Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #4-89

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 4, Number 89

                  Thursday, 4 June 1998

Today's Topics:

                  Soapbox or Boxed Soap?
                 Play Your Cards, Right?
                  chapel hill chalkies?
          The Peter Pumpkinhead mystery chord...
          NIN and the Blondie/Gregory connection
                  The Meeting Place....
                Superstars, Rumors and Dom
                 Partridge-Lennon / La's
           Without Dave... The Downsizing Years
                  Chalkhills statistics
                coffee and Pumpkin chords
                       My thoughts
           Dispelling The Myth of Fuzzy Warbles
                    Pumpkinhead chord
                        a question
                         The La's
                    Second Outpouring
                     Don't Mention It
                     Andy's interview
           Weird Guitar tunings & Ian Dahlberg


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Let it die / So it'll all break down to rotten.


Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 02 Jun 1998 17:45:28 -0400
From: Harrison Sherwood <>
Subject: Soapbox or Boxed Soap?

>> From: Dominic Lawson <>
>> Subject: Re:'White" Backlash

Dom, you're shadowboxing, bud. You have some nice moves: Your hook is
indistinguishable from greased lightning, and your footwork is like unto a
Nijinski. But the sight of you out there in the ring, dancing and jabbing,
only serves to emphasize a fact that's rather comically obvious--to me, at
any rate: there's nobody in the other corner. Well now, actually I tell a
lie, there _is_ somebody in the other corner, an entity known to us students
of rhetoric as a:

Straw man (n) 1: a weak or imaginary opposition (as an argument or adversary)
set up to be easily confuted.

While your major premise ("Chalkhills doesn't much mention HM and hip-hop")
is true, your minor premises ("People who don't talk about hip-hop and HM
dislike these musics" and "People who dislike hip-hop and HM are
narrowminded, provincial, and possibly racist") are respectively unprovable
and argumentative, and your conclusion ("Chalkhills people are provincial,
narrowminded and possibly racist") seems geared mainly to show what a
studmuffin of catholic taste you are. Are you going to try to tell us you
_really_ expected a hotbed of rabid support for hip-hop and tortured
pentatonics in an XTC digest? Without being too condescending (and it is
hard in the circumstances), my pal Erik Satie and I would like to invite you
to go ram your "cardigans and Cliff Richard" comment up your sinovial

But I am grateful that you have provided us with the subject matter for a
little digression on a topic dear to my heart: the Tyranny of the Hip.

>> From: Dominic Lawson <>
>> Subject: My Second Outpouring


>> It's sad enough that as people get older they lose the ability to listen to
>> anything remotely challenging or imaginative

Just got off the phone with Charles "Jolly Cholly" Mingus--hey, he's so old
he's *dead!*--and he told me to pass along a book recommendation for you.
(He's got some other recommendations, too, but we'll let that pass. For the
moment.) Got a pencil? Good! Here it goes:

_Commodify Your Dissent: The Business of Culture in the New Gilded
Age--Salvos from the Baffler_, Ed. Thomas Frank and Matt Weiland, Norton &
Company, 1997.  (Excellent summary and review at

I really can't overstate my admiration for this book.

Too busy compiling the necessary that'll finance another crop of the latest
hip, colorful, angsty, edgy trendoid sludge from Sony and Time Warner to read
anything other than excruciatingly pure 'zines that clue you in about the
latest hip, colorful, angsty, edgy trendoid sludge from Sony and Time Warner?
OK, let's provide an Executive Summary, shall we?

    There is no youth culture--only masks they let you rent.

You pointed the song out yourself, Dom, in your ungracious putdown of jim d
deuchars's perfectly inoffensive expression of liking for "Jesus Christ
Superstar": "Listen to Travels in Nihilon, for fuck's sake," were your
words.  (Hey, way to strike a blow for divergent viewpoints and
openmindedness! Let a hundred flowers bloom, eh, Chairman Dom?) Well, I did
listen, back in about 1980, and that line from "Nihilon" (along with the
early and not unforeseen realization that the then-new MTV was being run by
pod-people) set me free. Literally.

