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Frank Zappa-an introduction(NOT his MUSIC)...PERSONal things

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posted on Oct, 26 2007 @ 10:32 AM
even though nobody is going to care about this, i wanted to introduce frank zappa to you. we all know he was a composer/musician but he was also much more. he was very deep into and very critical of this country and what was going on.
leaving his music aside which is buried with lyrics that ring true today, this man was imo, the original CT'er and he said it out loud.

i see topics we discuss and he was giving lectures or singing about these things as early as 1964.

he was very vocal about the dumbing down of our society. about the horrible state of affairs of the education system. of course churches and evangelicals. the president(s).
the counter culture...he had an opinion on everything and contrary to what most people thing, he was 100% against drugs. he was for legalization but did not approve of using of any drugs and it is well known that he has fired members of his band(s) on the spot for discovering they did/are doing drugs while rehearsing or touring.

frank zappa was talking and not enough people were listening.

some snippets from this link

He was also a strident critic of mainstream education and organized religion. Zappa was a forthright and passionate advocate for freedom of speech and the abolition of censorship, and his work embodied his skeptical view of established political processes and structures.

Due to the home's proximity to the Arsenal which stored mustard gas, Zappa's father kept gas masks on hand in case of an accident.[8] This had a profound effect on the young Zappa: references to germs, germ warfare and other aspects of the defense industry occur throughout his work.[9]

While at "Studio Z", Zappa accepted an offer of $100 to produce a suggestive tape for a customer's stag party. Zappa and a female friend jokingly faked an "erotic" recording. Unfortunately, the customer was an undercover member of the Vice Squad and Zappa was jailed for ten days on charges of supplying pornography. His entrapment and brief imprisonment left a permanent mark, and was a key event in the formation of his anti-authoritarian stance.

..Zappa rails against people such as Jerry Falwell for relying upon the US administration to finance the religious organization, the "Moral Majority," while simultaneously embezzling the funds

...Thing-Fish, an ambitious three-record set in the style of a Broadway play dealing with a dystopian "what-if" scenario involving feminism, homosexuality, manufacturing and distribution of the AIDS virus, and a eugenics program conducted by the United States government.

^^^^^that album is covers so many things we talk about from the gov censoring us to putting 'things' in the water supply'

On September 19, 1985, Zappa testified before the US Senate Commerce, Technology, and Transportation committee, attacking the Parents Music Resource Center or PMRC, a music censorship organization founded by then-Senator Al Gore's wife Tipper Gore and including many other political wives, including the wives of five members of the committee. In his prepared statement, Zappa said

"The PMRC proposal is an ill-conceived piece of nonsense which fails to deliver any real benefits to children, infringes the civil liberties of people who are not children, and promises to keep the courts busy for years dealing with the interpretational and enforcemental problems inherent in the proposal's design. It is my understanding that, in law, First Amendment issues are decided with a preference for the least restrictive alternative. In this context, the PMRC's demands are the equivalent of treating dandruff by decapitation. (...) The establishment of a rating system, voluntary or otherwise, opens the door to an endless parade of moral quality control programs based on things certain Christians do not like. What if the next bunch of Washington wives demands a large yellow "J" on all material written or performed by Jews, in order to save helpless children from exposure to concealed Zionist doctrine?"


Zappa would also go on to argue with PMRC representatives on the CNN's Crossfire in 1986 and 1987

In the late 1980s Zappa's passion for American politics was becoming a bigger part of his life. Throughout the 1988 tour, he regularly encouraged his young fans to register to vote, and even had voter registration booths at his concerts. He was also considering running for President of the United States under the United States Libertarian Party ticket

imo, we need frank zappa today. there are a lot of misconceptions about frank but he ALWAYS said what he thought was the truth, no matter how unpopular it was and he NEVER gave out apologies when people demanded such.
after his sing jewish priness was released, the adl demanded one but instead, he told them why he would not give one.
nobody was safe and it was beautiful.

some quotes

Basically I'm in the idea business — whether it's a musical idea or a spoken idea ... If you wind up with a political system that wants to put idea men out of business, then you have worry on your hands.

