Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #5-345

         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 5, Number 345

                 Monday, 20 December 1999

Today's Topics:

                   Symphony in C minus
              The spirit of the Three Kings
                Re: The Big Express on CD
      Top purchases of 1999, and some other matters
               Julian: still getting there
                        As We Wish
            Re: My one, two, three cents worth
                      Bass-ket ball
                year-end post / listing...
             What A Damn Fine Year 1999 Was!
                   drugs [zzz...zzz...]
                    A Brief De-Lurk...
                        XTC & $$$
               XtC memoirs and Sedaris info


    To UNSUBSCRIBE from the Chalkhills mailing list, send a message to
    <> with the following command:


    For all other administrative issues, send a message to:


    Please remember to send your Chalkhills postings to:


    World Wide Web: <>

    The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

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

Why, oh why does she treat me like a snowman?


Message-ID: <002e01bf4a3f$2bd46c80$a88e0e3f@default>
From: "Joe Funk" <>
Subject: Symphony in C minus
Date: Sun, 19 Dec 1999 10:35:44 -0600


First of all, thanks to Kevin Diamond for straightening out the " End of the
Century/Millenium " Brouhaha ( hahaha ):

>For those who don't know, the millenium
>doesn't end untill the end (january 31)of the year 2000, in over a year.
>(The reason this is is because there was no year 0, it started with 1, so
>the year 1001 is a millenium, as is 1001-2001.

It works the same for the Century ( and in every other deca-based system! ).

Except the millenium is actually 1001-2000.  2001 is the beginning of the
next millenium.  Speaking of which, weren't we supposed to be travelling to
Jupiter by then?
Great idea Mr. Clarke,  but we can't even land unmanned craft on Mars!!!
 I know this is due to budget constraints, but as a youngster reading a
miriad of Sci-Fi, including 2001 A Space Oddysey, I thought for sure we
would at least have had a manned landing on Mars by now! )  Oops!  I've

Onto the subject matter - I haven't noticed whether anyone else on this list
has purchased Joe Jackson's Symphony no. 1....?  I have, and I really
believe Mr. Jackson has produced a beautiful, thought provoking piece of
music!  Without giving ya'll a complete review, let me just say this - this
is not a " Symphony" in the traditional 19th-century 200 piece orchestra
genre.  Jackson has assembled a small ensemble of brass ( Trombone, Trumpet,
Sax ), a Flautist, Violinist, with the usual core of Drums, Bass,
Percussion, Keyboards and Guitar ( Steve Vai, bowing down to the constraint
of JJ, reminiscient of his stints with FZ ).

Of which Seb Quoted:

>JJ's use of the term "symphony" must remain problematic I would have
>thought-I wonder if he was co-erced as part of his new deal with Sony
>Classical to call it that or whether he really feels strongly about the
>symphonic form.

No, Seb, he indeed wanted it to be a Symphony!  Maybe you should investigate
prior to contempt!!  JJ  from the sleeve:

" I had better say a few words about this piece before anyone else does.  It
grew from a handful of ideas - for instance, that on the eve of the 21st
century, a piece which was symphonic in structure surely didn't have to be
written for a 19th-century orchestra to qualify a symphony."

Nudge from Sony Classical!!!  Mr. Jackson has more class than that!

Anyway, JJ has really impressed me with his
Piano/Keyboards/Sampling/Sequencing techniques on this recording.  Like Andy
on " River of Orchids", JJ's use of sound textures and sequencing evokes a
certain imagery throughout the Symphony, especially in the 2cd movement,
where influences from Beethoven to Keith Emerson to Gentle Giant ( yes!,
Gentle Giant! ) merge into a farcical "scherzo".  Listen, I am not making
this up!

A Tour-de-force!!

Hey!  Seventh Grade!  I do give a "rat's ass" about Joe Jackson!

Favorite recordings purchased this year:

1.  XTC -AV1  Nuff said!
2.  Michael Hedges -Torched   We lost a true, soulful genius...
3.  JJ -Symphony no. 1 - see above
4.  Steve Hackett - Darktown   Steve's back! Electriffic!!
5.  Pat Martino - Joyous Lake  Jazz as you rarely see anymore.....

Equipment List: Telecaster, Custom Strat ( with EMG pickups ), Yamaha
FGX-412C A/E, Roland Jazz Chorus, Fender Princeton, Digitech RP-6, along
with various other sundry items!

