Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #5-139

         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 5, Number 139

                 Wednesday, 17 March 1999

Today's Topics:

                     YOUR DICTIONARY
                  Commercial Revolution
               Re: Andy's Slagging of Dave
                Re: XTC in Tokyo (Take 2)
                     Re: Peace child
                  Re: Punk vs. Art Rock
             Lighten up with a Guinness joke!
                My Music Boulevard Article
         There is no language in our paragraph 3
               Re: Seattle Listening Party
                     Vinyl Greenman?
             Springsteen -->drama and passion
               Re: Skylarking cover design
             Small Beatles thing/Big DG thing
              Whaddya Know, Whaddya Know...
                  Nelson and Kitchener.
               Lennon's "How Do You Sleep"
                      I had a dream
                      But... But...


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    The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

    Chalkhills is compiled with Digest 3.7 (John Relph <>).

It's called talking, it's how they betray their closest friends.


Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 09:11:26 EST

strangeways wrote:

"what does 'four-eyed fool' have reference to in your dictionary",

my guess is that the third person wears glasses.

perhaps andy's ex-wife had difficulties with her vision.

all the best,


Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 09:33:51 -0500
From: erik schlichting <>
Subject: Commercial Revolution

Eb wrote:

> That would be Michael Jackson who sold "Revolution" to Nike, wouldn't it?

Actually, correct me if I'm wrong (I'm sure this would happen without my
invitation), but I believe the Gloved One purchased the rights to as
many Beatles tunes as he could post-Nike, ostensibly to prevent such
from happening again. I seem to remember that Sir Paul did not have the
funds to make such a purchase. Sad and scary.

Shall we start pooling our funds in an attempt to wrest XTC's songs from
Virgin before they see them as potential commercial jingles? The chorus
from "When You're Near Me I have Difficulty" used to promote the latest
allergy relief nasal spray?

"All he would say
 ``Just like a household name'' is
 All he would say "


Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 10:00:25 -0500
Subject: Re: Andy's Slagging of Dave
Message-ID: <>

Andy said:
<<I too am annoyed by Andy's persistent slagging off of Dave in
interviews.  I understand that he is a man who speaks his mind, but
the repeated references by Andy to Dave's alleged laziness and
diabetes-induced ill-temper seem somewhat nonsensical when you
consider they made over 10 albums together over 14 years.  A lot of
this could be the way that the interviews were edited.  I'm sure that
comments by Andy were pruned down by writers and editors to create
"better copy."  However, it all still smacks of post-break-up
bitterness, an emotional state that magnifies all of the faults of the
other party.  Suggesting that Dave is chemically unstable and lazy
does no good.>>

I agree, and I was wrong with voicing my opinion of this in public.  When
I read Amanda's post I just got totally pissed off, and my emotions came
out.  I think if this keeps up the Dave Gregory fans will take one side
and the Andy fans (including me) will go on the other.  This might cause
a major split in the group.  I know everybody has the right to voice
their opinions, but we (inclucing myself) should wait a few minutes
before emotions take over.  Walk away from the computer and think of how
you feel.  I know I should do that more.  Emotions can get the best of
all of us, and it could disrupt the group.  I don't really want that,
because you guys are really wonderful (including Amanda).  Oh great I
have THE LOVING going through my mind right now.



Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 05:36:17 -0500
From: Cooking Vinyl <>
Subject: Re: XTC in Tokyo (Take 2)
Message-ID: <>

Message text written by INTERNET:<>
>From: Mark Goldsmith <>
>I was hoping that someone else who attended the signing at Tower Records
>in Tokyo last week would post an account, so it pleased me to see Mr.
>Isogai's (and now Osaka resident Michael Wicks') message in a recent
>digest, but at the same time I was genuinely surprised that he gave such
>a positive review. For my friend and me, the signing was a towering
>(higher than a sunflower, say) disappointment.

I sympathesize with your tower records experience.  Whilst not directly
involved and not being able to comment on Tower or Pony Canyon's role, I
want to mention one thing.  Colin and Andy have been doing promo for two
months solidly now.  This is incredibly hard work!   I imagine that they
are exhausted and very  jet lagged.  We work with many artists who would
not be rpepared to do the promotion schedule they are doing.   They are no
longer  20 years old.  Please give them the benefit of the doubt.


Message-ID: <>
From: "Amanda Owens" <>
Subject: Re: Peace child
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 10:08:50 CST

Ahhh, I'm feeling the heat already....

