ever considered trying his hand at fiction?

 3)  Adios, Swindon.  If London doesn't beckon, rest assured
      NY and LA await.  And Dave should consider making the
      move permanent.  We're on a roll here - low unemploy-
      ment, falling crime rates, $0.98/gal. gas, and new CDs
      for about half of what most of the rest of the world pays.
     And we Americans get to see the lousiest movies first.  B >
      I hope he settles on the East coast - incidentally where
     Mitch F., Harrison Sherwood, Mike Myers, myself, and so
      many other crazy Chalkheads reside.

 2)  Comb his hair, and recall, with satisfaction, Andy's fury that
      he hasn't got any left to speak of.

 1)  Go out and get laid, fer Pete's sake!

Think there's still room in the overstuffed-with-talent-already
King Crimson lineup for yet another ace guitarist/keyboardist?
Then all they'd need to do is find a third drummer and a third
bassist ("yo, Colin!") to form an unprecedented "triple trio"
lineup!  They'll need the fresh ideas if Dave joins them in time
to record "THRakKattaCK, Part VIII" and "Vrooom, vroom,
vroom, vroom...(...)..VROOM!" .

It's darkest before the dawn.


Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 09:40:40 +0100 (BST)
From: Chris Clee <>
Subject: Re: Chuffed
Message-ID: <Pine.OSF.3.96.980430093816.28288B-100000@piranha>

nah mate, dead chuffed means extremely pleased, don't care what the
dictionary says i know it's use only too well, ask any scouser (since when
have any dictionaries gotten any scouse terms correct)



Chris Clee



From: RiknBkr <>
Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 09:59:38 EDT
Subject: 1st post & Dave's leaving

Hello, my name is Phil This is my first post on this list and such a bummer
that it has to come on the news of Dave's departure from the band.  I've
been a fan of the band since '81 and I'm really dismayed about this sad
state of affairs.  I have checked in regularly in the Chalkhills "What's
new" area for the better part of two years before I finally joined in on
this list, and that was to get more intricate details from their forthcoming
release, particularly since the band's activity seems to be on the rise.  I
enjoyed Peter(?)  Fitzpatrik's post recently on the going-ons at Abbey Road,
but this news of Dave......has left me hollow inside.

Does anyone know if "Little Express" is still in business?  It seems a very
long time since I received my last issue, just wondering if the spring
edition is out.



From: OliBailey <>
Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 11:15:30 EDT
Subject: Chris Difford ?

As a relatively new subscriber to 'Chalkhills' I'm a bit puzzled by the
mention of a dispute between Difford and the Band. Could someone please
enlighten me?

Oliver Bailey


From: Saints3Den <>
Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 15:22:36 EDT
Subject: In Loving Memory of Dave

Hello Folks!

     Gee,this is my first posting in about 16 months ... I have read every
word posted in all that time, if anyone is interested.

      The terrible recent news has shaken me to the core. I think Dave is
the main reason I love XTC ,deep down. Although I really do enjoy the two
pre-Dave albums, I think it was the addition of Dave more than the
maturation of Andy or Colin as songwriters, at that point in time, which
made XTC my favorite band of all time .

       I wish him the best, and perhaps we'll all be able to proubly wear
"Dave Gregory"  T-shirts before too long.

      As long as I'm here...
                                         Many people seem to think that XTC
purposefully named some albums after a word or phrase from the previous
album. They then supply the "evidence". Looks like a coincidence to me.

     Several times , the question was asked ,by JHB , if I rcall,how
"fossil" was andy's newest recurring subject...or some similar idea. I
beleive it to be "Breathing In"

  "breathing in the smoke..."-- Books Are Burning
  "breathe 'em in until my head goes spinning around"-Church of Women
  "breate in and blow away the smoke"-- Easter Theater

   (Hope I got those lyrics right!)  thats the last song on Nonsuch and two
of his latest demo songs... recurring subject to be sure!

  Back to the subject of Dave's departure-

  #1    Is "history of the middle ages " back in as a possible title? I hope
  #2    Wouldn't it be cool to have Dave buy some of Andy's songs that will
not be recorded and use them to put out his first CD?

                                                                       ed st.


