Precedence: bulk
Subject: Chalkhills Digest #7-66

          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 7, Number 66

                 Sunday, 30 December 2001


                        RSM | O+L
                Another Phil Collin's bash
             A bag of oats and some mistletoe
                    The "Pop" Moniker
           Make mine a Dom Collins, barkeep...
                       A Pox On Me?
                   America Chose Cheese
                      Lust for Iggy
                       Garden Grass
                      Gilmore Girls
                       Deaf School
       RE: Open Posting re: Disliking Phil Collins
            consumerism and the music you love
                   Did the WASP sting?
I Think I'll Build a "Snowman" Right Now (Some XTC content)
                DIDs ... does anyone care?
                    Pop is as pop does
                posting : selling anything
                Re: The Dark Lord Commerce
                        New entry


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    The views expressed herein are those of the individual authors.

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

And what a year when the exams and crops all failed.


Date: Sat, 22 Dec 2001 19:27:37 -0500
From: Ian C Stewart <>
Subject: RSM | O+L
Message-ID: <>

Bob Muller transacted with R Stevie Moore and came up with:

> The CD that I
> bought just happened to have a cover of "Chalkhills & Children" on it, if
> there's anybody out there who collects XTC covers.

That's uh... well, let's see. In about 1999, in a flash of inspiration I
US! And lots of us actually did do covers of Oranges & Lemons songs. I
think Mr RSM had his song done by the time I finished typing out the
first round of emails. The guy is fast and furious and an absolute genius.

Typically I dropped the ball for a couple of years. The Oranges & Lemons
tribute album is about half-complete at this point. Which is far enough
along for me to want to continue it.

We already had all the artists and songs picked out - if anybody here
was/is one of the artists, pretty please email me off-list. Before I go
any farther, this isn't a plea for people to send me XTC covers and I
don't need volunteers for the album. I've just lost track of who was
going to do what and if any of those people are here now, pretty please
step forward.

Oh, and I'm sorry for kicking up dust re: p**l c****ns. i've been away.
i stand by everything i said but it was still silly to bring him up for
the 40295790817590th time.
cheese mang
Ian C Stewart
XTC videos


Date: Sun, 23 Dec 2001 11:31:28 +1100
From: "Paul Haines" <>
Subject: Another Phil Collin's bash
Message-ID: <007a01c18b49$297b3b60$e08bfea9@home>

Phil Collins. Can't stand the man myself (though once he was good in another
life), but Christ, did he play some mean drums on Rupert Hine's solo albums,
particularly 'Waving Not Drowning'.

But then I happened to see the video for his single 'Against All Odds' and
just had to pund my fist into the, wait, my head.

XTC content: I've probably missed it, and it's all been said before but are
the remastered cds better then the original cds, or do I need to get them if
I've loads of cash and need to be a completist?

Paul Haines


Date: Sat, 22 Dec 2001 20:04:03 EST
Subject: gott
Message-ID: <>

hey people!

   I'll add my ben gott sweater song idear...WAKE UP  should be the song!

   due to it already has the lyric..." THE GAP "  in it buy a sweater from *the GAP*

       and then your'e ready for another shift...

   (hi ben, ol' buddy)

 and Mr Relph is SLACKING by letting too many  "Re:"  subject lines through
I count

EIGHT big ones this time!  Oh, how I long for the days of "America Chooses



Date: Sat, 22 Dec 2001 20:00:09 -0600 (CST)
From: Brown <>
Subject: A bag of oats and some mistletoe
Message-ID: <>

>From digest #7-65-

Ira hath hooted:

<<I could have sworn Sheryl Crow appeared twice in that GAP ad ... until
everyone was commenting on how Liz Phair was there. C'mon -- they're almost

Sheeyeah, right!  Sheryl Crow looks more like the unfortunate result of a
wild night of barnyard lovin' between Carol Burnett and Mr. Ed, where as Liz
is quite attractive.. Who could ever forget Liz's Exile In Guyville album
cover shot.. WOW!

I see Satan's cabana boy is still alive and kicking.. Hey Dom, nice to see
you! ;-)

Nothing pertinent to say with regard to XTC, except that I've been on a sort
of second honeymoon with AV1 as of late.. And Great Caesar's ghost, what a
f*cking amazing album it is.. Ever the wordsmith, that's me!

To my Chalkchums all over the world. .
-Best wishes for a loving, peaceful new year-

Kiss-kiss, dahlinks!

Debora Brown

(And Chalkhills is still *the* premier XTC website as far as I'm concerned.)
Thanks for everything, Mr. Relphie! ;o)


Date: Sat, 22 Dec 2001 21:52:22 -0500
From: Ben Gott <>
Subject: The "Pop" Moniker
Message-ID: <>


Yes, "pop" denotes "popular" music.  But can't we also argue that, for
example, Blur is still "Britpop" even though no one listens to them anymore
but us?  Does the loss of popularity denote a change in title?  Is Blur just
"Brit" now?

I suppose that I should've pigeonholed The Feelies and friends into "jangly
pop."  But that's not even a category!  Grrrrpth!  I need a sweater!