Ya'll have a Merry Christmas!  Ya Hear!!

Joe " My hovercraft is full of eels" Funk


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 19 Dec 1999 11:39:19 EST
Subject: The spirit of the Three Kings

Last night as I was driving my kids around the neighborhood looking at
Christmas lights while listening to suitable Holiday music,  my 7 year old
came up with a striking observation.  She said something to the effect that
one of the reasons we exchange gifts for Christmas is due to the Three Kings
bringing gifts to the baby Jesus.  Mind you, she is in a non-denominational
private school, so there may have been limited talk about the Nativity.  But
what was most striking about her comment was that she made it coincidentaly
as "Thanks for Christmas" was playing on the tape deck.   I chuckled and
thought about the '45 sleeve.  That was sort of mindblowing.  Thought I'd
share this with you fine Chalkfolk since we're into these sort of back to lurking.  Merry Xmas!!!


Date: Sun, 19 Dec 1999 10:24:10 -0800 (PST)
Message-Id: <>
From: John Relph <>
Subject: Re: The Big Express on CD

On Dec 15, 23:26, Shigemasa Fujimoto wrote:
>Regarding Mr David Oh's question, what I can say for sure is that
>there have been at least two versions of THE BIG EXPRESS on CD.
>Version 1)
>Contains 11 tracks despite the fact that the back cover, the booklet,
>and the disc label list 14 tracks. My copy of this version says "MADE
>IN U.K. BY PDO" and "CDV2325 19801011 06 %" around the centre hole
>Version 2)
>Contains 14 tracks, including the three single B-side tracks, which
>are sandwiched between the A- and B-side tracks of the original vinyl
>album. The back cover and the booklet are identical to those of
>version 1. Around the centre hole of the disc my copy of version 2
>says "CDV 2325     2893 993  02 *" (the actual asterisk is bigger than
>you see on the screen).

I have a copy of the very first pressing of The Big Express on CD.  I
know, because CDs had only just been introduced when I bought it in 1985.
It's what you call Version 2 (I would call it Version 1, and the 11
track CD version 2).

However, the matrix number (or whatever you call that number around
the hole) is different.  It's "CDV 2325     2893 993  01 #".  The
label side of the CD has an opaque blue background OVER an opaque
silver background (more than just the usual silver colour of the CD).
The silver background is visible around the rim and near the hole.
The last page of the booklet has what was then standard on all CD
releases: a description of the "Compact Disc Digital Audio System" in
English, German and French.  At the very bottom of the page there is
the note "Printed in West Germany".  The tray inlay was also printed
in West Germany.  However, the booklet claims the CD was manufactured
in Great Britain.

I believe the 610-241 version was a reissue from 1987.

>I would like to pose a question myself. If you look at the inside of
>EXPLODE TOGETHER's insert, you will notice a back catalogue list for
>XTC. Many of the albums have additional numbers in brackets; for
>example, "258 288" for WHITE MUSIC. I suspect that these are the
>catalogue numbers referred to in Germany, but does anyone know what
>they really are?

To answer your question, I believe that more recent CDs from Virgin
are given two catalog numbers.  The first, the standard UK-style
number (e.g., "CDV 2325") and the second, a standard European-style
number (e.g., 621-241).  That way, they could press the same booklet
for CDs meant for distribution both within and without the UK.

	-- John


Message-ID: <>
From: "Nathan Mulac DeHoff" <>
Subject: Top purchases of 1999, and some other matters
Date: Sun, 19 Dec 1999 20:12:31 GMT

I'm still not going to comment on the drug discussion.  I'm probably not
going to take drugs unless they're prescribed or something, but I'm still
pretty much undecided on the legalization issues and such.  Besides, there
are other things I'd much rather talk about, such as:

Megan Heller:
>well, i've decided to cave and do a favorites of 1999 post.

