Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #6-220

         Chalkhills Digest, Volume 6, Number 220

                 Thursday, 3 August 2000


                A Canadian Heritage Minute
                       Video Frenzy
                  RE: Across the Antheap
           Little boy blue freaked 'em all out
                  Wouldn"t That Be Nice
                        Atari boy
                         Eb Ebbs
       Re: Artists you like (almost) as much as XTC
                  Yes, it's me again...
                        Beach Baby
          Blips and beeps, rap, R.E.M. rip-offs?
                         Old Neil
               Nothin' but an XTC thang...
                      Blah Blah Blah
        Responses, suggestions and a clarification
          All This Machinery Making Modern Music


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    The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

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I've been throwing low numbers on the dice of life.


Date: Tue, 1 Aug 2000 17:15:43 -0700
From: Ed Kedzierski <>
Subject: A Canadian Heritage Minute
Message-ID: <>

In 6-216, Tom Kingston asked:
>Who was it did that one that went "My definition, my definition is this....
>over a sample of that Quincy Jones instrumental (that was used in the
>swingin' London >scenes in the first Austin Powers)?  That was great!
That was the Dream Warriors; they were one of the few (only?) Canadian rap
acts, and this song involved something of a Canadian in-joke, playing on
the fact that there used to be a game show here in Canada called
"Definitions" which used Quincy Jones' "Soul Bossa Nova" (the song from
Austin Powers you're thinking of) as its theme song. It's also quite
possible that this is also where Mike Myers first heard the tune
(speculation).  (The show itself was a password-ish thing that was famous
for epitomizing the standard - in Canada, anyway - joke about the prizes on
Canadian game shows being so much cheaper than those on American game
shows: "you win our grand prize - this fabulous toaster!")

XTC content: they were very popular up here some years ago, and I was
actually first exposed to them via the radio (what a novel idea)! Oh, and
John, I've looked around but haven't seen that "Love at First Sight" single
you're looking for...

Good day, eh.
Ed K.


Date: Tue, 1 Aug 2000 22:01:34 -0400
From: "squirrelgirl" <>
Subject: Video Frenzy
Message-ID: <002e01bffc25$ad6489e0$2349c0cf@meredith-s>

Howdy 'Hillians!

It's all Wes's fault.  That would be Wes Long (sorry Wes Wilson - I've been
cheating on you, but just a bit).  He made me do it.  He made me browse
through all my XTC videos, and in the process I have become reacquainted
with a few things:

1.  Andy and Colin are hysterically funny in interviews.  Dave, too, on the
rare occasions when he speaks.
2.  The British and American versions of the Mayor of Simpleton video are
different (especially the captions/credits, as well a  few "England scenes"
thrown in here and there)
3.  Late 70s and early 80s videos are horrible - what's the deal with all
that white stuff in the background?
4.  Andy in particular, hates making videos - he stated that numerous times
in interviews.  Perhaps, as previously suggested,  we could combine the
talents of us Chalkhillers and make a ready-made Stupidly Happy video.  Then
all AP & CM have to do is lip-synch a few bits here and there.
5.  As mentioned by someone on list awhile back, Colin does,
indeed, do a "wanker" motion in the middle of Life Begins at the Hop.  Truly
a shining moment in video history
6.  Andy would be very convincing in a remake of the movie Psycho - check
out the looks he gives the camera in the Heatwave vid.  Wow.
7.  The Puppet Video is hilarious.
8.  Really, they could find better looking girls for their videos.  Hell,
I'd be in one for free!
9.  I was wrong.  I thought I had outgrown my lust for "the boys".

Just thought I'd share!  Have a happy day.



Date: Tue, 01 Aug 2000 21:53:08 -0400
From: Harry Strole <>
Subject: RE: Across the Antheap
Message-ID: <>

> So I'm listenting to Across This Antheap for the umpteenth time (my fave
> song from O&L), and I suddenly realize I have no idea what this song is
> about.

