December 4

So its been 44 years since this iconic rock and roll moment:

It was this date in 1971 that we all came out to Montreux. There on the Lake Geneva shoreline was a casino where they’d do big rock and roll concerts. We were there to make records with a mobile but we didn’t have much time.

The band Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention were at this casino, the best place around, but some stupid with a flare gun shot it into the rafters of this best place and burn it to the ground.

But we’ve already talked about Deep Purple. I’m here to talk about the protagonist in this mythic tale.

I am Zappa illiterate.

My only experience with Frank Zappa was the album Joe’s Garage:

IMG_20151205_230725809.jpg

My buddy John went to a record store in the mid eighties and came back to our dormitory with an armload of discount bin stuff, including the aforementioned Zappa record.

It was pretty bizarre stuff to jump into with both feet. There was an oddball narrator talking off and on through the whole thing and narrating a story of some joesixpack who formed a garage band and makes it to the height of rock and roll debauchery.

We listen to this Act 1 record over and over again and I became a fan of Joe’s Garage… although further exploration into Frank Zappa failed to live up to those early encounters.

Coincidentally 22 years to the day after the stupid with the flare gun incident, Frank Vincent Zappa passed away from prostate cancer.

In honor of Frank Zappa and to pay tribute to my buddy John who pointed me towards all sorts of different interesting music, today was Joe’s Garage day! But you can enjoy this video of Zappa (age 22) improvising music live on the Steve Allen Show… using bicycles as instruments with Steve Allen!

Rest in Peace Frank Zappa!

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