It's fairly obvious, since Richard Nixon, that there is no such thing as a fair deal for any voter in the United States — You're just not gonna get it. It's a joke — the people that you vote for, they're the next best thing to criminals. But of course they have money for advertising campaigns that make them look a little bit better than they actually are.

I have four children, and I want them to grow up in a country with a WORKING first amendment.

I like to watch the news, because I don't like people very much and when you watch the news ... if you ever had an idea that people were really terrible, you could watch the news and know that you're right.

The first thing you have to do if you want to raise nice kids, is you have to talk to them like they are people instead of talking to them like they're property.

Drop out of school before your mind rots from exposure to our mediocre educational system. Forget about the Senior Prom and go to the library and educate yourself if you've got any guts. Some of you like Pep rallies and plastic robots who tell you what to read. Forget I mentioned it. This song has no message. Rise for the flag salute.

The biggest threat to America today is not communism. It's moving America toward a fascist theocracy, and everything that's happened during the Reagan administration is steering us right down that pipe ... When you have a government that prefers a certain moral code derived from a certain religion and that moral code turns into legislation to suit one certain religious point of view, and if that code happens to be very, very right wing, almost toward Attila the Hun...

^^^^^that was 21 years ago on crossfire, live...

If you wind up with a boring, miserable life because you listened to your mom, your dad, your teacher, your priest or some guy on TV telling you how to do your S#, then YOU DESERVE IT.

A drug is not bad. A drug is a chemical compound. The problem comes in when people who take drugs treat them like a license to behave like an asshole.

The United States is a nation of laws: badly written and randomly enforced.

We're involved in sort of a low key war against apathy. Most of what we do is designed to annoy people to the point where they might just for a second question enough of their environment to do something about it. As long as they don't feel their environment, they don't worry about it — they're not gonna do anything to change it. Something's gotta be done before America scarfs up the world and #s on it.

^^^^^^^^^1968 right thuuuur

The illusion of freedom will continue as long as it's profitable to continue the illusion. At the point where the illusion becomes too expensive to maintain, they will just take down the scenery, they will pull back the curtains, they will move the tables and chairs out of the way, and you will see the brick wall at the back of the theatre


that scratches the surface of the mind that was frank zappa.
he died a couple weeks shy of his 53rd birthday on december 4th, 1993.

like i said, a lot of people have misconceptions about him cause they thought he was some king hippy/druggie and nothing can be further from the truth.

posted on Oct, 27 2007 @ 07:40 AM
maybe a visual representation.
here is frank on cnn's crossfire debating against censorship..

frank owns them as usual

here is part one of him doing it again in 1987. one of the questions was actually 'does rock music cause aids?'

and part two

i'm telling you...frank was a different animal..he tore these people up...he NEVER ducked questions about anything...
went right into the pmrc and rocked them too. told all the senators wifes what was who ya know?

the pmrc debates

part one

part two

part three

part four


they singled out songs like princes purple rain(tipper was abhored at the well as van halens hot for teacher)

one of my favorite zappa concepts.....sounds a lot like downloading music via a pc eh?


- copyright 1983 by Frank Zappa -

Ordinary phonograph record merchandising as it exists today is a stupid process which concerns itself essentially with pieces of plastic, wrapped in pieces of cardboard.

These objects, in quantity, are heavy and expensive to ship. The manufacturing process is complicated and crude. Quality control for the stamping of the discs is an exercise in futility. The system is subject to pilferage (as, in some instances, pressing 'over-runs' have been initiated, with the quantity pressed above the amount of the legitimate order removed from the premises and sold on the black market).

Dissatisfied customers routinely return records because they are warped and will not play.

Large numbers of people are employed in the field of 'record promotion' . . . these salaries are, for the most part, a waste of money.