Subject: dave's leaving
Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 20:51:03 +0100 (BST)
Message-Id: <>
From: Boodle Boodle Boodle <>

i'm going to be honest about this but...

if dave has gone do you really REALLY think he would want us to bitch about
andy or specualate whether the band will split? don't you think that we
should respect him and his decision to leave? i mean if the guy was to read
this digest and half of us are blaming andy the egomaniac and the rest of us
are preparing are sackcloths for the funeral of the band as we know it, it
ain't going to be very fair on dave. and let's be honest however DEARLY i
would love to hear new XTC - this will be the first ever new release for me
as a fan - material constantly being released i know that most of all we
should wish teh members to be happy. if we specualte we aggravate the
situation surely. if there are tensions between andy and dave they need to
make bridges not us hurl accusations and blame at them. it isn't fair. XTC
have brought me so much happiness - habe brought us as a mailing list of
fans happiness that the least we can do is wish some happiness for the

it is fair and expected for us to be sad. teh most productive thing we can
do - the most positive thing we can do - is to wish dave well and make sure
he knows how much happiness he has brought to us all. we have to think about
him as much as us. of course we're sad about it but dave's feelings should
be paramount here.

so lets all have a little tact shall we?



Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 13:10:03 -0700 (PDT)
Message-Id: <>
From: (becki digregorio)
Subject: thoughts in gratitude

greetings folks xtc,

i, too, feel the need to share my sad feelings about dave's departure from
our favourite band.  but as some of you mentioned in previous missives,
while it is some *major* news, we should also support dave in whatever
decision he's made.  he alone knows what's best for him, what the
particulars of the situation is, and what his next musical path may be.
selfishly, i don't want to see dave quit xtc, thus not being able to hear
his amazing contributions to their music and sound.  but let's hope that he
finds another band truly deserving of his talents and who will give him the
freedom to express himself with his guitar.

being in a band is just like any relationship -- it can be fragile,
comforting, monotonous, painful, exciting; sometimes all of these within a
short time frame. like anything, there are no guarantees.  it's just a
shame that xtc as a group never got the break they deserved, never made the
money nor received the recognition that other "less-than" bands seem to
get.  frustrating indeed.

i'm sure that no matter what happens, we will support the lads, buy their
music, go see them if they perform (with whoever), and let them know that
xtc, in any shape or form, is still the band that touches our hearts.

Ben Gott <> wrote:

>"...I've stayed with this list for so long, though, because I think that it
>>contains some of the brightest, most tasteful people who have ever crowded
>>around a group of gangly men with guitars.

cheers!!  so well said.  i've met some wonderful people because of
chalkhills (simon, mitch, richard, dean, jasper-man, kelly, eric, john
relph and others), and thanks to our mutual love for xtc became friends
with john wedemeyer (my current guitarist).  xtc fans are clever, witty,
and some of the nicest folks i've had the pleasure of corresponding with.
why else would i consider flying halfway around the world next month to
attend the xtc shindig in london??   :)

ben mentioned how his life and the music of xtc is just so *entwined.*  i
share this feeling -- not only because of the huge nonsuch promotional
poster hanging on my wall, or their cd's taking up the most room in my
collection, or even the fact that dave took the time to play on my cd; but
because their _music_ is such a gift, a means for us to feel this strong
connection with other fans, to be entertained for hours/days/weeks on end
by listening to their incredible songs.

and to john relph: thanks again so much for providing this list to us fans.

i can't wait to meet those of you who'll be in london next month.

peace to all,

--becki, one of the seven


Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 16:11:36 -0400
Subject: dave

dear mourners,
maybe im being irreverant here, only being a fan since about 1996 sometime,
but dave's leaving does not seem all that deterimental to me.  sure, he was
greatly skilled, but other than a close friendship with the band, he
amounted to little more than a glorified session musician.  i know thats a
little harsh, and i do love dave's playing, and im sure he adds much to the
band, but he can be replaced.  its not as if the main songwriter or the
leader of the group left.  he will be missed, im sure, and ill buy whatever
it is that he does from now on, but xtc will go on (as xtc) with or without
him.  when chambers left, xtc turned into the band i love (the one with all
the fantastic studio trickery and the on-the-verge-of-madness style) and im
sure (or maybe i just hope) that xtc will recover and become an even better
band.  whatever doesnt kill you makes you stronger, and if this doesnt kill
xtc, we can expect brilliant things in the future.
thank you for not flaming,
this is a wonderful country,
thank you, and goodnight,
ps-im not saying anything to the affect that im glad he left.  i wish he
hadnt, but he did, so we need to just get over it (plus, im tired of all
the "good luck dave's dominating this list")...


