Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #7-4

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 7, Number 4

                 Tuesday, 23 January 2001


                      New T-Shirts?
            The Definitive XTC albums campaign
                 XTC vs. Corporate Giants
               Nitpicking: Uffington, OXON
                   I'll get me anorak!
                     Re: Chrome Molly
            Re: warm snickers (was hot topic)
                       Fight Night
                i'm back! what did i miss?
                  Them's Fightin' Words!
           Chalkers gather... where and when..?
                  This Fabulous Century
                 Re: radically different
                      The pilgrimage
                Andy/Apples Collaboration?
                 Falkner in Soft- Apples?
                    re: ACSS (no xtc)
                    Aphrodite in Furze


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Date: Sun, 21 Jan 2001 23:32:23 -0700
From: Phil Corless <>
Subject: New T-Shirts?
Message-ID: <>

Hey, everyone!  It's Phil, the t-shirt guy (that seems to
be the most popular way to email me:  "You're the t-shirt
guy, right?")...

Anyway, I am currently measuring interest in a new batch
of t-shirts with the Uffington Horse and "XTC" underneath.
Front design only, nothing on the back.

Please email me at:

And let me know if you are interested in a shirt at $16.50.
If enough people are keen on this, I'll go ahead and organize

Again, simply email me with "Yes, am interested... let me know."



Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2001 01:56:21 -0500
From: MinerWerks <>
Subject: The Definitive XTC albums campaign
Message-ID: <a05001900b6918480e718@[]>

Greetings, Chalkfolks,

I'm sure we're all pretty excited about the impending remastering and
repackaging of the XTC back catalogue, but the news got me to
thinking... We've heard that the bonus tracks would at least be moved
to the end of the new CDs. But could we hope for more than just that
one small change?

The smattering of bonus tracks across the previous CDs seemed rather
arbitrary. White Music and Mummer provided a good overview of all the
extra material recorded around the same time as the album proper, but
to get most of the XTC b-sides and rare tracks, we were forced to get
Rag & Bone Buffet. And even then, there were some tracks that
remained hard to find. All of this makes compiling a complete XTC
catalogue a challenge.

If we're going to get remastered CDs anyway, wouldn't it make sense
for the discs to be the "definitive" representation of XTC's history
and body of work? In my view, this would mean pushing Rag & Bone
Buffet into obsolescence and loading up each individual album with
bonus tracks, much like Rykodisc did with Elvis Costello's catalogue.

So I humbly suggest the following list of bonus tracks for each of
the XTC albums. This proposed lineup would allow anyone who buys all
the remastered XTC albums to get the various compilation tracks
and b-sides at the same time. I suggest this in lieu of any
previously unreleased material, which I assume Virgin will horde for
their "definitive" box set of XTC's career.

White Music - original album plus:
Science Friction; She's So Square; Dance Band; Goodnight, Sucker;
Hang On To The Night; Traffic Light Rock; Instant Tunes; This Is Pop?
(single version); Heatwave; Traffic Light Rock (live); I'm Bugged
(live from Hope & Anchor); Science Friction (live from Hope & Anchor)

Go 2 - original album plus:
Dance With Me, Germany; Beat The Bible; A Dictionary Of Modern
Marriage; Clap, Clap, Clap; We Kill The Beast; Strange Tales, Strange
Tails; Looking For Footprints; Are You Receiving Me?

Drums and Wires - original album plus:
Life Begins at the Hop; Homo Safari; Chain Of Command; Limelight;
Bushman President; Pulsing, Pulsing; Scissor Man (BBC version); Wait
Till Your Boat Goes Down; Ten Feet Tall (US version); Officer Blue

Black Sea - original album plus:
The Somnambulist; Take This Town; Smokeless Zone; Don't Lose Your
Temper; Respectable Street (single version); The History Of Rock &
Roll; Too Many Cooks In The Kitchen; I Need Protection

Mummer - original album plus:
Toys; Jump; Desert Island; Frost Circus; Procession Towards Learning
Land; The World Is Full of Angry Young Men; Gold

The Big Express - original album plus:
Thanks For Christmas; Countdown To Christmas Party Time; Washaway;
Blue Overall; Red Brick Dream; Mantis On Parole

Skylarking - original album (with "Mermaid Smiled") plus:
Dear God; Extrovert; Let's Make A Den; Terrorism; Find The Fox; The
Troubles; Another Satellite (BBC version); Ella Guru; Happy Families

Oranges and Lemons - original album plus:
Living In a Haunted Heart; The Good Things; My Paint Heroes; Skeletons

You may have noticed that I left out one album - an important one -
plus a number of B-sides.

English Settlement is too long to include any bonus tracks on a
single disc. But there are a lot of b-sides from this period as well
as some various live recordings. I suggest that a remastered English
Settlement become a 2-disc set, with the second disc containing the
following tracks:

Over Rusty Water; Egyptian Solution (Thebes In A Box); Punch and
Judy; Tissue Tigers (The Arguers); Heaven Is Paved With Broken Glass;
Blame The Weather; Cockpit Dance Mixture

and then all the live tracks from b-sides or compilations:
Are You Receiving Me?; This Is Pop; Beatown; Roads Girdle The Globe;
Set Myself On Fire; Battery Brides; Respectable Street (from URGH! A
Music War); Living Through Another Cuba; Generals And Majors; Burning
With Optimism's Flames; English Roundabout; Cut It Out

A similar tactic was used by Capitol on one of the Beach Boys'
Brother Records reissues, allowing a second disc for material from an
EP originally included with one of the albums. And the cost of the
double disc was equal or nearly the same as the other single-disc
reissues. In the case of XTC, I'd even be willing to pay extra for a
two-disc set of English Settlement to get all that extra material.
Heck, it was a double album in the first place, anyway!!