In one quick, explosively insightful line, Andy Partridge Clued Me In. He
gave me the intellectual ammunition I needed to free myself from the
nightmarish morass of endless mindless consumption of whatever crappy Latest
Thing the evil, skull-faced marketeers of fashion have thought up this week
to separate me from my species being and (not coincidentally) my wallet. You
see, what happened with Punk (and _Commodify Your Dissent_ explores the
ramifications of this in great detail) was that the Powers That Were noticed
some shots coming across their bow, shots emanating from a genuine,
grass-roots anarchist, pan-racial, hard-left political and cultural
movement, with the deeply subversive potential to upset quite a few very
profitable apple carts. But rather than billy-club it to death in a Prague
Spring clampdown, in a move as brilliant as it was nefarious they BOUGHT IT
UP, lock, stock, and Les Pauls, started a 24/7 TV station whose ENTIRE
PURPOSE was to market Punk back to the Punks (or *their* carefully
demographically-segmented, vertically-skewed, sanitized and ideologically
diluted version of Punks), a place where we could check to make sure our
hairstyles were right, that we had the right shoes, that we'd paid our dues
to Sony, to Nike, to Seagram, to Paramount, to the folks who were upping the
bux for the entertainment. Shiny! New! Attractively packaged!

Ever since then we've been renting those masks like there was no tomorrow.

It was about the beginning of the second Reagan Administration before I
finally figured all this out, to the point where I realized that the most
meaningful act of subversion open to me would be to stop trying to buy in
(literally) to officially sanctioned subversiveness--in other words, to act
on the realization that the entire _idea_ of the rock-n-roller as lone
Dionysian iconoclast railing in the wilderness against corruption, was in
fact a media invention that only perpetuated the very things the Rebel is
supposed to oppose. Look around you--when the image of Jack Kerouac is used
to hock us pants, when The Beatles' "Revolution" is used as a soundtrack for
an ad for overpriced footwear made in Third World sweatshops, when the VW
Beetle is revived and marketed on the premise that we can somehow *buy back*
our humanity (hey: find a need and fill it!), Rock and Roll is DEAD,
man. The game is over, and we LOST.

Now I can hear the heckling in the back of the room: You're a copout!
Sellout!  Fight da Power! To which I reply, with a beatific smile,
No. Because now that I am free from the Tyranny of the Hip, now that I no
longer feel the need to consume the New merely because of the fact of its
newness, now that I have the tools to resist the relentless low-level
anxiety that television and Korporate Kulture tries to instill in me so I'll
be a Good German in my patterns of consumption, I am free to express the
sorts of *truly* rebellious thoughts that have been percolating in my
cranium for 37 years. Thoughts like, "Hip-hop's forced rhymes and mangled
scansion and metallic sledgehammer clanking make me feel as if I have inside
my head a death-camp orchestra conducted by a very angry robot, using
manhole covers for crash cymbals." (I think of this as an undesirable state
of affairs. YMMV.) Thoughts like, "Heavy metal reminds me of what it might
be like to be stuck in an industrial trash compactor set on "Slow Puree"
with a profoundly drunk Ohio State football jock who wants to use our last
moments on this planet to point out that he has a really big dick." (Above
parenthetical comment also applies.)

I can, in short, be true to myself--to my own perceptions, and not those of
some desperate greedhead marketeer with a line of bad faith and crappy values
and nowhere to peddle them except my face. It's deeply, deeply satisfying to
know just how many emperors out there are walking around stark raving nude.