Nicole did sayeth:

>In response to Mrs. Dave:

As much as I admire Dave, the very thought of getting together with
someone who is only three years younger than my daddy gives me the

>>       "Dave is such a complex person," Partridge says. "He's a famous
>>   diabetic and, when you mix extreme chemical mood swings with being
>>   grumpy bastard in any case
>(See Amanda's face go crimson.)
>Sigh! Why doesn't someone tell her to chill.
>I hope people can see the humor in my statement.

Oh I did.....I think......

>   Do you personally know Mr. Partridge?

Yeah, he also goes by the name of Louis Girard. (My uncle, who shares a
taste for witty, scathing remarks.) All things said and done, at the end
of the day I'd still probably pass out from excitement if I bumped into
the guy. Go figure.

>   How often Have you spoken with Mr. Gregory?

Three times by phone, three times by letter. (One if by land, two if by

>   Do you really know the whole story?

Nope.  I'm just trying to get a little word in for Dave, seeing as that
not too many others around here seem to care about his side of things.

>Mr. Gregory left the band, after sticking around for the 7 years or
>whatever they were on strike. He stuck with the band despite a lack of
>touring and therefore less monetary success. I would wonder, then, why
>he would leave. He gave up... he had it, let him take the high road and
>not express his opinions of Partsy so publicly. Let Partridge say
>what he wants. YOU can't argue with it... YOU were not there. YOU will
>NEVER know the whole story. No one will. Everyone has their own
>perception... Lets be done with it... let the marriage be undone,
Someone should tell Andy that! Why can't, when he's asked another
question about Dave, he just say, "I'm sorry, I don't want to talk about
that, it's done, it's over, let's move on?"

>PS-Not a word out of you, Mr. Friedman!
>Hey, let him defend Partridge...

J-O-K-E, that's how I spell that last remark in my dictionary. Of course
Mitch can defend Partsy all he wants.

>he probably has more reason to speak
>on this matter then you... But, maybe I'm wrong, hell... maybe
>you were there... maybe you are Dave.

Oh goddamnit, you found me out. Bollocks!

>>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.
>You are right, at least with the lack of self-restraint... but what are
>you doing? You are showing little restraint ripping in to someone
>you don't personally know.

Ah, got you there. I didn't write that last remark, Mario did.

>C-U-N-T that's how I spell "Andy" in MY dictionary.
>See, now thats just mean, to the bone! Boner, ha ha, get it?!


>Tis all for now,

Hey, you stole my tagline! ;)

I really wish this whole thing would just end and they'd both move on.
I'm not going to make any more remarks about Andy. (no, swear. Cross my
heart, swear on the grave of baby cousin Jay.) If I had my way, I'd get
them both to sit down and TALK for Christ's sake!

Tis all for now
Amanda C. Owens
"Keep your eye on things while I'm gone, keep a lid on things."-Brad
XTC song of the day-Greenman
non XTC song-C'est La Vie-Hubert Kah


Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 06:24:55 EST
Subject: Re: Punk vs. Art Rock

>OK, them's fightin' words!  Great punk rock was not something that
>"ANYBODY" in the mid- to late-70s could make, and it wasn't "ugly"
>(ugly is Rick Wakeman in a friggin' sequined cape or any guy in
>Journey with tight pants and a perm!).  I can't believe people still
>peg punk rock as "simple" music that greater musicians simply chose
>not to play.  Just because it had less chords and triplets that
>bombastic art rock like Genesis and Yes (or Billy Joel and Journey for
>that matter) didn't make it music that any musician could make.  The
>same thing goes for the music from which punk rock really derived:
>'50s and '60s rock 'n roll 45s: concise, rhythmic songs done with
>style and some balls.  The long list of "talented" '70s musicians who
>made punk rock necessary - prog rockers, bloated blues rockers,
>sensitive-to-the-point of comatose LA singer/songwriters, etc - were
>incapable of writing a concise rock 'n roll song, or even a "lesser"
>garage or punk rock song.  Sorry, the development of musical "chops"
>shouldn't rule out the ability to write, arrange, and record great
>little pop songs (it didn't hurt the Wrecking Crew or Motown's house
>band).  You want to hear "talented" '70s rock stars trying their hand
>at the music that "ANYBODY" can play?  Spin your old copy of Billy
>Joel's "Still Rock 'n Roll to Me".  PATHETIC!