Date: Sun, 23 Dec 2001 10:55:46 -0500
From: "Todd and Jennifer Bernhardt" <>
Subject: Make mine a Dom Collins, barkeep...
Message-ID: <>


In my last post, I wondered where Dom was, now that we need him. Of
course, he goes ahead and posts something that comes out before my
query. Ain't that just like him? Contrary bastard.

Hey Kirk Gill! Nice, thoughtful post. One more reason to sing: Thanks
for Chalkhills...

Say what you will about Phil Collins, but mere mention of his name
always seems to increase the volume of Chalkhills posts, so I suppose
that's worth something.

Todd J. pointed out:
> Perhaps more disturbing is the fact that if you look at the back cover
> of Brand X's "Moroccan Roll" you'll notice in the group photo
> that Phil
> bares a striking resemblance to Charles Manson.

Ah, 1975-76, the period when Phil was so busy with so many bands that he
couldn't find time to shave or get a haircut. If you take take a close
look at that photo, you'll also notice the smoldering fattie that
they're passing around...

(And while you're at it, revel in the Popeye-like power of bassist Percy
Jones' forearms! Truly one of the Monsters of Bass (tm).)

Jomama saith:
> Well, you probably never heard Fripp's "Exposure"..  Phil is all
> over this one..  "Breathless" is a CLASSIC!, IMO..

"Breathless" is indeed a classic, right up there (IMO) with such Fripp
power-chord luvlies as "Lark's Tongues in Aspic, Part II" and "Red" ...
but I'd bet big $$ that Narada Michael Walden is wielding the sticks on
that one, not Collins. The style is too in-yer-face and muscular to be
Phil. My apologies if you weren't inferring that by the above

Mr. John Relph (reprise: Thanks for Chalkhills...) would probably be
able to chime in here, given that he did the excellent solo Fripp
discography over on Elephant Talk, the KC-fan site.



Date: Sun, 23 Dec 2001 10:59:12 -0500
From: "Rich Greenham" <>
Subject: A Pox On Me?
Message-ID: <>

I was just was mindin' my own business, flippin' through the latest digest
-- when, all of a sudden, a startling revelation (or three) slaps me
upside the head:

1.  I work for *shudder*... a commecial radio station!

2.  As Creative Director of this *shudder*... commercial radio station, I
write *shudder*...  advertising copy!

3.  I'm a bloody bastard 'cause I actually enjoy earning my living by
writing *shudder*... commercials that air on this *shudder*...  commercial
radio station!

4.  Looking at what I've written above I shudder and wonder how I ever got
to achieve a managerial position in *shudder*...  a commercial radio
station with my atrocious punctuation skills!

I agree with some of you on the list -- commercial radio can suck ass at
times...  We (I generalize) don't play a lot of the music that should be
played, we clog your ears with countless minutes of commercials an hour
and get in your face with inane comments about life, breakfast cereal and
the weather.

But, at the same time, we like to do some good.  A local indie-band has
just scored a major-label recording contract thanks our early support of
their stuff.  Over the last five or six years, our staff and listeners
have raised almost $400,000 CDN ($43.78 US!) for local children's
charities.  And I've lost count of the number of times that I've heard
stories of on-air folks taking calls from listeners who've just needed a
sympathetic ear or direction to suicide counselling.

Yup.  Commercial radio is bad.  And to reply to those of you who abhor
commercial radio, I pass on this standard radio industry reply:  If ya
don't like what you're hearing, turn it off!

That said, I, in my pox-y state, raise my glass and wish each and every
one of my fellow Chalkhillians a very Merry Christmas.  And a Happy New




Date: Sun, 23 Dec 2001 11:41:50 EST
Subject: America Chose Cheese
Message-ID: <>

In a message dated 12/22/01 5:11:09 PM Eastern Standard Time,
somebody writes:

> Selling music to advertisers worked for Moby.
> I say if some ad execs have good taste in music, more
> power to them.  Commercial radio is dead and any other
> means to reach the masses is justified.
> And hell, I've been seing these Gap adds for years,
> often enjoying the music, and have yet to enter a
> store.

This thread is interesting...

The way I see it, the more power to the artists and the advertisers if they
use good music in their advertisements. It's killing two birds with one
stone; selling a product and gaining exposure for the artist. I would say the
only way I would be offended by this is if the song was altered to sell more
(for example, the Kmart ads where they use "Get Down Tonight" but change the
lyrics to some garbage about blue lights. That's no good.

I know it's easy to hate advertising: it's annoying, and we feel it
interferes with the content of our journalism and entertainment (and
sometimes it does). However, because advertising exists, most mass media is
affordable for most people. That wouldn't be possible without it. For
example, a copy of the weekday Boston Globe would cost approximately $8 were
it not being offset by advertising. It currently costs 50 cents.