Moreover, my liberation from the Tyranny of the Hip has freed me to pursue
directions that lead me to places *other* than Right Here, Right Now (with
My Visa Card Ready). Nothing in life, I find, gives me greater satisfaction
deep in my soul (nothing, that is, besides the people I love) than making a
connection with someone from the distant past, or discovering some
historical oddity--musical, literary, philosophical, what have you--that
gives me some sense that being human might not be such a bad thing after
all. (I revel that Andy Partridge passionately collects antique toy
soldiers. How wonderfully unhip! One of us! Gooble-gobble, we accept him!)
Don't you find, you dedicated followers of fashion, that your pursuit of the
consumerist wet dream of the Perfect Score, the Total Immersion in the Now,
strongly discourages you from exhibiting reflective curiosity about the
past--in fact from exhibiting any curiosity _at all_ except "what's
Murdock/Geffen/Eisner/Turner/Gates got for me now?"? I'm convinced that this
feature was designed in, a cleverly disguised emergency device to
cattle-prod us back into submission if our attention strays too far from
Ally McBeal.

To the rejoinder that there is some sort of healthy "indie" culture that
exists outside and separate from the corporate megalopolies and that purveys
cultural product that is somehow more pure and unsullied and "real" than
"mainstream" culture, I simply say, Sure. You just keep on believing that.
Just don't ask yourself too many uncomfortable questions.

So go ahead, accuse me of insufficient attention to _tempora_ and _mores_,
call me an out-of-touch old fart, tell me I'm resistant to change and mired
hopelessly in the past--you can even call me a narrow-minded racist if it
makes you feel better about yourself. Water off a duck's back. But it _is_
fascinating how the Culture Trust gets you to do its policing _for_ it, isn't
it, Dom? Think about it. If I've opted out of Hipness because I know in my
heart it makes us tools of the Man, and you're standing there ridiculing me
because I'm not Hip, who's the outlaw and who's the cop, eh?

I'm not interested in proving to you that I read the Right magazines, listen
to the product of the Right record labels--each more clangorous, thickwitted
and coarse than the last--surf the Right websites, watch the Right teevee
shows. Thanks, but I won't be bending over for anybody's purity test any
time soon.

Harrison "'There are few spectacles the Culture Trust enjoys more than a
good counter-culture, complete with hairdos of defiance, dark complaints
about the stifling "mainstream," and expensive accessories of all
kinds'--The Baffler" Sherwood


Message-Id: <>
From: "Mark Strijbos" <>
Organization: The Little Lighthouse
Date: Wed, 3 Jun 1998 00:20:02 +0000
Subject: Play Your Cards, Right?

Dear Chalkers,

Last issue Shawn "just the facts" Rusaw commented:

>> spotlight of an all-girl band called the Donnas listed XTC as
>> an influence, along with Motley Crue, Metallica and L7.
> Never heard 'em... don't want to hear 'em...
Heheh, that's the spirit!
Me, i try to play nothing but XTC (honest!) and this euh...
diverse (hah!) list of influences makes me fear the worst.
They probably can't play but look dead gorgeous & alternative  and
use lots of rude words... please tell me i'm wrong.

Currently on very high rotation in my CD players is the Drums &
Wireless BBC radio sessions cd. Anybody out there who hasn't got this
one should get a copy right now; it's elementary!

Now here's a shameless plug for my site The Little Lighthouse:
The rare Nonsvch promotional cardgame is now showing at the Treasure
Trove @

yours in xtc,

Mark "my name is Strijbos. I carry a badge" Strijbos
Mark Strijbos at The Little Lighthouse
 the XTC website @


Date: Tue, 02 Jun 1998 17:19:43 -0600
From: "Eric L. Muller" <>
Subject: chapel hill chalkies?
Message-id: <>

I, a several-year lurker and exceedingly rare poster to Chalkhills, will be
moving from the hinterlands of Laramie, Wyoming, this summer to a bit of
civilization known as Chapel Hill, North Carolina.  I'd be curious to know
whether there are any other Chalkhillers in the Triangle area.  If so,
please send me an e-mail.


Eric Muller

PS--Does anyone else find it sad, as I do, that Dave Gregory has agreed to
do the REO Speedwagon/Styx summer tour?