New digital technology may eventually solve the warpage problem and provide the consumer with better quality sound in the form of Compact Discs [C.D.'s]. They are smaller, contain more music, and would, presumably cost less to ship . . . but, they are much more expensive to buy and manufacture. To reproduce them, the consumer needs to purchase a digital device to replace his old hi-fi equipment (in the $700 price range).

The bulk of the promotional effort at every record company today is expended on "NEW MATERIAL" . . . the latest and the greatest of whatever the coc aine-tweezed A&R Brass has decided to inflict on everybody. More often than not, these 'aesthetic decisions' result in mountains of useless vinyl/cardboard artifacts which cannot be sold at any price, and are therefore returned for disposal and recycling. These mistakes are expensive.

Put aside momentarily the current method of operation and think what is being wasted in terms of GREAT CATALOG ITEMS, squeezed out of the market place because of limited rack space in retail outlets, and the insatiable desire of quota-conscious company reps to fill every available niche with THIS WEEK'S NEW RELEASES.

Every major record company has vaults full of (and perpetual rights to) great recording by major artists in many categories which might still provide enjoyment to music consumers if they were made available in the right way. MUSIC CONSUMERS LIKE TO CONSUME MUSIC . . . NOT PIECES OF VINYL WRAPPED IN PIECES OF CARDBOARD.

It is our proposal to take advantage of the POSITIVE ASPECTS of a NEGATIVE TREND afflicting the record industry today: HOME TAPING via cassette of material released on vinyl.

First of all, we must realize that the taping of albums is not motivated by 'stinginess' alone . . . if a consumer makes a home tape from a disc, that copy will probably sound better than a commercially manufactured high-speed dupe cassette, legitimately released by the company.



presenting: "Q.C.I."

We propose to acquire the rights to digitally duplicate and store THE BEST of every record company's difficult-to-move Quality Catalog Items [Q.C.I.], store them in a central processing location, and have them accessible by phone or cable TV, directly patchable into the user's home taping appliances, with the option of direct digital-to-digital transfer to F-1 (SONY consumer level digital tape encoder), Beta Hi-Fi, or ordinary analog cassette (requiring the installation of a rentable D-A converter in the phone itself . . . the main chip is about $12).

All accounting for royalty payments, billing to the customer, etc. would be automatic, built into the initial software for the system.

The consumer has the option of subscribing to one or more Interest Categories, charged at a monthly rate, without regard for the quantity of music he or she decides to tape.

Providing material in such quantity at a reduced cost could actually diminish the desire to duplicate and store it, since it would be available any time day or night.

Monthly listings could be provided by catalog, reducing the on-line storage requirements of the computer. The entire service would be accessed by phone, even if the local reception is via TV cable.

The advantage of the TV cable is: on those channels where nothing ever seems to happen (there's about 70 of them in L.A.), a visualization of the original cover art, including song lyrics, technical data, etc., could be displayed while the transmission is in progress, giving the project an electronic whiff of the original point-of-purchase merchandising built into the album when it was 'an album', since there are many consumers who like to fondle & fetish the packaging while the music is being played. In this situation, Fondlement & Fetishism Potential [F.F.P.] is supplied, without the cost of shipping tons of cardboard around.

We require a LARGE quantity of money and the services of a team of mega-hackers to write the software for this system. Most of the hardware devices are, even as you read this, available as off-the-shelf items, just waiting to be plugged into each other so they can put an end to "THE RECORD BUSINESS" as we now know it.

posted on Oct, 27 2007 @ 08:56 AM
Wow, BD, I didn't know all this about Zappa. I knew his name, the names of hid kids and a little of his music, but that's it. I had no idea he was so active politically. It's really too bad he died so young, the world could use more people like him.

posted on Oct, 27 2007 @ 09:17 AM

Originally posted by MajorMalfunction
Wow, BD, I didn't know all this about Zappa. I knew his name, the names of hid kids and a little of his music, but that's it. I had no idea he was so active politically. It's really too bad he died so young, the world could use more people like him.

well major, that is about what everyone knows of zappa.
very few of his songs....lemme see if i can guess

don't eat the yellow snow
bobby brown
why does it hurt when i pee
valley girl

sound about right?

