Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #5-134

         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 5, Number 134

                  Sunday, 14 March 1999

Today's Topics:

                     got my AV1 vinyl
                   potential singles ?
                  Another review of AV1
                    Play Misty for me
                   Spraying my butt...
     Funk Pop A HMV/PonyCanyon: Dissapointed in Osaka
                    More Dictionaries.
                       Dan asked...
        then out of nowhere invitation in gold pen
                    Seattle XTC Fans?
                      His Dictionary
                  XTC Apple Venus review
                        That's me
                   Question for Duncan
                The Beauty of Imperfection
Question re; Phil's offer of AV1 T's to us interested parties...
                   Marvelous Frivolous
                 the eye of the beholder
                         IRC Chat
               Re: Now dont get me wrong!!!
            Apple Venus demos and Song Stories
           Re: Albert/Victoria; Nelson/Hamilton
       River of Orchids played in BBC2 documentary
          Re: A Thought-Experiment in Nastiness
               The trashing of Dave Gregory


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Stop 'n go -- all of the time.


Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 01:12:17 -0800 (PST)
From: Benjamin Lukoff <>
Subject: got my AV1 vinyl
Message-ID: <>

And I'm happy!  Only $20 a pop from MusicMachine.  Looks and sounds great.



From: "john gray" <>
Subject: potential singles ?
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 10:59:52 -0000
Message-Id: <E10Lm4K-0000Ub-00@carbon>

I have been following the suggestions for possible singles
from AV1 . And then I read a few people asking what had
happened to some of the songs that never made it from
the original demos to the finished album ( you know where
this is going already, don't you ?).
 There seem also to be lots of people ( me included) whose
copies of the demos include only the songs which did make
it onto the album, so perhaps can't really comment . But those
of you out there in possession of the complete demos - are there
 songs 'left over' which in your opinions would make a strong single ?
Given the more than occasional Beatles comparisons, there is a
grand tradition to follow . Remember 'Penny Lane/Strawberry
Fields'  was a completely freestanding single release ( at the time
- future compilations being discounted).



Message-Id: <>
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 12:35:57 +0100
From: jan bletz <>
Subject: Another review of AV1

The Dutch music magazine OOR (ear') had a short but enthousiastic review
of AV1 this week. The reviewer was glad XTC haven't forgotten how to write
good songs'. He singled out Your Dictionary', a song with dark lyrics
sounding like a Disney-tune'. AV1 entered at number six (of 10) of OOR's
list of favourite new albums, behind Sebadoh (number 3).

Jan Bletz


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 08:19:28 -0500
From: Todd and Jennifer Bernhardt <>
Subject: Play Misty for me


Two (Too? Nah.) short replies:

Misty said:

> Gee, Andy can be bitter, but Elvis is a bonfide bitch, God love him. Just
> look at This Year's Model, an album which people love, but which I think
> gets very tiresome in its unremitting vitrol.  I think that any bitterness
> in Andy's songs is accompanied by this undertone of pain, whereas any such
> pain in Elvis's songs is obscured by this masculine, tough guy, anger
> thing.  In short, Andy seems more *sensitive*, while Elvis is a crank!
> This is why I like XTC more -- because Elvis just never seems to happy
> with anything.  For example, a simple Elvis Costello love song does not
> exist (except for maybe the aptly named song "Uncomplicated").

You're right in your assessment of the two, I think, but you gotta love
Elvis' crankiness. As for a simple, sad love song, I don't think you can do
much better than Imperial Bedroom's "Almost Blue." One of those songs that
has made me say, "Fuck, I wish I'd written that." I've certainly lived it.

and, in a separate post, asked:

> I have a question that is shallow and irrelevant and just symptomatic of
> my voyeuristic desire to know 'bout the private lives of the band...
> What happened between Aimee Mann and Dave?