Date: Wed, 29 Apr 1998 09:40:00 +0000
Subject: Chuffed again
Message-ID: <MS-MAILG-3.0-Note-pidesign-PAUL-0893767762>

Regarding "CHUFFED" (#4-73, "Steve")
Look, I've done a quick whois/nslookup for no find,
sorry Steve, mystery man, but it certainly appears that you are probably
stateside.  I don't know quite who Philip Howard/Eric Partridge have been
talking to but I've lived and been to many a place (though not *everwhere*
and not heard anyone use "chuffed" in a disgruntled manner.  I can definitely
say that "dead chuffed" is used in the positive as in "I was dead chuffed
with that" regarding a *good* outcome. I haven't got much experience of
Wales, some reaches of Scotland and the Midlands, so it may be used
negatively there.

(Surely enough chuffing nonsense? - Ed.)

Back on track...

Anyone have a UK/fast mirror of the video clips on Chalkhills/ZDNet?  I can't
get a decent enough xfer speed to make it worth the phone bill (even if the
company pays for it)

Paul Stratford
Systems Manager
PI Design

Any opinions expressed are mine all mine and nobody listens to me anyway.
"No time to fuss or fight" I'm too busy fixing bloody NT servers.


Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 14:25:55 -0600
From: Jeffrey Langr <>
Subject: new opps?

OK, Gregory's out of there.  Terry Chambers is long gone.  So XTC
goes from a three piece to a two piece, now with a session drummer
*and* session guitarist**.  The songwriting team's still in place.
Time for a new name, a new sound, maybe even touring.  "XTC" is just
too outdated of a name anymore (how many times have you had to ask,
"the drug or the band?").

Time to move on.  XTC survived Chambers' departure just fine.



Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 14:44:14 -0700 (PDT)
From: "J. Brown" <>
Subject: EC and XTC and record companies
Message-ID: <>

Hern wrote:
> In the past year many of my longtime favorite artists were in fairly
> dire situations.  TMBG, Elvis Costello and TMBG were all label and new
> album-less.  I began to despair as to whether the end may be at hand.

EC's situation was never very dire.  He chose to opt out of his Warner
contract early and there was never a question of him signing a new deal it
was only a question who with.  EC has always sold a good amount of records
and could have signed with any label he wanted.  This really is different
than XTC's situation where they have never sold a whole lot in the US or
the UK and thus have to worry about making money off of a standard record

jason, optimistic that Dave will return at some point


From: "jes" <>
Subject: Dave's Departure
Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 17:52:51 -0400
Message-ID: <000201bd7482$52ced8a0$95a545cf@xtc>

I started listening to XTC when I was a junior at Georgia Tech (that's 1977,
guys and gals).  My first exposure to the group was through GO 2, although
Drums & Wires may have been on the market.. didn't discover that one until a
little later.  But, I was hooked, deeply.  For a long while (probably 10
years) I bought everything they ever put out.  At one time, I believe (just
before the O&L release) I am pretty sure that I owned everything that Virgin
UK had issued.  And of course, I had Japanese releases, picture discs,
bootlegs, Canadian releases, flexi-discs, T-shirts, subscriptions to
newsgroups, my own email address, the whole shootin' match.  The only thing
that I have not done is fly to Swindon to stalk my heroes.  I leave that to
other people.

Not only that, I have been in a number of bands over the past several years,
many of which have been fairly well received in their day.  No, you've never
heard of any of these bands (unless you happened to live in Athens Georgia
in the early 90's).  But many of these bands had developed followings which
could have kept them afloat, were it not for Internal Tension and
Difficulties.  I've been in some great bands that exploded because of Ego,
Malice, and "Greed."