So with that, I say that if radio and EmpTV have abandoned variety and more
"interesting" music, and the advertisers wish to dig it up, lets let them. We
all agree that these artists deserve exposure, so they should get it any way
they can.  -Jason


Date: Sun, 23 Dec 2001 17:09:41 EST
Subject: Lust for Iggy
Message-ID: <>

Said Ralph:

<<If I hear Iggy Pop's Lust for Life used in yet another commercial (I've
counted three so far) I am going to melt my record into goo.>>

The opening of that song is one of the greatest in rock, as far as I'm
concerned, and my reaction when I hear it on TV is to TURN IT UP! The first
time I heard it on a commercial, I dug out that record that had been
collecting dust and discovered it all over again. No, I didn't go buy a car
or go on a cruise or whatever else they were selling, but I did enjoy the
album again.

Some of us are getting just a tad overemotional about the music/advertising
thing, aren't we? I have a great emotional attachment to my favorite songs,
too, but I just don't see what the big deal is. For Pete's sake, screaming
obscenities on Chalkhills (or anywhere else, for that matter) isn't going to
stop the marketing machine. If you don't want to see your favorite songs used
to sell Gap merchandise or any other possible product, then either change the
channel when the commercial comes on, or (ooo, here's a novel idea), turn off
the damn TV.

Merry Christmas to all (or Happy Santamas for you nonbelievers).



Date: Mon, 24 Dec 2001 07:50:42 -0500
From: "Christopher R. Coolidge" <>
Subject: Iggy
Message-ID: <>

on 12/22/01 4:56 PM, William (did I spell "fallates" right? My spell
checker didn't have an entry for it) Loring wrote:

> Iggy Pop is already enjoying his revival, courtesy of FTD(!) among others.
> I'm just waiting for the flower commercial where Iggy appears with a
> bouquet of flowers stuffed down his leather hip-hugger pants, while he
> fallates a microphone.
> p.s. I work in marketing, so I'll take that pox when you've got it ready
> for me.

  I'm waiting for him to spread peanut butter on them.

	[ On the pox?  Or on the pants?  -- Ed. ]


Date: Mon, 24 Dec 2001 12:21:48 -0500
From: Virginia Rosenberg <>
Subject: Garden Grass
Message-ID: <>

Hello Dook-

Yes, the vegetation theme is present for both openers- "River of Orchids"
continues the gardening theme also- and I think we can all appreciate the
beautiful irony of listening to "ROO" in one's car...

Quite a few XTC songs mention our green growing friends- if one were to make
an attempt at listing them, do you think "Greenman" should be included?

Best regards,


Date: Tue, 25 Dec 2001 21:01:25 -0500
From: Gary McBride <>
Subject: Gilmore Girls
Message-ID: <a05100301b84eded6ecc4@[]>

I've taken a shine to this show "Gilmore Girls" on the WB, and just
to cement my loyalty, they've used XTC songs in BOTH parts of their
holiday two-part episode. First part they used "We're All Light" as
the music for the high school dance, and at the dramatic conclusion
of part 2, they used the glorious "Thanks for Christmas" ...think
this might be from last season, so my apologies if it's a repeat to
this group.

Maybe they'll use "It's Snowing Angels" on NYPD blue.

Holiday Cheers,


Date: Wed, 26 Dec 2001 15:27:50 -0000
From: "Pledge" <>
Subject: Deaf School
Message-ID: <00c701c18e21$e40851e0$a77c7ad5@oemcomputer>

>Yes, I still have their first two albums on vinyl, sort of like a working
>class Roxy Music with a dry sense of humor and three singers(one female;
>whatever happened to Bette Bright, anyway?). They had some good and
>memorable songs and got a lot of airplay on CHOM-FM in Montreal where I was
>in high school at the time. A slight XTC connection: their guitarist Clive
>Langer went on to be a pretty successful producer in the 80's, including a
>few abortive sides with XTC during the sessions for English Settlement

Well Bette Bright married Suggs from Madness and went on to have a long and
successful mariage with him. They had two children with silly names (Scarlet
and Viva- pop stars and childrens' names eh?!?). The scary thing is that the
children are now fast approching 20, which makes me feel very old!

Clive Langer was a very successful producer in the early 80's being
responsible for all of Madness' hits in partnership with Alan Winstanley.

The two of the got together again in 1999 to twiddle the knobs on Madness'
wonderful comeback album Wonderful.

I think Deaf School played occasional gigs during the 80's, but other than
that I'm not really sure what else Langer produced.

Merry X(tc)mas everyone.



Date: Thu, 27 Dec 2001 21:20:18
From: "* Hobbes *" <>
Subject: RE: Open Posting re: Disliking Phil Collins
Message-ID: <>


>No one is holding a gun to your head and making you listen. (At least I
>hope not.)

But the problem with bad music is it's all pervasive at times:

When you go to meet a friend for dinner and the restaurant is playing "No
jacket required" on repeated loop at a volume that's to intrustive to block
out when they could have bought '69 Love Songs' by the Magnetic Fields for
$10 more.

When you hop in a taxi and the radio is blaring "Another day in paradise"
and the driver goes pontificates on what a beautiful 'meaningful... man'
song it is and thereby lets himself off the hook for never helping the
homeless because, after all, he agrees with the sentiments of the song but
not enough to engage in any action.