>From what I know, she dumped Dave -- and fired the rest of the band -- at
>the end of the "Whatever" tour. As Dave himself has admitted, it was a
>matter of "caveat emptor," so I guess she's well known for her, um,
>pragmatic approach to love and career.

Makes you wonder if any of the songs on "I'm With Stupid" were written
about their relationship, don't it?



Message-ID: <>
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 07:40:56 -0600
From: John Voorhees <>
Subject: Spraying my butt...

That is a wonderful misheard lyric, isn't it?
But I mostly wanted to express that I think I finally "got" Fruit Nut!
I loved Harrison's explication of the album structure a couple of days
back, and his summing up of the contradictions in Colin's songs. ("Fruit
Nut" saying "I don't need people at all" and "Frivolous Tonight" saying
"God, I really need people!") That's especially poignant given the
musical similarities between the two.  I immediately enjoyed Frivolous,
but couldn't quite work up enthusiasm for Fruit Nut.  I mean, it was
catchy and all, but there was something subtly... abrasive about it.
That little pipe solo that keeps coming back, the chords just dissonant
enough to make it vaguely unpleasant, the weird squeaky guitar on the
bridge, the glaring touches of reverb.
Okay, you can all virtually slap me for taking so long to realize it,
Lyrically, the song is a mantra for a harried worker/husband.  You can
almost literally hear him spraying his butt... I mean buds... in rhythm
to the song.  He's singing in the shed, there can be little doubt of
that.  BUTT!  He is trying to drown out some serious tension and
frustration from the day, and that's being expressed musically all over
the damn place, including a slightly strained vocal performance on the
part of Messer Moulding.  Frivolous Tonight is full of genuine enjoyment
at a stupid social gathering, but Fruit Nut is a man trying to convince
himself that none of the stuff outside can get to him while he's in his
shed.  And he's WRONG!  He's not really being kept entirely sane, now,
is he?  You get the idea that the wife not complaining is a fairly rare
situation, don't you?  You're afraid he's going to have himself a little
"episode" with those poisons he's mixing, now aren't you?
Honestly, I have yet to listen to this album without finding new stuff.
(About a dozen times now, I'd say, and I know you'll consider that
pretty lax, but give me a break. I'm a working man who rarely gets a
chance to go out and spray his butt.)

John Voorhees


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 23:32:52 -0800
From: michaelw <>
Subject: Funk Pop A HMV/PonyCanyon: Dissapointed in Osaka

Hello Chalkers!

Have immensely enjoyed the past few posts (especially Dom's age reference a
la Colin's Dying? "We're getting older, too.." Hey, Dom, I'm 31, and when I
listen to O & L I feel...well, 31! A young 31, of course!)

A couple of weeks ago, I bought AV1 from Tower Records here in Osaka. We
have TWO Towers here, and I guess I bought mine at the wrong one. Soon
after buying it, I received a message from a Japanese friend of mine saying
that XTC would be visiting both HMV and Tower on 3/13. As excited as when I
first bought O & L some 10 years ago, I was looking forward to the
visit. However, another friend cautioned me by saying there was a "policy"
that one had to buy the CD at the store where Andy and Colin would be
visiting.  I went to HMV to check, sure enough the staff there said, if you
didn't buy it here, and didn't send in the post card, and didn't call the
special phone number beforehand, you wouldn't be able to join the signing
line!  Slightly aghast, I called Tower in Shinsaibashi, where I bought the
CD. They said, "oh, the signing is at the OTHER Tower, you might want to
call them." When I did, they told me that all the tickets for the "event"
had been sold-out. When I asked what time the "event" started, they said
point-blank, "oh, sorry, that's a SECRET". Huh?!  What gives? Talk about
egalitarian childishness and idiocy!

