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Subject: Chalkhills Digest #5-128


         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 5, Number 128

                 Wednesday, 10 March 1999

Today's Topics:

              the sampling issue rages on...
                   this one's a sickie!
         "...still believe in that CHUNKY STEW?"
           Charts--Don't Panic/Sampling Issues
                Getting Together in Tokyo
           Its obvious! um....isn't it? Anyone?
                          Idea?
                      signing dates?
                        LA in XTC
                       Climb aboard
               re: The Return Of Rectal Boy
                     Misheard lyrics
                        somestuff
             Garden of stereophonic delights
                     Walking on Glass
                A.V. advertising in Italy
                Apple Venus/+a little more
                      Easter Theatre
                         Re: AV1

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An out of tune sung song today.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Message-ID: <19990309225303.12216.rocketmail@send106.yahoomail.com>
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 14:53:03 -0800 (PST)
From: Tyler Hewitt <tahewitt@yahoo.com>
Subject: the sampling issue rages on...

This is a long post, but it does try to seriously discuss an issue of
interest to some of us.

Gary Williams wrote:
You are obviously NOT a serious musician or artist, and if you are it is
not your primary source of income.

Those of you out there truly interested in this topic are urged to avoid
misanthropes like Negativland and instead dig up a copy of "The Art of
Music Licensing" by Al Kohn or "This Business of Music" by Bill
Krasilovsky.  There you will find serious discussions of this issue.

Duncan Watt wrote:
who exactly gets to decide whether a sample has been adequately
recontextualized? And if it's not, who should get paid? and how much?
Example: should Jimmy Page have been paid for the sample of Led Zeppelin's
"Kashmir" that Puff Daddy used to fashion the Godzilla movie theme? Was it
unfair that Zep had to pay Willie Dixon for their version of his song, or
was it just a collage?

This is a very, very important topic. Please reply.

The Debate continues...
To answer Mr.Williams: Your comment was not directed at me, but I felt
accused by association. For your information, I am a serious artist.
Not intending to brag, but I have a Masters degree in Fine Arts from
one of the highest ranked graduate art schools in the country. This of
course does not make me a better artist, but does tend to validate my
claim of being a 'serious artist'.  As for art being a primary source
of income, I answer-does it matter? If someone uses a piece of
something I made to create a new work, I am not really losing
anything. I cannot believe that I would lose sales because someone
borrowed something from me. Of course, I'm not getting paid for the
bit they borrowed, but again, I wouldn't really expect to be.
Why avoid "misanthropes like Negativland"? Isn't everyone entitled to
an opinion? Shouldn't the opinion of someone who has been directly
affected by these issues be considered? I think one of the main
arguments here is that those people who make and enforce these laws
may not have practical experience in the creative process.  The
members of Negativland may not be schooled in legalistic jargon, but
that by no means negates their viewpoints.  I tend to trust my fellow
artists over lawyers and others who have an ulterior motive in their
arguments.

To answer Mr. Watt: Your questions come a lot closer to what I feel
are the important issues here. Unfortunately, I don't have the
answers. Who knows when something has been recontextualixed enough? It
seems to be impossible to codify it in a way that will stand up to
legal scrutiny.  Taking it case-by-case doesn't seem right, either.
The potential exists for people to be prosecuted unfairly.
I don't know the songs you mentioned in your post, so I can't comment
on them. However, I do have a few comments to nudge this discussion
along:

1. There is obviously a difference here between the visual and
performing arts. Appropriation is accepted in the visual arts, and
rarely involves prosecution. The few cases of legal issues I have
heard about involved either copying a work in a different medium
(someone made a sculpture based on a famous photograph and sold it as
an original work), or were closer to slander or copyright infringement
(brand names, etc.).

2.  The fair use law, as I understand it (and I may be way off base
here) guarantees the right to use portions of a work for purposes of
parody. This is what hung Negativland. Lawyers for U2 and Island
records felt that the band had crossed the line from parody to
copyright infringement. It seems to me that often, one person's parody
is another person's high-concept recontextualized art piece. I don't
know how to tell them apart.

3. Negativland's stance is one of the little guy being wiped out by
mega-corporations. While I distrust the corporate mindset myself, I
can also see the bias in such an argument. However, there is truth in
this assessment. The members of U2 had ho problem with the use of
their music by Negativland, it was record company lawyers afraid of
losing a couple of bucks. Other cases of a similar nature (John
Oswald's Plunderphonics is the most well known) point to a similar
conclusion.

4.  Negativland espouse a utopian ideal where everyone would be able
to borrow freely and creatively from everyone else without fear of
legal repercussions. This is as about as likely to occur as there ever
being "a river of orchids where we had a motorway".  The bottom line
is this-where there is money involved, some people want as much of it
as they can get, all else be damned. Greed is a major motivator,
folks, and if the environment and creative expression get in the way
of the acquisition of wealth, they will be stomped.

