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Subject: Chalkhills Digest #8-4


          Chalkhills Digest, Volume 8, Number 4

                 Tuesday, 8 January 2002

Topics:

              Re: Lists of Lists upon Lists
                     Stewart Copeland
                 concerning Gentle Giant
                     Jazz and voices
                  Thanks For Chalkhills
                       Best of 2001
                    Woken by the clank
                       fill the GAP
                  Exploitation Tonight!
                  Re: Many Clever Things
                         ratings
                  save it for later ...
                       Hugh Padgham
               Genesis again(no XTC, sorry)
                          Odd...
             Re: Six Chalkhillses piled high

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Looking across our lego land.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

Date: Mon, 7 Jan 2002 01:21:05 EST
From: MaadMatt@aol.com
Subject: Re: Lists of Lists upon Lists
Message-ID: <63.4898a47.296a9851@aol.com>

Interesting list. Glad to see the White Stripes and Ryan Adams records (both
decent but not earth-shattering IMO) lower down on the list than most other
lists have put them, and a high ranking for the seemingly already forgotten
Bjork album. Though I'm disappointed that I haven't seen Powderfinger's
Odyssey Number 5 on any year-end lists (outside of their native Australia)...
it's probably the record I listened to most in 2001. SOLID power pop (oops,
there's that phrase again!) that reminds me a bit of early Oasis at their
best.

-Matt

> Date: Fri, 4 Jan 2002 15:28:51 -0800 (PST)
> From: <ringostr@u.washington.edu>
> Subject: Lists of Lists upon Lists
> Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.33.0201041528510.10133@hymn03.u.washington.edu>
>
> Top 50 Albums of 2001 according to my sorry ass:
> 1. Let the War against Music Begin - The Minus 5
> 2. Days of Speed - Paul Weller
> 3. Love and Theft - Bob Dylan
> 4. The Convincer - Nick Lowe
> 5. One Nil - Neil Finn
> 6. Vespertine - Bjork
> 7. The World Won't End - Pernice Brothers
> 8. Mink Car - They Might Be Giants
> 9. Blue Boy - Ron Sexsmith
> 10. New American Language - Dan Bern
> 11. We Love Life - Pulp
> 12. Rockin' the Suburbs - Ben Folds
> 13. Because We Hate You - Young Fresh Fellows
> 14. Worlds Collide: Live at the St. James - Neil Finn and Friends
> 15. Why That Doesn't Surprise Me - The Lucksmiths
> 16. The Incomplete Glenn Tilbrook - Glenn Tilbrook
> 17. Look Into the Eyeball - David Byrne
> 18. Meaningless - Jon Brion
> 19. Her Majesty of High Heels and Eye Shadow - Jonathan Richman
> 20. Amnesiac- Radiohead
> 21. I'm Waking Up To Us - Belle & Sebastian
> 22. Dog in the Sand - Frank Black and the Catholics
> 23. Ten New Songs - Leonard Cohen
> 24. Reveal - R.E.M
> 25. Stephen Malkmus - Stephen Malkmus
> 26. The Invisible Band - Travis
> 27. Tenacious D - Tenacious D
> 28. Ryan Adams - Gold
> 29. Oh, Inverted World - The Shins
> 30. Is This It - The Strokes
> 31. Necessity: the 4-Track years - Jason Falkner
> 32. Damascus - Yazbek
> 33. Daft Punk - Discovery
> 34. Poses - Rufus Wainwright
> 35. Jonathan David - Belle & Sebastian
> 36. Gorrillaz - Gorrillaz
> 37. The Gunman and Other Stories - Prefab Sprout
> 38. Air - 10,000 Hz Legend
> 39. Satellite Rides - Old 97s
> 40. White Blood Cells - The White Stripes
> 41. I Might Be Wrong (Live Recordings) - Radiohead
> 42. Feeding the Gods - Tim Finn
> 43. Driving Rain - Paul McCartney
> 44. Ancient Melodies of the Future - Built To Spill
> 45. Pneumonia - Whiskeytown
> 46. Hot Shots II - The Beta Band
> 47. Essence - Lucinda Williams
> 48. Isolation Drills - Guided By Voices
> 49. God Bless the Go-Go's - Go-Go's
> 50. For the Stars - Anne Sophie von Otter and Elvis Costello

------------------------------

Date: Mon, 07 Jan 2002 02:29:55 -0600
From: "Jim S." <quint_75@swbell.net>
Subject: Stewart Copeland
Message-ID: <3C395C83.5A6689DA@swbell.net>

> By the way, Stewart Copeland is a damn good drummer, don't you think?

Probably my favorite rock drummer.  Some of his stuff on "Ghost in the
Machine" is just unreal.

--
Jim S.

------------------------------

Date: Mon, 7 Jan 2002 01:12:48 -0800
From: <tlewis@televar.com>
Subject: concerning Gentle Giant
Message-ID: <001901c1975b$9a67da40$0500a8c0@t>

Just a quickie...haven't posted in years. Where do you all get the time?
Wasn't gonna squeak, but I'm a loooong time Gentle Giant fan, and the
following bit of misinformation, mentioned once, a Chalkhills or two ago,
has now been propagated enough in subsequent replies to make it annoying to
even the pottiest of spotty GG trainspotters:

Kerry Minnear was *not* the vocalist...he was the outrageously talented
keyboardist.
Derek Schulman was the lead vocalist you gents are carping about, and a
talented multi-instrumentalist in his own right. And really an awfully swell
vocalist, in spite of the comments.

And...if you folks haven't sampled Gentle Giant...Go...Now...Go to
Audiogalaxy...put your ethics aside and download any random 3 or 4 tunes. If
you adore "The Wheel and the Maypole" like I do (and you know you
do)...You'll find something to love.

