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How the list was started
Here are some messages from the beginning of the mail-listing back in 1994.
it all started with a message from Julian to the 4AD list in September 1994:
From: julian@sahiber.demon.co.uk (Architect of A Belly)
Date: Fri, 09 Sep 1994 10:42 -0500 (EST)
ANNOUNCE: New mailing lists

ANNOUNCING a couple of new sort of mailing list thingys
 -------------------------------------------------------

...The second list is another one that's been much mooted, and never
started - the US & UK indie lists SHOULD cover this area, but what
with everything else on there, people seem to come & go, such that no
one list has become the forum for the discussion of what's known in
the UK press as indiepop .  .  .

Again I'm not imposing any major rules on the forum, but the suggested
areas of discussion are Sarah Records, Slumberland, Bus Stop, Pop Bus,
early Creation, Postcard (heresy to link them, I know), 53rd & 3rd,
A Turntable Friend, Summershine, the numerous similar labels in
existence around the world, as well as fanzines (Grimsby Fishmarket,
Midnight Firefly) dedicated to them, and acts that 'could have been.'

I also foresee some spillage into the quieter end of the Riot Girl
axis, and '80s stuff like Lloyd Cole, Felt & Young Marble Giants, whose
seeds grew to become a thousand jangly guitar-playing misery guts.

Plus - your favourite lollypop flavour/colour, how happy you are with
your latest boy/grrl-friend, how unhappy you are 3 weeks later, which
band they've run off with, etc, etc.

Sha-la-la-la-send your ba-ba-ba requests (?) & messages to

indiepop@sahiber.demon.co.uk
ten days later the first digest came in:
From: stevet@eskimo.com (Steven Thornton)
Subject: Indiepop Digest 1
Data: Mon, 19 Sep 1994 21:51 -0500 (EST)
To: Peter Hahndorf @ HB2

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                Indiepop Ain't Noise Pollution ! ! !
                  i   s   s   u   e           1

                  Volume 1 - DIYgest No 1
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Hi,
  welcome to the very first indiepop digest - dedicated to the world of
manic-depressive boys & girls across the globe who get off on being
miserable - yes, they may sing about the summer, but you can't fool me -
winter's their favourite season, as you feel much better about feeling
bad!

Having discovered an enclave of Sarah fans camped out on the low prairies
of the 4AD-L list, who rapidly became a reservation, there seemed to be a
point when it became the default indiepop list, when anything with a
Rickenbacker and a crap guitar solo was fair game, but things moved on,
the Goths returned, and everyone seemed to really talk about other things.

Sporadic indiepop discussion on the uk-indie list never really seemed to
get very far, what with most pop types not wanting to talk about RATM,
Wonderstuff, Carter, etc, and the US indie list seems to discourage the
informal flow of discussion I think is so good on 4AD-L.

So hear we have it - a list for indiepop, where Alan Horne is god,
where people can come out of the closet with their Edwin Collins
obsessions,
where you can try and show off about their Sea Urchins 'Summershine' flexi
(which is worth a hell of a lot more comapred to its cost than any 4AD
 rarity!).
Hopefully discussion will be as much about old/reissued stuff as new
artistes. . . I'm sure you all read the subscription blurb.

Other information
-----------------

Until Bill Peregoy automates the list distribution/subscription
Andrew Norman has offered to distribute digests on a weekly basis -
as I guess there won't be too much traffic right at the start this
is probably a good thing.
[Note to Bill - if I don't contact you directly, go ahead & do it!
 Just post the new addresses to the lists]
Steve Thornton (stevet@eskimo.com) has volunteered to edit/oversee
this list, so from now on I guess he'll be making the introductions!

I'll handle subscription requests & collating the digests, as the
addresses
are already out.

Jobs still open include :-

someone to store & maintain arichives -
---------------------------------------
Bill Peregoy can automate the actual mailing lists but not archiving.
It would be particularly nice if it could be done in an automated manner,
or via WWW, but if not it would still be nice to keep them intil the point
comes when we can do that - I don't think it's fair to expect a real
person
to spend time de-archive stuff all the time.