------------------------------

Message-ID: <19990309225735.19489.rocketmail@send1e.yahoomail.com>
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 14:57:35 -0800 (PST)
From: Tyler Hewitt <tahewitt@yahoo.com>
Subject: this one's a sickie!

ok, I have a sick sence of humor sometimes. The easily offended might
want to go on to the next post...

Re: rejected lines from I'd Like That
4. "I'd be James Cameron if you'd be my Hamilton"

3. "I'd do The Donald if you'd be my Ivana, Marla"

2. "I'd be your Bobbitt if you'd be my Lorena, Ow! AAGH!!"

And the top rejected line from "I'd Like That":

1. "Be Amy and you'll get one great Buttafuoco, ho ho"

My favorite rejected line:
"I'd be your Gacy if you'd be my little boy-oh joy!"

------------------------------

Message-ID: <000201be6a7f$ccd5b120$ed09b3d1@oemcomputer>
From: "Aaron Pastula" <apastula@earthlink.net>
Subject: "...still believe in that CHUNKY STEW?"
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 14:18:51 -0800

>What are some of your better misheard lyrics from AV1?

For some unknown reason I keep hearing "'till the BUTTER shines like the
swirling sky."
I know the "g" is clearly articulated, but I keep having to remind myself
that it's "gutter."  What a dork.

AP

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 17:14:12 -0600 (CST)
From: Marshall Joseph Armintor <mojo@is.rice.edu>
Subject: Charts--Don't Panic/Sampling Issues
Message-ID: <Pine.GSO.3.96.990309170849.13785E-100000@is.rice.edu>

  <<All of us bought the album the first week. If that just got us to #106
on the Billboard chart, we can expect Apple Venus to drop off the chart in
the next week or two.  This is our band we support them 100%. Don't expect
XTC to be anything more than a underground cult band. Let's hope they
continue to put out records and make enough money to get by.>>

  Now, now, that's no reason to go swinging from the first shower rod you
see.
  Charts aren't anything to get worked up over...many albums do a slow
burn and wind up selling a ton, even though nobody notices them at first.
Hey, that's how Wu-Tang did it.  If the work is there, the people will
come, and the records will get into the right hands, provided that TVT
doesn't totally neglect them (like Virgin did), and I think they won't.
They haven't, so far.  Marketing only gains you so much -- good music gets
heard no matter what, and we're just Andy and Colin's footsoldiers.
  It ain't like the movies, where the product lives or dies on its initial
box office.  Although it's a little bothersome to think that roughly as
many people bought AV1 in that week as bought Bob Marley's _Legend_ or
_Dark Side of the Moon_, which, strangely enough, has crept back up the
charts recently.  Now, if anyone could tell me _why_ that is, right now,
I'd appreciate it.

<<Tyler, who exactly gets to decide whether a sample has been adequately
recontextualized? And if it's not, who should get paid? and how much?
Example: should Jimmy Page have been paid for the sample of Led Zeppelin's
"Kashmir" that Puff Daddy used to fashion the Godzilla movie theme? Was it
unfair that Zep had to pay Willie Dixon for their version of his song, or
was it just a collage?>>

   It's my understanding that it's an agreement between the original
artist and the one who does the sampling.  The orig. artist sets the terms
of the contract, can demand whatever they want, and has infinite rights
(if they want) to stop the record's release if they're not happy with it
for any reason.  Example: the firestorm over the Verve's using a
symphonic Rolling Stones sample ("The Last Time") in "Bittersweet
Symphony," which resulted in Mick and Keith appropriating ALL the
songwriting royalties from that tune -- although they only used that
strings loop, and the Glimmer Twins didn't have a thing to do with writing
the words, melody, or anything else.  More of a punishment for the
Verve without having "properly" cleared it, I think.
   If you sample from an actual recording, yes, the orig. artist/writer
must be paid, which is why Page et al. got paid for that "Kashmir"
bit...actually, it was the whole damn song, really.  Whether or not the
GodAlmightyLedZep was screwed in having to pay W. Dixon for the right to
use the riff from "I Need Love," when Dixon undoubtedly stole it from
somewhere else, well, that's a money issue.  Belonging, more or less, to a
genre where ripping off other artist's ideas is not only expected, but
institutional, yes, I think Dixon was being hypocritical.  Led Zep learned
their lesson, though,  and after that started taking licks from blues
records of the 20s and 30s whose artists were 1) dead 2) obscure or 3)
whose work was in the public domain, or all three.  (E.g. "Custard Pie" is
an example of that...it's a country blues from '27, whose originator
I've forgotten.  See how that works?)

   marshall

------------------------------

Message-ID: <13622E6FCA31D211A66B0008C71E812CA8FA32@SHN-MSG-01>
From: Naoyuki Isogai <nisogai@microsoft.com>
Subject: Getting Together in Tokyo
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 16:19:25 -0800

Hi there,

XTC have been doing promotional events at several music stores such as
TOWER RECORDS, HMV in Tokyo this week, and I succeeded in seeing them on
Monday.  They had a brief talk show at first, and then autographed on
audiences' items individually.  I showed them CHALKHILLS' CHILDREN '96 &
'97, and said to them, "It's me who played GOOSEY GOOSEY and SEAGULLS
SCREAMING!!!"  Colin did not seem to recognize what I meant, but Andy
seemed to remember my awkward plays and said to me, "You did that songs?
Fantastic!!!"  I didn't have enough time to talk with them more, but I was
really glad that Andy remembered our contribution, as well as I had my copy
of both CD's autographed by them.  I sent the scan of autographed CC97 to
John, and I expect he will upload it to the archive soon. (Thank you,
John!!!)