------------------------------

Date: Mon, 07 Jan 2002 15:48:07 +0100
From: art et affiche <art.affiche@wanadoo.fr>
Subject: Jazz and voices
Message-ID: <3C39B513.C62B46B2@wanadoo.fr>

Mr. Vreeland mentionned:
>>you could build and entire CD's worth of material on which xTC were
almost entirely disguised as a Jazz band. Consider an album comprised
of the following:
Mantis on Parole / Ladybird
Me and the Wind / I Bought Myself a Liarbird
You're the Wish You Are I Had
I Remember the Sun / Mermaid Smiled
The Man Who Sailed Around His Soul
Cynical Days /Rook
River of Orchids / Knights in Shining Karma
The Last Balloon>>>

Well I'm very very happy of this Jazz thread here, I've always loved
these jazzy references in XTC's music, from 50's mood to the more
explorative side of jazz (like in Mantis on Parole). They always use
them rather subtly, without making some pastiche, or just to proove
something like "hey look! I can play that way too. Don't you see I got
a large musical background?"

Ms brown added:
>>I don't see The World Is Full Of Angry Young Men listed here!!>>

You're absolutely right, Mummer Queen. It has to be.

As well Kirk.Gill added:
>>Chalkhills and Children
Yacht Dance
No Language In Our Lungs (Can you imagine what a bunch of horns could do
with that one?)
Seagulls Screaming / Omnibus
World Wrapped in Grey / Garden of Earthly Delights
And there's many more. The chord structures and melodies of Andy and
Colin's songs have the kind of complexity and interest  that would reward a

jazz musician, I think.>>

Well I'm not a musician, far from it (I just mess around with a bass
guitar and sing from time to time), but I think you're obviously right
here.  Maybe it's not only a question of chords, it's also a question
of tempo, because a lot XTC songs (and the ones mentionned above) are
not built with simple 2/4 or 4/4 rock rythms, but with some "mesures
composees" (help me someone, I don't know how to say that in
English!), i.e. not common bars, but bars where the main beat is not
regular (allo? are you still receiving me?).  That, + beautifull
chords changes, gives the strong jazzy feeling and the good groove in
Ladybird, The World Is Full Of Angry Young Men, I Remember the Sun,
Yacht Dance, World Wrapped in Grey etc. Am I right, dear Chalkhillian
musicians?

About M. Partridge voice, I've never thought about the fact it could
prevent people from getting into XTC... As I think of it, I've always
love that voice.  It's more significant for someone who is not
English, so who will automatically at first focus on the music and the
sound of the voice, long before paying attention to the meaning of the
lyrics. That's what I did with XTC (as with a lot of English and
american bands), and what made me love that voice is not perhaps his
technique (wich is getting better and better in my opinion), but the
quality of his interpretation, the way he places words on the melody
to bring rythm, the intensity in the voice, the strong emotions it
conveys.  Yes it's a little nasal, no Andy is no Pavarotti, but this
voice is fucking *true*, damnit.  Soft and rough, from calm to Xtrem
Xcitement, a wild range. Flat? Mmmh, I don't think (but I may be
wrong). And, just try to sing ''Another Cuba'', ''1000 umbrellas'' or
''The Wheel and the Maypole'' on the top of your lungs...  Yes Todd,
fucker can *sing*.

Marie O.

------------------------------

Date: Mon, 7 Jan 2002 11:06:50 -0500
From: "Michael Versaci" <mwversaci@att.net>
Subject: Thanks For Chalkhills
Message-ID: <000301c19795$51d74bf0$d900a8c0@atl430nb>

Folxtc,

I am very pleased at the recent return-to-form of Chalkhills.  I had been
wondering if her time had come and gone, and at least for now, she is alive
and well.

I enjoyed the debate between Dunks and Kirk - good points made on both
sides.  Personally I hate hearing records that have been the soundtrack to
my life, hawking some product on the shitbox - this morning I was treated to
a god-awful rendition of "Taxman" (selling something, I forget what!) and
found myself wondering who the hell has the rights to George's catalogue?  I
hope that it is Olivia and Dhani, but Hey Seuss Key Riced!  What next,
Hormel Bacon adopting "Piggies?"

Using pop music to sell pop products is a fact of life - I only wish that
the artists themselves were getting the money, and I think that in most
cases that is not what happens.  Sad.  I understand that the two members of
Timbuk 3 have turned down as much as $500,000 for "The Future's So Bright, I
Gotta Wear Shades"  while they continue to live on meager incomes.  Perhaps
they are waiting for a cool million?

500 thou this year would buy A LOT of beer...

Funny that Dunks likes Gomez so much.  Wasn't it their version of "Getting
Better" that Philips used a few months back?  Hearing that a few thousand
times forced me to reconsider my position and  I decided that it *would* be
better if the Beatles permitted the use of their original recordings in
commercials, because at least we wouldn't have to suffer their songs being
sullied by these heinous remakes.  I imagine that Gomez's own music is of a
different caliber?

I agree that XTC was better with Dave Gregory, and that Genesis was better
with Peter Gabriel (although they would have blown us all away had Kevin
Gilbert and Nick DiVirgilio joined forces with them, as was a distinct
possibility until our hero inadvertently decided that life in Joytown might
compare favorably to life in The City of the Sun - but that's another
story - and don't bother reminding me that Nick played on a few tracks -
he's a great drummer and all-around musician, but even he couldn't save
"Calling All Stations..."),  but whoever suggested that Genesis would not
have survived had Ringo been the drummer was way off base.  I don't think
"She Loves You" would have been a number-one hit had it featured a 64-bar
sax solo by John Coltrane, but that doesn't mean that Coltrane couldn't
play.  Ringo is an easy target to be sure, but the fact remains that the
records he played on are still great, and will survive all of us.

I know I'm getting old, because the only new record that I heard this year
that I liked was Tenacious D.

Michael Versaci

------------------------------

Date: Mon, 07 Jan 2002 10:56:42 -0600
From: "Bob O'Bannon" <batchain@earthlink.net>
Subject: Best of 2001
Message-ID: <B85F2F6A.28BC%batchain@earthlink.net>

Here are my favorites from the past year. It was a good year, I think....

