Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #4-77

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 4, Number 77

                   Tuesday, 5 May 1998

Today's Topics:

       Please tell me that this is only a bad dream
                     Dave's Departure
          Andy the prophet strikes yet again....
                 Thank you, Dr. Foulger!
                        Re: Dying
                    Brickbats 4 Andy?
                      Farewell, Dave
                   XTC/Church parallels
                       I apologize
            Lifestyles of the Rich and Davous
                     Dave Spotting #1
                   Musings on ...Dave!
                  a veritably bestiary!
                       You Chuff Me
                   A different purpose
            Re: mailing list or support group?
                     Nomination Yank
      ANDY BASHING? He's a big boy, he can take it.
                    Bass player Colin
                 From a brat in her shed


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And if it won't stay down that's the surest sign . . .


From: Skylark292 <>
Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 3 May 1998 16:11:00 EDT
Subject: Please tell me that this is only a bad dream

I guess I'm still in shock over the news of Dave's departure.  Ever since I
found out yesterday I've been going around with a huge lump in my throat and
a queasy feeling in the pit of my stomach that just won't go away.  I've
been trying to put a bright spin on things by telling myself that at least
Dave is still alive and hopefully well and will most probably be involved in
a lot of interesting musical projects in the future, that XTC hasn't yet
completely broken up, and that we'll still have a new album in a few months
to listen to.  But it's not working.  Dave's contributions to XTC were
invaluable and beyond measure.  I can't imagine XTC without him.  I don't
WANT to imagine them without him.  With the band finally back in the studio
after so many years and a new album finally due to be released in the fall,
plus the upcoming book, this should be a happy time for them.  That we
should lose one of them now is incomprehensible to me.  I know that they've
had difficult recording sessions in the past, but this one must have been
REALLY bad for the ever- patient Dave to call it quits.  What saddens me
even more than Dave's departure from the band is the apparent rift with Andy
that caused it.  To me it's far worse to lose a friend than a bandmate.
Those two have been friends for so many years, I hope that they can
eventually mend their differences regardless of whether Dave ever changes
his mind and returns.  It's ironic because in the past whenever I've felt
really upset or sad about something I've found that listening to some XTC
always made me feel better.  But now it's XTC that I feel upset about and at
the moment I can't bring myself to listen to any of their music.  That
doesn't mean that I've stopped being a fan, but it will never be the same
for me.

Joy  - desperately trying to cheer up and failing miserably  :-(


Date: Sun, 3 May 1998 16:15:50 -0400
Message-Id: <980503161550.22a0669a@RCMACA.UPR.CLU.EDU>
Subject: Dave's Departure

Hey there,

Despite the fact that most of what I have to say has been said by
better writers than I, just wanted to add my sadness regarding DG's
departure. I hope it is short-lived although I won't be holding my
breath. Damn the new technology that allowed AP's demos to get better
and better. In retrospect and with 20/20 hindsight I can see that
there was a relatively lesser presence of my fave musician on Nonsuch
(barring PP, That Wave and the now ominous sounding Books are Burning)
whereas I can hear him all over Oranges and Lemons.  I have to concur
with Amanda the woebegotten in that XTC will never be the same.  I
will still buy anything AP or CM put out but the XTC I have known to
love will be lessened. I guess I am going to have to start paying
attention to DG's other work (I have only heard him on The Seven
Worthies cd) although the great marriage of AP's songwriting talents
with Dave's musical genius shall be no more .  Puerto Rico mourns this
loss and my flag is half masted.



Message-Id: <>
From: "Simon Knight" <>
Date: Sat, 2 May 1998 15:49:13 +0000
Subject: Andy the prophet strikes yet again....

I've read lots of times that Dave threaten to leave during the Black
Sea sessions because Andy had the songs so tightly planned out
due to the live restrictions that Dave felt there was no performance
of his on that record whatsoever and questioned why he was even in
the band.