When you work in an office which blares the radio 8 hours a day and you have
no control over the volume, subjecting you a week of lazy programmers
playing "In the air tonight" which, without fail, makes the elderly lady
with blue hair say how it always makes her want to cry and you wonder what
she'd do if she was confronted with real beauty in a song like "Easter

When you take your nieces and nephews to see the new Disney film and your
skin crawls through every bland song then to add insult to injury the man is
given an academy award and you're wondering why no-one else ever realised
how utterly amazing Cotton Mather's "Kon Tiki" is.

Ten years later when you realise the lastest generic ken doll teen scream
boy band has done a knockoff kareoke cover of the 'meaningful... man' song
and you can remember when Brian Wilson could use harmony parts for more than
just "the other four members have be do something!" background padding.

When the sound is considered commercial, bland begats bland, radio closes
it's door to anything other than simliar sounding lowest common denominator
artists which leads to artists like Aimee Mann and Michael Penn unable to
get their albums released.

>  No one sets out to make mediocre music, or mediocre art

But does this mean we should let them off the hook when they do?  The great
thing is we have the capacity to recognise the mediocre from the majestic.

>Why not spend more time enjoying what you like, and let the other >stuff
>fall by your wayside. Life is short. Focus on the positive. >You'll never
>get to feel better about yourself by tearing other people >down...

I beg to differ.  Phil Collins:  mediocre musician; inferior actor; all
around shitwitted bane of humanity; spawn of Satan.


Date: Thu, 27 Dec 2001 19:27:58 -0500 (EST)
From: frippy <>
Subject: consumerism and the music you love
Message-ID: <>

When I was younger and I'd hear songs I liked being used in ads, I used to
get worried about my credibility, mostly.  I wanted people to know I liked
and owned Nick Drake's "Pink Moon" before it was used to market VWs!  And
of course it'd be sacrilege if anyone referred to a song I liked as "That
Volkswagen song" or "That Gap song."  DIE!

I recently caught a commercial for Chrysler that uses Blur's "The
Universal" (with nasal vocals cleverly removed, so it just sounds like
some beautiful triumphant symphony) as car designers get emotionally
attached to the PT cruiser prototypes they create.  Listening to the
backing vocals sing "Just let it go" as a man chokes back tears watching
his baby get driven away made me want to claw my eyeballs out.  I mean,
really, to use the generally sarcastic songs of Blur to make inspirational
ads for cars... they could've at least used "He Thought of Cars."

I was going to think there isn't any XTC song that could be used to really
market something, if atheist associations ran ads the way the Mormons do
(no offense to any Mormons on the list is meant here, they're just good at
advertising) then maybe they could use "Dear God," but could you see a
corporate owned radio station using "Funk Pop A Roll" to sell itself
without getting the joke?  Perhaps some discount airfare website could
offer us cheap fares for our Travels to Nihilon?  Maybe some home and
garden shop would like to advertise their festive Scarecrow People for
your lawn?  Maybe the owner of a tanning salon franchise might encourage
you to come in and lie under one of his many Miniature Suns?

But the use of Blur in the Chrysler ad made me think it's not really about
whether the lyrics convey some appropriate message that ties in with the
stuff being sold, it's just if someone thinks the music sounds good.  I
don't know what to think -- stuff I like often winds up in ads, I don't
know how much say the musicians had over it being used... blah blah blah.
I guess if there's anyone working in TV ads on the list, please, for our
sake, don't use any XTC!  I don't need some friend of mine shouting "Hey!
It's the frozen pizza song!" the next time I'm listening to English

As for Phil being evil, I'm afraid the answer is yes.  Play "But
Seriously" backwards and you'll hear messages like "Old people should be
turned into free meatloaf for the rich."

Scary, huh.


Date: Fri, 28 Dec 2001 19:02:54 +0100
From: art et affiche <>
Subject: Did the WASP sting?
Message-ID: <>

Maybe it has already been asked on this list, but does anybody
know how many copies of Wasp Star have been sold since its release?
I'm asking that, because here in my hometown, XTC records and this one
particularly are rather well placed on the shelves of records stores.
Is it because it sells and the display unit is regularly filled, or because

it doesn't sell and the copies are those that remain since ages?
Any idea?
I'd like to read it's the first option that wins! After all, it's wishes

On the question front, is there someone who has some informations about
the Partridge/Schneider collaboration? I've read they were meant to record
some material in November...

Oh and no matter if nobody doesn't answer my feverish questions (big sigh
all the same... ). Anyway:

PS: Je souhaite egalement aux habitants francophones des collines de craie
une annee lumineuse. Que le cycle des saisons vous soit benefique !
E tanti auguri per gli cugini e le cugine italiani... Ciao a tutti chi
10 piedi di lunghezza !

Marie who'sthatbastardthat'spushingthisdamnseasonscycle'spedal Omnibus.