Message-ID: <002401bd8e7e$5ea161a0$>
From: "James Schreiber" <>
Subject: The Peter Pumpkinhead mystery chord...
Date: Tue, 2 Jun 1998 17:30:02 -0600

This post is in response to "andy&shell" <>, who asked
about the second chord in the intro to Peter Pumpkinhead. Well, the chord is
properly called G6add9, and is layed out like so (from bass string to high


It's like a regular open G chord in standard tuning, but you fret the B-E-A
combination with your second finger on the 2nd fret of the neck. It's a
pretty common chord in jazz music and is really cool that Gregory threw that
kind of stuff in. Shame about losing him. Wonder who they'll get (if anyone)
that's that cool. He contributed so much to the XTC sound. Probably one of
the most creative guys I have heard in years.

Hope this helps you out, Andy and Shell...


Message-Id: <>
From: "J. D. SMX" <>
Organization: Access Tucson
Date: Tue, 2 Jun 1998 16:39:21 -0700
Subject: NIN and the Blondie/Gregory connection

Hi Chalkfolk,

> I enjoy NIN in small doses, but frankly their fans scare the
>daylights out of me. I recognise Trent's genius, but from a safe
>distance these days.

Same here, but this humorous take reminds me that on my trip to LA to
witness the Bauhaus reunion this July, I hope I don't get bitten by
any of those scary vampires.  Oooooooohh.

>Not all comebacks are as successful as the B-52's. XTC has been in
>the studio working on their first album of new material since 1992,
>but guitarist Dave Gregory recently left the band, leaving just Andy
>Partridge and Colin Moulding.
>Gregory, meanwhile, is rumored to join the reunited Blondie.

Even though we heard he was not in time to make the invitation, maybe
they did pick him up afterall.  If so, that would be reason enough
for me to get a ticket, even if Clem Burke isn't with them this time.
(But I, of course, hope he is.)
And the addition of Cindy Wilson back to the B52's is enough to get
me interested in them again.

The Reunion Thing Can Be Good,   JD SMX


Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 2 Jun 1998 23:09:36 EDT
Subject: The Meeting Place....

Greetings Fellow Chalkhilians,

Just a note to let all know that I expect to be seeing Squeeze at Avalon in
Boston on June 11th (my birthday) and will, of course, proudly be wearing my
Chalkhills t-shirt (Thanks, Phil) for Chris Difford to see (not to resurrect
that thread mind you..).

I envy the folks at who went to London gathering, sounds like a great time.
I have noticed in my years lurking that there seems to be quite a few people
from around New England on this list.....someday we should all get together
in Boston (I know...I shouldn't bring it up unless I am willing to take on
the responsibility...).


I saw a headline in the local newspaper a while back that read something
like "New Hampshire Chooses to Melt the Guns" or some such thing.  This was
about some program where all the guns people turn in to the police are
melted down for scrap metal (which is referenced in the song..isn't it?).
Pretty cool, Andy, considering the song is about 16 years old or
so.....(that doesn't actually surprise any of us...)

Just some rambling thoughts..thanks everybody....xtc.

~James W


Date: Tue, 2 Jun 1998 20:33:23 -0700
Subject: Superstars, Rumors and Dom
Message-ID: <>
From: (jim d deuchars)


Well, I see my reference to Jesus Christ Superstar (during the double
album thread) is getting some reaction. Dom, Don P. and I had a nice,
private e-mail exchange.

Now that I've seen the reference to JCS a coupla more times, I guess I
need to ask for Mr. Relph's forgiveness and violate his instructions to
end the double album thread.

Here's the deal: I hate Webber stuff as much as Dom. What's special about
JCS are the lyrics of Tim Rice. He's a top notch lyricists.

Good words were what placed Cole Porter at the top of the heap in his
era. It's the biggest advantage (IMHO) Andy P. has over the rest of the
songwriters of today.


And Don P. observed that lyrics made Talking Heads a stonger band than
their "competition".

Hey, Dom, you're fast becoming the most quoted Chalkfolk out there! Many
of us have been beating up on Dom lately. Just remember, he's one of us
(the cool, the in, the heppest cats in this here litter box) in that
he/we are a bit "proud" of our unusual musical tastes. Sometimes it make
us a bit abrasive. I'll get to the point soon!