1. Rufus Wainwright -- Poses. In my mind, this is hands-down the best of the
year, and I am crazy about the Weezer album (#2). Rufus has the
arrangements, the killer melodies, the perfect background vocals, the
variety, and a great singing voice to boot. XTC fans should love this.

2. Weezer -- (green album). Instantly catchy, but it never gets old. Every
song is a keeper, which makes it very excusable that the album is short.

3. Ron Sexsmith -- Blue Boy. Maybe Ron's best. Apparently he got screwed
over by a record company, so the bitterness has served him well.

4. Pernice Brothers -- World Won't End. Lush and pretty with ringing guitars
and strings. Sounds familiar, but doesn't seem derivative.

5. The Strokes -- Is This It. Yea, they have been hyped to death, but I
think it's warranted. Can't wait to see what these guys do next. They have
the swaggering attitude of early Wire and Jam.

6. Nick Lowe -- The Convincer. Nick is so corny and old-fashioned sounding
that he is utterly cool. He has mastered the art of brevity and simplicity.
Quite frankly, I think Andy Partridge could learn a few things from guys
like Nick.

7. Beulah -- The Coast is Never Clear. Haven't had much time to listen to
this yet, but I love what I hear. More catchy pop with fuzz guitars, horns
and great song titles ("A Good Man is Easy to Kill").

8. Pete Yorn -- Music for the Morning After. Solid songwriting, and the guy
can rock. "Murray" is one of my favorite songs of the year.

9. Bob Dylan -- Love and Theft. This is the album I think might have been
overhyped this year, but it's hard to deny the way Bob and his band expertly
handle a number of classic musical styles.

10. Freedy Johnston -- Right Between the Promises. Seems like Freedy is kind
of running out of ideas, but there are enough on this one to return him to
favor.

Bob

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 8 Jan 2002 00:12:59 +0100
From: "Mark Strijbos" <mark.strijbos@hccnet.nl>
Subject: Woken by the clank
Message-ID: <200201072258.XAA25365@smtp.hccnet.nl>

Dear Chalkers,

> Where is the self-proclaimed biggest XTC fan of all time
> Strijbos)?
I'm here folks, back with a vengeance !

seriously : i never claimed to be their biggest fan. i mean: who's
going to judge and what are the rules??? but i admit that i wouldn't
mind to go down in history as one of the most err... rabid is the word
here i think.

And to be honest: there are a couple of other serious contenders for
this much coveted title. like the guy who had XTC tattoos all over his
body and followed them around on the UK tours. i believe he ended
up at the funny farm, or so the story goes...

Anyway: last Friday me and at least one other Chalkie (hi Andre!)
had the privilige and pleasure to see a brilliant performance by the
H band featuring Dave Gregory on various gorgeous guitars at the
Amsterdam Paradiso

Singer Steve Hogarth correctly pointed out before they played
a familiar tune called "The Loving" that Dave, in a previous
incarnation, stood on the very same stage exactly 20 years ago
(March 8 1982, send me a message if you'd like that show on cdr)

After the show during our "meet and greet session" DG revealed that
he was actually wearing his English Settlement shirt that night, one
he bought to wear on stage during that ill-fated tour. fancy that!
What a lovely trivial factoid but perhaps also a remarkable insight...

Guess what he's got stencilled on his flightcases?
Answers to mark.strijbos@hccnet.nl, first correct entry will win
something from my XTC vaults.
Nederlanders mogen niet meedoen! (no Dutch entries allowed)

yours in xtc,

Mark Strijbos

------------------------------

Date: Mon, 7 Jan 2002 17:01:58 -0600
From: Parrish_Wilkinson@Dell.com
Subject: fill the GAP
Message-ID: <2FE007705F88044F8B2866EB5AB86070021D6612@ausxmrr803.aus.amer.dell.com>

Word just arrived at the agency...get ready gang, cause this spring, Peter
Gabriel, Elvis Costello, Kate Bush, Neil Finn and a few other English artist
will be singing "I'm a Believer" by the Monkees on the new GAP commercial. I
can't wait!!!

Parrish

------------------------------

Date: Mon, 7 Jan 2002 19:45:29 -0500
From: MinerWerks <dminer@gte.net>
Subject: Exploitation Tonight!
Message-ID: <a05001900b85fef1a2647@[192.168.1.101]>

>Well, you'd think so, but as recently as Robbie Williams it seems that young
>men and/or women with tons of talent but little business sense are still
>lining up to be exploited.

Yeah, they *are* lining up to be exploited, but nobody is forcing them to.

= Derek =

------------------------------

Date: Mon, 07 Jan 2002 20:18:31 -0800
From: Kyla <kyla17@earthlink.net>
Subject: Re: Many Clever Things
Message-ID: <3C3A7316.A6A3BC7E@earthlink.net>

Hey all - thanks for the welcomes, I feel quite warm...

Well, many clever things have been said here, several of which I wish
I'd said, and a couple I *could've* said, such as "And Dark Side well
we all know what Dark Side is used for..."  "As a soundtrack to "The
Wizard of Oz"?"

Which is about ALL I know about Pink Floyd, as my replies witness to
Clifford's questionaire:
1. Roger or Dave? Why? - Um, Daltrey or Wakeling?  Wot?
2. Syd or Post Syd? Why? - Um, Barrett, Straw, or Vicious?  Wot?
3. What is your opinion of the two post Roger albums (Momentary lapse
of reason and The Division Bell)? - Um, wot?
4. What is your opinion of the Wall Movie? - I'm afraid I haven't seen it?
5. Can you detect Floyd influences in XTC's music? Give examples. - Um, Wot?

And Jennifer, 'fellatrix' is such a good word that it inspires puns
aplenty or at least a limerick...hmmmm...