  I remember some of the pathetic attempts by certain LA studio
musicians in the early '80's trying to be "punk," putting out these
calculated vaguely power-pop albums and carefully putting their
thinning hair out of place in an attempt to look dangerous. I was in
high school when punk rock was at its creative peak, and I found it
refreshing that kids with no musical training could make the few
chords they know more effective than a lifetime of music achool
training.(take a bow, Emerson Lake & Palmer)When you write what you
know it rings more true than when you go out of your way to be
high-minded and effette for its own sake, which was the problem with
progressive rock in the 70's. The best punk rock rang true because
these kids wrote what they knew, played what they knew, and made up
the rest as they went along(though in The Sex Pistols' case, they were
too easily manipulated by both Johnny Rotten/Lydon and Malcolm McLaren
and were doomed to implode as soon as they kicked out Glen Matlock,
the one truly accomplished musician in the band); the worst was just a
chaotic mess, just like bad progressive rock was a chaotic mess only
with lots more notes. The point is it's not how many notes you play,
it's what you do with them. The Ramones knew only three or four chords
when they started out, but they learned those chords very well and
with that they found a sound that nobody else had. Know your strengths
and stick with them, know your limits and work within them, while
continually trying to stretch them. Roger mcGuinn of The Byrds is a
good example of a truly successful musician in the artistic sense; he
knows his strengths(great 12 string guitar/rhythm guitar work, an
instantly recognisable vocal style, an uncanny ability to collaborate
with others and come up with something better than each would on their
own)and his weaknesses(dodgy songwriting on his own, somewhat shaky as
a lead guitarist)and isn't afraid to experiment.(face it, his entire
career with The Byrds)Andy and Colin both qualify in this respect. If
they didn't need and recognise each other as musical collaborators,
they both would have broken up XTC a long time ago.



Message-ID: <900822C71730D2118D8C00805F65765C481940@EINSTEIN>
From: Jill Oleson <>
Subject: Lighten up with a Guinness joke!
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 09:40:57 -0600

Okay, I'll probably offend SOMEONE with this joke,
but that is certainly not my intent.  If anyone can take
the abuse of being the *bud* of a joke, it's us Irish/Texans.

  A Texan walks into a pub in Ireland and clears his voice
  to the crowd of drinkers. He says, "I hear you Irish are a
  bunch of crazy drinkers!!  I'll give $500 American dollars
  to anybody in here who can drink 10 pints of Guinness
  back-to-back". The room is quiet and no one takes of the
  Texan's offer. One man even leaves.

  Thirty minutes later the same gentleman who left shows
  back up and taps the Texan on the shoulder. "Is your bet
  still good?", asks the Irishman. The Texan says yes and
  asks the bartender to line up 10 pints of Guinness.

  Immediately the Irishman tears into all 10 of the pint glasses
  drinking them all back-to-back. The other pub patrons cheer
  as the Texan sits in  amazement. The Texan gives the Irishman
  the $500 and says, "If ya don't mind me askin' where did you
  go for that 30 minutes you were gone?".

  The Irishman replies, "Oh...I had to go to the pub down the
  street to see if I could do it first".

I didn't write it folks.  It's just another long-circulating Internet joke.
Guinness is for drinking not for internet-arguing, eh?

Oh, my XTC content?  Colin says they recorded "I'd Like That"
in the hallway of his home.

Jill Oleson
Austin, Texas


Message-Id: <>
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 11:38:05 -0500
From: "Jason Hauser" <>
Subject: My Music Boulevard Article

XTC will waste no time recording the follow-up to the recently- released
Apple Venus Vol. 1, their first studio album in seven years. The band will
return from Japan, where they are currently on a press tour, next week and
begin recording Apple Venus Vol. 2 in April, which is already written and
TVT expects a much quicker recording process this time around, as Vol. 2 is
a collection of straightforward, plugged-in rock songs rather than the
unplugged, orchestral- heavy tunes of Vol. 1. The album is expected to
surface by the end of the year. Tracks on Vol. 2 may include "Playground,"
"My Brown Guitar," "We're All Light," "Ship Trapped in the Ice" (about the
band's five-year feud with Virgin Records), and "The Man Who Murdered Love,"
among others. The band will commence recording the album as soon as the
finishing touches are put on bassist Colin Moulding's home studio on his
farm in Swindon, England -- a welcomed change from Vol. 1, which the band
recorded parts of in Moulding's living room.
The release of Vol. 2 raises the question of a longstanding touring rumor
perpetuated by lead singer Andy Partridge himself in an issue of Modern
Drummer last year. Partridge has expressed interest in a flatbed truck tour,
which would involve the band pulling up outside radio stations in selected
cities and playing a free show on the back of a flatbed truck that would
simultaneously be broadcast live on the radio. The reason the rumor is
connected to Vol. 2 is because the songs are much more easily rehearsed and
played live.
A spokesperson from TVT expressed hope in the tour, although it is nothing
more than a rumor at this time.


Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 12:06:48 EST
Subject: There is no language in our paragraph 3

Or at least quite not enough... just noticed another chunk of text had
disappeared from my last post. I'm waiting for the day I just lose, say,
the word "not" and get embroiled in a huge flame war!

Anyway, what you read was:

I'm beginning to warm up to the idea of not including a lyric sheet. As
I've listened to this album obsessively, I've found that each song
temporarily becomes my favorite at the moment I fid you can't beat that
kind of entertainment.

What I said, after "moment," was:

"... I finally "get it." Also, it allowed me to internalize the lyric "We'd
abort a new life" for days before I figured it out. And you can't... etc."

Anyway, say you're listening to AV1 in your car over and over again. And
say every time you hear River of Orchids, all you can think is, "But I LIKE
my car!" Does that make you a bad person?

The Gallery of Indispensable Pop Music - the coolest cds on the Internet


Message-Id: <4.1.19990316090335.0094cbf0@wingate>
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 10:19:38 -0800
From: "Suzanne R. Sweeney" <>
Subject: Re: Seattle Listening Party

This one's a bit long, but if you have enjoyed savoring the details of
other Chalkhillian gatherings, this post won't disappoint you...

Joel Enbom was kind enough to thank *us* for attending the Seattle
listening party:

<I just wanted to publicly thank Jeff Smelser, Lisa, Suzanne Sweeney,and
Jason for representing the Chalkhills mailing list so well at ourlistening
party Saturday night. A nicer, more personable bunch of people have not yet
crossed my threshhold.>

I believe layers of thanks are due to *him*, and his wonderful fiancee
Virginia, for hosting an absolutely delightful, magical, and informative
evening, highlighted by the glorious music from AV1! All I can say to the
folks who didn't attend is that you really missed out... :-(

My friend Jason and I knew we were in for something special when we
approached the front door and saw a lyric posted on it: "Let's reveal our
childlike nature." Well, we were all over *that!* When we walked in, we saw
chairs arranged to provide an intimate theatre setting and all of the
media-playing devices (TV and stereo) at front-and-center. After looking
around a bit, we discovered the room was actually an "Easter" theatre.
Lovely decorations and candles were placed throughout, making it warm and
inviting, and giving it that just-on-edge-of-Springtime feeling. (Much
needed up here water-and-Winter-logged Seattle...) But that wasn't the only
XTC reference. Wherever you looked, you could see AV1 lyrics posted in cool
fonts on the walls. It became a fun game to see which guests could quickly
guess the songs from these snippets of lyric. The basket on the buffet
table contained...wait for it...oranges and lemons, with a few green apples
from the CD thrown in for good measure. (And, I never did determine if this
was sheer coincidence <Yes/No Joel?> but the restroom was FILLED with
"sunflowers": hand towels, pictures, and so on. Someone must have thought I
was a Fruit Nut from all the gleeful laughter emanating from the lav...)

As people were gathering, we were treated to videos from Look Look. (Thank
you, Jeff! And ohmigosh, YEAH! Andy DOES look like Beck in TiP, Joel! hee
hee) By dinnertime (which was *fantastic* BTW, and featured the bounty of
the earth, all kinds of fruits and veggies--I'm a vegetarian--thought I'd
died and gone ta heaven there...), the room was a chorus of voices
expressing excitement about the new release, discussing the music and other
favorite XTC songs, noting current interviews and opportunities to meet the
band, and poring over each guest's memorabilia. (Jeff Smelser had the
motherlode in that respect. Videos, a signed AV1 CD, CD singles, and a
Chalkhills Children CD--on which his song really rocked, BTW. I loved that,
Jeff! Thanks for letting us get a happy earful!)

After dinner, we retired to the "theatre" for an insightful and reverent,
but very balanced presentation about the history of the band. Joel, I have
to commend you here. As an XTC fan, I reveled in sharing the band's history
with the newcomers, but you even covered some items I didn't know! And, in
less skillful hands, that "history" lesson could have been torture for the
newbies. However, Jason told me on the way home that he thoroughly enjoyed
that part of the evening. (He came in knowing nothing about the band and
had only listened to AV1 prior to the party.) He said after your
presentation he felt could talk to anyone intelligently about XTC and that
he really understood the events that created the music we were hearing. You
did an amazing job at getting a vast amount of material across in a way
that was informative AND entertaining. Thanks so much for that! :-)

Once we were brought up to the present day, we listened to Apple Venus,
Volume One. Joel's intro to each song set us up with suggestions of things
to listen for and/or just set the stage for the music. It was truly
enchanting to just sit back with a group of listeners and let this music
wash over us in waves. What a high! After each song, the group discussed
their impressions. It was interesting to hear all of the different
interpretations of the songs and the things that struck some folks, but not
others. (Lisa, your thoughts were my favorite! Thanks so much for being so
candid and open. It was such a pleasure to hear!) We continued along in
that vein until we had listened to the whole CD...and were finally sated on
all things XTC. ;-)

What a brilliant evening! It felt so good to enjoy the new CD with
like-minded folks who appreciate this music as much as I do. Thanks again
Joel, for making it all possible.