The point: another Don P. observation: We're having fun here, Right?

Finally (hooray for Jim!) can someone with a connection to Dave Gregory
please confirm: D.G. is set to take Linda McCartney's spot in the 1999
Wings Reunion Tour.



Message-Id: <>
From: "J & J Greaves" <>
Subject: Partridge-Lennon / La's
Date: Tue, 2 Jun 1998 22:01:21 -0700

Anyone know if any of the Andy co-writing done with Julian Lennon appears
on Lennon's new release? I haven't seen a new release but it's said that it
was released the same day as Sean Lennon's CD!

To Kirt in Vermont: The La's never released anything else to date. The bass
player left to form a band called Cast, which I think did well in the UK,
but hasn't been heard as much in most of N.America. Frontman Lee Mavers had
a updated version of the La's a year or two ago doing some live dates but
since then there's not a lot to talk about. Their only CD is a great
release, and I bought it because Dave and Andy talked about how much they
liked it in various interviews etc. Another link here is that Chris "Good
Things" Sharrock played drums in the La's at one point.

Until later


Message-ID: <>
Date: Wed, 03 Jun 1998 00:56:31 -0700
From: Eric Rosen <>
Subject: Without Dave... The Downsizing Years

Greetings, Fellow Keepers of Multiple Torches...
Does that make us dangerous? :) !:  :! (:  ? or just an En-dan-ger-ed
Spe-cies ?

Now that much dust has seemingly settled about the future of the duo
group formerly thought of as a trio, I ponder what the reel by real
dynamic must have been that was leading up to this parting of the ways
so many years later.  Where intuition and common sense meet, I'm
inclined to think that this must be the culmination of something that
has never been "aired" by the media thanks in no small part to Virgin's
enemic promotional efforts not to mention all the other setbacks and
unfortunate encounters that always seem to dog our musical heroes over
the years.

I tell ya, it hasn't been easy being an XTC fan since English
Settlement!  It's always felt like XTC are on the brink of either fame
or oblivion.

There were many people posting from every frequency of the emotional -
logical spectrum and I feel as if I have done time in every room with

Looking back, I think one can examine the albums and how they progress
from one to the next and with 20-20 hindsight, naturally; see this
coming. ;)

I can't recall the interviews in '86 but I remember there being some
talk (I don't recall which member said it) about how they weren't all
that satisfied with those instruments on Skylarking that were
non-traditional rock instruments (woodwinds, strings, etc).  I think
there was some sense that they felt the illusion of the synthetic
versions being real was not real enough.

With Oranges & Lemons, I think it's the same dynamic at work.  Every
time out, they create so MANY songs and they've always too broke to
afford MORE studio time so that they could "get each one just right" ---
that's just counting the ones that make it to final release!!

With Nonsuch, the sleeve insert gives a bit more detail about who played
what than was customary on previous XTC releases... at least, I remember
thinking this to myself at the time.  That, along with their portraits,
names and ages struck me as "the most Virigin could do" to make XTC
suitable for tabloid content?!

Somehow, over the years, each musician on his own, gained more and more
skills in the skillsets of the other members (by virtue of their highly
complementary interplay and willingness to try new things).  There had
to have been a tension that pushed them for the better but at the same
time was building this inevitable outcome.

Between the mad drive for "getting it just right," "each member becoming
a completely self-dependent 'expressional machine'," and the perceived
shortfall of the "synthetic solution" for non-traditional instruments,
it seems to me as if it's no coincidence that Dave would leave at just
the time they begin using the "expensive solution" of a real orchestra.
Technology and its deft use was as much Dave's forte in XTC as was his
guitar.  I think that no longer being "the icing chef" had rightfully
got him bummed and that maybe nothing in XTC was any longer its own
reward for him such that putting up with no touring and the general XTC
reclusiveness was what had to give.