Today I went to HMV around 1:20; Andy and Colin were due to show up at 2.
The "event" was scheduled from 2-4. When I got there, only about 20 people
were waiting. There was no line at that point. Then a few of the staff
started putting these ropes along the counters; not for the ticket holders,
but to keep the "onlookers" back. What onlookers? I tried to explain my
predicament, but they started to check everyone to see if they indeed had
these tickets, and asked that I stand behind the rope, which was pushed to
about 20 feet behind the table set up for Andy and Colin.  Come 2:00, there
was a sizable group who had tickets, I'd say about 100, while we
"onlookers" numbered around 30. We were situated in 6 aisles, with one or
two HMV staff at the head of each aisle, keeping us back the best they
could. Most of the other people in the store didn't know what the heck was
going on.  I was in a row on the far right, which was pushed back even
further so that Andy and Colin could come through a side entrance
(unbeknownced to us).  The "line" of people holding tickets was actually a
"blob"; the first of many organizational glitches by our friends at HMV
and/or Pony Canyon (PC).  At around 2:15, Andy and Colin come striding
quickly down an aisle at the side nearest to me. I was one aisle over, and
shouted a "hello", whereupon they turned their heads slightly, and
proceeded to shake a few hands.  As they apporached the table, I noticed
two mineral water bottles, but no bowls of fruit or any food/snacks

Some people started taking pictures, but they were quickly reprimanded (as
was myself, with several good "palm-in-lens" shots courtesy HMV/PC
staff). An announcement that no photos would be allowed, nor would videos
(I found this out, too).  In addition, no Q & A session, it was just right
to the signing!  Surprisingly, for the first few minutes, Colin seemed in
good spirits and fresh; Andy, on the other hand, seemed courteous but not
his jovial self...he smiled politely, but whenever he tried to sign more
than two things, a PC rep (there were no less than 3 Japanese staff up on
that stage, at the table, with them, and they were constantly shaking their
hands or head, saying, only one autograph, no, can't sign that too, etc I
tried to shout in a semi-loud voice, "Andy, Colin, AV1 is spot-on
magnificent, a great piece of art!" but I think my voice was drowned out by
the LOUD stereo system (I think Greenman was playing at the time). Andy
didn't seem to hear me, but Colin seemed to glance up a bit in my
direction, and just as I made eye-contact with him, two HMV/PC staffers
came over and, in not-so-bad English said, "Please, no shouting, keep
quiet, or you leave the store, OK?"  HUH?!  Well, seeing that I didn't want
to disturb those who had tickets and were waiting, I kept my mouth shut and
watched...and waited....behind Andy and Colin were these video monitors,
and periodically, I'd see shots of Andy and Colin signing stuff...Andy was
still in his smile/handshake/polite words but no chuckle mode, while one
guy shook Colin's hand/arm so hard, I thought he was going to fall off his
chair!  And I did notice one guy with 'The Loving' 12", which was cool.

Around 3:30, after numerous attempts to get in the "blob ticket line
group", I decided to leave; not because I wanted to (hell, I would've
waited until 4:30 or 5) but because I had to return to work to interview a
couple of applicants for our school. (I work about 10 minutes walking
distance from HMV, and was taking an unusually long lunch break).  It was
time for Plan B--I had a thank-you-for visiting-Osaka fan/friend type note
and some things for Andy and Colin to sign (just in case I didn't get to
meet them) , but was wary of giving them to the HMV/PC staff, as I didn't
see a bin/pile of things behind Andy and Colin's chairs (I guess giving
gifts was forbidden- too). Regardless, I asked a young couple in front of
me (the lucky ones who had tickets and weren't being harassed) if they
would be so kind as to give this envelope to Andy and Colin. They smiled
and I think they said, "sure, no worries!".  With that, I left the store,
and upon going out, saw a couple security guards walking toward the
front..which, by that time, didn't surprise me a bit...