I've metioned Andy's worries about his Nostrodamus-style lyrical
tendecies before.  Once again his lyrics were prophetic!  "We're due
for replay 1998!" ;-)  And you all thought it meant xtc having a new
album out rather than Dave getting shirty!

Once again, the wheel turns, a new album FINALLY rolls around, and a
band that has been blessed with all the musical talent and
songwriting ability in the world shoots themselves in the foot on the
starting line.  What's wrong with these guys?  When will it *ever*
end?  Can't we ever just have a record without the attached passing
the buck and assigning the blame for it's commercial failure, and yet
another person becoming alienated by Andy?

I vote instead of sending them money we hire a "Chalkhills
Counsellor" who gets the band together in a room with some wiffle
bats to sort out their negative feelings for each other.  Sure, it's
highly likely nothing would be resolved but i'd make a pretty good

Am i the only one who's worried that no matter how fantastic the new
album is i'm going to be really disappointed because due the the long
lead up and related dramas i'm really expecting all the stops to be
pulled out for this album?  I'm going to need "Then she appears" to
the nth degree to make me think it was worthwhile...

And am i also the only one who's worried that Andy's solo output
a) make Kate Bush look prolific
b) be instrumental, since it's hard to sing with your head so far up
your own arse!


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 3 May 1998 22:05:56 +0100
From: Phil Hetherington <>
Subject: DG&c.

Dave Ledbetter wrote:

>Now, it seems, to XC.

Which, curiously, is the branding used by Virgin on their 'cross-
country' train services.

My thoughts on Dave leaving... well, until the new album comes out
we won't really know just how much he contributed to it. It's a sad
loss, yes, but who's to say XTC may not go on to greater things?
Look at Suede, post-Bernard Butler. That's not to say I'm happy
about it, but lets try and think positive, right?

At the end of the day, the songs belonged to Colin and Andy, and
with the band not working together for so long, they have had
plenty of time in which to decide _exactly_ how the songs should
sound. It wouldn't surprise me if that led to other band members
being marginalised.

However, there's no reason to expect the _next_ album to be the
same as that, since the songs haven't been thought of yet. So I
suspect there is more to Dave's leaving now than we yet know. If
it's just that he's not able to contribute, why leave right at the
end of the recording process, not after a couple of songs (as
with Terry)? No doubt time will tell.

I suppose we can forget the idea of DG instrumentals padding out
the record(s) though. Sigh.

On a lighter note:

Re: 'chuffed'. I always understood 'dead chuffed' to mean 'dead
pleased', so don't get the impression that by preceeding it with
the word 'dead' you can invert its meaning. It's not as simple
as that.

|_) |_  * |    My web page:
|   | ) | |    Shriekback web pages: The above + shrkindx.html


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 03 May 1998 16:14:10 -0700
From: Steven Graff <>
Organization: SLAPDASH
Subject: Thank you, Dr. Foulger!

Gosh...all these wonderful alternatives!

Hey fans,

     I have to express my greatest thanksto Dr. Foulger for his offbeat
and upward-looking alternative chain of events which would be a
woinderfully exciting diversion from what HAS been going on in XTCland.
     Lord knows, Thomas Dolby needs a winner.
     I'd like to take a whack at all the folks telling us to "grow up
and get over it." Pardon us folks if we care a little too much. Dave is
a seminal part of this band. He transformed XTC from a wuirky
keyboard/guitar band to a driving assertive double guitar attack. Just
what they needed, until Andy (circumstances still unknown fully) put a
broomstick through the spokes of his own wheel. He says nervous
breakdown...I say malnutrition and Ian Reid's demonic tour
scheduling.Great excuse to stop touring Andy...try another so you don't
have to release recording too while you're at it!
     As I said before...I hope all the positive reation to his demos
hasn't turned our hero into someone who actually beleieves his demos are
a better realization of his songs than the complinment of two (now one)
other like-minded heads and a load of recording money. Big mistake.
     XTC always turned good songs into better songs. (I'm sure none of
us really want to hear the pedestrian version of Towers of London.) Not
only will Andy suffer for his mistake, but Colin too. I feel sorry for
Colin. He's a fully capable songwriter trapped it seems in the band-of
-his-dreams gone mad. Maybe Colin can work Dave in to help him with HIS
songs. (though Fruit Nut was fine on its own)
     I miss Dave already.(snif)

     Steven Graff


From: LadyCPlum <>
Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 3 May 1998 20:28:17 EDT
Subject: Yo.