With Skylarking, XTC made its break from "quirkiness."  Each release was
either more subdued or found ways to "cage" the quirkiness whereas
before, it seemed to pull them around as opposed to them pointing to
left field and hitting a homerun there.

Still, even with "more venues for XTC - related material" out there, all
I can say for me is that I still feel an emptiness, an unease.  If all
things must pass, so shall this, I suppose I hope.



From: "Suzanne Cerquone" <>
Message-Id: <>
Date: Wed, 3 Jun 1998 10:48:42 -0400
Subject: Chalkhills statistics

Kirt in Vermont bared his soul:
>>Religion: raised Baptist, now agnostic
Political party: Democrat (I'm betting that most XTC fans are either
Democrat, Labour, or independent. Any Republicans or Tories out there?)
Drugs: not as often as the old days, but sometimes
Job: public relations
Dream: best-selling novelist or ski bum<<

And so shall I:

Religion: raised Episcopalian (kind of like Catholicism but with condoms),
now a regular of St. Mattress
Political Party: Democrat until something better comes along
Drugs: see above
Job: project manager, electronic commerce
Dream: travel the world; win the next Powerball lottery and fund XTC's


Message-Id: <>
From: Christopher Westland <>
Date: Wed, 3 Jun 1998 8:59:53 -0800
Subject: coffee and Pumpkin chords

Hi All (more specifically "Andy&Shell"):

Regarding chord voicings for Peter Pumpkinhead - the first chord is a D,
voiced with the open D string ( NOT barred as I'm sure you probably knew)
and it moves to what could be best called a G 6th (from the lowest string,
3rd fret: GBDGDE, with the D, middle G and top E being played on open
strings).  No wierd tunings here either.  And I suspect Andy plays this bit,
not Dave.  Any other opinions?


P.S.  It takes coffee for me to respond this early in the morning....


Message-Id: <1BB242B4C823D1118E300000C0B800007F8DB8@MSXUS03>
From: "Addiego, MIchael" <>
Subject: My thoughts
Date: Wed, 3 Jun 1998 12:34:37 -0400

Hi All,

	I haven't pulled out my XTC records in some time but here are
some of my favorites:

Red Brick Dreams
In Loving Memory
Deliver Us From The Elements
Knuckle Down
Traffic Light Rock
Yacht Dance
Lady Bird
No Thugs In Our House
Madame Barnum

	I could go on and on.
	I do not like Funk Poppa Roll. This is the one band which has,
up to this point put out  a whole lot of remarkable music. Andy strikes
me as a bit of a pain in the ass and I think Dave will be missed. Colin
must be a saint (he writes great tunes as well).
	Hey,  here's a great band for you "Pizzicato Five". Is anyone
familiar with this band.
	Hey, here's some personal history. I am remarkably hip at almost
40. I am married with a two year old daughter (sorry ladies). I am
American (do not, I repeat do not...hold this against me). I will not
listen to rap except for "Bring Da Noise" I think it's a tragedy that
XTC doesn't tour. I would love to visit Swindon and just might sometime
soon. I have bored everyone by now, so I will move along. Ta...

Mike Addiego


Date: Wed, 3 Jun 1998 12:52:40 -0400 (EDT)
Message-Id: <v03007800b19aefdb20e4@[]>
From: Mitch Friedman <>
Subject: Dispelling The Myth of Fuzzy Warbles

Hi I'm back.

So yesterday I spoke with former XTC guitarist Dave Gregory for a while. He
was busy practicing guitar like he does for a few hours every day. He tells
me that for the month of June his project will be to paint the inside and
outside of his house.  Two coats. And then some gardening after that. He's
trying to give the creative seeds some time to reincarnate and sow. He
sounds fine in case you were wondering.  A friend of his in England printed
out the first 3 or 4 digests after 'the announcement' and gave them to
Dave. (No it was not me!)  He said he was touched by all the nice things
people said and was surprised by how much everyone really cared. So there.