As far as the above list, I'm pretty sure all the tracks are placed
correctly based on time of recording, rather than first release. I
also checked (to the best of my knowledge) to make sure all the songs
I suggested would actually fit on one CD! The only track I hesitated
on was "The World Is Full of Angry Young Men," because I recall that
some extra work was done on the song circa 1989 before it was
released. If the home demos are included on Oranges and Lemons, that
leaves no extra room, so I moved "Angry Young Men" back to Mummer,
where it was originally recorded - but not finished.

So, that's my plan, and I'd hope that most of you would agree that
it's a Good Idea. I'd also prevail upon any of you who have access to
Mr. Partridge to at least suggest this to him.

And if financial incentive is what is needed to convince Virgin of
this course of action, I'd point out that a remastered CD with nine
bonus tracks is going to have more apppeal and sales potential than a
remastered CD with exactly the same lineup. They have to know that
the market for remastered XTC albums isn't going to be much bigger
than those of us who already bought them. So they would be much
better off giving us something different this time. For example - I
already own the Mobile Fidelity CD of Skylarking as well as the
Geffen CD and the original vinyl. Would I buy a remastered disc with
the same track lineup? Probably not. But if you restore "Mermaid
Smiled" and add all those bonus tracks, HELL YEAH I'LL BUY IT!!

And, come on, we already know that's the gimmick behind the box set...

= Derek =


Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2001 03:53:06 -0500
From: MinerWerks <>
Subject: XTC vs. Corporate Giants
Message-ID: <a05001901b6918d24f01f@[]>

Howdy-ho again,

While perusing the latest digest, I noted Kate Burda's analysis of
the contemporary state of the music business. Not so long ago, we got
a bit up in arms about the consolidation of the major labels and the
mass dumping of artists. But I noted not one mention of a rather
ominous event which occurred last week in the media... something I'd
been hearing about for a while but didn't really hit me until it

Last week, AOL basically bought up Time-Warner. When I heard it, I
got a bad sinking feeling. I could make some bad AOL jokes here, but
I'll let the experience of being on AOL speak for itself. I will
point out, however, that AOL also acquired Netscape, which has seen a
nosedive in quality control on their latest browser, Netsape 6, which
I have heard called "the worst piece of programming to ever appear on
the Macintosh platform"...

And guess what was the first announcement that AOL made following the
acquisition of Time-Warner? AOL needs to cut jobs, and in some cases
even entire DIVISIONS of Time-Warner to maintain profitability.

You see, this all makes me wonder... A few months back, I saw some
interesting positions available at Rhino Entertainment (I would say
Rhino Records, but they also have Rhino Home Video and some other
divisions as well), which is part of the Warner Music Group. Well, in
the process of trying to just get my resume looked at by Rhino, the
whole method of applying for jobs has shifted to the "Time-Warner
Careers" website. This means that applying for a job in Rhino's
internet operations or A&R department goes through one big spigot at
Time-Warner where they also look for the guys who come to your home
to install the cable and EVERY OTHER JOB in EVERY OTHER DIVISION of
Time-Warner... No more need for "Don't call us, we'll call you,"
because there ISN'T anyone to call - you apply for a job into a big

And now, AOL owns it. (Shudder)

I've always envisioned Rhino as an independent label, in spirit at
least, even though they're owned by Time-Warner. Perhaps I'm being
too reactionary, but I wonder if Rhino Entertainment would even be
able to survive under AOL, without just being folded into Warner
Bros. other "major" record labels. Or just eliminated completely
because their products are too "specialized." I would hope they would
be able to go back on their own, as they were before they became part
of Time-Warner.

But overall, taking Kate's observations into account, I guess we
should just expect even blander product coming from the labels the in
Warner Music Group to maintain profitability for AOL. God forbid they
actually release something interesting that can't sell. New Line
Cinema (A Time-Warner Company), for instance, is known for taking
chances on some different kinds of movies, but under AOL they're in
some danger because they had a bad year in 2000. If the Lord of the
Rings trilogy bombs, I doubt they'll be around much longer...

* -------------

On the brighter side of things, however, I was happy to hear Wes
Hanks' news that Andy is co-writing with Robert Schneider of the
Apples In Stereo.  The Apples' "The Discovery of a World Inside the
Moone" was one of my favorite discs of 2000.

= Derek =


Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2001 08:03:28 -0000
From: "David Pitt" <>
Subject: Nitpicking: Uffington, OXON
Message-ID: <000201c08449$d2faba60$>

> Me old friend Dobbin must get a mention again:
> > The Westbury horse is the oldest and largest of
> > eight horses carved into chalk hillsides across
> > Wiltshire.
> hell no it ain't !
> > The Westbury horse, the only one to have been
> > given a protective concrete coating, dates back to
> > 1778 and was carved into the hillside on the
> > orders of the then landowner, Lord Abingdon.
> exactly, so our very own horsey a.k.a. Dobbin, the White Horse of
> Uffington is much much older than that... approx. 3000 years older
> actually.
> It's the one & only surviving pre-historic hillside carving
> in Wiltshire
> and a "must see" for all pilgrims who pass there on their way to St.
> Andrew in the Shed.