Mary humdrum, you ain't the only one who liked Phil Collins' Tarzan
soundtrack, I thought it was quite listenable.  Though it's become
clear to me that Phil-bashing here is a time-honoured X-mas tradition,
and who am I to knock tradition?

Virginia is too clever, wot with her thanks for the flowers note to
William, and as far as New Year food traditions; as a child, I was
quite superstitious (HO, like I'm Not Now!), and back then I knew ALL
the food for luck trads - my fave was apples dipped in honey (Israeli,
as I recall) because they were sweet, natch.  Hopping John? - oh, much
too healthy for you.  For awhile, I used to carry a can of black-eyed
peas to New Year's Parties, but people would just pass by and touch
the unopened can, hoping to absorb luck through the tin, I suppose...

Also, the Nick Drake song used on the VW commercial was 'Pink Moon' -
It was quite a nice little story commercial - this young group of
friends driving under the moon with the car's top down.  They arrive
at a party, which at a distance looks to be a boorish frat affair, and
with just a look they all agree to get back in the car and have a nice
time driving back, all the while listening to Nick, I s'pose...

Pledge - "Sorry can't resist this: Surely now is about the right time
to posthumously knight George Harrison. Any earlier and he'd have
still been alive."  I'm afraid that's terribly funny...though I had
the fleeting thought, while watching my talking heads shows Sunday
morning and encountering 'Taxman' used in an H&R Block commercial,
that GOD'S BLOOD! I was glad George wasn't around to have to stomach
THAT...

"Eegads, lad! Have ya been at the floor wax again?" - Debora Brown, I
love the rhythm in this sentence, and plan to use it myself many times
in the future...

And whoever said "I ordered the Dukes CD from the official XTC site
and received my copy signed in groovy silver ink by Sir John Johns and
The Red Curtain." - well, I think you've convinced me to order mine
ASAP!

Also, any 'pop' comparisons between Britney or Mariah and XTC may be
pointless, but I'm ever grateful to whomever used the name, "Britney
Shitney" and doubt I shall ever call her anything else again...

Belinda aka PeckhamRose - that is a VERY SAD story, but not the
saddest story I've ever heard.  The SADDEST story ever is when my
brother was touring with the Sluts in the late 70s, and couldn't be
woken in the parked tour van when Joey Ramone bought the band a drink
at CBGB's.  However, yours is pretty close.  You are taking it very
well, though...

And yes, Ben, I do think Stewart Copeland is a damn good drummer.  The
Police were generally pretty sound musically, I reckon.

And, to add a trace of XTC content, I listened to Wasp Star tonight
trying to pick a fave song, but it's so hard to choose as they are all
so strong!  I like 'Stupidly Happy', but I think that's because it was
the first song I heard from the album.  (And I like the lil rap about
the devil.)  Oh, and back before Christmas, I heard 'Playground' at
the supermarket, which was Quite Nice.  I think I shall go back, just
in the hopes of hearing it again...  *huff huff* This list is too much
fun!  - Kyla

------------------------------

Date: Mon, 07 Jan 2002 22:11:05 -0800
From: "Thomas Vest" <tvtwo@hotmail.com>
Subject: ratings
Message-ID: <F2429vTuI6jxyGqp8vb00016362@hotmail.com>

hello everyone

i missed out on doing this before, so i wanted to also relay my rankings for
xtc albums + to really stir up the pot, i will rank what i think is the best
song on each!  so, here they are

1)   skylarking / ballet for a rainy day
2)   mummer / desert island
3)   english settlement / jason and the argonauts
4)   wasp star (AV2) / we're all light
5)   black sea / no language in our lungs
6)   oranges and lemons / scarecrow people - cynical days  (tie)
7)   nonsuch / holly up on poppy
8)   drums and wires / making plans for nigel
9)   apple venus volume one / i'd like that
10)  big express / i remember the sun
11)  white music / this is pop
12)  go 2 / are you receiving me?

of course there are purists among you who will say that some of the songs i
selected were never on the original albums- they were on ep's, flip sides or
what ever.  to counter that, i have to say that i purchased all of the
virgin reissues with the extra bits put at various locations within the
track listing.  we debated all this not long ago when the reissues came out.
  i still like the track order on my original cd's as opposed to how they
were released originally and especially-ESPECIALLY over the recent import
versions.  blasphemy you say?!!  well, you will get no apologies out of me.
that was my first exposure to the band starting in the late '80's and thats
how its gotta be for me!

...on pink floyd.  totally prefer post syd barret to when he was still with
them.  i do like his solo output (madcap laughs-- very much) and i do not
think much of roger waters solo either.  matter of fact, my favorite solo
floyd recording is richard wrights "wet dream" album from 1978 (sony 24090).
  dark side of the moon is easily one of the top 5 albums ever released
though it is not my favorite floyd album-- that belongs to meddle.  if you
have not seen pink floyd live at pompeii on video, i highly recommend it.
INCREDIBLE!!!

thats all for now

thom

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 08 Jan 2002 06:54:20
From: "Duncan Kimball" <dunks58@hotmail.com>
Subject: save it for later ...
Message-ID: <F87isALSokRfndvyKoX000152f6@hotmail.com>

Surprising to see the strong response to the Pink Floyd thread. A lot of
secret Floydians amongst us. Personally I always liked them in the earlier
career.

Syd ... well what can one say? (An inordinate amount judging by the daily
volumes spewing forth from the Laughing Madcaps list. Now those guys can
TALK. Too many people with FAR too much time on their hands of you ask me!)

Seriously though ... no need to extol Syd's virtues here I hope. A true
genius. I would argue that his work with Floyd was the starting point for
everything they did in their post-Syd career. Either they drew on his
experiences lyrically (and one wonders whether Syd ought to get some
royalties from DSOTM seeing it was almost entirely about him) or they
elaborated on the musical concepts he pioneered in the lengthier pieces like
'Astronomy Domine'. But that's not to say they didn't do some fine stuff. I
was working in the garden yesterday while listening to "Meddle", which was
my first real Pink Floyd album, and I still love it. I think Echoes is far
and away the best of the extended pieces.