Dave tells me that Andy and Colin are about to release what will be a 4 CD
set consisting of all the BBC sessions that were ever done (like the Drums
and Wireless CD) as well as the live in 1980 thing that has already come out
but also a live in '78 post GO2 show with Barry. This set will be called
"Fuzzy Warbles" which is a term that originates from the milkbar scene in "A
Clockwork Orange". About two weeks ago when I last spoke with Andy, he
mentioned that Cooking Vinyl approached him with the Idea of putting out CDs
of 'every single demo we've ever done'. He was busy starting to go through
all the tapes in his house to see what he had. No word if this is definite
or not but the concept of these releases is to 1) get some of the older XTC
material out on Idea Records and 2) to raise some cash which will help to
fund the recording sessions for the new album(s).

Now back to the double album debate . . .


Message-Id: <l03102800b19b465fb7bc@[]>
Date: Wed, 3 Jun 1998 11:34:53 -0700
From: Dave Blackburn <>
Subject: Pumpkinhead chord

Dear All,
	Shell wrote:<I had been paying more attention than usual to the
guitar parts, for example the intro to "Peter Pumpkinhead".
By the way, what do you reckon the second chord is?  It seems to go from
D major to "G-add9-with-some-other-notes", but WHAT notes?!?  I can't quite
get it right.  Do you know whether or not Gregory uses any weird tunings>

	That chord is G6/9. The notes are bottom to top: GBEADG although
the top G is not always sounded. Use your first finger to bar across the
3rd, 4th and 5th strings (second fret), middle finger plays the root, 4th
finger gets the 3rd fret 2nd string, little finger gets the top string 3rd
	 As for weird tunings I think Andy is the one who uses them more
than Dave. He used an open E tuning quite a bit on The Big Express (Train
Running Low... etc)

				All the best,


Dave Blackburn  			Fallbrook, Ca


From: "David McGuinness" <>
Subject: a question
Date: Wed, 3 Jun 1998 20:45:17 +0100
Message-ID: <01bd8f28$2248c4a0$LocalHost@default>

Is this the first mention of the Dixie Dregs on this list?



Message-ID: <>
Date: Wed, 3 Jun 1998 16:24:44 EDT
Subject: The La's

<does anyone know what ever happend to the La's?>

One of the members of The La's is joined the group Cast after The La's
disbanded.  I believe it was the main songwriter (I very well could be

Shell writes:
<Do you know whether ir not Gregory uses any wierd tunings?>

In all the interviews I've read the "weird" tunings seem to be of Andy's
input and yes there are some strange ones, especially after XTC came off the
road.  This is probably the reason I can't figure out any of their songs.
Kudos to those that do for the web site.


"Hail mother motor, Hail piston - rotor, Hail wheel"


From: (Stewart Evans)
Subject: Second Outpouring
Date: Wed, 3 Jun 1998 15:52:46 -0600 (MDT)
Message-ID: <>

Dom spews on (somebody get this guy a chew-toy!):

->It's always nice to be proved right. Having expressed concerns about the
->often terrifyingly safe and predictable tastes of Chalkhills contributors,
->what do I read in the latest digest, as part of the "double LP" debate?
->Sting, Bob Dylan, Genesis and Jesus H. Christ Superstar!!!

It's easy to be proved right when you only pay attention to the facts that
suit you.  I saw mention of double-LPs from folks like the Minutemen,
Prince, Captain Beefheart, the Beastie Boys, and John Coltrane among others.
But hey, don't let us interrupt your littler hipper-than-thou trip...

In fact, a lot of folks here do have pretty far-ranging tastes, and I'm not
talking about "a Marvin Gaye or Bob Marley album" as Dom snipes.  But I
don't see any particular reason to talk about most of it here.  What we have
in common here is XTC, so other music that gets discussed is, big surprise,
XTC-related or that sounds similar to XTC.  I would recommend, for instance,
Yazbek to somebody knowing only that they liked XTC.  I wouldn't necessarily
recommend KRS-ONE, or Charles Brackeen, or Blue Highway or Khaled to that
same person.  So the picture of our tastes that shows up on Chalkhills isn't
entirely accurate.  (Tastes in mirror are broader than they appear?)  I
should've thought that would be fairly obvious.