That was my reaction too until I remembered that the Uffington horse is not
actually in Wiltshire but in Oxfordshire.


Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2001 02:42:24 -0800 (PST)
From: andrew sneddon <>
Subject: I'll get me anorak!
Message-ID: <>

Hello Chalkers and a very happy new year to all!

**Tenuous XTC content**

I was watching a program on Channel 4 last night
(called "The shape of things that hum" or something)
which was all about Vocoders.  One of the blokes from
Orbital was saying how he used to get scared listening
to Sparky's Magic Piano as a kid.  It reminded me that
Colin was apparently inspired by ol' Sparky when
writing the fabulotastic Bungalow!

Hmm, I really should get out more.....


Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2001 07:59:00 -0500
From: "Christopher R. Coolidge" <>
Subject: Re: Chrome Molly
Message-ID: <l03130302b691dceb4c0d@[]>

>I'm still around.  I've been just lurking.  I haven't listened to much XTC
>lately.  (naughty girl) I did pop in "Black Sea" a few days ago, and this
>album rocks.  I love listening to Generals and Majors and the other
>wonderful songs on there. (my brain's asleep to think of other songs right
>now) I've been preoccupied with learning web design, and thinking about my
>father who's going to have a triple bypass on Monday.  I hope everybody
>had a great New Year's.  Now I'm going back into lurking. :)

  Best of luck to your father. My father-in-law just had a couple of stents
put in the artery next to his heart because they had practically closed up,
the same operation Dick Chaney had. Unlike Dick Chaney, my father-in-law
didn't have a full-blown heart attack, just woke up in the middle of the
night with a severe burning sensation running from his chest down his left
arm. As a precaution my mother-in-law drove him to the emergency room,
where it was finally found 24 hours later after many tests he'd had a mild
heart attack. If he hadn't had such a cautious wife I might have gone to
his funeral a few days later. Life is so precious and fragile.
  As for me, I dug up Apple Venus and gave it a play the other day. Still
sounds great, IMO it's the best thing XTC ever did.

Christopher R. Coolidge
"The bad news is, there is no key to the universe. The good news is, it has
been left unlocked."
-Swami Beyondananda


Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2001 08:04:41 -0500
From: "Brian" <>
Subject: Re: warm snickers (was hot topic)
Message-ID: <004201c08473$e2a455a0$bd0bffd1@Brian>


>Being as things are a little quiet on the 'hill and we have so many educated
>and enlightened people within our midst, I thought I might start a new topic
>for discussion. Something for the experts of Theology, Philosophy, History,
>The Arts and all manner of Sciences to debate and ponder in the ensuing

Trying to start trouble, are ya?

>If the members of XTC had a fistfight, who would win and why?

"Oh, my GOD!!!!! They'll break up! It don't matter WHO wins!"

What if they DIDN'T have a fistfight?

Do the members of XTC have a history of violence towards each other?

We'll likely need a courtroom artist at the trial... I volunteer!

Now, with this you'll get somewhere.

-Brian Matthews


Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2001 15:40:15 +0000
Subject: Pitnicking
Message-ID: <>


In #7-3 Ryan Anthony bemoaned:

> the obligatory cut from one of the most overplayed albums of all time,
Pink Floyd's *Animals* <

Overplayed by whom?? I don't think I've heard any track from that album on
any radio I've been anywhere near in the past twenty years - and given that
its probably my favourite Floyd album I think I'd have noticed - but
perhaps it is different over that side of the pond?? Just to demonstrate,
yet again, the variety in the human condition, I'd rather listen to
'Animals' than any other album that the Floyd produced after 'A Saucerful
Of Secrets' (although 'Meddle' comes close)

Mark Stribos wrote, of 'our very own horsey':

> It's the one & only surviving pre-historic hillside carving in Wiltshire <

Sorry to disappoint you Mark, but I believe that the Uffington Horse is
actually in Oxfordshire, not Wiltshire, and hence the original article
might well be correct in describing the Westbury horse the way it did.

Kate Burda reported:

> Only composers can collect royalties for songs played in public or
private spaces like bars, radio, etc. <

Apropos of absolutely nothing, does anyone know how XTC distribute such
royalties?? I watched a TV documentary about The Beautiful South recently,
where they revealed that all publishing royalties are split seven ways (six
band members and the manager) in order to avoid what Sean Welch described
as 'the Bruce Foxton syndrome' , where a band member feels obliged to write
songs and badger the other band members into recording them, in order to
get a slice of that particular pie. At the time it made me think of Dave
Gregory and XTC, and I just wonder whether any Chalkhiller can throw any
light on this aspect of the band??

and rather belatedly, my 'albums of 2000', definitely in descending order:

XTC - Wasp Star (by far and away the most played and most appreciated album
of the year in my household)
Roy Harper - The Green Man (a brilliant return to his 'roots', with the
simplicity of the sound emphasising the beauty of the songs)
Kirsty MacColl (RIP <sniff>) - Tropical Brainstorm (Latin rhythms mixed
with the MacColl sense of humour. I miss her already)
The Beautiful South - Painting It Red (I got this one as a Christmas
present and it has really wormed its way under my skin)

the following are still in the 'not sure' bucket, although current
suspicion is that they'll end up as popular as many other albums by the
same artist:

Sade - Lovers Rock (can it get any more laid back than this??)
Paul Simon - You're The One (I can't decide whether this is half a dozen
good songs and a bunch of filler or simply an album of slow growers)

as to favourite tracks, I'll vote for just one, bypassing all the obvious
references to tracks from the albums listed above  - 'Drip Fed Fred' by
Madness - simply for one last chance to hear Ian Dury's dulcet tones.
Another Blockhead bites the dust <sigh>

Cheers, Steve

NP: Billy Bragg - Reaching To The Converted


Date: 22 Jan 2001 08:22:20 -0800
Subject: Fight Night
Message-ID: <>

Dear Chalk-enthusiasts!