Perhaps I'll do that too.  Of course, I bought relatively few albums that
were actually released in 1999.  In fact, I believe the exact number is
seven.  In the order of how much I liked them, I'd say, from my favourite to
least favourite, my list runs something like this:

1. Apple Venus Volume 1
2. John Linnell, State Songs
3. "Weird Al" Yankovic, Running With Scissors
4. They Might Be Giants, Long Tall Weekend (Yes, it's an MP3 album, but it's
still good stuff.)
5. Go Simpsonic (Simpsons soundtrack album)
6. Tori Amos, To Venus and Back
7. Moxy Fruvous, Thornhill

I've also bought quite a few older albums this year.  They might not be
anywhere near as numerous as those purchased by people who buy ten CD's at a
time, but, for a college student who had a very small music collection prior
to college, it's a pretty large number.  Among my favourites are:

The Beatles' white album and Past Masters Volume II--No explanation
necessary here, I'm sure.

Camper Van Beethoven: Telephone Free Landslide Victory, Our Beloved
Revolutionary Sweetheart, and Key Lime Pie

Hypnotic Clambake: Square Dance Messiah, Gondola to Heaven, Kent the Zen
Master, and Frozen Live Volume I--I saw this band perform live at a free
concert in the park near my school, and they were excellent.  A very
eclectic sound, influenced by music from around the world.

XTC: Pretty much everything I didn't have before

The Young Fresh Fellows: Fabulous Sounds/Topsy Turvy, The Men Who Loved
Music--I had heard of this band through TMBG, and they were really worth
checking out, although I've never seen one of their albums in a store.  They
have an amusing sense of humour, and work in a variety of styles (both
recurring themes for musicians in my collection).

In light of the recent Blur discussion, I should probably also mention that
I recently picked up a copy of Parklife, and I'm enjoying it.  I might have
to look into purchasing some more of their albums.  That might be easier if
I had a job or something.  Oh, well.

Jeff Azara:
>     On the subject of bad moves - In 1983 I found XTC and instantly
>became a fan on the new release of Mummer and had collected all the
>original U.S.  releases on vinyl up through Oranges & Lemons. I was
>used to the track order.  Here now in the Atom Age of CD players, I
>have been buying the albums again on disc. Virgin Records must have
>really had a bone up their bum over XTC to toss all the extra, not
>previously released tracks smack dab in the middle of the things. Am
>I the only one who thinks it wrecks the flow of the original albums?
>Most notably Mummer? I love the songs, especially Desert Island, but
>the songs that were not originally on the album should have been
>reserved for the end of the album. But, what's done is done, right?

Since I'm a fairly recent XTC convert, I guess I'm just used to hearing the
B-side tracks right in the middle of the album.  I guess one problem I could
see with sticking them at the end would be that the last song on an album is
usually chosen for a reason, while this is not always true of middle songs.
I guess I would have to hear the original running order to really form a
valid opinion on this, though.  I do think that having "The Somnambulist"
right before "Towers Of London" on the CD version of Black Sea was a nice
touch, because the opening guitar is all the more exciting when preceded by
a slow song.



Message-ID: <003b01bf4a5a$b62bd060$ccdea4d8@default>
Subject: Julian: still getting there
Date: Sun, 19 Dec 1999 14:53:20 -0500

Megan mentioned:
> Julian Lennon - "Photograph Smile"

Which was so very nearly a great pop album.  A fair amount of it is pure
bliss, but I couldn't believe how much of it sounded like direct lifts from
other bands' songs.  It becomes very distracting after a while.  I mean, all
right, I can believe that maybe Julian hasn't heard Robyn Hitchcock and that
one was just a coincidence.  But surely there's some subconscious thing
working when one song has *both* nearly the same lyrics and melody as a line
from Rush's "Jacob's Ladder" (Rush: "Follow men's eyes as they look to the
skies"; Julian: "Open your eyes as you look to the skies", same rhythm, both
pretty much sung on one note).  Yet another song's intro sounds strongly
reminiscent of the intro to "Invisible Sun" by the Police.  Okay.  Maybe
Julian never listened to *any* of these bands.  Maybe they're *all*
coincidences.  But what about the song that has practically the same
freakin' melody as "Free As a Bird"?  Come on now, Julian.

And the guy whose name I deleted and I'm too lazy to look up said:
> My last comments on the topic follow, as I agree it is getting out of hand
> and some of the more immature people on the list are resorting to childish
> retorts and insults.  Why is that these are the only people who feel the
> need to respond?

Most of the responses I read on this subject seemed polite enough to me.