Warm regards,


From: "James McGowan" <>
Subject: Vinyl Greenman?
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 10:37:46 -0800
Message-ID: <000001be6fdc$15d2b010$>

I was listening to Harry Shearer's Le Show on NPR last Sunday. Harry plays
the tastiest music in between his sketches and so I wasn't surprised to hear
Greenman during one of the breaks.  However, the song started *skipping*
about half-way through and someone had to reset the *needle* to keep the
tune playing! Methinks, "Eh? Vinyl?! Are we in a time warp?"

As luck would have it, I recorded the show and played back said incident.
You can clearly hear the faint snap-crackle-pop of a genuine vinyl record.
(Yes, I'm old enough to become nostalgic at the sound. And I know what a
skipping CD sounds like - yech.)

If anyone has already offered info regarding new XTC on vinyl, I apologize.
I tend to skip over the collector-oriented posts. So did they release AV1 on
LP or was it just a "45"?

James McGowan
Capital Management Sciences
Los Angeles CA USA


Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 16 Mar 1931 11:31:19 -0400
From: Micheal Stone <nedrise@MNSi.Net>
Subject: Springsteen -->drama and passion


I never thought I'd be standing up for Springsteen on the XTC list, but
Chalkhills takes some funny left turns sometimes doesn't it.  So here goes.

Going back, way back. It's 2 days before New Year's Eve, 1979.  I'm in
grade 12, and I'm in a rock band and me and my buds are cool cause we don't
go for that disco shit or that other weird stuff, that queer new wave and
punk crap. My friend and band mate Chris Harper(who's kind of strange and
not too cool himself) has somehow latched on to this Bruce Springsteen guy.
That geek from New Jersey who thinks he can play rock&roll.  Well, he's not
The Who, he ain't Floyd, and he sure isn't Zeppelin, so who does he think
he is?  Somehow my friend got me to sit through Born To Run from start to
finish. "Check this out."  he said, "this guy's playing in Detroit tomorrow
night."  I listened in skepticism.  Through the course of the 40 minutes or
so, skepticism faded and dissloved.  Exploded like a tin can out in the 90
degree heat.  As the last notes of Jungleland faded away, I was
floored. Floored and drained.  Wow. Fantastic. "Well", I said, " hmm - I
guess this guy's not a geek after all. Let's go!"

The next night Chris and I drove into Windsor and took the tunnel bus,
under the river, across the border, north to the US, to Detroit. To Cobo
Arena, where Bob Seger, Ted Nugent and Kiss reigned supreme, to see Bruce
Springsteen in concert.  For 4 hours he sang, and danced, and laughed and
told stories. Sweat, passion, drama, joy, rock & roll.  He owned that
place, he owned all 12,000 of us.  We became his loyal, worshipping
subjects.  We would have gladly jumped in the icy water of the Detroit
River and swam to Cleveland for his next gig, had that been his
bidding. Unforgettable.

Yes, at one time Springsteen was great.  His concerts have always been
legendary, but back then in the 70's, he was making records that were the
equal to his live shows.  He made 4 records in the 70's, all good, at
least.  1975's Born to Run , the one that brought him the recognition he
deserved, is a classic. Dreams of the open road, dreams shattered.
Passionate and dramatic, last chance for freedom.  Fierce commitment.  One
of the great albums of the decade. What few people seem to realize is that
the previous album , 1973's The Wild, The Innocent and The E-Street
Shuffle, is even better than Born To Run.  His second album, following his
impresive debut, Greetings from Asbury park, NJ.  Not so driving and
rocking as Born to Run. Loose, quieter, funkier. New York Soul.  Long
twisting stories, full of vivid characters and urban panoramas. This is
Springsteen the storyteller at his peak. Here New York and New Jersey come
alive in all the funky, gritty drama of a great Hollywood tearjerker. Coney
Island, Broadway, the Boardwalk, 57th Avenue. Cinematic. Passion and drama,
all in joyous aural technicolour. One of the finest albums ever made.