Date: Fri, 28 Dec 2001 13:04:34 -0500
From: MollyFa <>
Subject: I Think I'll Build a "Snowman" Right Now (Some XTC content)
Message-ID: <>
Organization: AT&T Worldnet

Hello from snowy Buffalo.  This is a great time to go outside and build
a "Snowman".  Right now, here in Buffalo we have six feet, and I'm stuck
in my apartment.  What a great time to just put on some XTC.  :)  Any
other Buffalo Chalkhillians in here?  How are you coping with this



Date: Fri, 28 Dec 2001 13:56:27 -0800 (PST)
From: Wasser Dan <>
Subject: DIDs ... does anyone care?
Message-ID: <>

With all the talk about Crim and Zappa, etc., I just
thought I'd list a few favorites (in no particular
order) ... not that anyone cares.

XTC - Wasp Star
Crimson - Beat
Zappa - One Size Fits All
Queen - The Miracle
Guess Who - Road Food
Bowie - Scary Monsters
ELO - Out of the Blue
Beatles - Abbey Road
ELP - Brain Salad Surgery
Kate Bush - The Dreaming

So, what would you recommend?


Date: Fri, 28 Dec 2001 17:15:47 EST
Subject: Pop is as pop does
Message-ID: <>

In a message dated 12/18/01 10:59:16 PM Pacific Standard Time,
an uncredited contributor writes:

> Don't you hate the fact that the stupid media has whored the term
> "pop" to describe Britney, Backstreet, and N*sync?  I always get excited
> when I see "In Pop..." on CDNow's website, only to be disappointed by a
> picture of Mariah Carey and her new album.  That is *not* pop.  The
> Feelies were pop.  The Housemartins were pop.  Sloan and Guided by Voices
> are pop.  Not friggin' MARIAH!

I'm a little behind here so I'm sure somebody has already responded to Ben's
comment. It's all pop. In the 60's The Beatles were first listed under "pop"
but so were Herman's Hermits, The Monkees, The Archies (were skipping to the
70's now), Paper Lace, Bo Donaldson and The Heywoods, etc. It's not the
quality that describes it, nor the type of music but whether or not it's
popular music. By that definition Mariah is pop and, sadly (at least in the
US), Guided by Voices and others are not.

Now there are plenty of people who love Mariah Carey. I'm not one of them
but her very popularity with others shouldn't condemn her as an artist. That
should be done based on artistic merit. Sadly, there are plenty of folks
that would do that with Xtc, Guided by Voices and others.

I received my order from Idea/Weatherbox the day after Xmas--pretty darn
good considering it was ordered on 12/10 and madness in the post office. Of
course, I wish I could get my bills in such a timely fashion (one showed up
over 6 weeks after it was mailed...). Unfortunately, they shipped English
Settlement instead of The Big Express. Perhaps it had something to do with
the fact that the title of the CD was hard to read (the remastered cover
artwork isn't the best although it does approximate the album cover).
Hopefully I'll get the correct album soon as I emailed them.

No complaints about the signatures (since I was missing Colin's from my
collection). Anybody know if Dave is considering the same thing through his
website? He's earn extra royalties and fans would probably pony up to
purchase additional copies. Just a capitalistic thought ...

I, too, was quite taken with The Doves CD although I felt it was
inconsistent. One track really stood out (don't remember the title but I
believe it was the 7th one). Songwriting is quite good. throughout. I didn't
really care for the distortion on much of The Strokes CD but the songcraft
is pretty good. Now if they could get a producer that didn't feel he was the
next Phil Spector....

I'm not a huge fan of Phil Collins stuff but did like his first solo album
Face Value. The song writing is pretty strong. I don't hold the fact that he
ripped off the sound of In The Air from Steve Lilywhite/Peter Gabriel and
the melting face album.  He took a dip with that second album with You Can't
Hurry Love. He's no less a pop artist than the Bee Gees (who I notice are
getting a lot of praise at Chalkhills) or Abba.

 Perhaps it's because he's more calculated than those artists. Sure his
songwriting has gone to crap lately. Perhaps it's due to the fact that he's
proven he has far more to offer as a performer. Regardless, he'll never be
in the same league as Xtc, Peter Gabriel or Kate Bush (artist's he has
borrowed from on occasion). He's just creating "pop" music. Whether it's
good pop music or bad is up to the individual to judge.

My favorite memory of Face Value was trying to explain to this woman in
college how his version of Tomorrow Never Knows was a modernized and more
commercial version of The Beatles version. This lady didn't think it could
be possible. She worshipped Phil and thought the Beatles were crap. That is
until she actually heard Tomorrow Never Knows...then she admitted that it
was more or less exactly the same.  Oh but I do miss the days when Tomorrow
Never Knows could be considered "pop"! It shows how sedate radio and
listeners have become.

As to Supertramp....well they were basically a power pop band that made it
very big. They haven't anymore depth than any other power pop bands earlier
in the decade (although I have to admit Pete Ham's stuff with Badfinger
still pushes the limits as to what power pop could be).  Dunks mentioned
that Breakfast in America made him ill. It certainly was overplayed but as
far as craftsmanship, strong rich melodies and interesting material
Supertramp provided a relief from much of the crap produced during the
70's. There was an awful lot (and much of it was awful). BIA still shimmers
the way a strong Beatles knock off (I'm thinking The Monkees' Headquarters
folks) does.