Best part of today was to watch Andy and Colin and see how genuinely
polite, kind, considerate, and generous with their time they are with each
and every person with whom they met (even though the time spent with each
person seemed short-no photos, only one sign per person, etc). I didn't see
them get up from their chairs, however, in the hour and a half I was
there...bummer, they must've been tired!  Worst part, of course, was the
absolute shabby, disorganized, unprofessional way that both HMV and Pony
Canyon staff handled today's event. The 30 or so people who were forced to
wait 20 feet behind the ropes dwindled down to about 10 (including myself)
by the time 3:30 hit...still, they forbade us to cross the line, and when
we tried, we were pushed back or taken by the arm..not that many Japanese
wanted to "rock the boat"-I sure didn't want Andy or Colin to be
distracted, so I reluctantly gave in. Aargh!

I was wondering, did any of you out there in Chalk-Land attend todays
event?  What time did Andy and Colin finish? I heard they had to go to
Tower soon after, so maybe that's why everything was rushed.  Sorry for the
long post, but I just had to vent my frustration with the way the in-store
event here in Osaka was handled, and was very glad/happy for my friend
Naoyuki Isogai, who hinted that the Tokyo event ran much better...thanks

Michael Wicks

P.S. I wanted to ask Andy a question, perhaps one of you (Yazbek?) know the
answer: were the songs "Mississippi Honeymoon" and "The Go-Go Years"
written and intended by Andy to be used on O & L, or did Andy write those
specifically for/with Yazbek?  Thank you and G'nite!


Message-ID: <01BE6D63.909D7260@robert>
From: Robert Wood <>
Subject: More Dictionaries.
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 15:03:28 -0000

Paul Culhane brought up the subject of Lyrics in "Your Dictionary". My
friend Dave who I finally got into XTC a few months ago, after years of
subjecting it to him, asked me an interesting question about it the other

The conversation as I was driving along  went something along the lines

Dave: "I have a problem with the lyrics of Your Dictionary"
Me: "What's that?" (As I thought he was going to suggest they were too
vitriolic or something along those lines.)
Dave: "When he sings 'S-H-I-T, is that how you spell me in your dictionary',
is he saying that's how *she* spells me as in her, or is that how she refers
to Andy?"
Me: "Also, is that Andy asking Marianne the question, or Marianne asking
Dave: "Post it to Chalkhills and see what they say."
Me: "OK"

So, er, whaddayathink?


Message-ID: <01BE6D63.8F0D0E60@robert>
From: Robert Wood <>
Subject: Dan asked...
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 14:41:20 -0000

...about Nonsuch and whether other people also loved it to bits.

Count *me* in as a big, big fan of Nonsuch - and also note that this album
is responsible for turning more friends of mine into XTC fans than all the
rest of the albums put together. It's a much more accessible album than
their others and I think that's what many people don't like. I reckon
there's a kind of snobbery about Nonsuch *because* of its accessibilty. I
even like The Smartest Monkeys, and Wardance is one of my favourites, sorry
Dan! I played Nonsuch a couple of nights ago, as side four came on a friend
came round to listen to a pair of speakers we were both thinking about
buying, by the time we'd unpacked the speakers and were ready to listen to
them we'd reached Books are Burning. It sounded just awesome - a fantastic
track, to my mind the best closing track to any XTC album.

Which reminds me of an incredibly fatuous comment someone made about  The
Last Balloon being the best album closer since Chalkhills and Children. Oh
yeah, beats *all* those other album closers that have come since, like Books
are Burning and er, er...


From: "Wesley Hanks" <>
Subject: then out of nowhere invitation in gold pen
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 08:20:31 -0800
Message-ID: <000001be6d6d$6aadf200$181c1d26@wes>

This is one lovely list!
I want to express my deep gratitude to a number of outstanding folks;
diabetics, page down:

John Relph - What with the constant dumping of reviews, tabs, list postings,
pictures, etc, etc. - well a man needs a hobby. bravo!

Dave Gershman - This man spent part of his precious face time with Andy
getting me a personalized autographed copy of AV1, gold pen indeed! (As well
as selfishly sending me tapes.) Thanks Dave.

Jill Olsen - A fellow artist who articulates so well the artist's mind. I
am envious that you live in a cultural hot spot, quite different from my
golden-age-of-plastic Las Vegas.