I'm keeping things, short, bittersweet, and terse this time out.

Harrison-I think you need a refill on that Lithium prescription my man.

Molly-If we weren't true fans, we wouldn't be upset about Dave leaving. Like
I said, some of us had to put the blame somewhere, and Andy was the somewhat
mistargeted scapegoat.

Lindsay-Didn't you already know this was a support group from the get-go?
We're all addicted to XTC, and support the band in all their various
"Hi, my name is Amanda, and I am an XTC-aholic."

One final note on Dave leaving-I'm agreeing with some people in saying that
we need to move on. Even I'M getting sick of talking about it. He's gone, we
can't do anything about it, XTC probably won't last much longer, surprised
Colin hasn't left yet, yadda yadda yadda.

Tis all for now,
XTC song of the day-Crocodile
non-XTC song-Always Something Breaking Us In Two-Joe Jackson


From: CCooli9575 <>
Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 3 May 1998 21:07:32 EDT
Subject: Re: Dying

  Whatever the circumstances, when an important member of a favorite band
leaves, it's like someone dying. Everybody speculates aloud, there's a wide
variety of reactions ranging from denial to rage to resigned acceptance to
philosphical musings. Whatever the case, they're all appropriate in a way.
From what I hear about him Dave reminds me a lot of the bass player in a
band I was in in the late '80's. The lead singer/guitarist was the lead ego,
and such a dominating personality that many of our fans assumed he wrote all
the songs and the rest of us were little more than session musicians; I was
the keyboardist and actually wrote most of the songs and let myself be
dominated by Blizz the frontman; Barry the bass player played inventive
basslines and provided comic relief like all three Marx Brothers rolled into
one person.  When the band broke up, it was because after almost two years
of playing together Barry announced he couldn't handle being cooped up in a
rehearsal room with Blizz and his ego anymore. Turns out he'd been feeling
that way for a long time, but he'd put up with it because he liked playing
with me and Graham the drummer(who was an old high school friend of ours who
wasn't exactly a rocket scientist, but was a good basic Mick Avory-style
rock drummer). So Barry said he'd show up for any gigs we still have, but he
won't rehearse with us anymore. That effectively killed the band. We could
have auditioned another bass player, but Blizz's ego couldn't handle such a
crushing rejection; it was easier to take his football and go thtraight
home.  Barry and I attempted to form another band with a former guitar
player who'd left the band earlier for the same reason and a new drummer,
but that fell apart partly because we didn't have a strong singer and the
drummer suddenly decided to quit the music business.

  A band is a fragile collection of egos, and it amazes me when a band
sticks together for years, even decades, with most or all of the original
lineup intact. When it does happen it's because everybody has their role,
everybody respects each other, and there's no dominant egos that have to
have their way at everyone's expense. That's what broke up the Beatles, what
reduced The Beach Boys to a mere oldies revival(take a bow, Mike Love!), and
The Kinks to a sibling rivalry soap opera. If XTC ends up being another
Steely Dan(two guys in a studio with crack session musicians who don't tour,
though even Steely Dan did a reunion tour a few years ago, so there goes
that comparison), that's better than none at all; in that case like many
others I'm amazed Dave stayed as long as he did. Maybe loyalty had something
to do with it.