it's too bad because his catalogue of work is crazy. 471 original compositions. everything from funk, doo wop, jazz chamber, to orchestral

he wrote every piece of music for every instrument.
when asked how did he learn all of that..his answer is

'i went to the library'

he was on the cutting edge of tech as well.
he wrote, produce, mixed, arranged, edited, etc ALL of his stuff, and he kept control of his masters.

there are very few people that like all of zappas stuff. hell, i am as big a fan as you can get and i have yet to hear it all.
there is definately something in there for everyone though.

he basically started the jazz fusion movement with the hot rats album.(miles davis' bitches brew was the other)
he was the innovator of the wah wah...jimi can thank frank for introducing him to the pedal.

he was doing tech stuff before it existed.
he had wat he called 'techies or hackers' working on his stuff. he had a preamp and eq's built into his guitars so he can control certain pitches....dweezil said his sg had about 30 grand in it in 70's dollars.

if frank were alive today, i have no doubt that he would be calling out all kinds of mofo's. there would be no apology for things said either.

he was very into voting and encouraged woman to vote and set up boths for female voters at his shows.

it is hard to imagine all the material he put out and not just music but film.
i have a documentary of him and on one of the bonus features, they go into the vault. it is hard to comprehend how much material is in there.

it is like an underground, locked, fireproof, secure bunker under the house. i would say it is as big as a couple of average sized master bedrooms and it is wall to wall to ceiling of his archives.
tapes going back to the early 50's.

frank zappa was the man...

sad thing is that as a composer, frank was just coming into his prime. he died just shy of 53 and thats about the age where 'serious' composers do their best work.

steve vai seems to think that in 100 years or so when people actually catch up, his music will be studied in conservatory's around the worls.

he only put lyrics to stuff cause people don't really like to listen to instrumentals. they like to hear the human voice attached to music.
his music is some of the most complicated stuff one could hope to play.
things like the black page
ship arriving too late to save a draining witch

major, he was VERY active politically and he was VERY much against organized religion. the same arguments we have today, he was singing/talking about 20-30-40 years ago.

posted on Oct, 27 2007 @ 12:53 PM
Zappa's a genius...I saw Zappa plays Zappa at the Wiltern in L.A not too long ago, great freaking show!

posted on Oct, 27 2007 @ 02:24 PM

Originally posted by Steff
Zappa's a genius...I saw Zappa plays Zappa at the Wiltern in L.A not too long ago, great freaking show!

i saw them in detroit and in canton this year.

i just missed project object in cleveland.

they are going to be putting out a dvd of the zpz so keep checking the zappa store.

it was a fantastic sho...
glad someone else here appreciates the man

posted on Oct, 27 2007 @ 02:40 PM
How can you not appreciate him........Terry bozzio had a broken arm, but sang a few songs (and played a drum solo) despite the arm, Moon Unit came up and danced, and of course Steva Vail was sitting in on several songs..

Did they have any special guests when you saw them?

posted on Oct, 27 2007 @ 02:58 PM
reply to post by Steff

when i saw em vai was there. napolean murphey brock was there. bozzio was there. joe travers was there.
of course dweez.

i met schiela gonzalez in canton...

i wish they could get ruth underwood and ike willis to tour with the zpz. that would be friggin fantastic man.

bozzio solo'd the black page and vai solo'd black page#2.
he and dweezil were dueling a little bit.

we were FAR away in detroit(6 hour drive for us) but they had a mega screen up and frank pops up on it playing chungas revenge and then dweezil took the other part, like they were dueling.

in canton though, i got to watch the sound check and my wife and i were 4 rows from the stage. was sooo close to dweez and was awesome.

most definately will be going to see them again.
the music is just amazing.

sad really that so many people don't get it.

as frank used to say though, if you 'get it', great. if you don't, you were not supposed to anyway

posted on Oct, 28 2007 @ 06:45 AM
here is a pretty extensive list of magazine interviews with frank


Q: Are there any devices which you've developed for the guitar?

