Author Topic: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #39 - 'The Perfect Stranger'  (Read 40720 times)

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Offline bout to crash

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #280 on: January 10, 2016, 09:47:51 PM »
Wait, what the hell just happened?  How did I miss the Fillmore East writeup from... last month?

Yeah, me too. Was a bit confused but chalked it up to the holidays...
Oh Jackie, always jumping to the most homoerotic possibility.

Offline Big Hath

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #281 on: January 10, 2016, 09:48:06 PM »
NM edited a previous post instead of making it a new post
Winger would be better!

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #282 on: January 10, 2016, 09:48:23 PM »
Ohhhhhhh. Makes a lot more sense now.
Oh Jackie, always jumping to the most homoerotic possibility.

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #283 on: January 11, 2016, 12:02:30 AM »
That weirded me out too.   NM....don't do that any more.   Just stop it!   :rollin
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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #284 on: January 11, 2016, 12:25:03 AM »
Interesting indeed! I've fallen behind here. I need a spanking.

*swat*

NM edited a previous post instead of making it a new post

OH... that's what happened... :lol

Offline Nihil-Morari

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #285 on: January 11, 2016, 01:42:01 AM »
 :lol


Haha! Sorry, will fix it in a minute. I guess I was out of my game  ;)
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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #286 on: January 11, 2016, 01:42:38 AM »
Official Release #12 'Fillmore East - June 1971'
(Released 08/1971)




Background Information:
Now Zappa was on a roll. Live there was more and more comedy, mainly to please the audience, and less long tracks and solo’s. This album is a great example of what happened on the road in those days. The two Turtles singers Howard Kaylan and Mark Volman are performing comedy routines while the band, undaunted, plays on.
Most tracks are telling ‘rock group’ stories, mainly concerning groupies. While most tracks are fun to listen to, they lack the musical density that Zappa portrayed up until this record.
The album includes Happy Together, the hit record that groupies craved for in those days (at least, that’s what the album tells us). Seeing people react to that song would make most artists happy, but not Zappa. The fact that the entire show sort of was a concept leading up to a grand finale that was not one of Zappa’s compositions was frustrating him.
Very apparent on this album, especially in Bwana Dik, is Zappa’s new way of selling his complex music to a big audience. His juvenile and often dirty jokes mask the fact that you’re listening to quite complicated music.
Please note that this is an album consisting of songs recorded in the same way, in the same period, by the same musicians. That’s a rare thing.

The Album Itself:
There are two kinds of songs on this album, first there are the songs that focus on the composition, or the instrumentation. There is a very rockin’ version of Willie The Pimp on this record (with a solo!), Little House I Used To Live In is some sort of condensed version of the Burnt Weeny version. Then there’s the encore, Lonesome Electric Turkey, Peaches En Regalia and Tears Began To Fall, which is something this album really needs. After all the joking it’s cool to hear the band firing.
On the other hand there’s the comedy songs, with Do You Like My New Car as the least song-y song. Most of these tracks are a real fun insight in the life on the road in those days (or possibly the life on the road as they would’ve liked it).


Essential Tracks:
Little House I Used To Live In
What Kind Of Girl Do You Think We Are?
Do You Like My New Car?
Peaches En Regalia
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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #287 on: January 11, 2016, 11:33:12 AM »
I like this one a lot.  I actually picked up Just Another Band from L.A. first, then got Fillmore East shortly after, but these two albums are by the same band and from the same period.  "Billy the Mountain" (from L.A.) was my first Zappa "epic" and got me into the Flo and Eddie era.  Fillmore East took the Flo and Eddie stage show to the next level.  Oh Mein Godt!  What a crazy, ridiculous, brilliant piece of work!

I love it all, except for "Tears Begin to Fall".  I just never got into the Doo-wop side of Frank, and here's a Doo-wop song without any actual Doo-wop, so IMO it didn't have much left going for it, but at least it was last and I could just skip it when it came on.  The rest of this album is solid gold, as far as I'm concerned.  Obviously, it makes a lot more sense when listened to sequentially, since it's all one thing.

"We are not groupies!"