  I was on the Crowded House list a while back and the list went through a
similar upheaval when co-founder and drummer Paul Hester decided to leave
the band. Crowded House continued with a new drummer for a while, but Paul
was very important to the spirit of the band(a sense of levity and comic
relief, as well as a great backbeat), and it lasted long enough for a tour
supporting their Best Of album, but there was no real reason to carry on
under the Crowded House name aside from pure careerism. Speaking of
careerism, their lead guitarist joined a reformed Supertramp almost as soon
as Crowded House broke up. A man's gotta make a living...



Message-Id: <>
From: "Simon Knight" <>
Date: Mon, 4 May 1998 10:37:32 +0000
Subject: Brickbats 4 Andy?

Molly wrote:
> If your true XTC fans, you wouldn't bash any of the members.

Look, i love xtc, i love their music and i respect the guys but
they're only human and we all have our faults.  That's why i'm
not too upset about Dave leaving:  no matter how great xtc
are, *they're only a band!*  The world will keep spinning.
I'd much rather we were allowed to be objective at times than fall
into blind fawning hero worship.

Three examples of Andy being an arsehole:

1) consistant assigning of blame for each record's commercial failure
either on producers or record companies (and even Swindon!!!) rather
than just looking inward for a second and accepting the fact you're a
non-touring cult artist with difficult songs.

Did he really expect to break the top ten with a difficult unfriendly
songs like "Wait til your boat goes down"?  How can he blame Virgin
for not promoting the records if he wouldn't make the effort himself?
Answer:  don't blame, accept the fact you're not going to sell
Madonna numbers and move on.

2) During recording of Nonsuch Andy whinged in just about every
intereview how Gus Dudgeon's cold dismissal of "Rook" really hurt
him, claiming it was a mental kick in the balls to be told your song
wasn't any good.  It didn't stop him from telling Steven Duffy half
of his songs were crap 12 months ago, and to "go back and write some
more", and even laughing about the fact in interviews!  Real
sensitive, Mr. Tortured Artist.

3) Dismissing Mary Margaret O'Hara's drummer as crap and trying
to add programmed drums (!) is hardly a way to start a recording
session off on the right foot.

Look back at the long line of people who have been burnt by the
band, even people who have had positive experiences like Dave
Mattacks have a "but" story about Andy in there somewhere.
Even Dave and Colin have voiced their difficulties with him.  Could
it be a coincidence that Dave choses to leave at the moment xtc are
working without a producer?

Look, i love the band and their music, but i won't wear
blinkers to the fact that they can a little difficult.  I didn't
automatically side with the band over the Chris Difford mess either,
since i find it hard to believe a band with 20 years studio
experience would commit to recording an entire album in a studio they
hadn't at least *tested* out first and made sure it had all the
capabilities they needed.  Who knows what went on?

Oh well, I wonder what the problem will be on the next album?

Current listening:
Ice Cream Hands - Memory Lane Traffic Jam (fantastic, and recorded in
2 weeks!!!)


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 03 May 1998 22:33:39 -0400
From: gregory <>
Organization: InfiNet
Subject: Farewell, Dave


I hope all of us take with a grain of the salt all the apparent
'devastation' that people tell us they are feeling about the untimely
departure of Dave Gregory from XTC (but didn't I read that Dave's work
WILL be on the new album?)...

I don't want to seem like as if I'm belittling anyone's feelings about
this bit of news, but let's face it - it won't be the end of the world
(an incident like the one depicted in a particular new flick opening May
8th is more likely to do that, he said tongue-in-cheek-ly...).

Am I concerned about the departure? To a degree, yes... XTC has always
been that combination of talent and people that we're all familiar with,
but I do feel the real brains behind the music is Andy. XTC will go in a
different direction (not necessarily a BAD thing) or maybe not (if we're
lucky), or it will go away.
A bummer? For this fan, yeah. But there will be no tag on my toe.
I've already survived a fave band bye-bye... it can be done, and life
does go on. There will be something else to help fill the void.