I think that this is probably my favorite song from Oranges & Lemons
also.  I think it mostly refers to how arrogant we humans tend to be
when compared to our general insignificance in the grand scheme of
things.  When all is said and done, we are just another species
populating the Earth in just another slice of geologic time.  What Andy
is pointing out to listeners is this fact.  Who, exactly, do we think we
are anyway?  The lyrics to Across the Antheap take us down a notch or
two or several hundred and snap human beings right back into the context
we have spent all of our history trying to crawl out of.
I recall an ongoing philosophical conversation I used to have with my
anthropology professor when I was at school.  She relayed to me what I
have come to call the Fluffy Bunny Theory.  We decided that it was
probably a huge evolutionary mistake for carnivorous, violent,
territorial primates to ever become sentient.  And haven't we fucked
things up pretty well?  We determined that it would have been much
better for all concerned, ie: all the other species, if a more benign
species, say, fluffy bunnies, for instance, had developed intelligence
and become self-aware.  Now there is no way to tell if another species
would have fared any better than us.  The point is that we are nothing
more than the result of an errant evolutionary coin-toss.  Certainly
puts the Republican National Convention into perspective, doesn't it?



Date: Wed, 02 Aug 2000 01:42:40 GMT
From: "Duncan Kimball" <>
Subject: Little boy blue freaked 'em all out
Message-ID: <>

Thanks to Joe Hartley <>

>Subject: Re: not so simple samples on AV1

>The little Spanish guitar riff at the beginning of Bungalow Bill is >not
>one of the lads, but is in fact a Mellotron sound.

I never knew that! Amazing what you learn.

>To come full circle, there's a company that sells samples of the old
>Mellotron tapes for use in newer digital samplers!

And Mellotron are still going. If you have $US4500 lying around, you can buy
a *new* Mellotron Mark VI (if only -- that's about $AU10,000).

They have a groovy website at <> -- well worth a look, it
includes a huge list of the albums on which the Mellotron has been used.



Date: Tue, 01 Aug 2000 22:38:11 -0400
From: Harry Strole <>
Subject: Wouldn"t That Be Nice
Message-ID: <>

> I'd love to see a true alternative to MTV on
> the air, but I think the general public would never support it.

Oh, yes that would be nice.  But, you see, in the '80's something
interesting happened.  MTV noticed that it had competition cropping up
on the UHF dials of America.  What would any young, budding,
monopolistic practice do?  Well, squash the competition of course.  This
is exactly what MTV did, by convincing the major labels to have an
exclusetivity  stipulation in their contracts.  Apparently all videos
were allowed to air only on MTV for the first two weeks after their
release.  This made all the other little nothing channels a moot point.
Oh, we don't need them anyway, do we, only a few weirdos watch that
So no matter how bad Clinton has been in letting monopolies flurish
again in the American landscape (Standard Oil is slowly being pieced
back together;  fuel prices go through the roof, what a coincidence and
this time the whole world feels it, eh UK).   We can once again thank
that great American who started it all: Ronald Reagan.  I'm sure Teddy
Roosevelt would have been proud to call himself a Republican during
Ronnie's reign.



Date: Wed, 2 Aug 2000 08:56:48 +0900
From: "John Boudreau" <>
Subject: ambience
Message-ID: <000001bffc4c$bc093fa0$7a5791d2@johnboud>

somebody said :

>Ambient: as always, I have no problem with being corrected when >I'm
>mistaken, but this has always sounded a bit too much like "new age >for the
>too-cool" to me.

i have been listening to much ambient music of late . i strongly recommend
to anybody who is interested in the genre to check out the web sites of
robert rich , and steve roach . the urls are :

rr =
sr =

there are sound samples available and discs can be ordered directly from the
artists .



Date: Wed, 2 Aug 2000 02:20:39 -0700 (PDT)
From: andrew sneddon <>
Subject: Atari boy
Message-ID: <>

I saw Sigue Sigue Sputnik at the weekend and they

vague XTC content.  I did things "on grass" at the
weekend.  damn those thistles

is it just me or is the word "Bristols" quite funny?


