Official Release #103. Performed/Arranged/Conducted by Frank Zappa. Road Tapes, Venue #3 features two complete shows from Tyrone Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, MN. The July '70 Mothers line-up featured Flo & Eddie, George Duke, Ian Underwood, Aynsley Dunbar & Jeff Simmons. FZ's vast Vault does not contain many full shows from this time period, so that alone makes this release a special one. The tapes were recorded to stereo reel-to-reel, but not without problems. Due to their historical relevance, we felt it was worth it, warts 'n all! Venue #3 does not disappoint.
Official Release #96. Live recordings from 3 shows in Finlandia Hall, Helsinki Finland - August 23 & 24 1973. One year after the release of Frank Zappa‘s “Road Tapes, Venue #1” the Zappa Family Trust have announced a second volume in this series of “primitive audio documentary attempts to capture the essence of what was highly and improbably and even impossibly out there on the road in some of the worst audio terrain imaginable”.
Features the latest remastering. Includes a Japanese description and lyrics. Frank Minion's one and only recording is a fascinating window into the world of a jazz performer. Quite cynical and sarcastic toward the jaundiced American view of the jazz life, Minion minces no words in stating his case, his reasons why, and his conclusions as to the home country of the music so thoroughly dismissing the music he loves. As this project was done back in the late '50s and early '60s, it reflects a syndrome that unfortunately still exists 50 years later. The CD reissue begins with a five-part suite based on the talking points and songs reflecting the vagaries and perceptions of a fictional big city neighborhood, which just as easily could be the reality of renaissance Harlem, references to Atlanta, or perhaps his native Baltimore.
Official Release #92. Road Tapes, Venue #1 is a double live album by Frank Zappa, released posthumously on 31 October 2012, by the Zappa Family Trust on Vaulternative Records. It was recorded at Kerrisdale Arena, Vancouver, on August 25, 1968. Fantastic audio artifact of the Mothers of Invention in their live prime, in my opinion. A total must for Zappa fans, and the whole conceptual continuity thing. Even my wife, who generally loathes Frank's music, particularly when he sings, found the whole record compelling, except for Help I'm a Rock, which can rub even the most jaded musical obscurist the wrong way. I liked it just fine. Loved the Orange County Lumber Truck medley. Pick this one up, Zappa fans, you will not be disappointed.
Features the latest remastering. Includes a Japanese description and lyrics. One of the few albums ever issued by vocalist Frank Minion – an ultra-hip singer that we'd rank right up there as one of our favorites ever! Although the cover bears a 1970 date, the album was recorded in the late 50s – and date reference is a great indication of the forward-thinking approach that Frank brings to his vocals! Minion works with echoes of some of his hippest contemporaries – particularly Oscar Brown and Eddie Jefferson – but he's also got a voice that's really individual, too – a lighter and fluid, especially when he hits some horn-like inflections – spurred on by the hip small combo of the backings. There appears to be a bit of crossover with Frank's other Bethlehem record, but we're not sure.
Official Release #97. Frank Zappa produced a television program aired by KCET in Los Angeles in 1974, featuring a sextet that included keyboardist George Duke and the zany saxophonist and singer Napoleon Murphy Brock. This bootleg opens with a blistering medley of "The Dog Breath Variations" and "Uncle Meat," followed by a rather overly long "Florentine Pogen." Zappa offhandedly ends "Stink-Foot" with the comment of "Oh, that's enough of that," before launching into one of his best pieces of the 1970s, "Inca Roads"; this version contains a particularly potent Zappa guitar solo and Duke's excellent keyboard work, too, but it is also contains a sudden fadeout near its conclusion.