Trey Anastasio (Phish): "Frank Zappa was 100% original. The music industry exerts tremendous pressure on artists to comform. He never bent. This is astounding. I am, and always will be, in awe of him." Adrian Belew: "When you come face to face with a genius its undeniable. From my first handshake with Frank in 1977 to our last private talk in his living room just months before his death, he seemed surrounded by the urgent aura of someone meant to create something no one else could. Not surprisingly, Frank was driven: the hardest working musician ive ever seen. Very serious about his music and its treatment, yet clearly enjoying his unique position as a creative force known and revered troughout the world" Cris Kirkwood (Meat Puppets): "Frank Zappa taught me that rock and roll doesnt have to suck" Alice Cooper:"Frank Zappa was one of the greatest guitar players of all time. I remember being in a nightclub one night-propably the Whisky or the Cheetah. These incredible people were going up and playing that night. First Mike Bloomfield, then Hendrix playing all this incredible stuff nobody had heard before. Zappa got up on stage and started imitating these guys-note for note-and playing their stuff better than they had!" Larry Lalonde (Primus): "Frank Zappa was the best guitar player you never heard" Steve Vai: "In Frank I saw an artist with an uncompromising approach and flawless integrity in his art. A hundred years from now, when many popular bands will mean little more than funny names from the past, Frank will be revered and celebrated for the true genius that he is."
On 'Watermelon in Easter Hay': "This song has always brought a tear to my eye. Envisioning it according to the "Central Scrutinizer" as the last imaginary guitar solo is a powerful image. Even more powerful is the melody itself. Frank's beyond beautiful, sparkling clean tone played through a Space Station Reverberator is one of the all time greatest guitar tones ever recorded. He had such an ear for tone. The combination of tone and melody on this song just kills me. Since Frank is no longer with us Watermelon In Easter Hay is even more difficult for me to listen to than ever. I know my Mom feels the same way. It is in my opinion the very best solo he ever played. It's because of his imagination that it exists and that's pretty damn cool. " On Frank Zappa: Besides being inspirational in my life by virtue of being my father, Frank's playing has had a profound affect on me. Of course he influenced me early on but it wasn't until I had several years of playing expereience that I could truly appreciate what he was doing with the guitar. When I first started playing I was 12. Frank's music seemed impossible to play. It was amazing to listen to but horrific to try and learn. His imagination was so powerful and so musical it was devastating. There are so many things about his music that I love but mainly I've always admired his soloing style. I think he was fearless when he played. I loved his description of his solos... He called them "Air Sculptures". My favorite "Air Sculptures" of Frank's are: 1. "Ship Ahoy" from Shut Up And Play Yer Guitar. (That whole album actually deserves a mention... especially "Deathless Horsie") 2. "Watermelon In Easter Hay" from Joe's Garage. That coincedentally is also one of my Mom's all time favorites. 3. "Black Napkins" from Zoot Allures.
~ The follow-up, Absolutely Free, was the first to use direct segues between songs, and was
arguably the first 'Concept Album' in rock music. Many credit The Beatles with this honor,
however here are two release dates of importance:
-On May 26th, 1967, Frank Zappa & the Mothers of Invention release "Absolutely Free".
-On June 1st, 1967, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Band was released.
I'll do the math for you: Zappa was first.
Interestingly, Absolutely Free was recorded in less than 24 hours, on a budget of less than $11,000.
~ Zappa was once proclaimed "a god of the Czech underground", by President Vaclav Havel,
in part due to the song 'Plastic People' and the impact it had on the Czech Anti-Communist Movement.
Havel also offered Zappa the job of "special ambassador to the West on trade, culture and tourism".
This did not come to pass, for several reasons. <"https://web.archive.org/web/20171015110111/http://www.theroc.org/roc-mag/textarch/roc-08/roc0816b.htm" target="_blank">CLICK HERE to read more on this.
The article comes from R.O.C.: Rock Out Censorship, a site some of us Zappa fans are familiar with.
~FZ once appeared on the TV game show "What's My Line".
Contestant Soupy Sales actually disqualified himself, because he immediately knew who Frank was.
I knew that guy was cool!
~ Zappa lyrics are referenced in, of all places, Gwar's 'Sexocutioner':
~ Zappa, to a soon-to-be-heartbroken fan enamored by the idea of him having eaten feces on stage:
"I never ate shit on stage."
Zappa on the subject, from The Real Frank Zappa Book:
"For the record, folks: I never took a shit on stage, and the closest I ever came to eating shit anywhere
...was at a Holiday Inn buffet in Fayetteville, North Carolina, in 1973."
"If Frank Zappa cut a fart and mixed it to stereo, I'd buy it!!!"
- jimmie d (from the Zappa Forum)
Here is a poem written by a 19 year old Zappa fan, also from the forum:
" I first heard Frank in '93
The day he past, my dad introduced him to me
I remember it as if it was yesterday
But in reality, it's almost 9 years to this day
We heard the news: Frank was gone, only 52
My dad was like:''Not yet...'', but the news was true
They showed some images of the guy
My dad just set on the sofa and began to sigh
I asked my dad: 'Who was this man with his goatee, moustache and long hair ?'
He said: 'He did and said everything you'd probably never dare'
He got up, put on the stereo and started to play
various of Frank's albums the rest of the day
He played Hot Rats, Apostrophe, Yerbouti and Yellow Shark until it was time for bed
For like an hour i lay there, the music and melodies continued playing inside my head
Ever since this day my musical life has never been the same
All thanks to a fantastic guy with a really great last name...
I really liked this poem, written by
Anton, aka 'AbnucealEmukaah83'
who is from The Netherlands.
Used with permission.
I have been reading about a favorite composer, Percy Grainger
- who shared Zappa's yearning to experiment with and further advance the Technology of Music.
In my humble opinion, Zappa fans will enjoy the following article,
in which Grainger 'innovates', mirroring Zappa's work with the Synclavier;
although many, many years prior, and with comparatively primitive equipment, to say the least.
Have a look:
The Free Music Machine
In The Real Frank Zappa Book:
Zappa recalls that when Dweezil was born,
he responded "musician" as his "religion" on the hospital admission form.
~ But Wait! -
Teen-Age Prostitute (mentioned on page 2 here) was sung by Lisa Popiel, the daughter of Sam (S.J.) Popeil,
the inventor of unbelievably handy little gadgets like the "Pocket Fisherman", and "Veg-O-Matic".
Her brother is RON Popiel; (Ronco)
...the absolute GOD of all that is infomercials, and the man directly responsible for:
the Inside-The-Shell Electric Egg Scrambler
the Kitchen Magician
the Dial-O-Matic Food Slicer
...and who was last heard hawking his wares & reeling in wide-eyed customers
while uttering the immortal pitch: "...not $59.95, not $49.95... not even $39.95..."
And his sister sang that song? Un---friggin--believable!
... BUT, don't answer yet!
There's more! -
Click his hallowed image to BUY, BUY, BUY!!
I will be adding to this section frequently... come back soon!
So, Bow-Tie Daddy, you say you want MORE?
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