I have been greatly inspired by Adrian Ransome's provocative thread
suggestion: If the members of xtc were to get in a fistfight who would
win? I believe it would go as follows:

Andy, wearing the sunny yellow satin trunks, may have a distinct height
and reach advantage, but Colin, wearing the silky black trunks has the
speed advantage.

Ding Ding! - Round One

Andy emerges from his corner looking fresh - wearing his war face. He's
psychologically ready for this bout. He does some dancing and shuffling

Andy meets Colin in the center of the ring.

Andy waits for Colin to get close enough and he lets loose with a right
jab/left-hook combo.

Colin's no dummy. He knows that the trick is to get inside of Andy's
reach. Colin accepts the left hook on the chin as toll.

Once inside Partridges impressive reach Colin delivers some punishment to
Andy's body.

Andy hugs Colin and the ref has to split them up.

Andy tries to fire off a power jab but the quicker Moulding ducks the blow
and gets back to work on the body.

Colin backs Andy against the ropes.

Andy tries to rally until Colin plants a sweet uppercut to Andy's
chin. Sweat sprays in a lovely arc from the back of Andy's head as he
falls to the mat in slo-mo singing "That wave...". Little cartoon
blue-birds fly around Andy's head.

Round One Ends In TKO For XTC Bassist Moulding!

Amazingly, in the post fight interview Colin does *not* thank Jesus Christ
and his baby's mother for everything he has achieved.

I love you guys!, Laura


Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2001 16:33:17 EST
Subject: i'm back! what did i miss?
Message-ID: <>

hah! after a year of disappearing from the face of the earth, i return
triumphant again! not that anyone knows who i am as i was the lurkiest of
lurkers, but no more will i wander the dark underground of internetia. :) i
had a total breakdown, moved, got a new job, am back in school majoring in
(ta daaaa) MUSIC! yay! and i'm sooo glad that i get to do a project on XTC!
hooray! i've been writing like mad and performing around the area a little
bit and doing pretty darn good for myself. so yay.

> XTC's Andy Partridge, having been sent CDs of the band the Apples in Stereo
>  by singer (and XTC fan) Robert Schneider, liked what he heard so much that
>  he called Schneider, and now the two are co-writing songs for a Schneider
>  solo album, due in the spring. Meanwhile, Partridge and partner Colin
>  Moulding plan to spend this year writing songs for a 2002 XTC album.

oh could i be any happier!!!?! the apples are such nifty guys, and i totally
love their video for the powerpuff girls (yes i watch the powerpuff girls!
it's my only weakness!). of course i really like they might be giants's video
for malcolm in the middle as well. it kind of goes along with the whole tiny
band theme.



Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2001 19:29:30 -0500
From: "squirrelgirl" <>
Subject: Them's Fightin' Words!
Message-ID: <002301c084d4$9ae4e840$a379c0cf@meredith-s>

Howdy 'Hillians!

In response to Adrian, who posed the question in the last digest about who
would win the XTC fist fight.  If you take all the members of XTC, you only
have 2.  Not much of a fight, eh?

Now if we assume (and we all know what that makes, don't we?) that Adrian
meant all the current *and* former members of XTC, we'd certainly have a
much more interesting spectacle, now wouldn't we?  I think a case could be
made for any of the lads - here are a few ideas:

Terry - have you SEEN those forearms???
Barry - by far the most frenzied of the bunch
Dave - takes the guitar's nickname "ax" all too literally
Andy - pictures Todzilla's face on all the other lads
Colin - underdog, schmunderdog - time to show Andy who's the real boss

Do we include the Dukes as well?

S "taking cover from flying drumsticks" G


Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2001 18:32:36 -0600 (CST)
From: Brown <>
Subject: Chalkers gather... where and when..?
Message-ID: <>

Last week on Twin Peaks-
>fired by John Keel's example and energy->>
> My New Year's Resolution - okay, one of a multitude - is to FINALLY
> get the Los Angeles area Chalkhillians - and you know who you are -
> together for a rousing bacchanal.>>

I am just mad about the idea of a rousing XTC-flavored bacchanal.. Now, just
who exactly is this 'John Keel' person?
Oh, Mr. Keel, if that *is* your real name..any further details on this Lost
Angels Chalk gathering?  Do tell!