-- Francis

"What I want, I want now!"
   -- Television


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 19 Dec 1999 15:02:09 EST
Subject: As We Wish

I'm very glad that Megan reposted this line from a previous quote:

<<>>If people are given the "right"
>>to act as they wish, the outcome will be detrimental to society as a
>> >>whole.>>

Hate to alarm you, but people already have the right to act as they wish,
it's called free will. I always do as I wish, and I'm fairly certain I'm
not driving society into a downward spiral. Uh oh, here I go again, doing
just as I wish:

Peace on earth and goodwill to all -- Have a Safe, Sexy, ecstatic new year!

I can hear the drums of doom a booming as I hurl society over the edge of
the abyss...

The quoted statement assumes that people are by nature slimy, scummy
creatures that are incapable of most wanting good things for themselves AND
others. I find that to be the antithesis of just about everyone (if not
every single person) on this list.

This is one area where I disagree with Andy -- he seems to have a view that
it's too late for us, but not for our kids (last balloon). Bullocks, it's a
big balloon, there's room for adults as well as kids. That's why I start my
alternative mix of AV1 with Last Balloon. It's the starting mindset and
emotion, the most common view when we lose sight of the magic of life. The
journey of AV1 helps us to shake off that useless perspective and get back
to the idea that we create our own reality, and if we spend time thinking
that this day and age sucks, that's exactly what we'll experience. Andy
says he believes in a brighter future, so I say: a few years ago, today WAS
that brighter future -- so enjoy it, it's pretty darn bright today if you
look through the right eyes.

After all, ten years ago could we sit at home and talk about XTC with fans
all around the world? That's what I'm talkin' about...

Will "Does anyone have any word on AV2? What gives?" Jacobus


Message-ID: <>
Date: Mon, 20 Dec 1999 08:27:43 +1100 (EST)
From: Mud Shark <>
Subject: Re: My one, two, three cents worth

> From:
> Message-ID: <>
>> Iain.Murray wrote:
>> I'm tired of trying to express myself on this forum, and having
>> what I write misconstrued as either personal abuse or humourless
>> churlishness.


> Not sure what occurred to cause this reaction, shame on you
> heartless bastards!!!...but my immediate response is...I'M TIRED OF

Page down, then. I'm sure that's been suggested

>  If anyone wants to leave, then leave.

A fair enought point, I grant you, but then :

> Never much cared for someone that hits and runs.

Huh? I'm having a bit of trouble with "hits and runs"
- what exactly does that entail? It was hardly a
Satanas-style all-encompassing flaming, after all. To
be honest, *I'm* getting a bit tired of reading about
what other people are tired of reading (of course,
that puts me in the same boat as you, I guess - damn.
I should have thought that argument through a bit

> (oops, attacks like this are what caused ya to leave in the first
> place...right?)...hey, why am I asking you a question?'re not
> even here anymore!!!  (humOrless)

I must say, it shows a remarkable level of bravery on
your part to attack someone who is in no position to
defend themselves. You must be so proud.


"I rail against God because I was told to stop eating paste in Sunday
school" - P.J.O'Rourke


Message-Id: <>
Date: Sun, 19 Dec 1999 16:39:12 -0800
Subject: Bass-ket ball
From: "Diamond" <>

Bass-Related question, whatch out.

Fellow Bass Players: I feel that it is time that I move on, and buy myself a
new Bass Amp. I need some suggestions from anyone who is knowledgable in
this area. I've been looking at a Harke, but the price is kind of steep, and
I don't have a job right now, so I'm trying to go for the CHEAPEST bass amp
that still sounds GOOD. So, any help would be greatly appreciated.

Also, I was wondering if anyone knew what Basses and Bass Amps Colin uses.

Kevin Diamond.
"To emphasize the afterlife is to deny life. To concentrate on heaven is to
create hell."
          -Tom Robbins


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 19 Dec 1999 16:31:09 -0800
From: dan phipps <>
Organization: cic
Subject: year-end post / listing...

hey all!

