Applied Zappigraphy

Started by karlhenning, January 06, 2009, 05:22:42 AM

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Dr. Dread

His most commercial may be Overnite Sensation and Apostrophe; his most popular anyway.

Kullervo

Quote from: karlhenning on January 08, 2009, 07:03:53 AM
4.  But . . . how do we make the case that he is to considered a 'classical composer' rather than an unusually literate pop bandleader/performer/writer?

Hey, if Laura Pausini can be in the Classical forum...  ::)

karlhenning

Quote from: Corey on January 08, 2009, 07:34:09 AM
Hey, if Laura Pausini can be in the Classical forum...  ::)

You had to go there, Corey;)

karlhenning

Quote from: ' on January 08, 2009, 07:41:49 AM
Yes, I think I prefer it. It could be No 1 (with a bullet).'

The Mark Volman/Howard Kaylan band leaves me with mixed feelings (speaking purely musically, I mean).

karlhenning

Quote from: ' on January 08, 2009, 07:52:57 AM
Because he has such a big and convincing foot in the classical world. Where would we put him if we only knew the Nagano, Boulez, Yellow Shark, Royal Philharmonic, Lumpy Gravy orch stuff, 200 Motels with the LA phil and Mehta, etc.

I think we have different ideas of a big foot here.  That still seems to me quite a minor player, classical-wise (though of course a recording with Ensemble InterContemporain is An Event) . . . and small footprint compared to his pop domain.

Quote from: 'I don't shop there, but I certainly find the Boulez and Columbia classical things in classical, in-store and on-line
Plus aforementioned recordings/performances  (Mehta, Nagano, Boulez, et al)

He did cross boundaries, which in turn makes for untidy marketing decisions . . . when I have seen the Boulez and LSO discs, they've been in pop trough along with Joe's Garage and Jazz from Hell.

Quote from: 'You might be amused to look at Slonimsky's various Baker's entries on Zappa over the years. His opinion evolved.  Nick changed his tune over the years (after he played with the band?)

That would be an interesting read!  All I've read (from the Slonimsky side) is chapter 23 "The Age of Absurdity" in Perfect Pitch.

I don't really have a tidy answer, and your points are fair.  Except that I think we are all grateful that Zappa never pulled a "Liverpool Oratorio" on us.

karlhenning

Quote from: ' on January 08, 2009, 07:55:39 AM
Ah, but Billy the Mountain has such a delightful, well developed use of leitmotif: Billy, Ethyl, the Tonight Show theme'

It's kind of a mess, but it's an unfailingly entertaining mess.  Some say he looked like Zubin Mehta . . . .

karlhenning

Quote
Quote from: bwv 1080Uncle Meat is the earliest Zappa album I will repeatedly listen to.  The earlier stuff is fun but dated.

Yes, it doesn't wear quite so well. Uncle Meat is indeed the goods.

Quote from: bwv 1080It's still hard to beat Hot Rats though.

That, One Size Fits All, Weasels Ripped My Flesh . . . and quite a few of the later live albums . . . always fall fresh by my ears.

Also Waka/Jawaka and Grand Wazoo.  (Though these each have song-tracks which I tend to want to skip.)

G. W. seemed to me insufficient, in a sense, though:  You see all these musicians in the credits, yet by the clock, they don't make a good proportional appearance at all over the course of the 37-minute album (an annoyingly brief compact disc, too, it must be owned).  The full complement of this version of the band, then, loomed larger in legend than in released recording.

At Newbury Comics one day, I chanced on a disc released since Zappa's passing, Imaginary Diseases . . . from a tour not of the Grand Wazoo, but of the trimmed-back Petite Wazoo.  Unlike G.W., and truer to (say) Make a Jazz Noise Here, all the guest wind players have a higher profile on Imaginary Diseases (a title, as Dave can tell us, drawn from "Stinkfoot").

In 2007, Barfko-Swill (that is so Zappa) released Zappa/Wazoo, live performances of the Grand W . . . .

karlhenning

Quote from: John Adams
. . . There seems to be a quality issue with Zappa's serious music that cannot be gotten around.

