Frank Zappa

Frank Zappa

Frank Zappa : Listen on Real Audio

It is not only Frank Zappa's absurd sense of humor that has made him a revered rock legend. He was also one of rock's very best composers, drawing from a deep understanding of classical music, as well as 50's rock and 70's pop.
Frank Zappa Real Audio 167 K.

Zappa became interested in music early in his life, joining a local band while attending college in California. In a few years, this band became the Mothers, and Zappa became its main songwriter. In 1966 the Mothers released their first album, "Freak Out", introducing to the world Frank Zappa's satirical wit and musical skills. After three subsequent albums, Zappa had developed his own sophisticated approach to composition, combining satirical or absurd lyrics with pop melodies, and mixing them with long jazzy improvisational segments and sound collages. Critics and a fervent fan base adored the Mothers , but mainstream audiences were unable to appreciate their complex music.

After the Mothers broke up in 1969, Zappa continued to devote his life to music, releasing a heavily influential solo album called "Hot Rats." Soon after, he created a new version of the Mothers, and released the album "Chunga's Revenge." In 1971, Zappa suffered two major setbacks. First, a fan's use of pyrotechnics at a concert burned down the venue, destroying all of the band's equipment. At a subsequent concert, an audience member pushed Zappa from the stage, injuring him so seriously that he was confined to a wheelchair for nearly a year. Despite his injuries, Zappa continued to record at a rapid rate, releasing two more albums, "Apostrophe," and "One Size Fits All." In the 80's, Zappa became somewhat involved in politics, even testifying in the US Senate against music censorship.

In the early 90's, Zappa was diagnosed with prostate cancer, and died on December 4th, 1993. Frank Zappa will always be remembered as one of the most focused, versatile, and inventive composers of rock. He was truly in a class by himself and to this day no musician has ever come close to matching his combination of eccentricity and popularity. Frank Zappa's unique style is loved by fans all over the world.

* A surprising number of things have been named after Frank Zappa, including two asteroids: 3834 Zappafrank, and 16745 Zappa. Also in the list is the ZapA gene of a microbe that causes infections of the urinary tract, a goby fish, a jellyfish, and extinct mollusk, and a spider, which is said to have a marking that resembles Zappa's famous mustache.

* With his second wife, Gail Sloatman, Zappa had four children. Their names demonstrate Zappa's devotion to eccentricity. The children are named Moon Unit, Dweezil, Ahmet Rodan, and Diva

* In the 60's, when Zappa owned a small studio, a costumer asked him to produce a 'suggestive' recording for a stag party. Mostly as a joke, Zappa recruited some friends, and together they faked sounds of people having sex for the 'erotic' recording. The customer turned out to be an undercover Vice Squad member, and Zappa was thrown in jail for ten days for supplying pornography. Ever since, he was a constant rebel against authority and especially music censorship.

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