I think I qualify as someone to speak to the issue of Dave Gregory's
"departure" from XTC.  My reaction?  WHAT XTC is there to LEAVE?  We are
discussing a 'band' that doesn't tour, releases albums at the rate of once
every generation, and possesses a fan base that, while rabid, is
insufficient to keep them on even a minor major label like Virgin UK.
Gregory's name has never appeared as a songwriter in any credits, and based
on the way that the demos move from demo to finished product, it seems like
very little input is expected or desired by Moulding or Partridge.  I fully
expect that Firework will be a collection of solo projects by Colin and
Andy, with Dave filling in the holes with some expert, but well directed,
guitar work.

I don't blame him.
I don't expect him to return.

He whet his appetite for touring with the Aimee Mann gigs, and he always
seems to be the "one who speaks" for the band when quotes are required.  You
have to drag Partridge out of the shed to get him to talk, and Moulding...
well, when do we EVER hear from him?  My guess is that he wants to be a
Rock'n'Roll musician and to do that, he's going to have to join a BAND.

Some very lucky, and very good band is going to benefit from his free
agency.  And, if he's smart, he'll flourish with whatever new project he
joins.  I would love to see him hook up with someone or something that is
established and working and touring.  What would be fun, right at this very
point in time, would be for him to find a way to join the Barenaked Ladies
(freeing up the ol' fat guy to simply sing), or even better would be to join
SemiSonic, who has a hit single now and may just have the nads to finish the
job.  (SemiSonic, for those who don't bring their heads in out of the sand,
rose from the ashes of Trip Shakespeare.  BNL has just about replaced XTC as
my favorite band.)

So, except for AMANDA, I would suggest that we all just get over it and stop
whining.  Maybe this will jar Andy's senses which are working undertime
right now, and maybe, just maybe, we'll see an Andy Partridge product soon.



Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 22:57:36 +0100
From: Jon Holden-Dye <>
Subject: Re: What if?

In article <>, Kate_L_Burda.ALDRICH writes
>How tense would the atmosphere get if Dave, not having patched things up,
>walked into a room with Andy happily babbling away during an interview?  If
>this departure isn't a "mutual agreement", would this get nasty?  Would the
>entire world's first impression of XTC be a bunch of conceited, vindictive

        Sorry, Kate (I'm seriously pissed-off about D.G.'s departure,
too), but, this hypothesising is veering towards Tapsville, Az. . . .

        Andy's not upset (he's currently heavily sedated).
        Dave will return just in time for the Japan "reunion" tour (new
drummer, natch).
        Colin will continue to be the lukewarm water between Andy's fire
and Dave's ice (and the "Ripper" musical is almost finished).

        I guess it's just another twist in the XTC story. The sort of
thing that keeps me interested. Rather that, than "they're brilliant -
still touring, all the original members, they do all the old favourites.
Mind you, they're starting to look a bit old . . ." stuff.
Jon Holden-Dye
"I like to keep an open mind - but
not so open my brain falls out." (Anon.)


Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 15:30:12 -0700 (PDT)
From: "J. Brown" <>
Subject: The End of the World?
Message-ID: <>

I am i the only one that thinks some people are over reacting here?  I
mean it really is too bad that Dave left.  i'll miss his little touchers
on future XTC releases and i do hope he comes back in spite of the fact
that the rift between him and andy seems unrepairable.  I guess its also
that as much as i like Dave i've always seen him as a muso and while
Dave's is technically a far superior guitarist, I always found Andy's
playing much more creative.  For me Dave will be missed but its  not the
end merely XTC phase 4.  When Colin eventually does leave then its time
for the solo years.  But until then i look forward to what the duo years
will bring us.  and how they with rank against the Barry Years, the Terry
Years, and the trio years.

And as far as Andy being an egomaniac, frankly i don't care i think Andy
is a genius and as long as Andy doesn't start bad mouthing Dave's
musical contributions because of personal problems a la Elvis Costello and
Bruce Thomas.

 Jason Wilson Brown
 History & Canadian Studies Major
 President- GEEK The Secret Society of the College Bowl  (206) 632-4905
 P.O. Box 45822
 Seattle, WA 98145-0822
"Thought I knew all the steps quite clearly, I don't have a clue"
                                -Elvis Costello


Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 15:58:41 -0700 (PDT)
From: Misty Shock <>
Subject: RE: Andy a bad guy? (fwd)
Message-ID: <>

> Molly said:
> I'm surprised and disappointed with the so called XTC fans who have made
> Andy into a bully.  I just read the Chalkhills digest, and some of you
> make me sick.  I know there were probably tensions between the members,
> but does that mean we have to make Andy into a bad person?