Anyways, I recognized that there are a lot of XTC fans in Tokyo, and some
of you Chalkers should be in Tokyo now, I guess.  So why don't we get
together in Tokyo and talk about your favorite songs, rare items, Andy and
Colin's favorite beverage, and anything you like?  If you could join us in
Shinjuku on 21st (Sun), please do let me know.

Cheers,

P.S.: Olof, I'm looking for that Japanese lyric file now, just a moment.

Naoyuki Isogai <nisogai@microsoft.com>
Product Manager, Developer Product Marketing
Microsoft Co., Ltd. (Japan)

------------------------------

Message-ID: <36E5C425.5A4@gate.net>
Date: Tue, 09 Mar 1999 20:00:21 -0500
From: pann@gate.Net
Subject: Its obvious! um....isn't it? Anyone?

Hey Chalkizens,

  With the recent posts about tying AV2 into the previous-lyric-becomes-
next-album-title thing, I think I can pretty well say I have a winner
here:

   Hairy Backs

Now, if that doesn't get the cash registers a-ringing, I will eat my
vinyl collection----(wait, what vinyl collection....)

clean shavenly yours,

Perry

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 21:07:25 -0500 (EST)
From: Ted Harms <tmharms@library.uwaterloo.ca>
Subject: Idea?
Message-ID: <Pine.OSF.3.96.990309210339.25866B-100000@library.uwaterloo.ca>

So, what's up with Idea records?

Is this just the front all xTc recordings or, perchance, Andy and Harold
Budd want to have another kick at the can that that music would be
released on Idea?

Is Idea going to sign other bands?

Is Idea going to buy up the back catalogue and do a ripper job of
re-releasing the original albums with bonus tracks?

Or maybe Colin wants to resurrect The Colonel....

And, Gord - you're welcome.  I'd demand your first born but he or she
would be half you and I don't think I'd want that in my house...;)

Ted Harms                                      Library, Univ. of Waterloo
tmharms@library.uwaterloo.ca                           519.888.4567 x3761
"But all things excellent are as difficult as they are rare."  B. Spinoza

------------------------------

From: "Ryan Holquist" <ryanh@velocity.net>
Subject: signing dates?
Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 21:22:27 -0500
Message-ID: <01be6a9c$d7570780$38051fd0@ryanh>

Hi-

I keep seeing the "XTC signing in __city__" posts... is there a schedule of
these things, or do they just show up?

...Ryan

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 19:15:03 -0800 (PST)
Message-Id: <199903100315.TAA15982@intergate.sonyinteractive.com>
From: Bob Estus <bestus@mail.sonyinteractive.com>
Subject: LA in XTC

Friends of a feather,

With a stack of records, still camera, video camera, and a questionnaire w/
return postage, I felt like a gluttonous fan ready to entirely consume the
objects of my affection Andy and Colin at their LA in-store appearance.

First order of the day (after a 3.5 hour drive up from San Diego) was to
meet up with a Los Angellene Mel Fleetwood. Mel is a long time
correspondent of John Partridge, Andy's dad.

Last summer, when a blurb about my website "the Roundabout" ran in the
Swindon Evening Advertiser, John gave Mel my address because he thought we
might hit it off. We finally had a good reason to meet up after much
emailing. While waiting for Mel to finish up at work I sat in his lunch
room and paged through his travel photo album. These were photos of his
pilgrimage to Swindon where he was the guest of the senior Partridges. This
included a visit with Andy and later the Mouldings. Also in this album were
photos of Andy and family at leisure that John had sent since. Priceless as
Andy in a santa suit :^)

We drove to the venue and got in the back of a very long line. After what
must have been a two hour wait, and after a few cycles of jitters and
euphoria, we finally got to the head of the line. As reported elsewhere
Colin and Andy treat each fan with an amazing amount of patience and
personal charm. It takes Andy a few seconds to recognize Mel because of a
hairstyle change and the river of faces parading by. Mel has been recording
an audio tape while in line to send to John. Now he asks Andy to say hello
to his Dad. "Oh hi Dad. I'm sat in a big record department store thing and
I haven't had my supper..."

In fact Andy had gotten halfway through my signing when he announced they
would be taking a quick refresh break and not to go anywhere. He offered me
a plate of fruit that he had been picking at and I said thanks but I wasn't
much of a fruit nut. I think this break worked to our advantage because
when they came back we got even more time.