After Born To Run came Darkness on the Edge of Town, another fine album,
but also the beginning of Springsteen's dumbing down, simplifying,
shortening the songs, gearing up for the assault on the masses.  The
beginning of the journey toward "Shitsteen", as it was put in the previous
post.  We know the rest.

But there was a time.  A time when Bruce could tell a story.  Better than
anyone.  That was his strength really. And he infused his stories with a
cinematic drama and a passionate delivery to create some unforgettable

stuck in the mud somewhere in the swamps of Jersey



Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 10:31:50 -0800
From: Jon Drukman <>
Organization: GameSpot, Inc.
Subject: Re: Skylarking cover design

> "Has the original cover design for Skylarking ever surfaced in a book or as
> a bootleg cover or anything?  I'm intrigued by this."

there's a rough sketch of what it might have looked like in XTC: Song



Message-ID: <697A4CA51395D111A658AA00040058069DA051@NT6>
From: "Wiencek, Dan" <>
Subject: Small Beatles thing/Big DG thing
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 13:15:45 -0600

First, Eb said thusly:

>As far as motivation is concerned, let's ask Yoko Ono why she sold
>'Revolution' to Nike. It's... do I really have to type it?

That would be Michael Jackson who sold "Revolution" to Nike, wouldn't it?


Not quite that simple, old chap ... Jackson owns the publishing rights to
the Beatles' songs.  He can authorize the commercial use of the
*compositions themselves* any way he wants.  However, EMI still owns the
rights to the Beatles' recorded performances, with, I believe, Apple having
a small stake in this as well.  Thus, Nike couldn't have used the Beatles'
version of Revolution without the permission of EMI and Apple, which is
where Yoko comes in.  I don't know the precise details, but it's something
along those lines.

Stephen Jackson then wrote, in part:

 As far as I can
see, Dave Gregory, other than providing flourishes of genius, provided
'quality control' and appeared to serve as some kind of mantle to AP's
excesses (ironically, of course, AV1 is not an album that suffers
particularly from this)

I've been as chagrined as anyone to observe the way Andy has behaved in the
wake of the split.  Maybe he has nothing left to learn from Dave musically,
but he could certainly learn from his (Dave's) tact and decency.  But let's
keep a sense of perspective, shall we?

First of all, Dave's influence on Andy's songwriting and arranging was
plainly in decline; you have only to listen to Andy's demos to know that.
The final versions of the Nonsuch songs were probably around 90-95% faithful
to the demos, and everyone who's heard the Apple Venus demos knows how
richly detailed they were.  The songs were almost fully arranged before the
band even started rehearsing.  Dave often fleshed out Andy's ideas with a
bit more flair and technical razzle-dazzle than Andy could've mustered, but
the creative donkey work was already done.

Like Andy said, he's at the point where he no longer needs to rely on his
bandmates for input the way he did before.  If you care to argue that this
will prove/has proven detrimental to his art, that's your right.  But I
don't think you can rightfully say that Dave has been acting as a brake to
Andy, and that now that he's gone Andy's going to run riot in a fit of
wanton self-indulgence.  As those who've read Song Stories know, Andy gets
his way pretty much all the time, with Dave there or not.  That's the way
it's always been, at least since he definitively established his dominance
of the band, around English Settlement.

In reading these digests, I find it surprising
that quite a number of subscribers consider Dave's departure as nothing to
get concerned about.

I think it's probable that Dave's absence will be noticed on the next album;
some of the guitar playing will lack his more polished, old-school approach.
I don't consider that something to get concerned about.  As long as Andy and
Colin remain the top-notch writers and arrangers they've been in the past,
XTC will continue to grow and surprise us.  And anyway, what you mistake for
unconcern is in most cases simple realization of the fact that XTC has
changed and that there's nothing we, the fans, can do about it.

Andy Partridge is probably a genius, but then so is Dave Gregory.

OK, point of order here.  The word "genius" is being woefully overused
nowadays.  The rock and roll era has seen maybe a dozen musicians who were
innovative, gifted, and daring enough to truly merit being called geniuses.
In my estimation, this list would include Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, Lennon &
McCartney, Brian Wilson, and Stevie Wonder, with a few spaces left for the
people I'm undoubtedly forgetting.  Genius is always a subjective thing, and
you might take issue with those I'd leave off my list--which would include
Ray Davies, Pete Townshend, James Brown, David Byrne, and a lot of other
very talented people--but I don't think many people would disagree with the
ones I *did* include.  Do you really want to set Dave Gregory beside
Hendrix, Wilson, and Lennon and McCartney?