Tangentially, the only genre of music I can think of that could really be
called "white" is classical.  Even country music has taken its share of
influence from blues and jazz over the years, as a listen to Jimmie Rodgers,
Bob Wills or Hank Williams will demonstrate.

-- Stewart

* ----------------------------------------------------------
  "You start 'im, we thrash 'im out."  -- Joseph Spence
Stewart Evans - - Boulder, CO


Message-Id: <>
From: "Mark Strijbos" <>
Organization: The Little Lighthouse
Date: Thu, 4 Jun 1998 00:22:11 +0000
Subject: Don't Mention It

Daer Chalkers,

> Surely someone MUST have already mentioned "English Settlement" ?

Yes, you are right. I did mention it before but for your sake I'll
just mention it once more: English Settlement.
And what about Nonsuch?
Also released as a double and also mentioned before if I'm not

yours in anorak,

Mark Strijbos at The Little Lighthouse
 the XTC website @


Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 4 Jun 1998 09:42:28 EDT
Subject: Andy's interview


I just watched a great interview with Andy on the video I got.  Boy, he
seems so down to earth.  He was very honest, and he didn't mince words, and
he was very witty.  I swear he could be a stand up comic.  He seems like a
guy I would like to sit down with and have a conversation with.  I know I've
read he's a perfectionist, and he can be very overbearing.  That means he's

I can't stand it when people think that people put celebrities up on a
pedestal.  They think celebrities are superhuman, and they don't have
problems or feelings of their own.  I'm glad to have someone to admire
that's human.

Bye for now.



Message-ID: <>
Date: Thu, 04 Jun 1998 08:30:42 -0800
From: Ed <>
Subject: Weird Guitar tunings & Ian Dahlberg

Andy said he hasn't used many weird guitar tunings, other than on "The
Big Express"; he just likes to use chords with "a little pepper to
them". Like most guitar players out there, I also started learning by
trying to figure out the obligatory "Smoke On The Water/Day
Tripper/Stairway to Heaven" riffs, but those XTC guitar parts always
ended with a lot of head-scratching. I would quickly give up after
reaching frustration, figuring "ah, they must be using some obscure
tunings", but I found this isn't the case.

Long, long, time ago I corresponded with someone named "Ian Dahlberg"
who used to post on Chalkhills, who sent me some great XTC guitar
tablature. I finally got around recently to returning the favor somewhat
by doing the MIDI transposition for Scissors Man. Alas, I don't see Ian
posting much to this list much, and his old e-mail address doesn't work.
So Ian, if you're out there lurking, the Scissors Man MIDI file can be
downloaded (then unzipped) from the Chalkhills Archive's "Sounds"
section (which contains a lot of cool stuff). You can easily play it
with Media Player in Win95's Accessories folder. For those with Macs,
there are a few more steps, but here's how to hear General MIDI files:

- Launch MoviePlayer, which is a standard feature on the more recent Mac
OS's (sys 7.1 and above, me thinks) ... it's in your hard drive
somewhere; use the always-handy Find File).

- Go to File, then Open..., and navigate to the ScisMan2.mid file which
should be found on your desktop (after your browser's unzipping utility
has decompressed it -- I use ZipIt). When it's selected, choose
Convert... ; you'll see a dialog window ask:

 Save converted file as:
 ScisMan2.mid Movie ;

- click Save (an "Importing movie" window will do its converting thing).

Finally, a MoviePlayer window will appear; start it up and enjoy!!

I've found most MIDI files sound great using the Mac's Quicktime Musical
Instruments extension. How it sounds on a PC depends entirely on your
computer's soundcard. The drums sound less-than-sonic with a
SoundBlaster card.

So Ian, if you're out there still (or anybody who gets a chance to
listen to the ScisMan.mid), let me know what you think.

Ed in S.F.


End of Chalkhills Digest #4-89

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