Video camera in hand I asked Andy to give me a short advertisement and he
pretended to floss his teeth with an AV cover (this segment has
mysteriously vanished from my tape, damn!!!) I had Colin sign my Colonel
single apologizing for the urine-like stains on the back of it. He
immediately picked it up and pretended to enjoy sniffing it saying,"That's
good stuff".  "A good year-in music", I quipped. I told Colin my 9 month
old loves "Fruit Nut". "Does he like freak to it?" says Colin throwing his
arms up in a mock baby dance. Ha, that man is borderline frivolous, I tell
you...

I got the pictures back and can safely say that a blushing californian is
several shades darker than the tan you get from standing in the english
rain.

we're not all light,
-Bob

Oh...AV1 is great! Harvest festival is the best movie I've ever heard. Eyes
brought water!

------------------------------

Date: 10 Mar 99 13:32:25 AED
From: Paul.Culnane@dcita.gov.au
Subject: Climb aboard
Message-ID: <0000jjlrnftp.0000ftzvdrpv@dcita.gov.au>

'ello dere

1) I can't remember who brought this up in 'Hills, but I noticed it too: in
"The Last Balloon", the children are invited to climb aboard last. Menfolk
first, womenfolk second, then "all you Children".

Someone should ask Andy about the significance or otherwise of this.  I
have no quarrel with it, but wasn't it always supposed to be women and
children first?  To me, it's refreshing to hear an acknowledgement for we
blokes - we can be first for once?  After all this time of standing aside
and offering our cloak to women and letting the kids fill their plates
first at a barbecue, we guys get first ride on the last balloon?  Or does
that mean we get to plummet to the ground first?  I'll take that risk.

2)  I'm having some difficulty with the lyrics of "Your Dictionary". Not so
much the vitriol (which I find a tad obvious and pedestrian), but with the
lines about Joey & Mary/Santa and the tooth fairy. Cute lines though they
may be in themselves, they seem incongruous in the context of the song, and
seem to only be there to facilitate a rhyme with the word 'dictionary'.  I
just think overall that the lyrics are clumsy and they spoil a very pretty
melody.

For me, there's always at least one tune on any XtC album that lets the
side down; for AV1, YD is it.  It's not horrible mind you, just a lesser
track on an otherwise brilliant album. Having heard the demo (which I also
thought was a lesser tune among a fine batch), it was interesting to hear
the intake of breath before Andy commences singing this song on the
finished version. Knowing of his disdain for the song, I took that
breathiness to signify his resignation to the demands of CM, DG, Hayden, et
al, who insisted he record it: "oh well, if I *must* record this song..."

3) Re Colin's voice on "Frivolous Tonight": is it being put through a
Leslie effect, as on "Bungalow"?  It sure sounds like it.

4) Steve Clarke and Markie Strijbos correctly linked AV1 to The Wombles via
Mike Batt (arranger of "Greenman" and "I Can't Own Her" and the man behind
the furry ones).  Perhaps I could have asked what the two had in
(Wimbledon) Common???  What a thigh-slapper   :-)     But Toni Adler's
thesis was quite acceptable too (Hi Toni -will write soon when my bloody
boss gets off my back - how dare she expect me to work!!!).

5)  Mark, great story about your Swindon visit; now, where's the Warren
report?

Love onya  ~p@ul

------------------------------

Message-Id: <3.0.2.32.19990309231131.006c6760@mail.interlog.com>
Date: Tue, 09 Mar 1999 23:11:31 -0500
From: David Oh <davidoh@interlog.com>
Subject: re: The Return Of Rectal Boy

dom, dom, dom, you disappoint me so...

part of the reason why you & i got into our little flame war a while back
was because a) you hated my style of writing & b) i took umbrage to your
vicious way of making personal attacks, not just at me, but at any other
person whose opinion you disagreed with. our war was fun at first, but
quickly became very tedious, especially the more beligerent you became.
however, we finally agreed offline to disagree & to change our methods of
communication; i would write a little more normally & you would tone down
your diatribes. peace & harmony was brought back to the land just in time
for the release of av1. & then you write the following:

And if you ever use the word boffo again, I will personally pay to have you
killed.
And on a more irritating and brain-dead note....
>>Wow, this album really blows guys
No it doesn't. And you're an ugly tosser. Sorry - kneejerk reaction.
>>A mediocre pop song with pretty dumb lyrics
Hands up who disagrees? Oh, that'll be everyone then. Twat.
>>The opening is almost as irritating as "River of Dreams"
but once it kicks in, it gets much better.
You are a prize penis. Keep going, this is great...
>>Pretty but sterile ballad
Ha ha ha ha ha. Ha ha ha ha ha. No, stop it. Seriously, STOP IT!!!
>>Did somebody say this was the greatest XTC song ever?  What
kind of drugs are you on?
OK, "Greenman" isn't the best XTC song ever, but it's the drugs you're
taking that worry me. Try oxygen - I gather your brain could do with
some.....
>>Mean-spirited, heavy-handed diatribe that might benefit
from a rockier arrangement.  Still, as someone else said, I hate songs where
the spell stuff out
I can imagine. It must be tricky having to work out what the words are in
such a short space of time. T - W - A - T . Quick, leg it before he works it
out.......
>>Frothy little throwaway from Colin.  At least it breaks up
the monotony.
Jesus, what a misery. Does anyone think that he's bought a Bob Dylan album
by mistake?
>>Boring, completely off-key, out of tune mess.
Now you're starting to piss me off. Come back when you know the first thing
about music and try again. Amateur criticism is all very well, but moronic
bullshit is another matter entirely.
>>Speaking of boring...  Atleast Andy finally shuts up
for the last couple of minutes for that great trumpet solo.
Oh well I am relieved. You liked the trumpet solo. Perhaps a Herb Alpert
record might make more sense next time.
Just for the record, I'm completely deaf in one ear and prone to sudden acts
of verbal diarrhoea, but even I wouldn't have had the audacity to post such
a pitiful litany of cack-handed drivel. Are you sure you actually like XTC
at all?
And speaking of major cock-ups...
>>An interesting note: My wife, on first hearing of "I Can't Own Her" said,
"It sounds like Sting"...AAAARRRGH!!... On second thought, she does have a
point there.
No she doesn't. The world has gone mad, and I shall weep for you all.
>>Dom, keep stirring the pot, please.
Well as you all know, I am an expert pot-stirrer. I am also a dab hand at
nudging heroin, and once disturbed some crack so it's kind of a career
thing really...
>>Hey, remember when REM had a rapper (KRS-One...or some other
combination of letters, numbers, and symbols) "sing" on
their album?
Yes, and it was rather good. KRS-One is something of a legend, despite
what you might think, so it was an inspired collaboration. OK, sampling
"Dear God" is a potentially awful idea but you never know, it could
work....just ask Ozzy. Contrary to popular belief, there is an awful lot
of excellent rap music around at the moment...
>>there a bit too much mutual masterbation at the alter of XTC on
this list most of the time
Possibly, but that is somewhat inevitable since Chalkhills is devoted to
XTC rather than merely curious about them....They're not my favourite band
in the whole world either, but I can totally understand a few jets of jism
gently splattering the digest from time to time...........AND LEARN TO
SPELL!!!
And getting my shots in early....
>>Harrison is anal.
>>Dom is rectal.
Hang on a minute. That's terribly rude. Why can't we all just be nice to
each other? Oh, and BTW (spew!) I'm definitely anal (behold my
alphabetically organized record collection and weep, sweet chalksods,
weep...) - I wouldn't like to speak for Harrison though. Oh alright then,
he's more sphinctral than anything else. Did I just make a word up? Cool.
>>And for those of you that insist on comparing ELO to XTC: Just remember,
Jeff Lynne took two very nice unreleased Lennon songs, and wrecked 'em!
Rectum? You sneaky devil....
Back soon!
Dom.

wow, dude, like, take a chill-pill, will ya?!? i mean, c'mon, dom do you
really have to make things _so_ personal? to disagree with someone's
opinion is one thing, but _must_ you take personal shots at other people?

to quote the great & powerful dom:
Amateur criticism is all very well, but moronic bullshit is another matter
entirely.

i'm reminded of the hippo calling the elephant fat!

<xtc content>
funny, to me, 'i can't own her' sounds a lot like thomas dolby, around the
time of 'the flat earth' album. some of the instrumental voicings &
arrangements remind me of mr. thomas morgan robertson dolby. anyone else
hear it, too?

also, as i have been transcribing the toronto meeting tape, i was reminded
of some very astute observations andy made about the various drummers
who've played for xtc. he was asked, "which one was your favourite?", to
which he first replied, "that's a naughty question! that's like asking
which girlfriend one liked the best?". he did go on to make funny, yet
poignant, comments about terry, prarrie, pat & dave. it makes for
interesting reading. but that's for later...

peace & xtc

davidoh

------------------------------

Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 13:22:38 +0930
From: "Van Abbe, Dominic" <Dominic.VanAbbe@faulding.com.au>
Subject: Misheard lyrics
Message-id: <45C458C0C9C7D2119F790000F87A42A406EAEA@s-mulgrave6.faulding.com.au>

Colin M. has got it quite right and I'm glad to hear it stated so
eloquently in song:
A man does indeed need a *shit* to keep him sane...

Whazzat??  You mean he says "shed"???   Oh, bugger.....  ;-)

Cheers,
Dom

PS. Great album, great songs, great production.  I was amazed in going back
to the demos to hear how plain and tinny they sound compared with the final
product.

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 9 Mar 1999 23:19:14 -0500 (EST)
Message-Id: <v03007800b30b5011c5e6@[209.86.134.236]>
From: Mitch Friedman <mitchf@mindspring.com>
Subject: somestuff

Hello Again,

Just some reponses to comments and questions from today's shocking 5
digests!