<<My favorite apple story, for now, occurs when the Jews were enslaved
by the Egyptians and the Egyptians were desperate to control the slave
birthrate. As part of their birth control measures, the Egyptians
arranged work schedules so that husbands and wives were kept apart as
much as possible, with extremely limited opportunities for intimacy.
When the wives realized what was going on, they began taking meals to
their husbands at their work site. When the husband was granted a
lunch break, the wife would take him into the nearby fields to feast
on "loaves and kisses." When God saw what the women were attempting to
do, He caused apple orchards to spring up around the fields, ensuring
privacy for the couples, and the continuation of the people. >>

Thank you for sharing your favorite apple story with us, Angie.. I loved it!
Kind of gives new meaning to the phrase, 'polishing the apple', hmmmm?  <G>

I'm afraid my imagination is running amuck over this one:

<<Harrison "Odin mounts the tree/Bleeds for you and me/Daddy's severed
genitals/Fall into the sea" Sherwood>>

..just how *does* one mount a tree?..

yeah, you guessed it.. it's a s-l-o-w news day..

Debora 'EEGADS.. think of the splinters!' Brown


Date: Tue, 23 Jan 2001 02:15:49
From: "Duncan Kimball" <>
Subject: This Fabulous Century
Message-ID: <>

Happy New Year? Bah! Humbug!!

Hey Molly - hope your dad is OK.

* * * * *

>From: Ryan Anthony <>
>Subject: How much for a foot-cranked computer?

>While its population has doubled, California hasn't
>brought any new power plants on-line in ten years --
>evidently any new plant would have imperiled the
>breedings grounds of the endangered Kowalski's tufted
>cockroach, or something -- so now the Golden State is
>hungrily eyeing the electricity of neighboring states,
>including Arizona. Help, Laura! I'm going to need one
>of your foot-cranked computers.

Maybe I'm just not in the mood Ryan, but I didn't find that particularly
funny. Lots of people have fought long and hard to try curb the profligate
waste of energy in the "First World". Let's not forget that the good ole
Yewessay is the world's largest consumer of fossil fuels, and has the
largest number of nuclear power plants.

Also, it's not (strictly speaking) home computers that are contributing to
the problem. PCs are actually quite efficient and rate fairly low on the
usage scale, compared with stuff like air-conditioning and heating. The big
new comsumer is your friendly, energy-hungry ISP. According to the anecdotal
statistic I heard the other day, one large "server farm" can consume more
energy than several  suburban shopping malls.

It's a serious dilemma -- California, like so many places, faces increasing
demands for power, but the current solutions are both equally unpalatable.
You can build more fossil fuel power stations, which increases our reliance
on the Middle East etc, dumps more hydrocarbons and other nasty organic
compounds and heavy metals into the atmosphere, contributes to acid rain
yadda yadda yadda ... or you can build more nuclear power stations, which
while less immediately polluting, have those disastrous long-term disposal
problems for spent fuel, and are always at risk of the kind of catastrophic
accident that happened at Chernobyl. Or even a smaller accident, which could
still irradiate large areas and populations ... Not to mention the fact that
both systems produce gigantic amounts of thermal pollution through waste hot
water, steam etc.

No offence, Ryan, but the evident fact that California's enviro-lobby have
been able to halt the contruction of new power plants and perhaps save a
number of unique ecosystems from being thus polluted should be a cause for
low-key celebration, not snide remarks. Further food for thought is the
prospect that many ISPs and other large energy consumers are now considering
turning to in-house power generation. By installing their own (presumably
diesel-powered) generators, they thus remove their reliance on the state
grid, but also increase localised air and water pollution in areas that are
already facing serious problems from the careless use, storage and disposal
of the many ultra-toxic chemicals used in high-tech manufacture.

Gee what a happy start to the day ...

* * * * *

>From: Brown

>"Let us not overstrain our talent, lest we do nothing gracefully; a >clown,
>whatever he may do, will never pass for a gentleman." -- LaFontaine

"La Fontaine can get knotted"
-- John Cleese

* * * * *

<<Anyone out there happen to see
2001 in the theater when it was first released>>

Erm ... not quite. I was taken to see it at a Sydney drive-in. Visually
speaking, a GREAT introduction to the film. I was 10, had been totally crazy
about space since the launch of Friendship 7, and just stared in wide-eyed
amazement at the awesome beauty of Kubrick's vision. I had certainly seen
NOTHING like it before, and it remains the benchmark.

However, being 1968, the audio side left a LOT to be desired. This was
*years* before the innovation of being able to clip an FM lead to your
aerial (not that it would have mattered anyway, since we didn't get FM radio
here until about 1975!). Listening to the soundtrack of 2001 on a crappy
drive-in speaker is rather akin to getting your first hearing of
Beethoven's 9th over the telephone.

I've probably seen the film 50 times since then, and I still never tire of
it. I'm really looking forward to the cinema re-release, so that I can take
my boy Lucas along and show him what a REAL space movie looks like. MInd
you, he suddenly twigged to "Forbidden Planet" the other week. He and his
sister spent hours pretending to be Robbie -- which was grand. We cheerfully
ordered them to clean up all their shit, which they did it happily (for
once) ... as long as we addressed them as "Robbie".

* * * * *

>From: "Kate Burda" <>
>Subject: The REAL reasons XTC never made any money!

PREFACE: Kate, have you read Fred Goodman's "Mansion On The Hill?" If not,
check it out -- he comprehensively lifts the lid on the filthy deals cut
"for" their artists by "legendary" managers Albert Grossman (Dylan. The
Band, Baez), John Landau (Springsteen) and above all, the Prince of
Darkness, David Geffen (Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, Jackson Brown, etc). The
pure self-serving evil of the management and publishing deals they set up
for these artists -- structured to make the managers themselves the main
beneficiaries -- is nothing short of scandalous.