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #288 on: January 11, 2016, 07:28:21 PM »
Fillmore East - June 1971--I'll admit, I haven't listened to the whole album in its entirety, but YAY for the start of the Flo/Eddie era! :lol They managed to come up with some really interesting twists on old Mothers songs, and I love how Do You Like my New Car? eventually evolved into The Groupie Routine from YCDTOSA 1. :lol :lol :lol That, and the beginning of the legend of the one and only... mud shark... DWAAAAARF NEBULAAAAAA oops. :rollin

Favorites: Do You Like My New Car?, What Kind Of Girl Do You Think We Are?, Happy Together

Interesting note - the live stuff with John Lennon and (eeegads) Yoko Ono was recorded during these shows, but didn't show up on wax for Zappa until Playground Psychotics. It was also the start of the John/Yoko vs Frank feud, where John and Yoko renamed King Kong as "Jam Rag" and called it their own composition, which really pissed Frank off. In Frank's own words

Reposting since N-M screwed the pooch. ARF! :biggrin: :rollin :metal

Offline Pragmaticcircus

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #289 on: January 11, 2016, 10:44:12 PM »
This is a brilliant live album, I love the flo and eddie stuff! And it has a brief version of Little House, which is one of my Zappa favourites!  :lol  :metal
"The thing that kills me is all these bands that use huge words in their lyrics, 'I'm swimming in a vortex of apathy.' I'm like, 'What?' I don't walk up to a friend and go 'That's a stylin' looking vortex of apathy you've got there pal. I was swimming up a river of deceit myself."
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Offline Nihil-Morari

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #290 on: January 12, 2016, 10:30:27 AM »
I really really like this album too. I try to remain objective while writing for this thread, but the flo and eddie era clicked first. I got into Zappa by my Zappa crazy uncle, and started with YCDTOSA 3 and Roxy & Elsewhere. After that the entire works was way too much, and on a suggestion by a local cd shop owner I just started from the top. The Mothers stuff sounded too old to me at first, but I couldn't stop laughing when I got to this album and (even more so) Just Another Band.

Anyway, I'm listening to a bootleg (it's on spotify), which is one of the first recordings of Flo and Eddie in Zappa's band, called 'VPRO Radio Piknik Uddel' and it's crazy to hear these guys make mistakes, which makes it especially cool to hear. Since it's a radio show the sound quality is pretty awesome mostly. For the people who want even more Zappa  ;)
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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #291 on: January 12, 2016, 11:26:47 AM »
Cool, thanks for the tip!  I'll check it out sometime.


One thing I love about "the Flo and Eddie era" (for lack of a better term) is how it highlighted how amazing their voices were.  That high, high singing in "Latex Solar Beef" is incredible.  Sure, there are lyrics, but you can tell that Frank was using their voices as instruments.  On "Peaches en Regalia" they actually are just instruments.  Also, just the idea that these are The Turtles, the guys who sang "Happy Together" and went on to become Mothers, cracks me up.

Fall 1980.  I'm sitting in my dorm room at Michigan State, listening to this album.  My school-assigned roommate and I got along fine, but we were complete opposites.  He had his TV and liked to drink; I had my albums and preferred alternative intoxicants.  Many evenings were spent with both of us appropriately unsobered, him watching TV, and me with my headphones on.  Anyway, if he wasn't around, I didn't need the headphones, but he came back from class and Fillmore East was playing, so he listened a while.  Not quite his thing, but whatever.  Then "Happy Together" started, and he said "Hey, I know this song!  This is The Mothers?  I had no idea!"

I just said "Oh yeah, The Mothers have done all kinds of stuff.  This is a live album, but yeah, this is them."

Heh heh.

Offline Nihil-Morari

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #292 on: January 12, 2016, 11:53:53 AM »
 :lol cool story. I've had some crazy looks when blasting Zappa's version of Stairway to Heaven.
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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #293 on: January 12, 2016, 11:58:04 AM »
Deb and Gentlemen, This is why I say I'll go out of my way to read anything Orbert writes!  :lol

If we all started recounting the instances of "odd looks" from others while we were listening to Zappa, we'd completely take this thread off course.