First of all, Andy was not fibbing about there not being enough songs for
AV2 but if you read what I said he said a bit closer you'd see that what he
told me was that he didn't think the songs they had chosen were quite good
enough and wanted to round up a few more good ones for the album. There are
reasons why they chose not to record some of the ones from the '95
demos. Those reasons being that he didn't think they were good enough and
he didn't want to record them.

When I first heard the demo to "Knights in Shining Karma" I mentioned to
Andy that while I liked the song, I thought the arrangement was far too
reminiscent of "You Can't Miss It" from the Peter Blegvad album "The Naked
Shakespeare" that he produced. He immediately knew what I was getting at
and said he'd do something about it, which I think he did . . . partially.

Please, if you don't know Andy personally please refrain from broadcasting
to the Chalkhills world that you are pretty sure he is an egotistical
prick.  I'm sure he'd have some similarly flattering things to say about
you if he read your comments.

Sorry for the slightly annoyed tone in some of this message but, well, I
can be an egotistical prick sometimes too!  ;-)

Mitch

------------------------------

Message-Id: <l03020900b30b855968ad@[203.2.40.113]>
Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 15:33:29 +1100
From: Martin Elphinstone <melphins@scu.edu.au>
Subject: Garden of stereophonic delights

Hi all,

Had a bit of trouble finding the tripleJ web site referred to by Toni Adler
(Chalkhills Digest, Volume 5, Number 115 - Airplay in Australia):

http://www.abc.net.au/triplej/net50/vote.htm

If you did too, try finding it at

http://www.abc.net.au/triplej/triplej.htm

and follow the "net50" link to vote for any (or all!) of AV1 (yep, I like
it). Toni, we must have differently-capable browsers 'cos I can't find your
link to request airplay via the web either.

And now for the right-brain part of this stereophilic posting:

Francis Heaney (Chalkhills Digest, Volume 5, Number 124 - Re: Spatail
panning) you clever thing! I hadn't thought of "The Last  Balloon" floating
off into the ever-distance on the fade-out but I do now. Not sure whether
it's fading left or right (or straight up?) though - maybe I need a better
set of headphones.

My favorite AV1 stereophonic moment is on "Easter Theatre" when the backing
vocals "Stage Left" and "Stage Right" come in through alternate channels of
the stereo. BUT, "Stage Left" comes in through the right channel and vica
versa. Are my headphones wired around the wrong way (no, I don't have them
on back-to-front!)? Assuming they're OK then is this some theatrical
convention in that what appears to the audience to actually be the left
hand side of the stage is actually referred to as Stage Right, i.e is it
the right hand side of the stage from the _actors'_ perspective??? If this
is the case then is the stereo image designed to mimic what the audience is
"seeing" in the theatre?

My favorite non-AV1 stereophonic moment (of all time) is in "Bike Ride to
the Moon" by The Dukes of Stratosphear (from "Chips from the Chocolate
Fireball"). Left and right channels not only carry different percussion
tracks but the right-hand track is fractionally delayed relative to the
left - not sure why but it sounds great overall, maybe deeper and/or
broader than if everything were exactly in sync.; definitely sounds weird
if you listen to that channel on its own - you hear an out-of-sync.
percussion track alongside the various (in-sync.) instrumental and vocal
tracks.

Oon the theme of two, I love the dual meanings in the lines

"I wouldn't Hector if you'd be Helen of Troy" in "I'd Like That"

and also

"Enter Easter Egg, she's dressed in your yolk" in "Easter Theatre"

Talk about laugh! Too clever by half this Partridge fellow (to plagiarise
something I read on this list ages ago, also writing about Andy's wordplay
but in "Leisure" on English Settlement). Can't think of any other
contemporary lyricist who has such fun (and success) playing with words as
Andy Partridge. Reminds me a lot of the sort of humorous wordplay that make
Spike Milligan such a multi-layered comic writer...

Martin.

(Re-lurks...)

Martin Elphinstone
Centre for Animal Conservation Genetics
School of Resource Science and Management
Southern Cross University

------------------------------

Message-ID: <3504CE5C.C5D17EE0@mnsi.net>
Date: Tue, 10 Mar 1998 01:23:57 -0400
From: Micheal Stone <nedrise@MNSi.Net>
Subject: Walking on Glass

Chalklodytes

in #126, Chris says:

>Anyway, for those unfamiliar with Philip Glass, Einstein On
>The Beach is definitely worth your acquaintance; the rest you can leave
>alone just as well

I could only take 20 miutes or so of Einstein On The Beach before I had to
get that record off.  In fact I think i whipped it against the wall.  It
was that chorus singing:

           "one two three four
            one two three
            one two three four
            one two
            one two three
            one two three four
            one two"                  ----- and on and on, ad nauseum

It just drove me crazy.  Maybe that's what he intended.  But I've always
considerd Glass to be a serious poseur on the modern music scene.  Though
Powaqqatsi and Kundun soundtracks aren't bad.