Another case in point is my beloved Small Faces. Don Arden lives the life of
Riley, while Ronnie Lane died penniless. It took drummer Kenney Jones almost
TEN YEARS and lotsa bucks to track down the money from their Immediate
recordings through a maze of shelf companies and offshore accounts. Those
records have made *somebody*  many tens of millions over the years, but the
Small Faces they have seen nought of it.

Another salutary lesson can be found in Roger McGuinn's testimony to the
Napster hearings. I was frankly stunned to learn that this gentleman -- one
of the most successful songwriters of the 20th century, and the leader of
one of its most famous and best-selling bands is, by his own testimony,
STILL unable to support himself and his family from his royalty income
alone. McGuinn told the hearing that, apart from the initial advances, he
has never seen a cent in royalties from his Byrds and post-Byrds efforts,
many of which sold multi-milllions. Even as late as the 1990s, when he
released the successful "Back From Rio" CD -- which sold over 500,000 copies
-- he didn't get a brass razoo. Unbelievable.

>Only composers can collect royalties for songs played in public or >private
>spaces like bars, radio, etc.

Are you sure? I was under the impression that all the musos who perform on a
recording are entitled to a small mechanical royalty for public performance.
The traditional exception was session players, who received a one-off fee,
but as I recall from my contact with session legend Carol Kaye (Beach Boys,
Byrds, Monkees etc etc) there is/was a recent campaign afoot in te US to
secure residual payments for these session players, for the many hugely
successful hits on which they played (although I could be mistaken).

>Only 20% of royalties are ever recouped by the record labels- the rest >is
>written off as a loss.

So *they* say. What about XTC? There can no doubt that Virgin recouped their
royalties many times over -- yet it wasn't until after the lads escaped
their contract and had it audited that Virgin finally started handing over
the cash.

In my view this has been Standard Operating Procedure for the majors. They
openly collabnorate with managers, agents and publishers to screw the
artists for every dollar they can extract. They habitually sign new artists
on a piddling royalty rate -- from memory, the Beatles originally got about
2%. The rate varies depending on how famous you are and how tough your
manager is. I clearly recall artists like Elton John and Stevie Wonder being
able to negotiate what were (at the time) landmark deals in the late 70s,
with rates of 20% or more -- ten times what the Beatles were getting.
Imagine how rich they'd be on THOSE rates? The top artists like Madonna
probably now recieve upwards of 30%, but I'm guessing there.

But the cruel fact is that once the advance is paid, you can usually bid
"Goodnight Irene" to the rest of your money. This happens in many ways but
most typically, label execs, managers and producers simply steal it. I know
for a fact that this happened to Tamam Shud, a leading Sydney
underground/progressive band in the late 60s-early 70s. They cut three
tracks for a famous multi-gold-selling various-artists surf soundtrack
called "Morning Of The Earth". They have never been paid a CENT in
royalties. According to their lead guitarist Tim Gaze, the producer made the
deal with the label and was supposed to pass on the income to the artists.
Of course, he simply pocketed all the dough and now refuses to hand it over,
or even talk to them, and the label (Warner) continually fobs them off,
claiming they can't even find the original contract.

These crooks are able to further protect themselves by sending the cash on a
long holiday to the Azores or the Bahamas, as in the case of The Small Faces
and many others. Plus, the bands are usually too broke to carry out an audit
of the accounts (which THEY have to pay for) and any attempt to recover the
money through the courts is Catch #22 -- it would probably cost the artist
many times  more in legal fees than they are owed in royalties, and it would
be a brave artist indeed who would brave the might of a giant like

>Record labels do not own the rights to tours or merchandise -- all
> >proceeds go to the artists and licensees.

Which is fine if you own the merchandising rights and get a good rate
(unlike Epstein, who parted with the Beatles' merchandising for peanuts).
Because of the above-mentioned sharp practices, touring and
merchanise are generally the ONLY ways most professional musicians (e.g.
Roger McGuinn) can earn a living. The situation is typified by the desperate
plight of many Australian artists of the 60s, 70s and 80s. Although some
were very successful at the time, few if have ever seen a cent from record
sales or publishing simply because the deals were so appalling and the
managers and agents were such crooks. Many remain (technically) in debt to
their labels (although who can really tell?) so any new deal is always going
to be queered by the outstanding debt.

Another factor not helping our local heroes at all is the fact that
significant portions (and in some cases ALL) of the catalogues of some of
the top Aussie acts of the 60s and 70s -- Spectrum, Ariel, Tully, Tamam
Shud, The Twilights for example -- are mouldering in the vaults of the
record companies. So even if they were likely to get some royalties for
their records (which is pretty far-fetched) they ain't gonna sell many CDs
while fat-arsed coked-out label managers sit around getting hummers from
their secretaries while the master tapes turn to jelly. And even if the
records DO get a release, either through the parent label or via a licensee,
the chances of artists recouping anything from royalties is just about zero,
thanks to the crook deals they got and the crook treatment they continue to