It's of its time but the quality of the songwriting is still quite good. I
have the feeling that for Dunks they fall into the same too clever by half
category that 10cc fell into after the departure of half the group.
Supertramp wasn't any better or worse than 10cc. In fact much of BIA is
quite witty and although it does suffer a bit from the California production
sound typical of the era (ironic considering they were a UK band that
relocated to SoCal), songs like Gone Hollywood and, yes, even The Logical
Song still have bite. This was before the band became a shadow of its former
self and produced drivel.

If we can appreciate Paul McCartney's worst material (and that of Xtc, too,
I might add) for its craft, melodies and production, I think we can
appreciate Supertramp for carrying on a similar tradition. I can easily see
the best of Supertramp being related to later Xtc (Pink Thing, Earn Enough
For Us, Ballad of Peter Pumpkinhead). The one flaw in the songwriting of
Davies & Hodgson was their lack of consistency.

I'm not suggesting that we elevate Breakfast In America (and Supertramp)to
high rock art or to lower the expectations either. I'm suggesting to accept
it for what it was--pop music that demonstrated intelligence, wit and
interesting melodies.  That's the least we can expect from the best pop
music but, sadly, most pop music fails to live up to that standard
itself. Sure the Bee Gees delivered some great pop as well but so did a
number of bands from that era.  For every Give a Little Bit there had to be
The Streak....

It's a bit ironic when we bash other bands that produce interesting work
that doesn't appeal to our taste and then get indignet when other folks do
the same of Xtc. I tolerate a lot of types of music that I don't
particularly care for. That doesn't that I like it or relate to it (music
tends to be, like most pop art forms, generational in nature and very few
bands or musicians can transcend that barrier of age and time) but I still
recognize the craft and imagination that goes into it.

I'm going to hop off my pulpit and return to the cheap seats now...Happy New
Year to all!



Date: Fri, 28 Dec 2001 21:07:42 EST
Subject: posting : selling anything
Message-ID: <>

Hi all,On the selling issue, I see it as there being art, science and
commerce - at least in a capitalist society.  Business is reality and you
might as well laugh. I'd rather the message be sent: ooohhh, look at this
nice will make you feel (good) like this Nick Drake song.  The
higher end music used, generally the higher the economic demographics of the
target audience. The lowest common denominator song, well, goes for a low
cost product, i.e. Britany Spears - Pepsi. So if they used XTC for Jaguar,
that would sort of be a compliment and then I guess that means that I'm
watching the right program (but driving the wrong car). How about that new
"It" vehicle with the balance sensors that is used on sidewalks and may take
over cities, they could use "River of Orchids" maybe. Well, i'll have to
listen to the song again in that context anyway. There can be good art in a
good ad. Art has used commerce on occasion.  Marketing/advertising feeds off
of art to be appealing !
and not just purely science/numbers, doll
ars&cents, saying "buy this".
I find it easier to deal with advertising utilizing music than the "music
industry", whatever that means anymore. I don't see how musical artists are
going to be paid for their music in this disk burning, digital music
stealing time. At least they get paid for use in a television ad.
Happy 2002 - Ginny of Philadelphia


Date: Sat, 29 Dec 2001 06:07:37
From: "Duncan Kimball" <>
Subject: Re: The Dark Lord Commerce
Message-ID: <>

Kirk ( sayeth:

>Subject: Evil Awful Consumerism

>You keep hammering on consumerism, and advertising, and selling out, >and I
>think you probably need to just get over it.

Then again, maybe I don't.?

>Here's my take. In this life, there are those who create, and those who

This is my take -- there are two kinds of people: those who say there are
two (or more) kinds of people and those who ... don't.

>(amongst other groups that I'm really not talking about right now,
>so there). Some people create "art," and I sometimes get the impression
>that the people who consume this art  get a little protective of their >own
>perceptions of it, like they "own" it. (Yes, I used that awful word
>CONSUME. If you don't like consuming, how can you ever manage to >actually
>buy an XTC record in the first place?)

Touche (turtle). Was I excluding myself from the realm of consumption? We
are all "guilty".

>Anyway, here's a (somewhat bizarre) example of what I'm talking about.
>Think of Michael Jordan, the basketball player. "Art" may be too big a
> >word to use to describe what he does,

Yeah just a little bit (oops)... I still can't quite fathom how someone
whose most highly perfected life skills are running and throwing a ball can
be "worth" more than, say, a brain surgeon? Go figure.

>but he does it, and he had a pretty good run doing it,

To say the least. How many billions is he worth now?

>before deciding to hang it up. Then, a couple of years later,
>he decides that he'd going to give it another go, And what do you hear >in
>the media? He's going to "tarnish his legacy."

WHAT "legacy"? Geez, Louise ... talk about silk purses and sow's ears.
Einstein left a legacy. Tolkien left a legacy. Are you seriously contending
that ANYONE is going to remember Michael Jordan as some kind of "artist"?