Still, when we get to Joe's Garage, I just may need to share my favorite story!   :biggrin:

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #294 on: January 12, 2016, 01:12:12 PM »
I'm looking forward to it, Mr. Peccary.

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #295 on: January 12, 2016, 02:37:50 PM »
I don't listen to this album as much as "Just Another Band From L.A.", which is really stupid because as I'm listening to it now I'd have to say it's probably more enjoyable, over all.

Also, Latex Solar Beef has the lyric in it that first made me pay attention to the "conceptual continuity".

Hear the screaming hot black steaming
Iridescent Naugahyde python's gleaming
Steam roller


When I noticed Cyborg singing that lyric, probably about the 20th time I listened to Joe's Garage, it was the first time I thought to myself, "Hey, that's from the end of Latex Solar Beef!" From then on I started noticing the crossover themes more often and of course they're everywhere in the discography.

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #296 on: January 12, 2016, 03:45:04 PM »
I love the Conceptual Continuity!  And that's one of the first ones I noticed, too.

One that I discovered "backwards" was on Roxy & Elsewhere where Frank introduces Bruce Fowler's dance, which he hopes will sweep the ocean, right after the mud shark did.  I didn't pick up Fillmore East until later, but it of course has the original Mud Shark Dance (and the Mud Shark Arpeggio) which is sweeping the ocean.

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #297 on: January 12, 2016, 04:18:28 PM »
Well, for me, the circular-motion was always destined to take the place of the mud shark in my mythology.  :)

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #298 on: January 12, 2016, 05:01:27 PM »
Rub it!

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #299 on: January 12, 2016, 09:58:22 PM »
I think I've only heard this album once before. My first reaction on this listen is that the sound is comparable to a bootleg. Very raw. As far as Flo & Eddie albums go, it's probably the one I have the least use for. It is very similar to JABFLA, but inferior in nearly every way. That said I still enjoy it (just like pretty much any Zappa album).

The Flo & Eddie bits are fun, especially Do You Like My Car. I just wish the music had a bit more going on like the interactions on the JABFLA album. I think my favorite moment on the album is Happy Together. The way it fits the "concept" of the album and how its built up to, it's very effective but also a solid rendition. Plus I actually really like that song. Lots of cool references in this of course, blink-and-you-miss-it musical references to Lumpy Gravy, Tell Me You Love Me, and others. This is also the introduction of one of the more popular pieces of conceptual continuity: The Mud Shark. And I'm always up for any version of Peaches. Love how Flo & Eddie are utilized in this as well.

I do like the Flo & Eddie stuff, I just think it overshadows everything else a little too much for me to go for this album as much as some of the others. In JABFLA, the music plays a more active role during the more vocal driven bits, rather than just being background. But still a cool little artifact and I dig the raw sound. I ike that it's an unpolished capture of the moment, warts and all. 

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #300 on: January 12, 2016, 11:08:29 PM »
My first reaction on this listen is that the sound is comparable to a bootleg.

Has anyone mentioned this yet?  The album itself is a jab at all the Mothers bootlegs that were out there at the time.  It has a plain white cover with the band name, venue, and date written on it in pencil.  Like a cheap bootleg.

In "Billy the Mountain" from Just Another Band from L.A. (released only months later), Studebaker Hawk gets a mysterious phone call, and during that call, he asks the person on the other end "Did you get those white albums I sent you, with the pencil on the front?  Yeah?  Yeah, you should move some of those for me."

Offline Cyclopssss

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #301 on: January 13, 2016, 01:19:16 AM »
This off course, was the culmination of the Flo and Eddie era Mothers. As ambitious as ' 200 Motels'  (the movie) had been, Fillmore East June' 71 is where this version of the Mothers made their mark. The sound, as has been mentioned isn't great. But the material is. The band somehow manages to flow effortless from composition to composition, delivering Zappa's humurous offerings with near perfect timing. It's a pleasure to hear the audience's honest reactions to the often bizarre lyrics, of which there is a LOT of. Bwana Dick, Willy the Pimp, Do you like my new car?, What kind of girl do you think we are? are a testament to a band that was clearly having a good time performing them. Not to mention the deliberate culmination in the Turtles hit ' Happy Together', as a punctuation mark to the cabaret performance that went before it. The audience unleashes an applause in clear relief of getting a breather. The whhole Mudshark section is perfect. Peaches en regalia has never sounded as tight and musically profound as it does on this record. The whole Latex Solar Beef song has to heard to be believed. Fillmore East June ' 71 deserves all the credits it gets.