On a cheerier note:

In Easter Theatre, can't you just hear the big grin on his face as Andy
sings:

           "Buds will laugh and burst,
            racing to be first."

Ahhhhhhhh.  Another great Apple Venus moment.

kicking and leaping
Mike

------------------------------

Message-ID: <36E61A50.44419E9D@tin.it>
Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 08:08:00 +0100
From: Giancarlo Galli <giagal@tin.it>
Subject: A.V. advertising in Italy

I was reading my favourite digest (Chalksomething of course) and
listening to early morning news on the radio when the beginning of River
of orchids, struck my ears!
The italian distributor of A.V. is making a massive advertising campaign
on indipendent radios: let's hope for the best!
By the way, one major network (Radio Popolare) has declared album of the
week A.V. and broadcasted almost all of the songs a couple of weeks ago.

And the Greenman peeks out sometimes here and there.
I feel a whole lot better... something decent on the radio speakers.

       Giancarlo Galli

------------------------------

From: CCooli9575@aol.com
Message-ID: <f74cc288.36e656c0@aol.com>
Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 06:25:52 EST
Subject: Apple Venus/+a little more

Chalkoholics,

>It's good to see the excitement over AV1 hasn't peaked yet. A couple
>digests back, someone mentioned that AV1 discussion had crossed internet
>lines into the Elvis Costello list. Today, I found that it had (quite
>favorably) leached into the Catherine Wheel list. Has anyone seen other
>inroads made anywhere?

  It's been mentioned very favorably on both The Kinks list and the Richard
Thompson list. Considering that I'm on both lists it doesn't surprise me
that they have as good taste as I do. :-) Personally I don't think we have
to worry about Apple Venus either stiffing big-time or going
multi-platinum, as some have feared or expected. I think XTC, like The
Kinks and Richard Thompson, have a large enough fan base worldwide(probably
about 100,000 worldwide like Richard Thompson; The Kinks' is larger but not
as deep, there's a few very serious fans and a lot more very casual ones
who just know the hits)that Apple Venus would be a break-even project for
TVT/Cooking Vinyl if all those fans buy one album each. Consider that a few
will buy multiple copies to bother their friends with and that others will
turn people onto the album who either a: hasn't heard of XTC but would like
the album if they heard it, or b: thought they'd broken up or c: had heard
"Senses Working Overtime" or "Dear God" or "Mayor Of Simpleton" and forgot
about them. Those are the people who'll build up the fan base. Nonetheless,
I can't see Apple Venus selling more than a few hundred thousand copies
worldwide, which would be enough to make TVT/Cooking Vinyl a small profit
and build a fan base for Apple Venus II, which has a better chance at
commercial potential.

  Not bad for a couple of guys who don't tour. A few more insights on Apple
Venus I after a second listen; I'm not sure about the resemblance to Glass,
Reich, or Eno, but I'd recommend "River Of Orchids" to any fan of
contemporary classical music; I'd consider Andy a fellow traveller of all
three, rather than influenced by. I much prefer "Frivilous Tonight" over
"Fruit Nut;" the latter reminds me of a weird novelty song by Procol Harum
from one of their later albums called "Fresh Fruit," just as, uh,
fruity. Still a cute ditty and a decent song, but something of a
throwaway. Nevertheless, it's great that Colin seems a lot more cheerful on
this album; based on most of his output on Nonsuch and Oranges And Lemons,
he was turning into quite a gloomy-gus and he was beginning to worry
me. For the first time since, oh, maybe the Dukes, he sounds like he's
singing with a grin on his face. I beg to differ about this being an
entirely acoustic album, though; isn't that an electric guitar solo on
"Easter Theater?" Sounds like a Dave solo too. And, of course, the samples
are triggered electronically, and I hear a number of synthesised keyboard
sounds throughout. "Harvest Festival" has grown on me a bit, but for me
it's still by default the weakest song on the album. I guess everybody's
going to have one song that moves them more than the others, for me it's
"The Last Balloon." I don't know if anyone's noticed, but its melody and
general mood and feel remind me a lot of "Rook," discounting the choice of
strings and horns over oddly chorded piano for backing. It has the same
bleak meancholy feel, though, and it's the only song on the album I'd
recognise immediately as an XTC song as a casual fan hearing it for the
first time, aside from "I'd Like That" and "Your Dictionary," which sound
like unplugged versions of electric XTC songs out there somewhere. The rest
breaks entirely new ground, though "Greenman" does somewhat suggest
"Beating Of Hearts" at times.