>In other words, they have these nice memories of what he did

i.e. made shitloads of money, and in the process enriched all the leeches,
hangers-on, middlemen, marketers, image consultants and commentators who
managed to get their snounts in the trough while the going was good.
Trickle-down effect, I think they call it ... the effect of gravy trickling
down off the glutton's chin ...

>and they'd like to leave it at that. But guess what? He is an actual
> >living, breathing human being, who wants to play the game again. The
> >legacy those people cherish isn't his fricking problem. He's more
> >concerned with having fun, and making money, and doing what he wants.

... and making money ... and making more money ... and making even more
money than that ... As Norm McDonald once quipped, Jordan came back to the
game because he realised there was still some money in the world he didn't
have yet.

>Guess what? That's what a lot of us are concerned with, too. We just >don't
>have an audience begging to differ.

Well, that's what happenswhen you launch your art on the world. If it's good
art, some people hopefully *will* take it seriously. Isn't that the idea?

>So a musical artist puts out a record, and some years go by, and >someone
>comes along and offers a bunch of money to use that record to
>sell.....whatever. Chances are, this artist might like a new car. Or
>something nice for his wife. So he takes the money. In fact, a bunch of
>people are throwing around cash in this transaction. The company that's
>selling.......whatever is hoping to sell more stuff and make money. The
>advertising agency that wants to use the song is getting a piece. And >you
>know what? People work for these companies, people like you and >me. People
>that want to get paid.

Fine. I have no problem with the concept of a fair day's pay for a fair
day's work. the artist worked for his/her meagre reward, and I say let the
advertisers *work* for it too. As far as I can see, all these kind of
campaigns are bludging on the creactivity of others, cynically exploiting
the known audience appeal of this music for their own ends. Plus, by
exploiting existing music (over the use of which, incidentally, the
composers/performers usually have little or no  control) they deny work to
contemporary musicians and composers.

>You say: "It is about the act of Giving, only insofar as you are being
> >seduced into giving your money to Gap, or Coke, or Microsoft, or >whoever
>is yapping at you at the moment." Guess what? A good friend of >mine works
>for Coca Cola  (ohmygod). And he's not the personification >of evil. In
>fact, he has a lovely daughter, and he's a pretty good >dad.

I don't doubt it, though I'm reminded of the old sayings about Mafia men and
Nazis ... an unfair comparison perhaps, and I mean no disservice to your
friend, but the point is that plenty of "good" people have helped do a lot
of "bad" things over the years. Definitions of good and bad I leave to the
reader. Personally I think that the Coca Cola company's explicit goal of
making their brand of carbonated sugar syrup becomes the most consumed
liquid in the world is a pretty fascistic concept (and they explicitly mean
that they want more people drinking Coke than *water*, I kid you not).

>You go on to say: "God bless the happy, healthy world where we spend >more
>per annum feeding our pets than on welfare for humans
>living in poverty. Merry Xmas, starving millions." So how is that >dolorous
>fact the fault of advertisers?

How is it not? You evidently argue from the assumption that because
advertising doesnt work on YOU, it doesn't work. Unlike 'The Audience',
these companies and advertising types aren't fools. They wouldn't spend such
vast amounts year after year if they didn't get results ... big, profitable

>What, are you saying that people have no choices in life?

No, but I loathe the idea of a world where the only "choice" available to us
is "McDonald's or Burger King?"

>That advertising renders them unable to do good?

The perfect advertisement would render us incapable of anything except
buying that product. And don't think they wouldn't try ANYTHING to do that.

>People have a choice, and the fact that they decide to spend their >money
>on pets instead of on helping out humans in need reflects >poorly on all of
>us, and is clearly the fault of each individual person who makes those

Don't go there, I beg you. You won't like what I'd have to tell you.

>In this society, in this economy, we're connected, and sometimes art is
>used to grease the wheels. It isn't the fact that radio has become
> >moribund that's making the songs and artists we love appear in ads. >It's
>time, and the fact that we're at the age where advertisers want >to appeal
>to us, and the music we grew up with is the tool they're >using. Doesn't
>anyone remember the 50's revival in the 70's? Do the >math. We've become
>our parents. The music of the 50's is now being >used to sell adult diapers
>and denture cleaner.

And that makes it OK? I think not.

>Now, Andy and Colin may feel protective of their legacy. But I'm not so
>sure. I remember seeing Andy co-host MTV's 120 Minutes back in the >day,
>and the co-host asked him if he ever listened to his old >material. I
>believe the phrase Andy used was "No, our turds are for >others to chew

Well, Andy's said a lot of things over the years, and I doubt if he feels
that all of them were equally wise.

>And if the Beatles or other groups didn't want their songs to be used >in a
>way they didn't like, they should never have signed the contracts >that let
>it happen.