FZ: There's one thing a guy named Bob Easton constructed for me called the Electro Wagnerian Emancipator. It's avery attractive little device that combines a frequency follower with a device that puts out harmony notes to what you're playing. You can have your choice of any 12 chromatic notes in four parts following your runs. You can't play chords with it, but linearly it'll follow you whether you bend or whatever. Its main drawback is that the tone that comes out of it is somewhat like a Farfisa organ


Q: Are there certain settings you use on the 27O equalizer in conjunction with the guitar to achieve certain sounds?

FZ: It depends on what kind of hall I'm playing in. I'm real fussy about equalization, and sometimes there's a compromise between the kind of sound I want to get onstage and what the mixer needs to hear out in the audience, and I'll change things around like that But I've used the 100-watt Marshall with the volume at about 4; I double the inputs into the bass channel (with a connecting cord), and the treble is on about 4, and the bass at about 3; midrange will be anywhere from 6 to 8; and the presence will vary from 6 to 10. This is the average - the bass could be as high as 10 or as low as 0 depending on how much bottom is needed. And on the 270 the volume will be on 4; treble all the way up; the bright switch is on; the midrange wlil be on about 75%; the bass will be about 80%; the graphic equalizer is all the way up at 80 cycles; about 80% at 160, all the way up at 320, just about flat at 640, and maybe a little bit of boost at 1250.

GPM: But how can the average guitarist go about deciphering odd meters?

Frank Zappa: Well, let me put it this way: If you're going to go out of the norm, go all the way. Don't go out just a little bit. If you're scared to go out there, stay in the norm; just learn to play really well in 4/4. But if you want to go beyond that, you've got to set your mind to going in a totally different direction. If you want to count odd meters, they're all broken down into groups of twos and threes.

GPM: So, as you take the quarter note of a half-note triplet, and divide them into groups of 3, 5, and 7, for instance, you produce tinier subdivisions.

Frank Zappa: It's not just tinier subdivisions. Ritards [ritardandos,or periods of slowing down],and accelerandos [speeding up] inside of a bar, mathmatically worked out so that instead of bomp, bomp, bomp, bomp- four beats in a bar- you get another kind of action, where the time inside of a bar goes faster, goes slower, and goes faster again. But it comes out on the downbeat of the next bar. So if you're tapping your foot to it, you can still tap your foot to it; You're going to come out on the downbeat of the next bar.

o you spend much time, then, working with your guitar?
FZ:Hardly ever touch it. The only time I play my guitar is when I know I'm going to tour. I practice a little bit before we go into rehearsal to get the calluses built up again. Then I play during rehearsals, and when we get out on the road, I usually practice an hour a day before each show. Once the tour is over, I don't touch it. I haven't touched my guitar for about six months.

posted on Nov, 5 2007 @ 09:47 AM
this is only 1:30 long...please check it out....

it's 'the vault'

this is ALL the material that frank archived through his career.

in here are the masters to all his official stuff, snips of other music projects he was working on, snips of films, the original beefhears trout mask replics masters.

just pure insanity how much material is down here.

franks wife has stated that there is enough unreleased material in the vault that they cuould release a full length cd every month for 3 years.

thig is, it's all mixed up....they don't know what is in every box, how far into the editing process frank was, etc....

anyway, this is amazing i think

this is underneat their house in a steel/cement fireproof bunker with security staff and cameras trained on it...

i can not even begin to speculate what some of this stuff is worth...
MILLIONS of dollars worth of material in here.

posted on Jul, 23 2011 @ 05:35 PM
reply to post by Boondock78

You're right about how people portray Zappa. I can't count how many times I say Zappa and the first thing I hear is don't eat the yellow snow

posted on Sep, 28 2011 @ 10:22 AM
Mr. Zappa was a force to be reckoned with. I could only imagine how much he would piss off TPTB these days.

posted on Nov, 22 2011 @ 08:40 AM
reply to post by Boondock78

you are wrong: I care for Zappa, a lot.
you are right: the world surely could do with Zappa, nowadays


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