It's a pitty this band wasn't around longer than it the period it was given. It ended off course at the end of ' 71 with some lunatic pushing Frank off stage into the orchestra pit at the Rainbow theatre because he ' thought Zappa was giving his girl the eye' .  :facepalm: I think we could have gotten a lot more great records out of this band had that not happened, but who knows, really? Frank was fickle, often soon bored with formats.

As it is, together with some portions of 200 Motels, Just Another Band From LA and some even more fantastic renditions of classic Zappa tunes on 'Playground Psychotics'  this is the best it would get from this version of the Mothers. A true classic.
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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #302 on: January 13, 2016, 07:14:04 PM »
My only thoughts at the moment:

WITH A BULLET!
WITH A BULLET!
WITH A BULLET!
WITH A BULLET!

*drum smash because he thought there would be another "WITH A BULLET!"  :lol

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #303 on: January 13, 2016, 07:36:26 PM »
Ha! Noticed that on my last listen.

One thing I like about the version of Peaches on this album is the improvised guitar solo. It's such a tight arrangement that it's hard to do much improvising, but Frank makes it work. Close enough to what's on the album but different enough to be a completely fresh take.
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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #304 on: January 13, 2016, 08:02:00 PM »
My only thoughts at the moment:

WITH A BULLET!
WITH A BULLET!
WITH A BULLET!
WITH A BULLET!

*drum smash because he thought there would be another "WITH A BULLET!"  :lol

ROFL, that is indeed a priceless moment. :rollin

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #305 on: January 13, 2016, 08:52:22 PM »
It's the part that gets me the hottest.

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #306 on: January 14, 2016, 02:34:12 AM »
It's a pitty this band wasn't around longer than it the period it was given. It ended off course at the end of ' 71 with some lunatic pushing Frank off stage into the orchestra pit at the Rainbow theatre because he ' thought Zappa was giving his girl the eye' .  :facepalm: I think we could have gotten a lot more great records out of this band had that not happened, but who knows, really? Frank was fickle, often soon bored with formats.

Zappa stated, after disbanding the band, that he wasn't connecting with the show anymore, the music wasn't that important anymore, and one of the musical highlights of the show was a song that he hadn't written.

Volman acknowledges. "It really wasn't the Mothers any more. The show built up and up to ‘Happy Together’ and, I think, at some point his comrades in arms who he listened to came to him and said ‘you know, you're losing your base, you're losing your thing here.’ But I really don't think he paid much attention until he started noticing it for himself, and realized he needed to re-evaluate."

[...]

(and about making a 180 degrees turn into his next project, Waka/Jawaka. After the show with the fire (see: Deep Purple), Zappa wanted to return to the US immediately, but the rest of the band wanted to finish the tour, 3 cancelled shows later, and with new equipment, the first concert involved a man, an orchestra pit, and some broken bones)

Volman is convinced, "that European tour set Frank back emotionally a lot. He took a lot of it on himself spiritually, he suddenly looked at what we were doing on stage – things like ‘The Fat Floating Sofa’, which was God making the porno film with the nun and the dogs ... there was some pretty ludicrous, but morally low material there, spiritually it was the lowest he'd ever sunk. And I honestly think the effect of the fire and the incident at the Rainbow, made him start to re-evaluate spiritually what he was doing – the thought that there may have been some sort of karmic payback going on, a slap in the face: ‘take that.’ Back to back, these two concerts wiped him out for almost a year."

https://wiki.killuglyradio.com/wiki/Zappa_And_The_Mothers_–_The_Flo_And_Eddie_Years
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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #307 on: January 14, 2016, 03:25:17 AM »
Alright, I can understand Volman's thinking there, that Zappa was perhaps losing his base. But Karmic payback time? Come on, it's not like Frank was all politically correct all of a sudden afterwards.