Always loved Gilmour's voice, and they don't call him "God's Guitarist" for
nothing. A man of infinite taste. Loved that first solo album too. Always a
fave. Still, I'm happy to see him getting old, grey and fat, since I always
felt that fate had been far too kind to him -- GREAT guitarist, excellent
singer, male model looks ... grrrrr. Oh well, maybe he had a very small
penis (as if).

Roger? GREAT songwriter, did some lovely stuff in the early days, but if the
stories are to be believed, he is probably the winner of the Lifetime Order
of the Blessed Hat of Colonel C***. The shit he put Rick Wright through was
enough for me to lose all respect for the guy as a person. A complete turd.

>From: "Richard" <rjpa1@attbi.com>
>Subject: "Commercial" Music
>
>(it's a LONG one)

Don't brag, dear, it's SO unnattractive.

>With a few exceptions (Iggy and Nick Drake) most of the songs you are
>hearing were already big hits that you naturally like (or can't stand) from
>radio exposure. (Although it is quite possible that you were >CONDITIONED
>to like those songs ...but that's a different subject.)

Uh-Oh conspiracy theory! The Illuminati run it all I suppose?

>What do Enya, The Rolling Stones, Miles Davis, Hank Williams, Supertramp,
>Smokey Robinson, Boston, Mungo Jerry, Nick Drake, Al >Green, The 1910
>Fruitgum Company, Iggy and Andy have in common?  They >write/wrote songs
>for money (or at least with the _intent_ of making >money.)

In some cases, sure. In other cases, money was a happy by-product but
absolutely NOT the motivating factor.

>Is there something definably more sacred about only selling a song as
>product as opposed to using a song to sell a product?

Sacred is a very loaded term, but if you want to use it then "Yes". Because
out there in the wild world, The Song ultimately has to stand or fall on its
own merits. Using a recognised hit to sell an unrelated product is evidence
only of the parasitic nature of the advertising industry, since they rely so
heavily on music created only to sell itself, in order to come up with a way
to attract attention to a product you otherwise probably wouldn't touch with
a barge-pole.

I do not pretend that popular music is not a commercial activity. I just
hate the way the advertisers bludge off the creativity of others.

(BTW, for those not familiar with the term, I quote from the Macquarie
Dictionary:

>" bludge

>--verb (bludged; bludging) Australian, NZ Colloquial --verb (i) 1. to evade
>responsibilities. 2. to be idle; do nothing: >"we spent Saturday just
>bludging around the house". --verb (t) 3. to cadge. --noun 4. a job which
>entails next to no work. 5. a period of not >working or not working
>conscientiously. --phrase 6. bludge on, to impose on (someone). 7. on the
>bludge, >imposing on others. [short for BLUDGEON]
>--bludger, noun "

>For Nick Drake, I believe it actually increased his record sales.

A pity that Nick is (A) not alive to approve or deny the use of his own
music and (B) not around to benefit from the considerable royalties its use
would have generated. Still, I spose it'll keep his family comfortable.

>Becki diGregorio turned me on to Nick Drake a few months before the
> >commercial came out.  After the commercial I heard a few people >talking
>about it (they talked about the product to identify the >MUSIC). Who can
>argue with exposure that brings positive results?

On the other hand we have the case of New Radicals, whose sole hit single
"You Onlt Get What You Give" ( I think that's the title) was recently
bludged on by an Australian car advert. Despite the rather considerable
exposure, and the fact that commercial radio almost immediately picked it up
again, the record company couldn't be bothered re-releasing it.

File under "N"  ... for "No honour among thieves".

>How about artists who have recorded the one "commercial track" to ensure
>sales for the rest of their "less than commerical" record?  Is there
>exploitation in that sales tactic?  By many measures, yes.  If >you bought
>10cc's "Original Soundtrack" with the intent on getting 42 >minutes of lush
>love songs and soft ballads, I have news for you... >Life Is A Minestrone!
>I'm not saying the rest was bad... but it was >distinctly different from
>"I'm Not In Love."  It's all about exposure.

Hmmm. Not the best example. Of course, 10cc had two basic writing teams,
Godley-Creme and Gouldman-Stewart (though they all collaborated). Surely I
don't need to remind you of Mr Gouldman's impeccable pop pedigree. "For Your
Love"? "Bus Stop"? I have no doubt that INIL was written as The Single, but
that's neither here nor there. I'd imagine that most of their singles were
Stewart-Gouldman as they were the more "commercial" writers.

And if we're talking about exposure, we should rightly ask why the
post-split 10cc album "Deceptive Bends" was a huge hit when Godley and
Creme's "Consequences" (by far the more enduring work IMO) is one of the
great "lost" records of the century?

Answer: Mercury knew they could lotsa easy money out of Deceptive Bends, and
probably figured it was cheaper to pay G&C to go ahead and make a lavish
triple-album. They could just write it off as a tax loss rather than waste
more money promoting something that might only sell a few thousand copies.

Some artists get the luxury of being able to include a commercial track
amongst the rest. Gouldman seems able to write hit material with the same
facility that most of us ... well. let's not get scatalogical. You get my
drift. 10cc also evidently had the luxury of being able to include
disctinctly "non-pop" material on the album. Most artists aren't so lucky.

>How about a song that garners little airplay anymore and the owner is
>approached with an offer of money to use the song in a commercial?  The
>song was written to make money and when another variant on ways to >make
>that money is presented, why not?

Well, in the case of Nick Drake one could almost say "no airplay". Certainly
his records have carried on virtually by word of mouth since their release
and surely he never even existed as far as commercial pop radio is
concerned? But if someone wanted to use such a song in another context, and
the composer was agreeable, well why not indeed? My only beef is that 9
times out of ten the composer has little or no say in it whatsoever, since
the publishers generally own the song outright and the record companies own
the original record until their advance has been recouped and/or the artist
buys it back. I remind you that not even The Beatles own the rights to their
own songs.