Live long and prosper,

-Bradenton Brian


Message-Id: <v01540b05b172da355cce@[]>
Date: Mon, 4 May 1998 14:45:31 +1200
From: (James Dignan)
Subject: XTC/Church parallels

This is all sounding eerily familiar. One of my other favourite bands is
Australia's "The Church". The nearest they came to any real hits was quite
a number of years ago, and since the late 80s their output has been very
small. After having a fairly stable line-up for several years, their
drummer left and - rather than directly replacing him, they used 'associate
Church members', notably Jay Dee Daugherty, on drums. Then, after a period
of inactivity, their long-serving guitarist Pete Koppes quit, reducing the
band to the two songwriters/singers, the bassist (Steve Kilbey) and
guitarist (Marty Willson-Piper). In the meantime, members of the band had
worked as session musicians and in side-projects and other bands, mainly
backing female vocalists (notably in All About Eve). It was beginning to
look as though we'd seen the last of them. Kilbey even worked on ambient
music with members of an Aussie outfit called Fake.

After one rambling experimental album from the Church which fans mostly
loved but critics hated, Pete Koppes rejoined as an 'associate member' for
one more album, recorded and released at a time when rumours abounded that
the band had split up/was splitting up/had gone bankrupt. He is now,
according to rumours, back as a full-time member of the band.

So...given the uncanny similarity of much of this to XTC's recent history -
drummers quitting, work with Sam Phillips ands Aimee Mann, ambient work
with Harold Budd, long-time guitarist quitting etc etc etc, what chance do
you think there is that Dave might rejoin at some stage in the future?



From: MFa2707621 <>
Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 3 May 1998 22:47:07 EDT
Subject: I apologize


I just wanted to apologize for whatever I said in the last Chalkhills.  I
was upset with what some of you guys were saying about Andy.  I know with
the departure of Dave we have to find blame with someone.  Maybe it was
partly Andy's part, but we don't know the whole story.  Until we know
everything don't judge him.

	Bye for now.

Buffalo, NY


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 03 May 1998 22:09:53 -0500
From: "Jeffrey W Wall M.D." <>
Subject: sigh

I will Listen to XTC with Dave,
I will listen to XTC without Dave,

I will listen to XTC.



Message-Id: <>
Date: 04 May 98 12:25:51 +1000
From: "Adam Davies" <>
Subject: Lifestyles of the Rich and Davous

Dave is gone, in case you haven't heard.

IMHO, Harrison Chuffwood's comment in #4-76 [it's just a rock group] is
the most sensible thing anyone has said in the past week.  The XTC
reshuffle has given us something to talk about, fair enough, but it's
starting to sink into the realm of a gossip magazine.  While I'm not
out to make editorial decisions in a public forum, the fact remains
that Chalkhills is a mailing list 'for the discussion of the music and
recordings of XTC (the band)', not for speculating on the personal
lives of three people most of us have never even met.

My point: Can we *please* leave the guys alone?  Dave Gregory has left
XTC.  That's all we need to know, and probably more than we have any
right to know.


      The statements and opinions expressed here are my own and do
         not necessarily represent those of Oracle Corporation.


Message-Id: <>
Date: Mon, 04 May 1998 07:56:41 +0100
From: Simon Sleightholm <>
Subject: Dave Spotting #1

Spotted in PC Pro Magazine, June 1998 Issue, Page 61 - "Pirates Ahoy"

"A lot of the revenue from software sales goes back in R&D.  It is the life
blood of the software business," says David Gregory, anti-piracy officer for

Jobs for the boys, is it Peter? ;)


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


Message-ID: <>
From: "Sebastien Maury" <>
Subject: Musings on ...Dave!
Date: Mon, 04 May 1998 05:25:35 PDT