Dave Gregory is not a genius.  He's a talented, versatile guitarist and
arranger.  Jeez, isn't that enough?  Are you so eager to defend him that you
would elevate him into company in which he's obviously outclassed?  I've
never met or spoken to Gregory, yet he seems a man with a very realistic
assessment of his strengths and weaknesses, and I'm sure he would blanche at
being set among such distinguished artists.

And if you're wondering, I'm not even sure I'd rate Andy Partridge as a
genius.  His lyrics are inventive, his melodies sophisticated and original,
and he's a skilled producer and arranger.  But I like his work too much to
be an objective judge. ;)

The difference is that AP appears to be conceited, an egomaniac
and something of a twat.

No, the difference is that Andy's talents cover a broad enough spectrum to
allow him to create his art almost independently of other people.  He
displays little of the behavior associated with egomania: he doesn't seek
attention or acclaim, he doesn't claim credit for ideas that weren't his own
(as far as I've ever heard), and his songs, far from being the dull
outpourings of a self-obsessed man, show a genuine empathy and concern for
the world and for its inhabitants.  I think Andy's recent untoward comments
*are* selfish, but it's the selfishness of someone who's been deeply
hurt--as he's said himself, he has a problem dealing with what he perceives
as betrayal.  Just as he eventually mellowed toward Todd Rundgren, Andy will
one day gain enough perspective on the situation to fairly acknowledge
Dave's contribution to the band.  It's not behavior we'd admire, perhaps,
but he's just a man, folks.

And remember one tiny thing: Dave is happier for having left the band.  He's
a talented man who will have no trouble earning his living doing what he
loves.  And I envy him that.


Dan Wiencek
American Academy
of Orthopaedic Surgeons


Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 15:17:25 -0500
From: (Bill Peschel)
Organization: The Herald
Subject: Revolution

So it is written:
>As far as motivation is concerned, let's ask Yoko Ono why she sold
>'Revolution' to Nike. It's... do I really have to type it?

And Eb replied:

That would be Michael Jackson who sold "Revolution" to Nike, wouldn't

So I say:
Yea, it was the one-gloved demon who sold the ad rights to Revolution to
Nike. I seem to remember Yoko objecting to the sale and asking that it
be stopped, but no go.

Now, everytime I hear Revolution, I think first of Nike, and maybe the
Beatles. Same with a number of other songs that have since been
appropriated by Madison Avenue. To any artist who cares a damn about
his/her creation, that's the primary reason why their music shouldn't be

Yours in XTC,

-- Bill Peschel
Book page editor, Rock Hill (S.C.) Herald


Message-ID: <>
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 15:26:47 -0400
From: Harrison Sherwood <>
Organization: Averstar, Inc.
Subject: Whaddya Know, Whaddya Know...

Just a Quick One While He's Away:

Today's Zippy the Pinhead cartoon in the Washington Post was
arse-wideningly a propos. (If you aren't familiar with Zippy, GET THAT WAY
at He is every bit as important
as Joseph Campbell, if not more so.)

Griffy (the overanalytical, grouchy cultural critic) is sitting looking at
an art book, annoyance exuding from every pore: "Oy! Another practitioner
of slick pop surrealism!! Do we really need one more artist who can
juxtapose th' Bob's Big Boy image with scary science fiction monsters?

Zippy (the non-sequitur-spouting, muu-muu-sporting microcephalic): But can
we ever have enough dinosaurs and Cadillacs?

Griffy: These guys are nothing more than polished technicians of marketable
banalities! I've had it with this "everything equals everything" mentality!

Zippy (now persuing the same book): Wow! Fifties clip art and Seventies
clip art in the same great painting!

Griffy (resigned): Hold the fort for a minute, Zippy. I'm going to listen
to a Mozart piano concerto and read Chaucer in the original Old English...

Zippy: Hey, now there's a wacky juxtaposition of seemingly unrelated
cultural icons!

Combine this cartoon; an article on the British film "Lock, Stock and Two
Smoking Barrels," which asserts at great (not to say irritating) length
that we Yanks are no good at sarcasm; a play review entitled "Enter Stage
Right and Left"; an article about NBC that makes reference to "Fluffing the
Peacock's Feathers"; and Springsteen and McCartney traipsing into the R-n-R
Hall of Lame hand-in-hand like Hansel and Gretel, and you've got a Tuesday
morning read that's just chockablock with tachycardia-inducing
fun-n-frolic! Which of my Chalkie friends, I wonder, will stand up and
whinny when I throw out Nabokov's whimsical term, "Referential Mania"?