>I do agree with Jason's statement about feeling offended when the original
>song is perverted to contain product-relevent lyrics.

I'd concur, although I've always had an inexplicable soft-spot for the
rather amusing retread of Ian Dury's "Billericay Dickie" for the Aussie
Spray & Wipe commercial. I just thought it was cute that anyone would bother
using such an offbeat song.

(Double standards? Moi?)

>What about the actions known as "promotion"?  Tours, signings, visiting
>radio stations & talk shows are all about selling more product.

Errr yes. But again, it's about selling THE SONG, not selling cat food by
using someone else's music to trick people.

>Does it really taint their "art" to accept money (from a secondary source
>or otherwise) when their original intent was to satisfy a >contract for
>which they had received a monetary advance?  Did the >artist balk when all
>the investment by the record company was >recovered and a noticable amount
>of money started ending up in their >bank accounts?  Was some kind of
>sublimation achieved through >success?  Nah... it's a business.

Well, this would only happen in a fraction of cases, which to me only
compounds the felony, as it were. In most cases the publishers and record
companies were the only ones to benefit from said use.

>You don't actually think that Billy Joel wants to sing "Still Rock-n-
>Roll To Me" or that the Stones look forward to riffing on >"Satisfaction",
>do you?

Why not? They wrote them. That's SUCH a critic's remark. Did Muddy Waters
get sick of singing "I'm A Man"? That says a lot more about YOUR
expectations and preconceptions than it does about the real use and currency
of the song and its popular impact. "Satisfaction" made those guys rich and
famous. What's not to like?

Really, the *only* question mark over Mick still singing "Satisfaction" is
that clearly he has NO problems generating the psycho-motor response in
question. It kind of undercuts the truth of the lyric when your exes include
a legendary chanteuse, a gorgeous Brazilian heiress and one of the world's
top fashion models ... and that you're still knocking up stunning
dolly-birds in your late 50s.

>They are doing it for their crowd and the crowd's memories.  With any luck,
>those memories are tied to feelgood things and that gives them >marketing
>potential outside of their original use.  It's similar to >having a
>cross-over hit on a different genre of radio stations.  I >doubt any artist
>has said, "Oh shit!  Now they're playing my song on >Adult Contemporary
>stations too!  What will me Goth friends think?!  My career is ruined!"

Well, with respect that's only a problem in America, which has a
sufficiently large audience and industry to allow for such market
specialisation. (Yankeecentrism?)

>There can be backlash.  For instance, I will probably NEVER but a Chevy
>truck BECAUSE of the frequency of "Like A Rock" but, again, it is all about
>exposure.

No offence, Rich, but I don't think Detroit is losing any sleep over it.

>At a holiday party a few weeks ago, I was talking with a rather talented
>painter.  She asked about my latest ...er ... let's just call >them "forms
>of expression."  I explained what I had been doing.  Her response was to
>ask what my goal was in doing the project and was >there a real outlet
>(i.e., $)?

<snip>

>She is very religious

Kaaa-chinngg! Why so long between feed line and punch line? John D.
Rockerfeller was a devout chruch goer. Never stopped HIM being a greedy
amoral bastard.

>and expressed disappointment in the fact that I wasn't
>"...sharing my god-given talent" but her concept of "sharing" included
>routines involving purchase orders and invoices.

Hey, that's her hangup. She sounds like a rather shallow person to me.

>I playfully queried if she felt that there was anything sacriligeous about
>exploiting her "god-given talent" for money.

See above comment on Rockerfeller.

>All this hooey about artistic purity gets annoying.  (suggested reading,
>"Mansion On The Hill" by Fred Goodman - it's all about Dylan, >Grossman,
>Springsteen, Geffen and the improbable blending of bohemia >and business)

I've read it. It did nothing to disabuse of the feeling that most true
musicians will keep on working and creating regardless of their material
status. It did a LOT to open my eyes (a little wider anyway) to what dirty
low-down scheming bums most managers and publishers are. The filthy
double-dealing over publishing deals (where the REAL money is) perpetrated
by Geffen and others made me sick to my stomach.

>There are other facets to this issue which include providing songs for
>movie or television soundtracks, tour financing, product endorsements >in
>concert and on recordings (like Mitsubishi Pro Audio and fano >Guitars) and
>the occasional fact of bettering their recording career (not just their
>wallet) with the exposure that these opportunities >lend.

>In the end, it is a business regardless of how pure you would like to view
>your favorite artist.

Pure? When did use that word? NOBODY is pure. Another silly Judeo-Christian
concept. But I still say there's a difference of INTENT.

As for the business thing ... Hmmm. Yes it's an industry of sorts; I could
liken it to the garment "industry", where retailers and major clothing
labels rake in millions from the hard slog of the piece-workers who sew
clothes all day and night for a few cents, and where most designers work for
a pittance making their haute-couture bosses look good on the Paris catwalk
and get little in return other than a meagre salary and the "satisfaction"
of seeing their designs ripped off by cheap, mass-produced knock-offs for
which they never see a cent either.

>As it has been said so many times... if you don't like something, don't buy
>it.  Advertising is done because it works.  If you say it >doesn't work
>with you, I simply don't believe you.

Maybe I'm tired but there's something in that bit there that I just don't
get, Richard.

Advertising has almost NO effect on me other than to irritate. It does not
influence my buying patterns -- excpet where I will consciously avoid a
certain product because the ad shits me so much.

I buy (A) what is available (B) what I can afford (C) where it's made and
(D) what I think represents quality and value for money based on what I know
about the product. Advertising would be way beyond the last thing to
influence me positively about brand choice. It invariably has the opposite
effect. I AVOID name brands unless I happen to like the product already, in
which case they're wasting their time.