Although I only discovered Chalkhills recently, XTC has been a large
part of my life; for over a third of it. If pressed, I'd say that they
are my favourite band, and thanks to Chalkhills, I have renewed my
acquaintance with some of the older albums I hadn't heard for a while.
The breadth of knowledge and avid delight in the guys' music is
wonderful and staggering, and I'm glad to be a part of it. It's true
that Dave's leaving the band is sad, and his contributions will be
sorely missed, but it signifies nothing more than a progression in XTC's
musical journey. The new album will be out in "the fall" (thanks guys,
but it's autumn already down under, and I don't see no album in no
record store! Seriously, though, I can't help thinking that a little too
much is being made of his departure. Horizons open, opportunities arise,
and dammit, people change. This explains divorce, war, job changes, and
yes, even band personnel movement. Just as we all have our favourite
songs and albums, so too different people are going to feel various
emotions about Dave's decision. But who knows what will happen in a
week, or a year?
I suppose what I'm getting at is that I'll like AP, CM (DG) et al no
matter what, and whatever each of them does together, solo, or with
other people, it's bound to be interesting and an antidote to the rising
tide of pap on the airwaves!
As people seem to do:
Fave XTC song of the moment: Cynical Days.
Fave non...: Teardrop (Massive Attack)
             Underground (Ben Folds Five)
Fave classical: Bantock: Pagan Symphony.

Cheers and here's to Fireworks!!!!!!


Message-ID: <>
From: "Sebastien Maury" <>
Subject: a veritably bestiary!
Date: Mon, 04 May 1998 05:42:14 PDT

Hi all Chalkhillers, me again!
What is it with those Swindonians and animals (New Zealand readers, any
insights here?)
I was listening to Nonsuch the other day (yes I do like it! some great
songs on it, and many "growers", that I like more and more in the
interminable quest for a new album!), and it struck me how many animal
songs there are! So I thought I'd see if it was a trend at all. And
bugger me if it isn't (!). In no particular order:
1. Across This Antheap (O&L)
2. The Smartest Monkeys (Non)
3. I'm Bugged (WM)...yeah OK, stretches credibility!
4. New Town Animal in a Furnished Cage (WM)
5. I Bought Myself a Liarbird (BE)
6. Ladybird (M)
7. Shake You Donkey Up (BE)
8. Seagulls Screaming Kiss Her, Kiss Her (BE)
9. We Kill the Beast (Go+)
10.Shore Leave Ornithology (Another 1950) (Take Away)
11.Tissue Tigers (The Arguers) (Senses B-side)
12.My Bird Performs (Non)
13.Crocodile (Non)
14.Rook (Non)
15.The Mole From the Ministry (Dukes)...well, sort of!
16.Mantis on Parole (Dear God single)
17.Fly on the Wall (ES)

Highly boring for some maybe, but I found it quite interesting! Any
corrections, suggestions? (I have deliberately not considered unreleased
Love all, Seb.

PS, Does anyone know the 1996 You am I record Hourly, Daily, which has
half a dozen tracks strongly reminiscent of late 80s style XTC. They're
a Sydney band with a ferocious live following and three or so albums to
their credit. Check them out. Anyone care to comment?


Message-Id: <>
From: steve mcallister <>
Date: Mon,  4 May 98 08:46:31 -0500
Subject: You Chuff Me

god bless you, Harrison.
I agree many times over on all points, and, if I could scribble as well as
you I'd've said thing sameways you's was.


Message-Id: <>
From: Christopher Westland <>
Date: Mon, 4 May 1998 9:28:23 -0800
Subject: A different purpose

Hi there: Still being new to this posting, I"m impressed with the rather
animated discussion of Dave's departure contained herein.  But I have to
agree with one Mr. Harrison's perspective on the affairs of the band (Thank
you!)  and was hoping to redirect the discussion a bit with 2 questions.  (I
apologize in advance if this is a re-iteration of things said previously)

1. How might one obtain a copy of the demos being discussed?  I've always
thought demos are more interesting than the final product because they
represent part of the path to that final song.  If you want to learn how
someone thinks musically, transcribe and listen to every version of a song
that person recorded.  The creative process is often more interesting than
the personal life...and certainly more unique....

2. Are there any musicians posting or reading this that live in the Bay Area
USA?  You should know where this is leading....