But often touring just presented the sharks with another opportunity for a
feeding frenzy, since so many agents and managers of the era were/are
out-and-out crooks (cf. Animals/Hendrix "manager"  Mike Jeffries). The
famous story of Aussie band The Masters Apprentices is typical. Their bass
player, Glenn Wheatley, later became manager of Little River Band and John
Farnham, and he put the hard-learned lessons of the Masters to good use.
According to Wheatley's recent book, the scales lifted from his eyes after a
gig in August 1969. At that time, they were part of "Operation Starlift", a
major all-star package tour featuring some of the top Aussie groups and solo
artists of the day -- John Farnham, The Masters, Ronnie Burns, Russell
Morris, Johnny Young, Zoot, and The Valentines (one of Bon Scott's pre-AC/DC
bands). Their Brisbane Festival Hall concert drew a (then) record crowd of
over 7000 people, breaking The Beatles' 1964 attendance record. This event
finally drove home to Glenn just how badly they were being ripped off. The
punters had paid about $5 per ticket, so the gross must have been about
$35,000 -- yet the Masters, like all the other acts, were on a fixed fee and
received a miserable $200 for the gig. Even top-biller Johnny Farnham only
got about $1000. So, all up, the entire bill for artists' fees for that show
probably amounted to less than $2500. Where did the other $32,500 go? I'll
leave you to figure that out for yourselves. Multiply this by the fact that
there were literally hundreds of discos and suburban dance gigs each week in
each major Australian city in the 60s/70s, and you start to get some idea of
the scale of the rip-off even in this small market.

>With this setup, it's easy to see why XTC never made much money.  >Taking
>an easy example, let's say Virgin forwarded them $1.2 million >to pay the
>manager, record new albums, etc in the 1980's.

You reckon? As I read it, the whole problem was that they remained on the
terms of the original 1977 contract throughout their incarceration with
Virgin. I doubt anyone saw anything like a seven-figure advance, and even if
they did, my understanding is that most of it was siphoned off by their
manager Unfortunately, they had to sign a "Stumm" clause to get out of his
clutches, so we'll probably never know for sure.

>I'm sure a thorn in Virgin's side was the lack of touring.  Obviously >XTC
>would make the money from any tours, but tours promote album sales >and
>that's where Virgin could cash in.  Any company would want to >attempt to
>improve upon an 80% failure rate for recouping costs.

Well, the non-touring thing isn't all that well liked by the labels, who
generally prefer bands to do all the work for them ... but then being a
non-touring unit never really hurt the career of Scritti Politti, now did

OK I'm hungry. Time for lunch

Cop ya later



Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2001 08:22:15 -0500
From: "Christopher R. Coolidge" <>
Subject: Re: radically different
Message-ID: <l03130303b691e294a06d@[]>

>.Techno Techno Techno - Johnny Cash>>
>..Not notice?  Stuff and nonsense, Smudge..  I love this album!.. bought
>copies for everyone on my Christmas list!  I applaud Mr. Cash for taking his
>music in such a radically different direction..
>..(and just between you and me, Johnny fills out a pair of spandex pants and
>one of those girlie sweaters *much* better than that Moby fellow)..

  Of course there's Pat Boones album of big band jazz covers of heavy metal
classics, In A Metal Mood, except that album actually exists! Truth is
stranger than fiction. You haven't lived until you've heard Judas Priest
done big band style. It actually works, though not everything on the album
does; I could do without ANY version of "Stairway To Heaven," big band or
  Another few albums too strange for words that actually do exist:
Tiny Tim's Christmas Album
George And James- The Residents(twisted versions of material by George
Gershwin and James Brown)
Metal Machine Music- Lou Reed(Here's another fucking album, record company
Anything by Kathie Lee Gifford
The Wit And Wisdom of Ronald Reagan(the record is blank)

Christopher R. Coolidge
"The bad news is, there is no key to the universe. The good news is, it has
been left unlocked."
-Swami Beyondananda


Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2001 22:03:13 -0600
From: David Lake <>
Subject: The pilgrimage
Message-ID: <>
Organization: Blushift Productions

Back from de-lurking for half a 'mo.  Looking for assistance from any
Swindon area Chalkers.

In mid-February, I'll be making a trip to London in which the better
part of a day will be spent out West in Swindon.  I'm interested in
seeing the White Horse up close, but from what I can tell there are only
a couple buses that travel Swindon-Uffington and only on Saturday.
True? False? Alternatives?  Help, please!

Also, if any chalkers would like to recommend a decent pub in London
(City) for plain folk such as I, I'd love to join you for a pint or
two.  I promise I won't go on and on about American football.

Cheers, David (no longer goes by Spanky)


Date: Mon, 22 Jan 2001 23:06:56 -0500
From: Groove Disques <>
Subject: Andy/Apples Collaboration?
Message-ID: <>

Wow!  What a collaboration this could be if the two of them manage to keep
their heads out of their butts.  Apples in Stereo produce some excellent
songs, but I think they can lose the forest for the trees with the best of
them (Mr. Partridge, some may argue, can be among the best;-).  The recent
Apples album struck me as being so concerned with getting every little
sound just so that essential elements like great songs got lost.
Nevertheless, that attention to detail has its charms.  If we're lucky, the
end result could sound like the aborted bubblegum album.



Date: Tue, 23 Jan 2001 13:08:56 -0500
From: "Seth Frisby" <>
Subject: Falkner in Soft- Apples?
Message-ID: <>

Hey-lo Chalkfolks,

           Here comes yet another rare post from a rare
poster...yipee!...*ahem* Well anyways it sure seems things have
quieted down around here. They're even quiet enough for little old me
to come out of the wood work. That little bit of Apples in Stereo news
is very exciting. I've found the apples to be a very enjoyable listen
and in the melody dept to be very indebted to XTC. Although one thing
that makes me really like the Apples and not absolutely love them is
they're lack of depth in comparison to say...Xtc. Know what I mean?
Even Xtc gets into they're poppiest and they're silliest Andy and
Colin are still popping off incredibly clever and sometimes insightful
lyrics. But I don't have to tell you guys that. It'll be very
interesting to see this teamup, especially since Andy's actually
taking some interest in a younger generation's music. We don't want
him to become an old fogie do we?