Harrison Sherwood - My friend, you always leave me saying to myself - I
think I was thinking about that, man this sharpie bloody nails it every
time. Sit back and enjoy!

Mark Stijbos - A fan's fan. You will never catch Mark dismissing any portion
of XTC's work. He constantly points out things that add value and insight
which adds to the enjoyment of XTC's music.

Simon Sleightholm - A genuinely warm, patient and honest individual who
extended a pleasant, reassuring welcome when I was a stumbling, fumbling

Dominic Larson - Passion need not be dismissed. Taking the middle road is a
boring existence folks. Stand for something and don't blink.

Bottom line, music actually means something in these folk's lives. They
contribute and share their lives, which in this increasingly ugly world, is
a vulnerable and precious commodity. Naturally I can't list everyone on
this list who's contributions are worthy of recognition.

Heart on sleeve,
Wes Hanks

How about "Bursts Up Through Concrete"?


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 08:48:44 -0800
Subject: Seattle XTC Fans?

Recently discovered XTC, my only previous exposure being the Mayor Of
Simpleton (one of my favs). First got the Upsy Daisy Assortment, and
found myself liking the later stuff best. My expectations were well
satisfied by AV1, Nonsuch, and Oranges & Lemons.
Like another favorite band of mine, Squeeze, the earlier material that
I've heard
doesn't thrill and move me like the latter.
(Thought you said it well in your recent post Dave (Robson).
Colin's bass playing is exemplary, and for those who don't like his
songs on AV1,
I would say they are best enjoyed in a lighthearted mood (Arrive there
as you will.. :)
As a musician influenced by The Beatles, Todd Rundgren, The Beach Boys,
XTC has become one of my very favorite bands.
Strangely enough, I haven't been able to find many XTC fans here in
Seattle, Wa.
Are you out there?
Rich Frers (SeattleGuitar)


Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 13:24:21 -0500 (EST)
Message-Id: <v03007800b31015a05081@[]>
From: Mitch Friedman <>
Subject: His Dictionary

Hello again,

Welcome to yet another in a series of very short posts by me lately.

If anyone was lucky enough to hear the great 3 hour radio show appearance
that Andy and Colin made on Sunday Feb. 21st on Vin Scelsa's "Idiot's
Delight" show on WNEW-FM, then you'd have heard the definitive explanation
behind "Your Dictionary" (and "Dear God" for that matter). Andy said "I
wrote "Your Dictionary" to make myself feel better, not to hurt someone
else". Etc.



Subject: XTC Apple Venus review
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 99 19:40:25 +0100
From: Ludovic Patry <>
Message-ID: <>

To complete your list of album reviews, a good one was published in the
swiss daily "Le Temps" on march 13, 1999.

Great website, XTCsely yours,

L. Patry


Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 13:08:13 -0500
Subject: That's me
Message-ID: <>

Steve from TX mentioned this:
<<1. People generally have the greatest affection for the recording that
"flipped the switch" for them, and turned them into fanatic fans.
Chalkhillians are die-hard fans, and die-hard fans are by definition,
people who are fans of long standing. Therefore, they generally favor the
earlier recordings.>>

I think that defines me.  I'm a diehard fan, well I don't have all their
stuff yet, but I think I am one.  I've listened to their music for about
10 years since I haerd Oranges & Lemons, I know that's not one of their
early stuff, but that's the first album I ever bought from them.  I do
have Drums & Wires and that's my third fave after Skylarking and AV1.



Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 13:41:41 -0500 (EST)
From: Funk Genie <>
Subject: Question for Duncan
Message-ID: <>

Three cheers for Duncan Watt's last post on extensive sampling-
My question to you Duncan is how much of a say does an artist have
in whether or not someone covers his/her song. Could Zep, Sting, XTC have
refused to allow the use of their songs? I've wondered about this since
Puff Daddy started his tomfoolery and I am even more curious now that
REM's "Superman", Steve Miller Band's "Fly Like and Eagle", and the Stones
"Can't Always Get what you Want," have all been used in commercials. And
if the artists do have a choice what is their motivation for allowing the
use of their song?