Date: Wed, 2 Aug 2000 04:15:58 -0700 (PDT)
From: Al LaCarte <>
Subject: Eb Ebbs
Message-ID: <>


Eb left us:

>This list is best taken in small doses. See ya when
the next album's due.<

Don't let the modem hit you in the ass on the way out.



Date: Wed, 02 Aug 2000 04:53:00 -0700
From: "Ray Michno" <>
Subject: Re: Artists you like (almost) as much as XTC
Message-ID: <>
Organization: My Deja Email (

>> MJC said:
<< With that in mind, I'll suggest a thread:
What pop/rock artist, that you like (almost?)
as much as XTC, sounds the most different
from XTC? >>

Steve Earle. Excellent rock/country/folk/bluegrass artist. I had the
pleasure of picking up two fantastic albums this year: Wasp Star &
Transcendental Blues.



Date: Wed, 2 Aug 2000 08:30:11 -0400
From: "squirrelgirl" <>
Subject: Yes, it's me again...
Message-ID: <001801bffc7d$67e47440$3a48c0cf@meredith-s>

Howdy 'Hillians!

We seem to be a mighty prolific bunch these days...those digests just keep
a-rollin' in.

Anyway, Wes Long, you're now keeping me up all night (sorry Les).  Yes, I
woke up in the middle of the night last night with a great idea.  Since
Andy doesn't want to tour, yet there is a voracious appetite amongst the
fans for visual contact, what say we get them set up in a shed with some
instruments and a video camera and let them record themselves playing an
hour or two of a variety of songs from their vast catalog.  A few thousand
copies could be made and marketed (possibly through Chalkhills).  I'm sure
most of us would be willing to pay 20 or 25 bucks for a 2-hour "concert"
video of them doing their thing.  Minus production and distribution costs,
that should still put a few thousand extra dollars in their pockets.

My favorite band name that, to my knowledge, has never been used as such:

Smarter Than the Average Bear



Date: Wed, 2 Aug 2000 07:59:38 EDT
Subject: Beach Baby
Message-ID: <>

Chalkers - you all are driving me CRAZY with these throwbacks to songs I
first drove to in the early 70s! Beach Baby was by the group First Class.

(Anyone remember My Belle Amie by the Tee Set???)

Following is from CDnow DOT COM on First Class:

Best remembered for the smash "Beach Baby," Seventies pop group First Class
was the studio creation of the British songwriting and production team of
John Carter and Ken Lewis, who together previously enjoyed success under
the guises of the Flowerpot Men, Carter-Lewis & the Southerners, and the
Ivy League. For "Beach Baby" -- a slice of richly harmonic pop in the mold
of classic Beach Boys -- the duo enlisted the services of singer Tony
Burrows, the voice of other pre-fab hitmakers including the Edison
Lighthouse ("Love Grows [Where My Rosemary Goes]"), White Plains ("My Baby
Loves Lovin'"), the Brotherhood of Man ("United We Stand") and the Pipkins
("Gimme Dat Ding"); upon its release in 1974, the single reached the Top
Five on the U.S. pop charts and also scored in the U.K. A self-titled album
and follow-up singles including "Dreams Are Ten a Penny" and "Funny How
Love Can Be" tanked, however, and after releasing a second LP, The First
Class SST, Carter and Lewis dissolved the project in 1976. ~ Jason Ankeny,
All Music Guide

T-shirt: Anyone who didn't get a Stupidly Happy T-shirt - ya missed out.
They're great!