W/W/W officer !
---------------
I think it would be a great idea if someone on the list could create a
list homepage to store semi-permanent information like the FAQ, useful
addresses (fanzines, useful mail order firms, record store info), and
links to other relevant ones.
I don't really know a lot about WWW but I think there's plenty of hi-
quality info amongst the people on this list, and we could probably
create something very worthwhile.

FAQ/Style Guide
---------------
If someone cares to create something a little more formal than this
as an FAQ to pass out to new subscribers, I'd be grateful - I think
it would be best to take suggestions as to rules/guides over the
next few weeks from those subscribed.

If anyone has any other suggestions for ways people can be actively
involved, jobs they'd like to do, etc , feel free. . .

Also do tell anyone else you think might be interested - like people
on alt.music.alternative, rec.music.misc, gaffa, etc - I know there
are people on there who would be interested, but I'm reluctant to
go sticking big shiny adverts up at the beginning of college term -
snobbery or realism? :-)

anyway, as Alison Statton once sang - " From Caerleon to Washington" . . .
Washington State anyway. . .
Do your worst Steve!!!

Julian

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Steve - put an intro here.

[OK, Pop Tart]

Hi, my name is Steve, and I'm a pathetic wanker. [Hi, Steve]. You can
call me Fnarf if you like. Unfortunately for you, I'll be
irresponsible for mismanaging this digest, at least for the time
being. If you have any complaints or scathing criticisms of any kind,
send them to me (stevet@eskimo.com), as I rather like that sort of
thing.

Should I introduce myself? I'm stuck out here in Seattle, Washington,
where we no longer approve of the "g-word", but I still can't find
anyone who knows a good whiny pop tune from an arse on the ground. So
I don't know how much I'll be able to contribute directly -- I'll
probably be taking more than giving, so to speak. but I am a certified
Pop Loser. I have the Postcard Records kitty-and-drum tatooed on my
pasty shoulder, I have received an actual handwritten letter from
Clare Sarah Records, and Phoebe Summersquash kissed me on the cheek
once. I used to keep the Sarah Records discography on 4AD-L, but I've
been slacking lately due to financial straits and the total
unavailability of their products here in Jet City. No trouble finding
rare Soundgarden boots or Kurt Cobain's toothbrush, but I don't want
them, do I?

I'm 5 foot 8 inches tall, 150 pounds, with brown hair and lovely blue
eyes, and glasses, and I like long walks at sunset, intimate candlelit
dinners for two, lite jazz, and Victorian poetry -- no, wait, that's not
right. I really like organizing my singles my catalog number, alienating
my friends, whining endlessly about the absence of All About Chad from the
local radio stations, weeping into my whiskey glass to the strains of the
Go-Betweens, and puking my guts out in the men's room at the Crocodile
Cafe. Girls, I'm available! And you wouldn't even have to be nice to me.

My idea of what's appropriate for indiepop is pretty straightforward:
indie and pop. Anything on labels like sarah, bus stop, summershine, four
letter words, merge, spin art, brilliant, slumberland, xpressway, simple
machines, k, a turntable friend, teen beat, flying nun, teen beat, sunday,
pop narcotic, or any of a hundred other labels I've forgotten or haven't
even heard of is fair game, plus selected oldies but goodies like postcard
or cherry red. Anything released on seven-inch single. Anything that is
pop enough to make your heart leap, your toes tap, your ass shimmy, your
lips move, and your eyes fill with tears. I'm interested in the emotional
response, not the fancy effects pedals.

Of course, if you think I'm full of it, you're welcome to talk about
something else. If you think the above is a pretty narrow range, broaden
it. Yesterday I listened to Frente!, the Bats, Versus, the Sugargliders,
Boyracer, The Harvest Ministers, and k.d. lang. How about you?

Steve (stevet@eskimo.com)
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