Astrophobes beware! Just
Do It. Do it for the Swirling Sky.

Harrison "Elliptical? _Moi_?!" Sherwood


Message-ID: <7792192DE506D2119A6100A024F0274A1EAE9D@PIMAIL>
Subject: Nelson and Kitchener.
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 19:15:39 -0000

It's all non-XTC I'm afraid!
In Digest 5-136... Ian McCausland said...

>There is a great little film called Mrs Brown..

Thoroughly recommend it.

> Isn't Lord Nelson, the fellow with the large moustache seen on the World
> war One posters ordering people to enlist...the basic pose to be ripped
> off in the USA with the Uncle Sam Wants You poster?...

No!  That's Earl (title as in Lord not Earl as in Earl-Jones) Kitchener (who
wasn't in the Army at the time and really pissed the Army off by insisting
on wearing a uniform).  Nelson was looong dead-dead-deadski.  Nelson, as
well as being sans arm and sans eye he was also sans moustache!  He's the
originator of the phrase "I see no ships" (If you've heard of it) after
holding his telescope up to his blind eye (I'm not sure of the roots of
"Turning a blind eye" I think that it's probably biblical)

> I get the sense that both affairs were so well known but never publically
> acknowledged that they eventually become part of pop culture...

The Viscount Admiral Nelson and Lady Hamilton thing was very well known and
very much acknowledged.  I've sent IM some info (from Encarta of all places)
if you want I can forward it to you too!


Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 13:35:22 -0800 (PST)
From: Charles <>
Subject: Lennon's "How Do You Sleep"
Message-ID: <Pine.SOL.3.95.990316132048.6301B-100000@alishaw>

Amanda recently wrote:

<<Alright, that's it. I have lost all respect I ever had for Andy as a
person. When he decides to remove his foot from his mouth an get his
head out of his ass, maybe I'll feel a bit different. For now, Andy is
dead in my eyes. You can flame away all you want, this is my opinion,
this is how I feel, so nyah. Dave gave twenty years of his life to that
band, and this is what his "friend" does to him.>>

Now strangely, I have been largely out of the loop relating to the
Dave/Andy imbroglio (feel free to privately email me with details
concerning the grounds for their divorce), but what Amanda said about
Andy's public comments re: Dave reminds me of the way I have always felt
about my former hero John Lennon once I fully understood the lyrics of
"How Do You Sleep" off the Imagine album.  I mean, when I was in my early
to mid teens, and I first knew the song, it was clear to me that it was a
mean spirited attack on McCartney, but it wasn't until I happened to
listen to it again...probably after several years of not listening to
it...that the sheer pettiness of that piece of puerile vitriol struck me.
My view of Lennon, the man, was substantially reshaped by that song, and
regrettably there is some spillover into my view of Lennon, the artist
(In fact, I am pissed that Harrison contributed guitar to that
fact, did Ringo play drums and then ask to have his name removed from the

Perhaps Dave deserves the attack more than I thought McCartney did -- I
can't really say, because as I said earlier, I am woefully ignorant of the
facts in the case.  But I sympathize with Amanda's reaction.




Message-Id: <>
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 16:14:19 -0500
From: Todd Bernhardt <>
Subject: I had a dream


Just wanted to let everyone know, I had a dream last night about
meeting Andy. He was a real asshole.

I didn't care.

That is all.



Message-ID: <000901be6ffd$7b709f60$f06dcec0@t24806009694.DOA.STATE.LA.US>
From: "John Voorhees" <>
Subject: But... But...
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 1999 16:36:48 -0600

See... um... it's about this...
<<I beg to differ.  A Genius is in the league of Shakespeare or
Einstein.Bandying the word "Genius" about in relation to someone of the
stature of Partridge is a little over the top.  I forgive you, though.
People do itall the time about their favourite melody makers.  But it's a

Quantification of genius is a tricky matter.  I mean, IQ tests are hardly
the final word here. Since you included Shakespeare as one, it seems you at
least acknowledge the possibility that artists or wordsmiths can be genii...
but who's to judge?  I mean, the ages get their chance at judgement with
genius as with sainthood, but how can you tell while the bastards are still

For my money, Andy Partridge is a songwriting genius.  Am I wrong?  Ok, WHY
am I wrong, and who qualifies if Andy doesn't?  Is there such a thing in
your dictionary (so to speak) as a genius in the world of popular music,

Oh, the Matchbox 20 guy.  Of course.  AAAAAAARRRRRRGGGHHHHHHH!

John Voorhees


End of Chalkhills Digest #5-139

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