I'm sure many people will echo my sentiments, but I think that it is clear
that we don't think that Andy is "a bad person."  If we really disliked
Andy, I don't think that we would be on the list.  Many on the list say
that Andy is their favorite songwriter and call him a genius.  I don't
think it would be fair if we just concentrated on Andy's more attractive
features.  Those parts of Andy that seem negative contribute to his
"genius" as much as those that are more outwardly admirable.  Criticism of
Andy should be viewed in the context of the respect which we bear toward
him.  I'm on Macca-l, the Paul McCartney mailing list, and any negative
comments are looked down upon.  It makes it difficult to speak freely and
express your thoughts.  I think that a list can only benefit from the
freedom to be critical.  I don't think that anybody is under the
impression that Andy is perfect, and it wouldn't be fair to ignore those

Misty Shock
"No round of drinks can extinguish this feeling of love and engulfing
bliss."						--Andy Partridge


From: STakesh <>
Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 19:05:45 EDT
Subject: Come hither, scrivener.

I have someone's thoroughly disreputable word on it that
Harrison Sherwood probably knew before any of us about
Dave's decision, which would help explain why he hasn't
posted recently.  Take your Prozac, HS, and come back.
You can have mine, even. The worst news is over (I hope).

We Chalkies, having gotten a mite bit dependent on your
wildly careening prose style, will simply not permit you
to remain forever quiescent in that normal  life/career/family
hole you've been wallowing in.  A bounty of a thousand
kudos paid to whoever reveals his current email address.
(Backstory:  he switched jobs and hasn't posted since.
What, is there a real work ethic at his new corporate
warren, or what?)

If your withdrawal continues much longer I will
circulate rumors that you are: 1) in seclusion following
head-to-toe cosmetic plastic surgery at an exclusive
clinic/fat farm in Chevy Chase; 2) in seclusion at an
Arizona New Age commune, studying chakras, crystal
power, and healing touch therapy; 3) writing us up for
an archly  condescending, dismissive expose for October,
Salon, or Rolling Stone.  Or for Time, which should have
you sprinting out of your closet in no time!

Stephanie Takeshita
So what if this is only my second direct post.
"Consistency is the hobbled gobblin of  those of us
struggling to keep their minds..."  -- something that
Dan Quayle could've, should've said.


From: LadyCPlum <>
Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 19:39:45 EDT
Subject: This STILL sux.

Oh well. Anyways, cutting right to the chase,

Catherine-No! I called dibs on Dave already! I can cook for him, and provide
him with a nice place to sleep, provided he can put up with me listening to
music at night. Or, he can always sing me to sleep at night.....nah forget
it.  I'm FINALLY spoken for, (fabaroo guy, but that's another story.) you
can have him. ;)

Molly-One of the stages of grief is anger, which is what I felt (in
tremendously vitriolic ways) towards Andy when I first heard the news. I
think it's perfectly understandable to feel a bit of hostility towards Andy
right now. I mean, he WAS a major factor in Dave's deciding to leave. I was
told that Dave would generally sit in the corner and shake his head at
everything Andy did, time and money-wise. I still feel a bit of resentment
towards him, even though I'm sure Dave didn't base his decision to leave on
Andy alone. And I think all of us know how Andy can be in the studio, with
his wanting to have control over the proceedings, almost in a totalitarian
way. Now, I can't make judgement calls, since I don't know Andy personally,
but going by what I've heard/read, that's how I feel. Just because there are
people who feel anger at him doesn't mean we're any less fans of the band or
of Andy's brilliant lyrics. Every band has their flaws, XTC and the
musicians in it were never perfect, and they never will be. But Andy is a
spoiled rotten only child, and carried that "Gimme gimme gimme" mentality
with him into adulthood. Now, you can disagree with me all you want, that's
my opinion of him.

At least we have the memories of Dave's incredible guitar player and
charming personality. (What kinda guy would send a cd to a girl he's never
met before?)