  There's only two pop-rock oriented albums I've heard that Apple Venus I
resembles in the slightest; The Beach Boys Smiley Smile and Todd Rundgren's
A Cappella. The difference in the latter case is A Cappella did with the
human voice what XTC did with orchestration; though Rundgren goes one step
further and relies on sounds of human vocal origin(no farting or whistling,
though)only for rhythm and orchestration, sampled and live. It's an amazing
achievement, but not entirely successful, like much of Rundgren's more
experimental work. Apple Venus is much more successful as an artistic
achievement; it's not perfect, but it's really really good, and how many
albums can you say that about these days?

Chris

------------------------------

Message-Id: <v01540b02b30c14b5a8ec@[193.149.72.170]>
Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 12:29:44 +0000
From: isecuk@gn.apc.org (isec)
Subject: Easter Theatre

Dear Interested Parties

Somebody wondered about the meaning of "now the son has died the father can
be born", and someone else mentioned the answer could be found in Joseph
Campbell's work. Quite right - anyone who wants to understand Andy
Partridge could do a lot worse than reading Campbell's book 'The Hero With
A Thousand Faces'. As you know, Andy is hugely into mythology and is a
large and voracious bookworm. He called me in '96 after I sent him a copy
of a book I'd written about mythology and stuff. We had a mad, funny chat
and I told him I thought Peter Pumpkinhead was about the universal hero of
Campbell's book and he said 'That's it exactly - most people think it's
about Jesus, JFK, Martin Luther King and so on but it's about Campbell's
hero of all times everywhere'.

The hero in this sense, according to Campbell, is any individual who
rejects conformity. In particular, a hero is anyone who rejects the usual
goals of money, status and power, to search for deeper truth, compassion,
meaning and fulfilment by "following their bliss" in whatever they find
deeply moving and inspiring. By contrast, Campbell argues that doing
something just to make money leads directly to the personal and social
"wasteland" that we see in the culture all around us.

I think Andy has very consciously pursued his bliss in his work. He has
long since abandoned money and success, and as a result has produced some
really wonderful stuff. This is why he is so inspiring - he's a living
example of what can happen when people follow Campbell's advice: forget the
money and do what you love.

On the Easter Theatre lyrics, I think the idea is that we can only become
fathers/creators when we stop being children. So in a sense our old
childish selves have to 'die' so that we can be 'born' as adults and
fathers.

This idea of birth from death has a very old and important history. In
traditional cultures, people noticed that when you plant a seed - that is
to say, when you bury it, or 'kill' it - something subsequently starts to
grow from where it was buried, so there came this notion that death of the
old was necessary for the birth of the new. This is where the whole notion
of human and animal sacrifice came from: kill an animal and new life, more
animals, will be created to hunt.

People also noticed that the final phase of the old moon and the first
phase of the new moon looked like the two horns of a golden bull. In
between there were three days of darkness, so they had the idea that the
old moon died (the left horn) and gave birth to the new moon (the right
horn) - the three days in-between were thought to be the dark face of the
bull. From this came the sacrificial killing of bulls (for example in
Spanish bullfights) which is symbolic of killing the old to allow new life
to pour into the world.

Easter, of course, is a celebration of the death and rebirth of Jesus who
after the crucifixion, like the moon, died/disappeared for three days and
then was resurrected as a heavenly being: again, new, better life from the
death of the old and lesser. Easter now falls on the first Sunday of the
new moon, so the two ideas are very closely linked. In Buddhism there is a
very similar theme: under the tree of enlightenment the ego of the Buddha
died and he was reborn as an enlightened being. It's no coincidence that he
was under a symbol of the tree of life (as was Jesus on the cross - an
ages-old symbol of the tree of life): the idea, again, is that renewal of
life comes from the death of the lesser leading to the birth of the
greater.

So Andy is probably arguing that for renewal to be possible - for a saner,
more enlightened and alive world (symbolised as Easter) to be born and
"upheld" - the selfish/proud/greedy/childish aspects in us need to die so
that we can give life to this better way and "blow away the smoke" that
come from the flames of greed and hatred from which we should "shield" our
souls (see - KiSK). Perhaps this is also the theme of The Last Balloon.

One last thing: "some might say we're a bit of a shower". A shower in
English slang means "an unpleasant and contemptible person or group of
people". So it means: "some might say we're a bunch of useless
idiots/jerks".

Best wishes

David Edwards

------------------------------

Message-ID: <36E6314B.4325@bhip.infi.net>
Date: Wed, 10 Mar 1999 08:46:20 +0000
From: Brian <mattone@bhip.infi.net>
Subject: Re: AV1

Tschalkgerz!

AV1 was really clicking with me yesterday.

"Easter Theatre" is one of the best pieces of music ever written by XTC.

"Frivolous Tonight" is one of those songs that could only work when
Colin sings it. He's got that touch... great tune.

"Green Man" is one the coolest songs I've ever heard.

"Your Dictionary" - ballsy tune, and one that'll never make it to the
radio.
That's our lads... don't change a thing.

We can look forward to happy times, now.

Dave Gregory may have departed, but XTC is still here.

--
 BRIAN THOMAS MATTHEWS

------------------------------

End of Chalkhills Digest #5-128
*******************************

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