       In the arena of neat team-ups I have other news that I haven't
seen listed here yet. It seems Jason Falkner a perennial favorite
around here is guesting on the band Air's newest album due out in
spring. Very cool, yet I have no idea what it will sound like.It comes
out this spring sometime.

      And one more little note. The Soft Boys are going to start their
first tour in twenty years or so this March so don't miss it. I myself
will be going to the Boston show on the 26th of March, which is three
days after me birthday! ....Well I'll let everyone continue to read
the rest of this particular digest..

Seth"Ravaging bear hugs" Frisby


Date: Tue, 23 Jan 2001 10:12:46 -0800
From: "Hiatt, Randy" <>
Subject: re: ACSS (no xtc)
Message-ID: <>

Ryan Anthony <> said:

>Great googly-moogly! It's Sunday night, and Tucson's
biggest little radio station in the world, KXCI-FM
(, just now introduced me to the
Afro Celt Sound System. You Chalk-hipsters have no
doubt heard of the combo, but to my knowledge I've
never seen the name mentioned in any Digest.<

They are very cool.  I saw them at WOMAD.  I was passing by their stage and
heard what appeared to be Roxy Music meets Peter Gabriel with Hammer
Dulcimer, African percussion, electric guitars and a ton of synths.... how
could you go wrong with all that!!

It was an odd combination that captavated me.  I went out and got their Vol
1... waiting for a Live CD.

Randy (who likes to be all mixed up) Hiatt

wanna hear my music?...
or my Home Page:


Date: Tue, 23 Jan 2001 16:45:20 EST
Subject: Aphrodite in Furze
Message-ID: <>

Apple-plectic apple-pologies for the Greco-Roman mix-up in my last post. I've
been wrestling myself naked as a penance: *Smack* "Greco!" *Smack* "Roman!"
*Smack*! Believe me, it's punishment. Somewhere, his muscles oiled and
gleaming in the Mediterranean sun, Steve Reeves smiles and nods approval.

>From: Jefferson Ogata <>
>Subject: Oil of Aphrodite
>The lovely lady's name, my dear Sherwood, is Aphrodite. "Aphros", by the
>way, means "foam".

...But the lovely *album's* name, Jeffster, is "Apple Venus," which counts
for *something* in this discussion, one hopes. "Venus," by the way, rhymes
with oh never mind.

>Incidentally, Thomas Bulfinch (pshaw!) is not at all revered among
>classicists; reviled is more like it. He fails to document the varied
>origins of the myths he strings together, so you can't tell when he blends
>stories from authors millennia apart.

I take your points about Bulfinch Pshaw (He's *gotta* be related to George
Bernard Pshaw, of Pygmalion-who-fell-in-love-with-a-sta
tue-of-Venus-sorry-Aphrodite fame? Right?). But, if I may be allowed to mount
a small sentimental defense, in fact in Bulfinch's time ("The Age of Fable"
was published in 1859) systematic documentation of this sort was unheard of
except in extremely academic biblical-study circles, and it took the singular
genius of Sir James Frazer, fully 60 years later, to apply
historico-scientific rigor to the study of myth. (And yes, we should be aware
of Frazer's many shortcomings as well.) Bulfinch was, for all his faults, at
least motivated by a wish to democratize mythology, taking it from the realm
of dry academia and writing for a popular audience. This is not a reason to
accept his version of myths, to be sure, but at least it's a reason to like

>and going on in great detail about minor bits such
>as "Pyramus & Thisbe".

Well, yes, but as he *was* writing for a popular Victorian audience, the
"Midsummer Night's Dream" angle (not to mention the "Romeo and Juliet" angle)
must have proved irresistible.

>He has his place in history for providing a somewhat revisionist background
>for folks to understand a fair body of music & literature

...Not to mention the highly expedient fact that "The Age of Fable" is out of
copyright and on the Web, and fully indexed and searchable, making it
butt-convenient when you want to give a bunch of Internet people the rough
outlines of a Greco-Roman myth being alluded to in an XTC song. I've just
found that Frazer's "The Golden Bough" is also available at, but
can't find anything specific in it about the birth of Ms.

> And have a happy new millennium,

And unto thee as well. Dammit.

>Where the hell is Dom? What the hell is going on?

Brother Dominic has given up his day-job as a cart-walloper at the Library of
Parliament to become an editor at Kerrang! magazine (one is informed that the
exclamation point is part of the trademark, and thus obligatory). Why exactly
this gives him the right to stop regaling us with his ribtickling excremental
abuse is beyond me, but perhaps it's a matter of professional reputation.


As to "what the hell is going on," your guess is as good as mine. I'm
thinking they're trying to reenact a Cretan amphora painting of bull-dancing,
equipped with live ammunition and a dead T-1 line, popcorn and clam juice at
intermission, and Greek for the hindmost.

Harrison "I declare the Games of the XXV Dadalympiad open!" Sherwood


End of Chalkhills Digest #7-4

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