This is the guy who came up with Catholic girls, why does it hurt when I pee, zombie woof, Dinamoe Humm, Camarillo Brillo, Dirty love, Traci is a snob, etc, etc. I do admit however that his best work was yet to come, as were his best bands. 
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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #308 on: January 14, 2016, 07:11:50 AM »
I knew that some shows were cancelled after the famous Smoke on the Water incident, but I didn't realize that the show where the guy pushed him off the stage was the very first show after that.  The end of an era indeed.

Also, wow!  I didn't know about the WikiJawaka.  I have a lot of reading to do!  I've read most of this site: ARF!

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #309 on: January 14, 2016, 07:54:32 AM »
That's a cool site. I use this one as well: https://globalia.net/donlope/fz/index.html
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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #310 on: January 14, 2016, 05:28:23 PM »
A little ahead of ourselves, we still have 2 more Flo an Eddie albums, but I think if Frank wasn't pushed off the stage and broken his back and larynx (which lowered his voice by a half step or something like that, giving him that "classic Frank" voice we all know and love on post F&E albums) he wouldn't have went in the jazzier, more complex, sophisticated direction he went in, as well as more political as time went on. I remember reading somewhere that Frank got into jazz heavily during the down-time between that last concert with Flo an Eddie, and the Waka-Jawaka/Grand Wazoo sessions. Frank never admitted liking jazz much, but he obviously did. He met Miles Davis (I believe) in the 60s but he snubbed Frank, so that left a bad taste in his mouth when it came to "jazz" and being labelled a "jazz musician".

Makes sense that he had a "revelation" of sorts, he probably spent a lot of time reflecting on his career during the 71-72 time while stuck in a wheelchair. I mean, almost everything released in the remainder of the 70s is some of Frank's best work.

But let's get through 200 Motels and JABFLA first.  :)


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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #312 on: January 16, 2016, 10:53:50 AM »
200 Motels is a lot to digest, trying to update tomorrow!
The FZ Discography Thread! https://www.dreamtheaterforums.org/boards/index.php?topic=44650.0
Nihil-Morari is generally considered the resident Zappa person.

Offline Nihil-Morari

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #12 Fillmore East - June 1971
« Reply #313 on: January 17, 2016, 02:13:09 PM »
Official Release #13 '200 Motels'
(Released 10/1971)




Background Information:
One of Zappa’s biggest works. A monstrous undertaking with The Mothers and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, combining both Zappa’s new comedy rock music and some of his most challenging orchestral works. All of this packed in over an hour and a half of musical madness.
And as if that weren’t enough, they only had 5 rehearsal days (and only 7 shooting days!) for an entire movie, during which they would have to record this album as well.
Since this is a discography discussion, the soundtrack will be the main focus point.
The Mothers at this point were Flo & Eddie, good old Ian Underwood and George Duke. Furthermore there was bass player Martin Lickert (he replaced Jeff Simmons who quit the group just before the filming began) and drummer Aynsley Dunbar (Ruth Underwood is credited as well). He was the first rock star to be added to the Mothers line up, back in 1969, but now with Flo & Eddie there were more band members who already had a career.
For 200 motels Zappa needed some extra characters, and he was fortunate enough to find Keith Moon willing to add his craziness to the movie. Besides Moon, Ringo Starr played a pretty big part in the movie. Zappa found himself surrounded by rockstars.
A remarkable name on this list of musicians is Jimmy Carl Black. The original Mother didn’t part in good ways with Zappa but he does play a part in this album, mainly singing ‘Lonesome Cowboy Burt’.
The album wasn’t released on CD until 1997, and then sold out quickly.