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 14:03:29 EST
Subject: The Beauty of Imperfection


This is my first time de-lurking here.......

Regarding some of you folks who feel "Your Dictionary" does not fit in with
the overall beauty of Apple Venus 1.

I understand in some Eastern religions there are rugs that are made with
perfect precision, yet a small imperfection is eventually included to convey
that humans are not as perfect as God.  Also in the symbol of Yin & Yang,
there is a small white dot within the larger black swirl, just as there is
also a small black dot within the larger white swirl. The idea here being that
there are no pure absolutes; that there is little of "the other" in

To me "Your Dictionary" is a wonderfully powerful song that fits in
beautifully with the rest of the album.


Albuquerque, NM, USA


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 14:15:18 -0800
From: Dan Phipps <>
Organization: CIC
Subject: Question re; Phil's offer of AV1 T's to us interested parties...

Hi all,

Anyone else heard anything from PC re:
these AV1 shirts?

Good God!!  These things look GOOD, too!

Just wondering if maybe I was being
impatient or something.  Probably...

Can't wait to get mine!!!!!  :-)

/Dan Phipps <>

The two rules of Life:
1.  Don't sweat the small stuff.
2.  It's ALL small stuff!


Message-ID: <>
Date: Fri, 13 Mar 1998 14:17:25 -0400
From: Micheal Stone <nedrise@MNSi.Net>
Subject: Marvelous Frivolous


Another big Nonsuch fan here.  I love it, and up until the arrival of AV1,
was my most played XTC album of the last few years.  A flawed masterpiece,
great songs and not so great songs >>Then She Appeared(for me-as good a
song as there ever was), followed by Wardance(the less said the better).
Take off 4 tunes(ah, but which 4 tunes?  -we'll never agree on that!) and
you got their best album ever.

In #132, Tim Lovegrove said:

- initially wasn't impressed with Frivolous either but the damn thing
  just doesn't give up and I love it now.

Yeah!  I think Frivolous Tonight just may be the best thing on AV1.  Alot
of people are calling it "light", and of little consequence.  Think again
people.  Just because it has a light and merry sentiment does not make it a
light weight song!  I played Frivolous for a musician friend of mine, and
besides the obvious Bealtes reference, it made him think of Kurt Weil.  Not
too shabby!  Way to go Colin!!!!!

And, having nothing whatsoever to do with anything:

A rejected Hallmark Card verse:

My tire was thumping
I thought it was flat
when I looked at the tire
I noticed your cat........Sorry!



Message-ID: <>
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 11:48:06 -0800 (PST)
From: Tyler Hewitt <>
Subject: the eye of the beholder

Lots of interesting comments on beauty. I have to play Devil's
advocate a little, and bring up a couple of points:

1. Who decides just what is beautiful? There are not only major
cultural differences in what is considered beautiful, but there are
personal differences as well. While I agree that a lot of today's art
is unattractive, others may not think so. I for one think that
Joel-Peter Witkin's work is beautiful. It's grotesque, and very
disturbing, but for me there is also an undenyable beauty in much of
his work.  Maybe there's some sort of difference between visually
beautiful and morally or conceptually beautiful. I don't even know if
that makes sense, -what do you think?

2. My cynnical self fears that if there is a return to beauty in the
arts, it will be a smirking, self-aware, insincere beauty.
Postmodernism has made everyone very self-aware, and you can't ignore
that knowleedge. I don't necessarily like this much, but I can't
change it.


Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 15:14:33 -0500
Subject: IRC Chat
Message-ID: <>

Well, I tried to hold another IRC chat, and nobody showed up.  I waited
about 10 minutes.  I thought I mentioned that I changed the date, because
last week I had a few computer problems.  I even said to look at my web
site.  I wanted people who weren't on AOL to have an opportunity to get
together and discuss AV1, but I guess people are more busy.
I will never hold another IRC chat again for a while.  I don't understand
why people won't come to my chats.  It was at 3pm EST (8pm GMT).  Oh



From: (Joel Flaxman)
Message-Id: <9903131751.ZM492@custer>
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 17:51:41 -0600
Subject: Re: Now dont get me wrong!!!

Steve Oleson wrote:

>People generally have the greatest affection for the recording that
>"flipped the switch" for them [snip] Therefore, they generally favor
>the earlier recordings.

I disagree.  I was turned onto XTC through Nonsuch and these days I
can barely stomach it (flame away).  I like the older releases because
I find them musically superior and far more interesting to listen to.
Yes, I even like Go 2 (White Music has it's moments, but well it is White

(The following should be read as a whisper) And speaking of Go 2, would
anyone be willing to trade me demos of the Barry Andrews song that didn't
make the record? (end whisper)



Message-Id: <v01540b03b3107b322687@[]>
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 17:54:14 -0400
From: (bruce bubier)
Subject: Apple Venus demos and Song Stories

I've just finisthed reading Neville Farmer's XTC book
It was quite good and I recommend it.
In it was mention of demos for Apple Venus that were readily available.
Now, it's been several years since I've been in XTC tape trading circles
but if anyone could help me track down some these demos I sure would
appreciate it.
I have lots of XTC (and others) to trade.
Please write to me directly at

Can't wait for Volume 2.

Thanks mucho,
Bruce Bubier

You can have art without even doing it. All you have to do is change your
   -John Cage


Message-ID: <000301be6db3$db51d760$6aebabc3@xonwjikf>
From: "Ballentyne" <>
Subject: Re: Albert/Victoria; Nelson/Hamilton
Date: Sun, 14 Mar 1999 00:43:58 -0000

In Chalkhills Digest # 5-132, Steve Sims wrote: "... can someone explain the
significance of Albert/Victoria and Nelson/Hamilton?"

Albert was the husband and consort of Queen Victoria; and Emma Hamilton was
paramour of the great naval hero, Admiral Lord Nelson.

It's little moments that these that make us British fans realize just how
exotic some aspects of XTC must seem to fans in other parts of the world!

Orrabest, orratime!
George Ballentyne


Message-ID: <000201be6db3$dab19fc0$6aebabc3@xonwjikf>
From: "Ballentyne" <>
Subject: River of Orchids played in BBC2 documentary
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 22:01:16 -0000

Saturday 13th March, between 9 and 10 pm, BBC2 showed a documentary, "Twenty
Four Hours in Las Vegas". Included among the incidental music (during a
section on the life of a professional drag artist), was the intro to River
of Orchids ... from the first "plop" to just before Andy's "Hey!". And very
appropriate it was too, played over reflections of the neon lights in
puddles. Nice surprise, that was! *s*

Orrabest, orratime!
George M. Ballentyne


Message-Id: <>
Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 18:07:00 -0800
From: "Elena F. Sirignano" <>
Subject: Re: A Thought-Experiment in Nastiness

Fellow Chalkheads,
                 In response to Marshal's writing about "My Dictionary"
being the most nasty to date, I'd have to say Yes and No.Generaly Andy does
not seem like the type, in so far as I can hear/see in his lyrics, to come
right out and say somthing derogatory to a specific person in his songs.
His has a very eloquent way of conveying a message. But listen to "No Thugs
In Our House". There is nothing indirect about that song. It comes right
out to punch you like a biggoted little skin-head.And while we are at it
what about "Funk, Pop A Roll", he is saying "Bye Bye" to all of us because
he believed that after that song and album (and not touring) that Virgin
would surely can them.  Elvis Costello has always been a little more direct
in most of his songs, but let's face it divorce will piss anyone off. So
Andy can be harsh and funny all at the same time, but he has never held
back his ability to show who and what he is angry towords.