"and so this is christmas, and what have you done?
another year over and a new one just begun..."

not meaning to ape the antics of others, but when
i saw the year-end post / listing by jeffrey thomas
in chalkhills 5_343, i just had to bite the hook and
get reeled in, too!  so here are *my* favorite pur-
hases of the last year pre-y2k! --

xtc:  homespun
xtc:  apple venus volume 1
xtc:  i'd like that  (cd single)  (a gift)
xtc:  easter theatre  (cd single)  (a gift)
yes:  the ladder
yes:  circus of heaven, 1979  (2 cdr's)  (bootleg)  (a gift)
paul mccartney:  run devil run
paul mccartney:  off the ground -- the complete works  (2 cds)
jon anderson:  3 ships (cdr)  (a gift)
jon anderson:  chagall -- unreleased album sessions (2 cdr's)  (a gift)
the lilac time:  looking for a day in the night  (a gift)
loreena mckennitt:  live in paris and toronto  (2 cds)
the beatles:  yellow submarine songtrack
scott appel:  nine of swords  (cdr)
scott appel:  parhelion  (cdr)
def leppard:  euphoria
paula cole:  this fire
...the entire collective soul catalogue
marshall crenshaw:  downtown
pete droge:  spacey and shakin'
michael hedges:  torched
leo kottke:  one guitar, no vocals
latin playboys:  latin playboys
harry nilsson / john lennon:  pussy cats
pete ham:  7 park avenue
nick heyward:  from monday to sunday
keith moon:  two sides of the moon
chris rea:  the road to hell
the records:  smashes, crashes and near missed  (best of)
mike rutherford:  smallcreep's day"  (cdr)  (a gift)
tom petty / the heartbreakers:  echo
ringo starr:  i wanna be santa claus
richard thompson:  mock tudor
richard thompson:  celtschmerz  (live)
robin trower:  essential

plus many many wonderful dubbed cassettes
that were sent to my address as music trades
from other friends and relations who wish to
"share the wealth!"

looking back...a very "productive" and blessed
1999, other than the fact of my father passing
away from cancer in october.  (rip, dad!)

xtc will indeed ROCK in y2k, so everyone get
ready!!  it's a-comin'!!  :-)

waiting for av2 and warbles that are fuzzy...

/Dan Phipps <>

"Imagination like a muscle will increase with exercise."
(Peter Blegvad)


Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 19 Dec 1999 16:01:01 -0800 (PST)
From: travis schulz <>
Subject: What A Damn Fine Year 1999 Was!

1999 was a good one. AV1, Homespun and the
anticipation of AV2 and Fuzzy Warbles made the year
one to remember. It was a good musical year overall.
Thanks to the internet- I made out like a frickin'
bandit this past year.  The autographed AV1 cd I won
over at the Little Lighthouse was just the best thing
ever- thanks to Mark who spearheads that fine XTC
site! Ebay was my ticket to the Ella Guru/Mayor of
Simpleton disc, the Japanese XTC Demos, the book
titled "Lost In Music" by Giles Smith (lots of
XTC/Martin Newell content) and then there's my
favorite ebay score- The Oranges and Lemons poster! (I
think it was Wes Long I bought this from- thanks man!
Looks great with a gold frame). Also on the net,
Jarmusic allowed me to buy the Martin Newell Ol Box of
Humbug- all cds plus a vinyl single and an autographed
picture of Martin with our Andy.....for only $20 (the
price does not make sense, I know). And I can't forget
Chalkhills- it took me ages to get on the list because
I'm computer-dumb, but I'm very glad I finally made it
here!  Great personal emails-some from other XTC fans
from Nebraska- I thought I was the only one. Thanks to
those who made trades here; especially Bob Estus-
thanks for the XTC video, and Wes Long- thanks for the
Colin demos cdr! The only thing that could have
improved 1999 for me would be to have had a new Little
Express come out. Oh well. Later. Happy Holidays!!!!!


Date: Sun, 19 Dec 1999 14:03:17 -0800 (PST)
From: dAVe burlingame <>
Subject: drugs [zzz...zzz...]
Message-ID: <>

...and so it came to be that Tom's ignorant post begat Dom's more
reasonable reply which begat Megan's enlightened comments:

:>>the moral fabric of this country in specific and the world in general
:>>has been on a steady decline since the 60's
:>Don't confuse oppression with order!
:yes, exactly, I agree.

ah, but this is the crux of tom's argument. its black heart rests on the
ideal that the state and the law know best, and if an act is not expressly
allowed by law, then it must be forbidden. he does not state it
explicitly, but it resides within his words nonetheless.