Date: Wed, 2 Aug 2000 11:56:11 +0000 (MET)
Subject: Blips and beeps, rap, R.E.M. rip-offs?
Message-ID: <>

The esteemed (but often verbose) Harrison "Command-V" Sherwood wrote:

> Music that is made entirely using sample-playback technology in
> conjunction with MIDI (that is, the genres we group as "electronica") is
> necessarily heavily quantized and mechanical (not to mention repetitious
> to the point of sadism). To my perception, the purveyors of this group of
> genres have allowed their musicianship to become subsumed to the tools
> they use. It appears to me that the greatest skill involved in creating
> this category of music is the ability to invoke a cut-and-paste command on
> a computer. To me, this results in a music that is about as moving as a
> Gantt chart.
It sounds like you're describing dance music, which is a subset of
electronic music, and which is Specific Purpose Music (a term Elvis
Costello once used) anyway. If you think electronic music sounds as good
as the dial tones on your phone, check out Plaid, Aphex Twin, Orbital,
Black Dog, The Orb or Autechre - IMHO proof that electronic music can
have "soul" (for want of a better word).

Tom Kingston ( wondered:

> Who was it did
> that one that went "My definition, my definition is this.... over a sample
> of that Quincy Jones instrumental (that was used in the swingin' London
> scenes in the first Austin Powers)?  That was great!
I think that's the Dream Warriors "My Defininition Of A Boombastic Jazz
Style" from their 1991 album "And Now the Legacy Begins" - a rap classic,
in that it was one of the first (and most succesful) fusions of hip-hop and
jazz. They made one other album (which was a dud), and then quit. Their
"Anthology: A Decade of Hits 1988-1998" is even better than the "Legacy"
album - it has all the good bits, plus some interesting dubbish
collaborations. always has a lot of their stuff listed

Tom then stated:
> OK.  Where are you?  Actually, Dom, I atoned for this sin earlier.  However,
> give me the Ramones anyday over the Pistols!
Hell yeah! You can't beat classics as "The KKK Gave My Baby Away" and "Beat
On The Brat" - in all the album recommendations that float around on the
list, I haven't seen the Ramones' Anthology mentioned yet (so I'll do it

And finally Laura Brown remarked:
> Has anyone else noticed how much the intro to R.E.M.'s Pretty
> Persuasion sounds like the intro to NLIOL [Martin: No Language In Our
> Lungs]? The PP intro sounds much more jangly and all over the place, the
NLIOL is much drier (well, that sums up the difference in the garage-pop
production of "Reckoning" and the new-wave production of "Black Sea"

Marty "even though Todd Bernhardt apologized for his inadvertent use of my
nickname, I'm still using it just to rub it in" van Rappard


Date: Wed, 2 Aug 2000 04:24:11 -0700 (PDT)
From: Al LaCarte <>
Subject: Old Neil
Message-ID: <>


Chris Coolidge defended Neil Young:

>and his guitar playing, though as technically
proficient as any other great guitarist, is an
acquired taste.<

Which ones?  Mark Farner?  Mick Jagger? Elvis Presley?

I like Neil, but a technically proficient guitarist?



Date: Wed, 2 Aug 2000 10:49:58 -0400
From: MinerWerks <>
Subject: Nothin' but an XTC thang...
Message-ID: <a04310100b5ad99444a1a@[]>


>I've heard plenty of great rap myself.  I'm not knocking rap per se.  BUT -
>my argument was centered on the importance of songs.  Rap has been around a
>long time, and as an "art" form it has been commercialized and elevated to a
>position it was not meant for, for the sake of sales.  My fear is that the
>current generation of young people will be so "rapped" up with it all to be
>cool that songs will became a thing of the past.  That would be tragic to no
>end!  If that happens, Seasons In the Sun and Playground of My Mind would
>start looking pretty good.  It scares me that every time a car of teens pull
>up with music blaring, it's fucking rap!   They are eschewing one of the
>greatest and most joyful elements of human life.  For what?  Tupac?  And tell
>me, how on EARTH does this speak to the experience of these middle class
>So tell me, everyone, is songwriting in danger?  What do you think?

It is interesting how hip-hop culture has seeped into the suburbs.
Kevin Smith, the director of the films "Chasing Amy" and "Dogma" grew
up in rural New Jersey, with very few black people around, yet his
films indicate his musical tastes include Run DMC, Public Enemy, Ice
Cube and the like.