>Van Gogh had an agent.

Van Gogh sold ONE painting in his lifetime. What does that say except what a
shitty agent he had?

>p.s. EMI owns the rights to XTC's back catalog and can use it to generate
>money in virtually any way they would like (reference: XTC >remasters -
>this was a request from the Japan distributor, not from >XTC, Geffen, EMI
>or me.)

See above. Technically, I believe EMI (now) owns the original recordings.
Andy could, if he so chose, cut a new version of "Generals and Majors" and
sell it for an advertising jingle if he was lucky enough to do so. Provided
the publishers were paid there'd be f*** all EMI could do about it.
Similarly they could sell the original XTC recordings to anyone, for any
purpose -- hell, they could destroy them if they felt inclined -- and
there'd be f*** all Andy could do about it. Ask Paul McCartney.

Another thing that shits me no end is the use of 'soundalike' tracks in
adverts. I heard one recently that was clearly intended to sound *just* like
the Cake song about the short dress and the loooonnnnnnng jacket. Harrison
was sued over THREE NOTES. How can advertisers get away with stuff like
that?

>From: Pat <pattrex@emptystreet.com>
>Subject: Phil/Gabriel (no XTC)

>And I always thought their voices had some striking similarities...

Really? In range, perhaps, and in tone on maybe one or two notes, perhaps,
but PG has a very "thick" quality to his voice, lots of overtones, etc,
whereas Phil's strikes me as being a fairly 'pure' voice, tonally.

Dunks

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 08 Jan 2002 07:56:57 -0500
From: "Christopher R. Coolidge" <cauldron@together.net>
Subject: Hugh Padgham
Message-ID: <B86056C9.1DFE%cauldron@together.net>

on 1/7/02 12:45 AM, Ben wrote:

> So does the chronology of Hugh Padgham early '80s production go "Face Value"
> --> "Ghost in the Machine" --> "English Settlement"?  There wouldn't have
> been much time for him to do much else in there, I'd imagine, although he
> has proven to be a very prolific producer since then...

  Hugh Padgham also did Split Enz' Time and Tide in '82 as well, not sure if
it predated or postdated English Settlement. I remember it came out some
time during the summer that year.

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 08 Jan 2002 07:57:07 -0500
From: "Christopher R. Coolidge" <cauldron@together.net>
Subject: Genesis again(no XTC, sorry)
Message-ID: <B8604E09.1DFD%cauldron@together.net>

on 1/7/02 12:45 AM, Pat Ortman, "Vee Tube's favorite Chalkhills
Musician", wrote:

>> So did I. It was the vertiginous, rollercoaster drop in lyric quality (and,
>> frankly, choon quality) that made post-PG Genesis such a pale and dull
>> imitation; from the sublime (or at least pretty interesting) to the ...er
>> ... not sublime at all, actually.
>
> I agree. I was introduced to Genesis via the We Can't Dance CD, and though
> I enjoyed it I was far more impressed with Peter Gabriel's solo work
> (except for Ovo). It had more depth, right off the bat. It took a while to
> delve back into the far back Genesis catalog, but was definitely worth the
> trip. Lyrics are paramount, and Peter was it. I'm still hoping his next CD
> is decent, though... did not like Ovo at all.

  For me the turning point was when Phil Collins decided he could write
songs too and put out Face Value, and began contributing to the band's
material as well. Beginning with Abacab is when their albums become a rather
uneven listening experience, though all their albums, even Invisible Touch
and We Can't Dance, have enjoyable tracks(mostly the longer stuff like
"Mama," "Home By The Sea," "The Last Domino," "Driving The Last Spike," to
name a few). On A Trick Of A Tail and Wind And Wuthering, for example, the
main difference between them and The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway is the lack
of Peter Gabriel's voice and lyrical input. Without him and with Phil's more
melodic voice, it's left to Tony and Mike(and Steve, depending on whether
you ask Steve or Tony; supposedly Steve Hackett left because of a royalties
dispute with Tony, who he accused of stealing his songwriting credits for
himself) to emphasise the sweetness and melody of Phil's voice in their
songwriting. IMO the likes of "Squonk," "Ripple," and "Your Own Special Way"
have a richness of melody that they could only hint at with Peter's more
dramatic voice. Though Peter Gabriel could and can be melodic, his voice
lacks Phil's choirboy sweetness. I also notice their album without Phil
Collins, Calling All Stations, while not a masterpiece and sounds like a new
project rather than a Genesis album, is a fairly solid piece of work with no
great songs(The title track comes close though) but no stinkers like
"Invisible Touch" or "Illegal Alien" either, suggesting that the blame for
their mainstream pop period falls squarely on some sawed-off bald runt's
shoulders. Though the mostly unctuous crap Mike and The Mechanics were
responsible for suggests Mike Rutherford at the least was a willing
accomplice.

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 08 Jan 2002 13:59:29 -0600
From: "Margaret Quinn" <margaret_quinn@hotmail.com>
Subject: Odd...
Message-ID: <LAW2-F59SmhnWaFUWSh00010523@hotmail.com>

Ok, stumbled upon this interesting link. Yes, there is XTC content. Look to
your far left when you pull this up and read who's listed under "Personnel".

http://www.inkblotmagazine.com/rev-archive/Stevie_Wonder_Music.htm

Yes, it's obviously an error, but an interesting one at that. Can you
imagine?

--Margaret

------------------------------

Date: Tue, 8 Jan 2002 19:17:21 EST
From: Hbsherwood@aol.com
Subject: Re: Six Chalkhillses piled high
Message-ID: <199.cc766a.296ce611@aol.com>

Tiny Bubbles:

Well, you get busy and let your Chalkhillage duties lapse for a week or two,
and look what happens!

Six Chalkhillses piled high in the In-Box, and only one pair of (failing,
bespectacled) eyes to read 'em. So you try to plow through the whole shebang
in one sitting and you wind up supine, immaculate on your employer's floor
gibbering softly... Phil Collins...he's baaaaaaaack....