:>>No one cares about what anyone thinks, says, does, or wants to do
:>>anymore.  No one cares, period.
:according to whom?  I care.  I care about protecting the freedom of others
:to do what they wish with their own bodies within their frame of knowledge.

yup, very well put. tom is also saying that since people do not seem to
care, he believes the law will MAKE them care. this falls into the realm
of those who wish to legislate morality, where everyone is procatively
prohibited from expressing or exercising and freedoms of views deemed
"unpopular" by a majority of others, regardless of merit.

:>>If people are given the "right" to act as they wish, the outcome will
:>>be detrimental to society as a whole.
:I'm sorry, but this particular line makes me uncomfortable in relation to
:this argument.  In fact, the whole post made me uncomfortable, because it
:seemed so possible that it was talking about more than drugs.

as soon as he moved out of the "premise" of his rant, his supporting
arguments grew weaker. maybe if he stayed within the confines of his
original point, he might have made a more cohesive (but still
ill-informed) case.

:>>Laws serve two purposes, one is to protect the people from physical
:>>harm, the other is to uphold a sense of moral dignity.
:there's that uncomfortable feeling again.  Whose morals?  Judeo-Christian

good question. tom talked about native americans and their use of peyote,
and how it was "all right" with him.

speaking on behalf of all native americans, i would like to thank tom for
his blessing regarding my creed's use of peyote. we were all wondering
where he would fall on this issue, and will now rest easy that he has
voiced his opinion.

:>>Why should I have to worry about my future children becoming drug users
:>>just because YOU want to be one right now?
:Regulations and morality don't always do the trick.

it doesn't appear that tom doesn't trust his "future children" to "do the
right thing." i have a hard time deciding whether his preemtive
resignation has to do with his knowledge that his children will be too
weak-willed to be responsible, confident citizens, or with the fact that
tom understands himself to be such a poor role model that his children
will become heavy drug users just to avoid the "reality" he will force
upon them...

the bottom line, though, is that this very much a religious type of
argument. no one's mind will be changed, and the ignorant will continue
preaching the virtues of limiting other's freedom.

that's enough. let's put this to rest.



Message-ID: <>
Date: Sun, 19 Dec 1999 19:26:10 EST
Subject: A Brief De-Lurk...


Time for my quarterly Chalkhills posting before I crawl back into my corner
of the room.  Just a couple of quick items.....

Thanks Michael V. for the great tribute to John Lennon earlier in the month.
You did a great job with that!   Nineteen years and I still miss him too....

Thanks to those with access to speak with Andy & Colin and periodically
updating us less-fortunate individuals with news (Mitch, Mark Stribos, etc).
I usually read these posts 3 or 4 times.  I appreciate it.

A friend recently showed me the original black plastic bag from his vinyl
copy of Black Sea.  Very neat.  I understand that this is how the Canadian
versions were packaged (David Oh mentioned this recently, who I think is from
Toronto).  I still have my original green paper bag from my copy.  This was
my first XTC record purchased in 1980.

As with AV1, I am trying to avoid hearing demos from songs that will be on
AV2.  I would rather be blown away by the real thing when it comes out next
year - and then hear the demos (ala, Homespun).  Just my opinion, but it
worked out great last time...

Speaking of demos, That doesn't mean that I am adverse to hearing demos of
older songs....Ian where are ya?   I just got to your site before it was shut

My wife actually likes "Harvest Festival" and "I'd Like That".  She has never
expressed any interest at all in XTC over the years.  I call it a small
miracle.  Of course I am taking full advantage by continuing to play AV1 as
often as possible in the background when she is home.  Shhh, don't tell her.

Phil, when are the next batch of shirts coming out?  Either mine is shrinking
or I am eating too many cheeseburgers...

I have always wondered what the members of the orchestra that was hired for
AV1, thought of the songs they were playing.  Anyone know?

I have been subscribing to Chalkhills for something like 4 years or so now
and I still look forward to reading.  This is a great group (despite the
periodic off-topic threads and arguing - that's what the PGDN key is for

Merry Christmas everyone from New Hampshire, USA.



Message-ID: <>
Date: 19 Dec 99 17:03:35 PST
From: vee tube <>
Subject: XTC & $$$

      Dateline: Bugalow 11-25-99

       "XTC ain't po'no'mo!"