On a gut level, this cross-cultural embrace of rap music frightens
me. This is a phenomenon that can't be ignored, because several
prominent rap artists have the following and influence to debut a
record at number one on the Billboard charts. That's amazing.

The scary part isn't that kids are embracing rap music, it's that
they're embracing a rather narrow-minded cultural mindset. A lot of
so-called "gangsta" rap (and newer stuff influenced by the genre) has
extended beyond any attempted artistic expression into the realm of
poseurs advocating misogyny, anger, and a drug and alcohol-fueled
"party all the time" lifestyle. I think some rap artists used to take
up this guise as a base for satire or commentary, but now it's become
a self-perpetuating stereotype.

What attracts the kids to this? Maybe this is the ultimate result of
a culture where almost no taboos exist anymore. Some of the more
commercial rap is an escape from politcal correctness (I think Eminem
is as good an example as any here). Because of the reasons I
mentioned above, some rap music (and I might as well mention the rave
culture here as well) glorifies a very attractive hedonistic
lifestyle. These kids are looking at other things than songs as the
"most joyful elements of human life." Perhaps this is linked to the
fact that kids today have been living in a darn good economy for a
while, and there's nothing "heavy" going on - no equivalents to
Kennedy's assassination, Watergate, Vietnam, Challenger explosion,
etc. - for them to worry about. Sorry to base my argument on very
North America-centric themes, but it's all I can really speak of from

Funny that this theme was broached in, of all places, the movie
"Head" back in 1968... the Monkees are being led around a factory
where various odd things are occurring around the corners of the
equipment. The guy leading them through says:

"Pleasure. The inevitable by-product of [progress]... The tragedy of
your times, my young friends, is that you might get exactly what you

BTW, I don't think songcraft is in too much danger. I think musical
tastes are bound to change with the ebb and flow of social and
political climates. The only question is when.

>BTW, if anyone would like to hear what rap could be, check out In The
>Ghetto Of Beautiful Things, TSOTT, Kevin Gilbert.

Man, I gotta check out this Kevin Gilbert guy... this has almost
become a list for him!
As far as what rap could be... I've always liked Self, who is heavily
influenced by the Beasties, and I really dig the Citizen King disc,
which is an amalgam of hip-hop, guitar pop and underground dance.

>ObXTC: Nonsuch is a great album.  Whatsa matter with you people?  If
>you're not XTC fans, go away!

I wonder if several years from now another XTC album will replace
Nonsuch as the most polarizing disc in the group's canon. I predict
Wasp Star will become this album.

David Smith added:

>I don't want to get too involved in the Rap argument, simply 'cos
>it's old news, but in 6-208 Alan Martin said "When was the last time
>you heard a "Rap" lyric and thought, "Wow, I've never thought about
>*blah* in that way".
>For me it was De La Soul's first album. Patchy in parts, but some
>real head turners. In general I agree, a lot of rap has got lazy and
>you need to go back to "old skool" such as DLS, A Tribe Called Quest,
>Arrested development and the Jungle Brothers to get you really thinking.

This reminds me of my early years when I didn't think I would be able
to stomach the Ramones, and that punk rock would be too noisy for my
tastes. When I finally listened, I was pleasantly surprised that the
music was very much a modernized version of what Phil Spector used to
do all those years ago. I'm having the same reaction now listening to
some Public Enemy. It's certainly not what I expected. From what I've
heard, I gather I'd really like De La Soul as well.

I also thoroughly enjoyed a skewering of rap culture, a kind of
"Spinal Tap" of rap called "Fear of a Black Hat." Some of this is
brilliant... there's one part of the movie where a guy points out all
the guys on the tour named "Ice" something...

and in a different "ball"game altogether, Robert Wood (huh, huh, he
said "wood"...) said:

>Nadgers are your bollocks, old man - or to be a little more medical, your
>gonads. Testicles, town halls - whatever your preferred moniker is...

