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Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Deeve, May 29, 2019.
I heard Lowell George is on some early Zappa recordings, but left to do his own thing.
Don’t know but a tune like that is so far out of Frank’s core competency/wheelhouse that he might either have blinked with incomprehension or laughed and thought it was stupid.
Regardless , he wouldn’t have held his opinion !
Barring Lowell George whose participation in the early Mothers isn't really well documented on recorded material, Frank didn't generally have a rhythm guitar player before 1977 when Adrian Belew got hired.
Whatever you might think of Camarillo Brillo as a song, the original recorded version's got some pretty funky little riffs played by Frank himself. Once he outsourced that job to someone else, it seems like he became focused on being the "soloist" when he picked up the guitar and he had a few one or two chord grooves that he played a LOT which often were not related to the other parts of the song. E.g. "Inca Roads" is C to D for 5 minutes then we do the rest of the song. "Dirty Love" is a killer solo played against the tunes' chord progression by comparison and just feels like a more integral part of the song.
The first time I saw Frank live was around Christmas 1975 with Captain Beefheart as opening act. That band is the one that recorded the original version of Black Napkins and Ship Ahoy in Osaka and Frank is blazing on guitar. Can't remember the posthumous release that covered a show on that tour but it's got a lot of hot guitar and the last time he was involved at that level (playing "parts" as well as solos).
Then years later, Frank writes "Truck Driver Divorce"!
I really miss him too. Not only for his music. He knew things.
A friend helped w a concert in Baltimore.On a now gone cassette Frank s checking the 10 inch speaker array by playing the riff from "Supernaut". There s also a vocal where Frank is talking about "if he was doing last night, what he was doing before,.. then ...(it becomes inaudible)...same tone of voice as his stage talking , but just a few of the crew there.
Hey, claim to fame: I used to gig with the mother of Patrick O'Hearn in the 70s. She played piano and he played bass with Frank during the Zoot Allures period.
Right. Frank was not an omnivore - if it was out of his sphere he either ignored it or ridiculed it.
Lowell claimed at a 1975 Little Feat concert that he was fired because he "wrote a song ["Willin'"] about dope," but alternatively said that "it was decided that I should leave and form a band" by mutual agreement.
I love Zappa, but I have to question his logic. He posits that the young hippie was too conservative, and that is the cause of the decline of the musical art form. The old cigar chomping know-nothing executives were the key to allowing artful rock to get through the machine of the music industry and reach the public.
Let me get this straight: the 60's hippies were too conservative, and the old cranks in suits sitting in the office made good music possible? Zappa is painting with a broad brush here, but his statement seems to defy what I know about the 60's hippie movement. Smug and arrogant, maybe. But conservative? It may be representative of his personal experience, but I think he is putting labels on people that might not fit. I think he may have mis-characterized the cartoon figure of the hippie that he was describing in the first part of that video.
I fully understand Zappa's fight with the PMRC, and I was fully in support of him. He is good at turning a phrase and making it sound good, but under scrutiny his logic doesn't seem to stand up. Like with a lot of musicians, I love the music, but their logic can't always be counted on.
Zappa holds a special place for me because I literally would not exist if it weren't for him (My parents met at a Zappa and the Mothers gig in 1967). But growing up with his music in my home and then later trying to grasp it as a budding musician, I was pretty much a fan from the very beginning. It's smart, funny, and technically brilliant, but still has plenty of soul and grease like good rock and roll is supposed to. There's truly nothing like it. You know within 2 seconds who you're listening to.
His particular brand of humor and politics are off-putting to some. Which is a shame because there's so much to discover and appreciate within his music. But you know what they say...if someone’s being made fun of and you can’t tell who it is, it's probably you.
I've read and or listened to many many FZ interviews. He seems to have settled into a groove on many topics and you'd hear him say the same thing over and over again.
I don't know what really went on in the record industry, but my take is that "whoever" was in A&R in the 60's were more likely to take chances on things that they did not personally understand or relate to. It sounds like a bit later, when rock and roll actually became mainstream, that A&R people (whether or not they were "hippies") became less likely to suggest some off the wall artist as it could mean losing their job.
But yeah, Frank painted with a broad brush and sometimes missed the mark. Unlike ME!
Thank You Frank for Ruben & The Jets.
Nah - Frank was a genius musician , a deep thinker and entirely human .
His humor hit the mark sometimes and was pretty good - for a musician.
And it wasn’t about “getting the joke” or “not getting the joke” it was the obviousness/lowest common denominator nature of a lot of his humor. Called “broad” in the business. A tight smile follows...
At least he had the music to fall back on!
Note : humor is at least as subjective as music so, if you’ve laughed out loud at a Zappa-ism then...cool.
“I just followed up the steps...”
"Let's Thank Frank . . ." 'nother band name alert
I crank up the outdoor speakers with Shut Up 'n Play Yer Guitar while doing yard work. No neighbors, fortunately.