   World wide! sales of AV.1.= 250'000

   Dateline: Dallas (VH-1) 12-19-99

    "Prince usually got $1-2 for each
   album when he was with Warner Bros.
  since he started his own label,he makes
        five times that much"

  If I wasn't so selfish (Ha!) My Christmas
 wish for XTC would be that these numbers are
 close, But, as I (and the rest of us) are going
 to be in line for AV.2.and F.W.,
  It looks like the guys will be able to
 release as much music as they are proud of for
 a long time to come.( and live accordingly)

  But as I am a shell fish.I must now admit,I'm
 going to wish for something for my family instead,


P.S. If it's allowed,my second wish is the first
                 one above.



Message-ID: <001401bf4a93$208ca780$>
From: "benhelen davis" <>
Subject: XtC memoirs and Sedaris info
Date: Sun, 19 Dec 1999 20:37:14 -0600

Hello to all the "Chalkhills & Children" out there (I have monitored this
forum for some time, and it appears that both groups are well represented

Anyhow, someone asked a few posts ago how each of us got into XtC.  In my
case, it was in a Ford Fiesta on the road between Southampton and Lymington,
Hants. in the summer of 1980 or 81 (I can't exactly remember -- in any case,
I would have been twelve or thirteen), with Grandpa at the wheel and Granny
riding shotgun.  I had just purchased a cassette titled "Street Level -- A
Collection of New Wave Hits" from the bargain bin at Woolworths and had
planned to listen to it on a crappy little boom box in the privacy of my
bedroom.  Grandpa insisted, however, that I audition my new purchase on the
car stereo (of which he was quite proud and which normally emanated BBC
Radio 2 or perhaps pipes of Pan music from the "Picnic at Hanging Rock"
soundtrack, a favorite of his that year). My protests notwithstanding, the
three of us listened in stunned and/or embarrassed silence to the strains of
"Pretty Vacant" by the Pistols, "No More Heroes" by the Stranglers, "Butcher
Baby" by the Plasmatics, and other such fare (all great songs, but not
exactly the kind of tunes a pre-teen wants to listen to with a pair of
English septuagenarians in a confined space) until side one mercifully came
to an end somewhere between Lyndhurst and Brockenhurst.

"I'll just listen to the rest of it when we get back," I offered, trying to
resolve the awkward situation, but Granny just said "I'm sure the next song
will be better, dear" and flipped the tape. Although she did not appreciate
it, she was right. I was mesmerized by the sharp stabbing guitar riff, the
chirping background vocals at the end of each line of verse, right the way
through the fading cries of "Nigel...Nigel...Nigel."  It was far and away
the best track on the tape, and still one of my favorite songs of all time.

The next year (or the year after, depending on what year it actually was
when all this started), I was one of the hundreds of thousands (I assume,
but I don't know exact sales figures) of pop fans who made "Senses Working
Overtime" the band's biggest UK hit.  Soon after that, I returned to the US,
watched too much MTV, and went into several years of XtC hibernation (caused
in equal parts by the band's obscurity over here and a prolonged bout of
teenage confusion which caused me to do inexplicable things like buying
albums by Culture Club and Huey Lewis and the News. I also smoked a lot of
pot during this period...perhaps marijuana is indeed the root of all evil.
Now, if only the government could legislate good taste....)

Finally (to make a long story not so long) I got back into XtC in a BIG way
in college when "Oranges and Lemons" got some US airplay.  Also, my buddies
Zahir and Sunil were/are XtC freaks (if you guys are lurking out there, make
yourselves known to me!) and turned me on to the entire catalogue. (I once
asked Zah "Which XtC albums do I need?"  He gave me a patient look and
replied "All of them.") I've been a zealot ever since.

Now that I've written my XtC memoirs, it's time for a nugget of non-XtC

Senor Martin asked "Where is David Sedaris' new book?"
I just heard him (Sedaris) at the Paramount Theater in Austin where he read
from his
new material.  It's a good thing I had only one Shiner Bock before the
performance, because I laughed till I peed on myself (especially at his
account of taking French lessons in Normandy and his imitation of Billie
Holiday singing the Oscar Mayer jingle).  He said his new book should be
available sometime in the spring.  Anyone who enjoys an hallucinatory
mixture of biting satire, profound cynicism, extraordinary wit, and (as
described by the author) a "fascination with pathology" will worship
Sedaris.  Get started with "Barrel Fever" and "Naked" and buy his new book
as soon as it hits the shelves.

X is for XtC and X-mas.  Enjoy both of them.


End of Chalkhills Digest #5-345

Go back to the previous page.