"... bags of fun with Buster..."  (couldn't resist)

and, last but not least, from Warren Butson:

>Just thought I'd express my absolute joy at recieving the Jules Verne
>sketchbook cd from Derek at Mindwerks? It's beautifully made with (i
>assume) the original artwork and liner notes, and even a picture
>disc. fabulous. The quality is pretty good especially the studio out-takes,
>I'd never heard that song about the English something or other and even
>though it was onlt about 2 mins, I though it was a great little tune,
>others it appeared to me were best left un-recorded! Anyway the main thing
>is to thank Derek for all the hard work you put into it and you didn't earn
>a penny from doing it which shows what a nice chap you are, congratulations
>on exhibiting true altruism!

Well, golly gee [** blush **]...
I'm really glad everyone's enjoying the CD so much. I was really
pleased to make it. I'd like to thank everyone who sent me comments
like the ones above via email. There are a few people out there who
have written to me about getting a disc and are waiting for a
response. I hope to get around to combing through the next batch of
orders this weekend. Once I got the first wave of discs out, I had to
step back and take stock. I ended up mailing over 30 copies of the
disc! I was quite surprised!

There is someone else who should be thanked for this production. I
wanted to publicly thank Keith Clark, who helped me keep the cost of
materials down by offering to print those booklets on a laserjet...
now that's true altruism as well!

  = Derek "DJ Dolby D" Miner =


Date: Wed, 2 Aug 2000 07:57:26 -0700 (PDT)
From: NickJeri Santangelo <>
Subject: Blah Blah Blah
Message-ID: <>

Okay, I think the Rap deal has been done to death.

How about some other categories for song lists instead
of just 10 best or 10 worst?  For example, the 10 Most
Original Pop Songs, or the 10 Most Significant Pop
Songs? (i.e. songs that started trends, changed music
forever, blah blah blah)\

Some of my 10 most original/significant in no
particular order:

1.  Generals and Majors - XTC  (although not actually
my fav. XTC song, it was political, original as hell,
and a hit ANYWAY.  You can count the number of times
that's happened on the fingers of one hand, I

2.  Ballad of a Thin Man - Bob Dylan (Started a folk
trend.  Okay okay, the more significant songs were
Blowin in the Wind and Times They Are A Changin, but I
always liked this one better).

3.  Helter Skelter - Beatles (original,made history
for the wrong reasons....)

4.  The Girl You Want - Devo (original, started a

5.  Who'll Stop the Rain - Creedence (politically
significant  song about the Vietnam War and I just
plain like it.)

6.  Radio, Radio -  E. Costello (original, started a
minor angry pop trend)

7.  The Whole Pet Sounds Album (original, started a
minor Andy Partridge trend, scared the hell out of
the Beatles)

8.  Hot Head - Capt. Beefheart (do I even have to
*say* original? Actually got air play in L.A.  Hey!  I
saw Beefheart in the early 80's at an infamous club in
Huntington Beach called the Golden Bear.  Interesting
evening.  I'll post about it some time.)

Another IDEA (two in one morning?  Caffeine musta
kicked in).

List the artists whose work you collect the most
extensively.  I have the complete works of:

XTC (surprise?)
Costello (will you STOP, EC!  You're costing me a
Junior Wells
BB King
John Hiatt
Nick Lowe
Sam & Dave
And some guys off Alligator Records (Blues label) you
folks have probably never heard of.  What can I say, I
grew up in N'Orleans.)

Can't think of any more and I have to go to work now.



Date: Wed, 02 Aug 2000 10:45:42 -0400
From: "Todd Bernhardt" <>
Subject: Responses, suggestions and a clarification
Message-ID: <>
Organization: Enterworks, Inc.


A response or three:

Deb (I think) asked:
>Has anyone thought about which WS song you'd like to see up on the
little screen?<

I'd go w/Colin's suggestion and say "Stupidly Happy." I'm not going to
storyboard it for you, but it's fairly obvious that the possibilities
for an amusing and original video of that song are endless. Get Aardman
Animations involved, and you're talking Awardsville.

Alan Martin declared:
> Geesh!  You guys are vicious!  I stand by my words.