"They" didn't get much say in it at all, actually. Being young and dumb,
they signed piddling contracts with Northern Songs, which paid them only a
tiny fraction of the billions their songs have turned out to be worth. When
the group decided to hadn their management to that  infamous shyster Allen
Klein, McCartney was (for once) overruled on his desire to place control of
the group's affairs in the hands of Linda's dad. BIG mistake. The reasons
were obvious at the time but (not for the first time) John, George and Ringo
were proved WRONG. They were duped and swindled just like the Stones. And
years later -- despite a personal appeal from Macca himself, Michael ("I
*REALLY* Love The Children") Jackson greedily and cynically bought their
entire Northern Songs catalogue, and we have since seen it ruthlessly
exploited for his own gain by the King of Poop.

>Sure, a lot of artists got screwed when they signed contracts (like
>XTC, for example), and were taken advantage of. But something tells me
> >that by the time the Beatles were signing away their catalogues, they
> >had a lawyer or ten telling them what the ramifications were.

No. See above.

>You say " just saddens and angers me to hear music I take rather
> >eriously, that (I believe) was made with serious intent, being used to
> >sell stuff that has NOTHING to do with music." You know what? It >saddens
>me, too. I can't help but feel that way, 'cause the music >connected to me,
>and it's in my mind, forever. I've made my own >connections to it, and I
>don't want to have to experience some other >connection that someone wants
>me to make.

Exactly. Why are we arguing? hahah

>But Andy and Colin aren't just musicians. They're businessmen, too. >When
>they felt screwed by their record company, they stopped making >albums,
>'cause the business wasn't working out. It wasn't an artistic >decision, it
>was business.

It was both. I think/hope that Andy, Colin and Dave made a decision that
they would rather be artists first, and have full control and be fairly
recompensed, rather than becoming mere cogs in the Virgin production
machine, even if it cost them money, which it did, and lots of it. As for
your comment that they "felt" screwed?? well, a rip-off is a rip-off and
they *were* being ripped off BIGTIME -- really. The way I hear it, it was to
the tune of something like 30 million quid.

>The reality in the music business is, to paraphrase a song by Tool, >that
>the artists you love sold out long before you ever even heard >their name.
>Sorry. Even our lads from XTC.

Sorry but I don't agree. I have NO problem with commerce, per se, and no
problem with Andy or anyone else making an honest buck out of their music.
the sad fact is that so few musicians have ever been able to make a living
wage, while agents, managers, promoters, publishers and all the other greedy
parasites make trillions. The undeniable fact remains that many artists
whose music is used by advertisers never see (and indeed never saw) dollar
one from the use of it in any context. And the fact also remains that the
advertisers are exploiting the appeal/image/ of the music, hoping the
associations will rub off on their shitty products. And I have a REAL
problem with the exploitation of someone like THE LATE Nick Drake, who has
no say in it, and who I surely believe would have abhorred the use of his
music in advertising of any kind.

>Anyway, the reason I respond like this is that I'm a musician, and I >love
>it. I haven't made much money from it, and I've never made >business the
>central idea behind why I'm doing it. But I gotta live, >and money helps,
>and sometimes the people who create something would >like to make a dollar
>or two from it and not be dogged about it from >an ivory tower by people
>who know nothing about their personal >situation.

See above. If *was* people who did the creating were the ones getting rich,
I wouldn't be whining about it. Unfortunately the money all seems ot go to
people who wouldn't know the business end of a guitar if you shoved it up
their fat, coked-out asses.

>I'll admit, I'm cranky, pig-headed, trivial, rude, and downright >stupid.

We must be twins, separated at birth! hahah

>But I always enjoy your posts


>and don't want this message to be as mean as it probably sounded.

I never have a problem with a good, reasoned argument.

>I'm an old hippy too, I guess, but I also have to admit that I play >this
>Great Game you so despise. Sometimes I even enjoy it. And you >play it,
>too, even if it's hard to swallow the fact that you do.

Never said I wasn't complicit but, hey, I don't have to like it!



Date: Sat, 29 Dec 2001 20:25:08 -0800
From: "Sughosh Varadarajan" <>
Subject: New entry
Message-ID: <000201c1914c$035c30c0$45a9c7cb@SughoshVaradarajan>

Hello folks!

Nice to meet a bunch of fellow XTC fans! Joined this list a few days ago,
and I must confess I was expecting a little more action one's said
anything so far!

Anyhow, here's a lil' bit about me for what it's worth.. I'm from Bombay,
India, and I've been an XTC fan since I first saw the vids for "Mayor of
Simpleton" and "The disappointed" on MTV (yes, I actually happened to be
around at those once-in-a-blue-moon times when MTV played XTC!). Since then,
with much difficulty (ask any Indian what he has to go through to get hold
of good music!), I have succeeded in accumulating all the XTC albums
starting from Drums and Wires.

I'm sure this has been done to death on this list, and indeed it's rather
difficult to choose faves with a band like XTC, but this is my best albums
list in descending order.

1. Skylarking
2. Apple Venus Part 1
3. Nonsuch
4. Oranges and lemons
5. English settlement
6. Drums and wires
7. Black sea
8. Wasp star
9. Mummer
10. The big express

Looking forward to hearing more from all of you,



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