Tis all for now
XTC song of the day-1000 Umbrellas
non-XTC song-Always Look On the Bright Side of Life-Eric Idle


Message-Id: <>
Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 20:20:40 -0400
From: Will Kreth <>
Subject: The Years Take Their Toll

While looking at the SwindonWeb site

under the "Hall of Fame" listing for XTC as famous Swindonians, I noticed
the band's birthdates (amateur astrologers, I invite you to do these guys
charts! A Virgo, a Leo, and a Scorpio - no wonder they've had many a

Andy -  11 November 1953
Colin - 17 August 1955
Dave -  21 September 1952

You do the math. I'm not ageist, but these chaps aren't getting any younger
- especially Dave at nearly 46. He's been playing in bands since he was in
his teens - nearly (if not exactly) 30 years. 30 years of pop music, but
nearly zero songwriting credits for XTC. Why does this matter? Well, when
Lennon and McCartney shared songwriting credits for most of the Beatles
music, it was they who received most of the royalties (or their estates) in
the ensuing years. Granted, Harrison and Starr wrote some songs, and it's
hard to speculate what their record contracts said, but the lion's share of
revenue went to the most prolific of the Fab Four. ASCAP/BMI pay royalties
to those who have the copyrights - any time a song is played on the radio,
performed as a cover, written down and sold as sheet music - in other words,
the broadcast rights; the performance rights; and the publishing rights.
There is also the mechanical reproduction rights -- cutting a CD,LP,
Mini-Disc, Cassette, or Video. Suffice it to say, that with the overall
sales of Beatles "product" over the years - you'd be hard pressed to find
anyone who wouldn't want to be in the shoes (Old Brown Shoe?) of George or
Ringo, when it came to realizing their lesser share of the loot.

During the Virgin years, we all seem to agree that The Contract From Hell
that XTC complained so bitterly about did none of the members a service in
its language and scope. But, the songs are almost uniformly Partridge or
Moulding penned -- at _least that what they say_. A.P. is on the record
several times saying that D.G. added "twiddly bits" here and "icing on the
cake" there. However, we notice that D.G. never shared any songwriting
credits. (If you know of a song that D.G. either shared credit for, or got
full credit for - please post it here). For instance, take a look at *Yacht
Dance*. The flamenco nylon string guitar part - pure Gregory - in technical
virtuosity and inventiveness. *Yacht Dance* - with full songwriting credit
going to A.P.  I ask you - if you were 46 years old, and vowed never to
drive a friggin' rent-a-car back to the lot again - would you be
increasingly self-interested in your remaining future music career being as
profitable as possible? "Funk Pop a Roll" indeed.

Hate them or love them - one smart thing (I think) that U2 did when they
started out was to always share songwriting credits equally as being written
by "U2" - thus sharing in the benefits (perhaps) more equally, and creating
less friction. Andy is a masterful songwriter, whose prowess and range of
colours grows richer each year (too many years in-between, of course). But
what we have with "Firework" is a brilliant Andy solo-album, that he knows
will sell more if he calls it an XTC album. It's a solo album when you have
a demo that is nearly fully-orchestrated - needing next to no collaboration.
And bands are about collaboration, right? (*unless you call it "The Andy
Partridge Project" - then everyone knows from the start who's in charge.*)

Those of you who are King Crimson fans know that Robert Fripp has been very
outspoken about artists retaining songwriting royalties since he started
the Discipline Global Mobile record label:

He's got the right idea - but not everyone has the power to fight the record
companies and win. George Michael tried, lost, and then got out of his
contract. TAFKAP/Prince fought Warner Bros. and won (sort-of, if he could
find the Quality Control button again). Ornette Coleman fought record
companies for years, and only recently found a distribution deal for his own
Harmolodic label that he could live with.

I've rambled on here, but I think Dave Gregory has many different
and important issues to consider with his musical (and non-musical)
future. It's like a marriage - it's like a mid-life crisis with three
egos taking turns playing Drama Queen for a Day - they may need
counseling, a spot of therapy, a few hugs. I hope it all turns out for
the best, cos we all luv 'um, the "facking basterds." ;-)



End of Chalkhills Digest #4-75

Go back to the previous page.