Good fer you, Alan! Fight on.

In a related vein, RIP, Eb. If ya can't stand the volume, turn us down,
I guess.

And from Duncan Watt ("The Fastest Man in the World ... He *Really*

> C'mon, think back, man... SCENE: Family yelling, stomping feet ascending
> stairs... CUE Little Tom: "You CAN'T tell me what to do! I HATE you!"
> (slams bedroom door, rushes to sadly anemic Emerson stereo system, stabs
> at 'On' button while grabbing 'Volume' and *invoking* the sweet blast to
> the only correct setting: *all the fucking way up*...

YEAH, baby! Okay, new-thread suggestion from yours truly:
What song did YOU pick in this situation? (And please don't be so
pathetic as to suggest that you didn't have a favorite "piss off the
parents/old folks" song.)

For me, it was "The Loser in the End" by singing-drummer extraordinaire
Roger Meddows-Taylor -- last song, Side White, _Queen II_. Lots of drums
and cymbal chokes; loud, grungy, distorted guitars; Taylor's gravely
voice nice and prominent in the mix; and a bridge with lyrics that
couldn't be beat:

So listen mothers everywhere
To just one mother's son
You'll get forgotten on the way
If you don't let them have their fun
Forget regrets and just remember
It's not so long since you were young
[Back to the chorus]
You're bound to be the loser in the end ...

And finally, from my pal Doom (damn this spell-checker!):
>Ol' Pa Burnt-Arse quipped...
>>remember the good old days, when we'd get an issue every couple of days,
and the posts would be filled with interesting information and
about XTC?<<

>No, but they sound hot diggity dawg! Tell us more, Gramps!

Damn smart-ass youngster! It wasn't a rhetorical question -- I was
wondering if anyone actually remembers those days and could tell me
about them! Seems my memory ain't what it used to be...

Lovingly yours,
Er ... wait, wait, it'll come to me in a minute ...


Date: Wed, 2 Aug 2000 11:00:19 -0400
From: "Michael Versaci" <>
Subject: All This Machinery Making Modern Music
Message-ID: <000101bffc92$60c5e530$82b7f6d1@mtwe50004>


Talent can take many forms.  Some musicians are adept at playing
instruments, while others have an ability to create parts for other
players.  Accomplished instrumentalists deserve our respect. Having said
that though, I believe that some of the classical composers arranged parts
for instruments that they themselves could not play.  We don't consider
them non-musicians or light-weights.  Is that much different than today's
composers using sampled instruments and writing parts for those instruments
that a computer "plays?"

What I object to (as others on this list have mentioned) is the usage of a
recorded passage from another artist's record, looping it and writing a new
song around that passage.  It seems cheap to me.

I'll say this about Rap / Hip Hop: I don't care for it as a genre,
therefore I don't feel qualified to criticize it.  Dismissing rap as
non-music would be an arrogant position for me to embrace when facing the
fact that millions of people *love* it. When I hear a loud rap song from a
passing motorist with its obnoxious beat and its sometimes angry lyrics
being rhythmically shouted at me, I try to keep it in perspective. It seems
no different then when my parents' generation labeled The Beatles as
"garbage" and Hendrix as "noise."  They formed their opinions listening to
Big Band, Classical, Opera and Tin-Pan Alley music.  I understand the
knocks against rap - but I attribute that to my pre-dispositions that were
defined during the Rock & Roll, Classic Rock and New Wave years of my
youth.  It's generally agreed upon among psychologists that at the
biological level, tastes (and even world-view type concepts) are formed
when humans are young.  As we age, it is more difficult for us to adapt to
new ideas.

Interestingly enough, by the early 90's, my parents had come around to The
Beatles, saying thinks like "That Paul McCartney sang some good songs,
didn't he?"  They still think Hendrix was noise...

Michael Versaci

"Come mothers and fathers
 Throughout the land
 And don't criticize
 What you can't understand"

Bob Dylan


End of Chalkhills Digest #6-220

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