Is there more to follow this? This seems like a lead-in.

karlhenning

Was Freak Out! a "best-seller," really?

karlhenning

Roster on Zappa/Wazoo:

QuoteFZ: guitar and white stick with cork handle
Tony Duran: slide guitar
Ian Underwood: piano and synthesizer
Dave Parlato: bass
Jerry Kessler: electric cello
Jim Gordon: electric drums
Mike Altschul: piccolo, bass clarinet and other winds
Jay Migliori: flute, tenor sax and other winds
Earle Dumler: oboe, contrabass sarrusophone and other winds
Ray Reed: clarinet, tenor sax and other winds
Charles Owens: soprano sax, alto sax and other winds
Joann McNab: bassoon
Malcolm McNab: trumpet in D
Sal Marquez: trumpet in Bb
Tom Malone: trumpet in Bb, also tuba
Glenn Ferris: trombone and euphonium
Kenny Shroyer: trombone and baritone horn
Bruce Fowler: trombone of the upper atmosphere
Tom Raney: vibes and electric percussion
Ruth Underwood: marimba and electric percussion


karlhenning

(I noticed that Jn Adams used the tired-out m-word.)

Dr. Dread




karlhenning

Quote from: mn dave on January 08, 2009, 07:31:07 AM
His most commercial may be Overnite Sensation and Apostrophe; his most popular anyway.

Not at all to discount your suggestion(s), mon vieux . . . they do raise one of the cruces of the biscuit, as it were.

In the excerpt James offered, we find Jn Adams writing something of a conflicted tribute, in part because of the 'appeal to the eternal six-year-old in all of us' (though what a 6-year-old makes of the G-spot, is anyone's guess).

Some music-lovers I know, who might from a purely sonic standpoint be game to give Zappa a chance, would find potty-mouth lyrics (at random example, "Fem-Bot in a Wet T-Shirt" from Joe's Garage, say) off-putting.

Just another Zappigraphical consideration . . . .

Dr. Dread

Quote from: karlhenning on January 09, 2009, 11:21:39 AM
Not at all to discount your suggestion(s), mon vieux . . . they do raise one of the cruces of the biscuit, as it were.

In the excerpt James offered, we find Jn Adams writing something of a conflicted tribute, in part because of the 'appeal to the eternal six-year-old in all of us' (though what a 6-year-old makes of the G-spot, is anyone's guess).

Some music-lovers I know, who might from a purely sonic standpoint be game to give Zappa a chance, would find potty-mouth lyrics (at random example, "Fem-Bot in a Wet T-Shirt" from Joe's Garage, say) off-putting.

Just another Zappigraphical consideration . . . .

Nah. J. Winter loves that stuff.  ;D

karlhenning

Quote from: mn dave on January 09, 2009, 11:24:14 AM
Nah. J. Winter loves that stuff.  ;D

Then you've mastered the first lesson: Know your audience  8)

Dr. Dread

Personally, I don't mind absurd lyrics so much but that bathroom humor gets old pretty fast. I also don't like some of his vocal experiments, especially when they become silly and irritating. And sometimes he seems like a one or two trick pony compositionally; there's a sameness to a lot of his "non-rock" stuff.

Todd

#39
Did my eyes deceive me, or are there no mentions of Joe's Garage?  Juvenile, yes, but fun nonetheless.  The guitar work in Watermelon in Easter Hay is superb, and Packard Goose could never have been written by anyone else.  There are of course other fine albums, including some with a mighty young Steve Vai, but for me the two that still receive more than occasional play are Shut Up 'N Play Yer Guitar and Guitar.  They're not albums in the strict sense since they are merely collections of guitar solos from concerts, but the man could play the guitar extraordinarily well, and who can resist titles like Orrin Hatch on Skis and In-A-Gadda-Stravinsky (with its Rite Of Spring inspiration), and Treacherous Cretins?  His classical stuff isn't as good as his rock stuff.
The universe is change; life is opinion. - Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

People would rather believe than know - E.O. Wilson

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