                  NYC Elena
ps RE:Who's Who. Victoria was Queen, Albert was her consort, but I don't
know the Hamilton reference. Any other takers?


Date: Sat, 13 Mar 1999 21:59:44 -0500 (EST)
Subject: The trashing of Dave Gregory
Message-ID: <>

Hi Chalkhillians,

as an XTC enthusiast for the last seventeen years, I quite evidently share
in the general ecstasy surrounding Apple Venus' release (even though the
very low threshold for even the mildest criticism of it on this list is
more than a tad annoying, though to be somewhat expected, I suppose).
Amidst all the warranted praise and the sometimes overstated hoopla that
the release of the loooonng-awaited album has generated, however, one
aspect of songmeister Partridge's promotion of his and Moulding's latest
gem that grates me in the worst possible way is the wholesale thrashing of
former compadre Dave Gregory. To wit, this latest outburst in the New York
Daily News, from Feb. 28 (thanks to the fellow Chalkhillian who sent in
the URL to this list):

	"Dave is such a complex person," Partridge says. "He's a famous
   diabetic and, when you mix extreme chemical mood swings with being a
   grumpy bastard in any case, he started to become more and more
   difficult to deal with. He didn't want to do anything. He didn't want
   to work with the orchestra because it was too expensive. He didn't
   want us to sign with TVT [the band's current American record company].
   He became jealous of me as a songwriter and musician. And I resented
   carrying him.

   "After we stopped touring, he didn't have too much to do in the band.
   He came up with little solos - after I bullied him. He sees me as
   evil. But I took him from being a van driver and stuck him in a famous

The bad blood was already much in evidence in the RayGun article, to
mention just one widely available article; here, the bile really boils
over, and even though one grows accustomed as an XTC follower to Mr.
Partridge's often venomous diatribes -- laced with the usual brilliantly
witty repartee as a mitigating factor --, this belittling of his former
bandmate's "little solos" reeks of the worst possible egomania and lack of
basic courtesy, not to mention self-restraint.

Now, I know this point, and many others about Partridge's "genius"
excesses and tantrums, have been raised in previous digests, inevitably to
be followed by almost sycophantic rebuffs as to creative genius' claim to
immunity in such matters. These particular comments of Partridge's might
even have been commented upon in recent digests which I have yet to read
(the current flood of postings makes it hard to catch up!). To hopefully
make my point a bit clearer, as i'm reacting quite spontaneously to the
Daily News article, I must add that I do appreciate the idiosyncrasies of
Mr. Partridge and the fact that only out of the whole cloth, stains and
all, can come his particularly layered brand of songsmithing. I'm also
conversant with the peculiar ways in which journalism can often bend
interviews to shape a more dramatic narrative out of a more unstructured
outpouring of words (and feelings); one need only look at the quotes
patched out of the Mojo article as attention-grabbing teasers in bold
type to get the idea. My point is just that even though much tweaking can
be done on the rough interview material, the gist of too many articles
amounts to a deliberate and vindictive smearing of Dave Gregory to make
one fully comfortable with Partridge's attitude during the current
promotional tour.

Maybe I'm too mindful of the whole thing and my knee-jerk reaction only
points implicitly to the depth of my respect for Andy Partridge's
intelligence and sensibilities, as evidenced in his body of work; after
all, one's idols can only fall from their pedestal if one put them there
in the first place. I guess I wanted to vent my anger at the slighting of
Dave Gregory's contributions to the XTC mixture, and ended up displaying
by the same token much disappointment in Andy Partridge, the man (who is
absolutely entitled to his opinion, and revels nakedly in them no matter
the forum, it seems; no wonder there is an accompanying "pink thing"
fixation to booth).

Just my two cents, as they say (which is substantially less as it is in
Canadian currency, to be sarcastic about it)...

Mario Beaulac


End of Chalkhills Digest #5-134

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