As for the band and those of you sulking about Dave's departure - look at it
like this: At least they existed in this incarnation for as long as they
did.  What did we get out of it? Mmmmm, English Settlement, Skylarking,
Oranges and Lemons....



Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 4 May 1998 17:37:17 +0100
Subject: Re: mailing list or support group? (LINDSAY DIANE WARREN) wrote:
>Is it just me, or does it seem this mailing list has turned into a
>support group??

Har Har Har, well said.

My name is Rob and I am a XTC fan

When record choops have refused to serve me I sent my wife.

I have tried substutes, but without success.



Message-Id: <>
Date: Mon, 04 May 98 09:10:19 -0800
Subject: Nomination Yank

I nominate Jon Brion as the new ingredient in the XTC lineup.

He's a big XTC fan, incredible on all instruments, can write and sing
excellently, though American is an Anglophile, could produce and
arrange as well as be a member of the group...

Only problems: I don't believe he ever wants to be in a band again!
Even The Grays was a band that didn't want to be one.  (Jason Falkner
described them as "four fascist islands".  Great album title,
perhaps.)  Also, I can't imagine him wanting to be second fiddle to
Andy--but I do imagine the "Fireworks" would be spectacular, if brief!

Not a replacement for Dave, but an alternate.



Message-Id: <>
Date: Mon, 04 May 1998 14:48:34 -0400
From: Ralph DeMarco <>
Subject: ANDY BASHING? He's a big boy, he can take it.

Dear One Armed Bandits and Affiliated Members:

>Is it just me, or does it seem this mailing list has turned
into a support group?  >Lindsay

YES!  Chalkills, at least to me, has always been a support
group.  Perhaps we are too emotionally FRUSTRATED
because we love XTC so damn much!

Will Andy ever regret XTC going on strike?  Will he lament
the years gone forever while their fans sat on their hands and
bickered about nothing?  I can't defend Virgin, but I doubt
XTC got the worst record deal known to man.

I realize it sounds insensitive to criticize anyone who has
intense stage fright but ... has he ever tried to conquer it?
People have triumphed over much worse fates.

Does XTC owe us anything?  Perhaps not.  But now with
Dave gone - it has been a very heavy price to pay, especially
since the Gregory mix worked so damn well it's almost
orgasmic to sit and listen to Drums and Wires.

Other great bands have been through nightmares much
worse than those boys from Swindon.  Take the Kinks for
example: Peter Quiafe, their original bass player, left in '68
and it devastated the band.  The original magic was gone.
When Andrews and Chambers left the band, their sound
changed dramatically.  We should expect the same I

In the late 60s, The Kinks were banned from touring the US!
They missed all the great festivals.  The Kinks were asked to
apologize for their so-called misdeeds on the previous tour.
They refused out of principal and in doing so, were cut out of
the most explosive rock shows in the world at that time.
When they returned in the early 70s nobody cared if they
couldn't even remember the words to their own songs, they
just wanted to see them get up on stage and play.

Sticking by your principals is an honorable thing, but the
consequences can outweigh them when the players involved
are no longer "angry young men".

Peace and good luck to Dave.



From: "CGRG" <>
Subject: Bass player Colin
Date: Mon, 4 May 1998 18:53:18 +0200
Message-Id: <>

Hello everybody,
I've just joined Chalkhills Digest. I'm very interested in Colin Moulding's
work as a bass player, and I would like to know things about it:  basses,
equipment, recording techniques, etc. Is there any web site where I can
find this?
Thanks a lot.