I'd love to chime in on the Songs Used in Advertising debate (I'm a strong
Anti, with intimations of Historical Heat-Death thrown in: It's the ultimate
usurpation of the Language of Opposition by the Exploiter, and you
Randian/Chicago School weenies can all just suck my ETAOIN SHRDLU), but I
sense it's winding down and it would only render me Unfashionable--or, worse,
Boring.

However, people keep saying this, and it needs to be clarified:

>From: "Steve Johnson" <sjohnson@co.missoula.mt.us>
>Subject: We're All (Not) Light

>If McLennon and McCartney sign away their rights, they are
>forever doomed to listen to "Revolution" on McNike ads.  But it's their
>choice.

Lennon and McCartney no more "chose" to sign away their rights to their songs
than I "choose" to pay my mortgage. I can "choose" not to pay, but I "choose"
not to force my children to live under bridge abutments with people in
clashing plaids.

The appearance of "Revolution" in a Nike ad was the final episode in a
monumental and epic legal battle that began before the Beatles broke up.

 From the rec.music.beatles FAQ (
http://rmb.simplenet.com/public/files/faqs/outline.html):

   During the great Apple debacle the Beatles experienced in the
   late '60's, the lads found themselves losing tremendous amounts of
   money and needed a lot of cash fast. This and other contributing
   factors (like Dick James selling his stake in Northern Songs) led
   to the Beatles selling the publishing rights to their songs (except
   for some of the early ones like "Love Me Do" which were published
   by various companies and are now owned by MPL -- Macca's company).
   The song rights were for sale again a few years back, and Paul
   mounted a joint effort with Yoko to buy them back -- but (as Paul
   tells it) Michael Jackson outrageously outbid everyone, offering
   a really unheard of and unanticipated price. He walked away with
   the whole kit and kaboodle.

   Consider the following scenario, if you will. If "Please Please Me"
   was in a film and not sung by the Beatles, then Mr. Jackson did
   license it. He owns the song, like a book copyright, while EMI
   owns rights to the Beatles recordings. Presumably EMI never licenses
   a Beatles recording for use in such a case unless the Beatles think
   it's okay (this may be an unofficial arrangement, probably because
   the Beatles are suing Capitol-EMI for rights of the recordings in
   the US), which was what caused the uproar over the Nike commercial
   (apparently Yoko okayed it, but no one asked the others, and, hey,
   Yoko wasn't a Beatle anyway. :-) ).

(I could have hoped to find a more comprehensive reference, but this was the
best I could do for the nonce. The story's much more complex than that, but
the main point is, it wasn't a "choice" of Lennon and McCartney to sell the
rights to their songs. They were forced to by circumstance.)

----

On an entirely less legalistic note, Santa brought me a wonderful little gift
this Crispness Mawn, something I'd coo'd into his ear at the mall while the
security guards were looking away. I'm not talking about my favorite
tetrahydracannabinoid substance; Santa don't do that. No, I'm talking about
the Rhino Records compilation, "Nuggets II: Original Artyfacts from the
British Empire and Beyond."

This companion volume to the original "Nuggets" set (which was assembled in
1979 by the great Lenny Kaye of the Patti Smith Band) travels far afield to
compile an enormous (4 CDs!) sampling of British, European, Antipodean, and
even South American psychedelia from 1965-69. Monumental in its scope, it
finally assembles in one place all those obscure influences on the Dukes of
Stratosphear mentioned in Song Stories that you thought in your heart of
hearts you'd never get to hear because your record collection wasn't cool
enough.

Want "My Friend Jack Eats Sugarlumps" by The Smoke? It's in here! "My White
Bicycle" by Tomorrow? Got it! Small Faces? The Pretty Things? The Move? The
Creation? Check! Check! Check!

One thing that's way-cool about Nuggets II is how many guys who grew up to be
Seventies dino-rockers got their start here: Steve Howe (lookin'
slick-n-snotty and about thirteen years old in his purple crushed-velvet
drainies), Ronnie Wood, Roy Wood, Marc Bolan, David Bowie, Carl Palmer... And
can you believe there was a time when Jeff Lynne was actually *cool*? Didn't
think so! But they're all here! Ollie Halsall! John Halsey! Van Morrison!

No Dukes fan (hell, no fan of rock-n-roll) should be without this amazing
collection.
An enormous *energy* emanates from these recordings, a sense of an explosion
of creativity, of nonchalant smashing of boundaries. Sure, there's
pretentiousness, yeah, some of it might be a smidge twee, OK, some of the
guitars needed tuning, but I swear I'd put "Sorry" by the Easybeats (my new
fave-rave band of all time) up next to the finest of punk slashers by the
Who, the Clash, The Jam -- anybody. (I'm told by an authoritative source that
Dean Gabber and his Gabberdines used to end sets with a killer version of the
Easybeats' "Friday on My Mind," also on Nuggets II.)

Here's the deal: In the accompanying booklet there's a picture of The
Creation onstage. Here's Kenny Pickett, the lead singer, holding a cup of
paint and a brush. He has the *coolest* 1966 hair. Noel Gallagher goes to
sleep at night wanking to a fantasy where he has hair this cool. Kenny,
cigarette dangling, is painting the legs and ass of a gyrating, panty-clad
go-go girl who's already been pretty thoroughly bedaubed. (And dig it! Girls
were allowed to be a little tubby in 1966! All right!) Then you realize that
the stringy object hanging from the bassist's tuning peg is her bra!
Awwwwwww-riiiiiiight! Gimme some o' that Elll Esss Deee!

You just get the sense that you missed a really, really really good party.....

Read all about it at http://rhinorecords.com/features/76787p.html?P=

Harrison "Selling sweaters? 'Dreadful knitwear'" Sherwood

------------------------------

End of Chalkhills Digest #8-4
*****************************

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