The Album Itself:
So conceptually this album mainly deals with what touring life can do with you: ’Touring can make you go crazy’. Musically it’s a record that has everything Zappa is known for (except for long solo’s). There’s the spoken work, comedy, rock music, classical music and even some tape editing. This was the first time Zappa could record with a REAL orchestra, meaning he could write whatever he’d want to write. Some parts are vaguely reminiscent of the synclavier albums, later on in his career.
Although there are a lot of tracks, and there’s a lot of music on this album, it really flows well. Not many tracks are suitable for standalone listens (with the possible exception of Mystery Roach, Lonesome Cowboy Burt and Daddy, Daddy, Daddy).
A track by track breakdown of this record is pointless, 5 tracks are shorter than a minute, and only 11 tracks (out of 34!) are longer than 3 minutes. Most tracks segue, and nearly all tracks feature all kinds of music mixed in one Zappa-esque bag. Again: a track by track review would be pointless.
This is a record to go to when you’re interested in Zappa classical music, but can’t make yourself to listen to a full album of that stuff. If you’re a fan of the Flo & Eddie era this is a great one too, they really shine.
In terms of conceptual continuity (Zappa’s way of describing recurring themes throughout his work) this album is a big one. There’s hint of past and future releases everywhere. This is also the record that got Zappa in real trouble with the law. Because of the sexual references everywhere he had to appear in court, of which there’s a hilarious account in The Real Frank Zappa Book. The way Zappa’s describes him defending himself agains an 80 year old judge reading out ‘The last boy to do her got in and got soft’ is really amusing to read.

PS. I’ve noticed that this album isn’t on spotify. You can find a vinyl rip on youtube.


Essential Tracks:
Semi Fraudulent/Direct-From-Hollywood Overture
Mystery Roach
Lonesome Cowboy Burt
She Painted Up Her Face through Shove It Right In
The FZ Discography Thread! https://www.dreamtheaterforums.org/boards/index.php?topic=44650.0
Nihil-Morari is generally considered the resident Zappa person.

Offline Mosh

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Re: The Frank Zappa Discography Thread - #13 200 Motels
« Reply #314 on: January 17, 2016, 05:11:32 PM »
Unfortunately this is probably the most rare Zappa album. Of the official releases, it's the only one the ZFT hasn't managed to regain the rights for. I believe it still belongs to UA. As a result, this is the only album that wasn't rereleased in 2012 with the rest of FZ's catalog and the Rykos are very hard to find. I was lucky enough to find a vinyl copy in fairly good condition and that's what I'm listening to now.

I think this could be Zappa's most challenging album. As Nihli-Morari said, it pretty much covers every style Zappa was known for, minus the solos. Most of his albums tend to stick to a certain style or sound, but this one is all over the place musically and very hard to follow at first. It's also pretty difficult to pick out individual pieces, everything flows together. The majority of it is the orchestral 20th century classical stuff which can be very challenging on its own. However there is a bit of straightforward melodic stuff, like the Overture (a reworking of Holiday In Berlin) and Strictly Genteel. I enjoy both quite a bit and I think Frank did a good job mixing the melodic and the avant garde. The few rock songs on the album seem to blend in with everything else, almost as if they are part of the orchestral bits. It's like a demented hybrid symphony. It's also very long and dense, so I have to be in the right mood to fully enjoy it.

A small detail but the drumming in Would You Like a Snack (Holiday In Berlin) makes me wish Aynsley Dunbar was around to play drums on Burnt Weeny Sandwich. I'm not sure if I mentioned it during that album's discussion, but I find JCB's drum performance on it pretty lacking. One of the few things that brings the album down. I like him fine on the more blues/doowop driven early Mothers material, but as FZ got more Jazz driven and more experimental he kinda falls behind everyone else. Dunbar on the other hand doesn't do anything spectacular on the tune, but still keeps up with the rest of the band much better and keeps it a bit more interesting. Really fit in the band well during that period.

But anyway, everything flows together rather nicely. Nothing really sticks out like a sore thumb or feels out of place. There are pros and cons to this of course. On one hand, it creates a very immersive listening experience. On the other, there isn't a single song I'll listen to out of context. Luckily, there are better out of context versions of these songs on other albums that I can go for, such as several great renditions of Strictly Genteel.

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