From: "KIMBERLY MARTIN" <KMAR0971@Mercury.GC.PeachNet.EDU>
Organization: Gainesville College, Univ Sys of GA
Date: Mon, 4 May 1998 14:57:40 EST5EDT
Subject: From a brat in her shed
Message-ID: <1C111CE282E@Mercury.GC.PeachNet.EDU>

As a busy college student and editor of newspaper of her college, I
haven't had time to post in a while, and didn't because there
seemingly wasn't much to be said...but now, DAVE...
    I agree wholeheartedly with Harrison Sherwood (vice versa??)--XTC
is a rock band, not a cure for AIDS.  I am a big fan of music,
especially XTC, but admittedly, many of the bands I am keen on
(Beatles, Kinks, Blur, Left Banke, B-52's, just for a vague idea)
have not put out material in years (or at least any listenable
material), and probably never will again.  Blur's the exception here,
but I heard that they were going to stop touring, thus putting them
in the same category as XTC.  My point is, I like music for the
music, the end.  Live shows are great, and the Blur show I went to at
the Cotton Club in March '97 was one of the best shows I have ever
attended, but most rock shows fall into two categories, and are mere
occasional recreational activities, not more important than the
creative product itself:

1)  those for the "younger set"
-I just spent three days at Atlanta, Georgia's Music Midtown
festival, where there was much commercial alternative rock, underage
drinking (I'm only 19 and only got carded once--hee hee!!--after a
few beers even Eve 6 sounded alrite), and crowd surfing.  These kinda
shows can be fun (see above parenthetical statement), but most people
are not there for the music (see above parenthetical statement
again).  Kids go to these things to drink, mosh, show off their nifty
tattoos and piercings, and kick other people in the head.  The
musical pinnacle of the whole she-bang was SEMISONIC, and I would have
enjoyed it much more if I wasn't constantly having to defend myself
from damn crowd-surfing kids.  I wanted to watch the band, but every
5 minutes there was a pair of vans in my face, and I was bearing
witness to kids digging around in the mud for their ripped-out facial
piercings.  Ah well, semisonic was great nevertheless...(and I'm not
pierced anywhere, so I came out in one piece)

2) those for the "older set"
--At the ripe old age of 15, I went to see one of my fave bands,
Crowded House.  I dug immensely all of their albums, most notably
their 1st and "Woodface."  So, me and a buddy went to the show (my
dad dropped us off), and I can honestly say it ranks among one of the
WORST shows I've ever been to.  we got there MAYBE 10 minutes into
the opening act, the then-unheard-of (but still immediately
identifiable as crap) Sheryl Crow, and the place was packed with
thirty-somethings all standing in their spots, arms folded.  We tried
to get a place closer to the front to stand, and no one would even
let us WALK thru the crowd--we got elbowed so often, we ended up by a
wall on the balcony.  Anyway, the people who had seats just sat and
clapped after the songs, and the people who were standing just stood
there and guarded their precious space.  Hmph.  there was slight
dancing during the "hit" song ("knocked down"), but the crowd looked
like they had a serious case of rigor-mortis the rest of the time.
Even though I didn't get to see any serious injuries at this show,
the crowd was subtly more hostile anyway.  I left disgusted.  and
didn't listen to CH for almost a year just b/c of the horrible

    oh yeah, THE POINT!
    I'm not too worried about this whole Dave thing.  If Colin left,
I'd be bawling tho, just b/c of gems like "Vanishing Girl."  God,
that song gives me goosebumps no matter how many times I hear it.
but, I'd just stop crying and put on "vanishing girl," and then I'd
say "wow, what a great song."  As far as I'm concerned, XTC _is_ Andy
and Colin.  They are geniuses.  and, I know what it's like to be a
control freak / perfectionist.  I was the managing editor AND copy
editor of my school's newspaper last quarter (can we say TIME
CONSUMING??), just b/c I didn't think anyone else could do just as
good of a job.  Of course, I got letters saying things like "you self-
absorbed wind-bag...what a shameless piece of narcissism..." but,
hey, that's the way I operate.  and if Andy has to be a brat to give
us the best possible XTC album they can make, I say, I CAN'T WAIT!!!
I'll miss dave, but I don't know him personally, so can't really make
a judgment call here.  as long as this album is still gonna come out,
I'm happy.
my time has run out, must go to work now!
au revoir mes amis
Kimberly L. Martin


End of Chalkhills Digest #4-77

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