Today is the end of Zappadan 2012; it’s Frank’s birthday. Well, and the end of the world too, if ya bought into that Mayan Calendar cr@p. So I figured “Inca Roads” would be a good way to end this year’s #Zappadan2012 series.

And rather than reinvent the wheel, I also figured I’d just repost a #Zappadan2011 post featuring “Inca Roads” – here it is!

Zappadan 2011, Day 6
by: TwoPuttTommy
Fri Dec 09, 2011 at 00:24:00 AM CST

I wanted to start this post out with a video of Frank playing “Inca Roads” – and I searched and I searched and I searched. And what I found was a tasty – TASTY! – version of a guitarist that played for Frank, Mike Keneally. And it’s awesome in more than one way; in this version, there’s just Mike and bassist Bryan Beller – let’s watch!!!

Back in 1991, when Frank was sick and everyone knew his touring days were over, there were two special shows performed and recorded – film, too! – at The Ritz in New York on November 7 and 8, 1991. Frank picked the songs and arrangements – Mike Keneally was the guitarist. The film was used for a PBS documentary; the CD was called “Zappa’s Universe” and it’s great. “Inca Roads” evolved over the years while Frank toured; as most songs did – arrangements depended on who Frank hired for the band. The “Zappa’s Universe” version is one of my favorites, even though it’s Keneally playing and not Frank. I couldn’t find a TouTube of it, or another rocker off that CD, “Hungry Freaks, Daddy.” It’s a great CD, and one every fan of Franks should own.

1988 was a monster year for Frank; he put out the single CD “Broadway The Hardway” – with a guest appearance by Sting and a few not-so-subtle jabs at Jimmy Swaggart – and two double CD’s – “The Best Band You Never Heard In Your Life” and “Make A Jazz Noise Here.” All three CD’s are live recordings. It was an incredible band; they played stuff from a reggae version of Johnny Cash’s “Ring Of Fire” to Ravel’s “Bolero” to “Stairway To Heaven.” Here’s Frank’s composition, “Black Napkins.”

Mention “Frank Zappa” to most people, and if they recognize the name they’re more than likely to make a “yellow snow” comment, or some comment on lyrics. Frank more than once said his music didn’t need lyrics, except for one reason: had to have ‘em to sell records. Well, to rip politicians he didn’t like, too. But to his hardcore fans, many of the best songs are instrumentals. If you liked “Black Napkins” go down below and click on the “Watermellon In Easter Hay” link -same band, same venue!

Frank’s son Dweezil has been touring and playing Frank’s music for the past few years; he’s wrapping up a tour in England now and Dweezil’s website says he’s starting to line up the 2012 tour by inking some February shows in California. I’ve been lucky to see Dweezil play here in Minneapolis 3 times; the inaugural “Tour De Frank” at the Orpheum, at First Avenue, and again at the Orpheum. Where ever you are, if Dweezil is playing anywhere near – go see him! More Dweezil, later.

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Previous posts referencing Frank are now in one convenient location, here – the new Zappadan page.

And it’s taught at The University of North Texas by Professor Joseph Klein!

Here’s the deal – Professor Klein teaches a class on Zappa’s music, and Mothers alumni Tommy Mars and Arthur Barrow participated in a concert with the students last spring; here’s the cut ‘n paste from the University’s website:

Zappa Unlocked: The Mars/Barrow Connection
A program of works by Frank Zappa, performed by guest artists Arthur Barrow (bass) and Tommy Mars (keyboards), with performars from the Music of Frank Zappa class; University of North Texas Voertman Hall, 16 April 2012.

Here’s two tasty numbers from it – Sofa & Peaches En Regalia!

If you have the time, check out the whole show.

“The modern-day composer refuses to die!” — Edgard Varese

Previous posts referencing Frank are now in one convenient location, here – the new Zappadan page.

For those wondering, “That’s college rythmn!” is a line from the song “Dummy Up” from the outstanding album Roxy & Elsewhere.”

I saw it over at Little Bang Theory, and thought it was too good not to share. I’m embedding the YouTube so you can listen to it, too! It’s from the double CD “The Best Band You Never Heard In Your Life”; a Zappa album that, like the rest of mine, I bought at The Electric Fetus.

Here’s what’s written, in the liner notes: “The 1988 road band self-destructed before U.S. audiences in the South, Midwest and West could hear it perform. It was, however, heard and appreciated by East Coast and European audiences during its brief existence (four months of rehearsal in 1987/1988, followed by a tour, February through June 1988), and it is from those performances that this compliation is made. … and there are no over-dubs of any kind.”

It’s a great album; if you’ve ever wanted to hear Johnny Cash’s “Ring Of Fire” played reggae, for instance, or wanted to hear Swaggert roasted, this is it! Plus, it’s got “Inca Roads” and a smokin’ hot “Zombie Woof”!

Here’s “Bolero” –

Previous posts referencing Frank are now in one convenient location, here – the new Zappadan page.

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(image via Guitar Player Magazine, January 1977 interview through the link) “Zappadan” commemorates the late composer/producer/musician Frank Zappa; it runs from December 4th – the day of Frank’s death in 1993 – to December 21st – the day of Frank’s birth, in 1940. A list of previous posts referencing Frank is below.

Today’s trip down the Zappadan memory lane is to the early 1970′s; about keyboardist George Duke and one of Frank’s better known songs, “Inca Roads.” In the first YouTube, George talks about how he came to play in the band, and how Frank taught George to play a synthesizer and become a vocalist. At the end of this interview, George makes some references to “Inca Roads.” The second YouTube shows George playing and singing in a performance of “Inca Roads.” Let’s look!

And now, the YouTube of “Inca Roads” performed August 27, 1974 on KCET TV (Los Angeles):

(direct link to YouTube; link contains show information)

The clay animation over the sound track is… well, interesting. This TV special, “A Token Of My Extreme,” is the first time Zappa used Bruce Brickford’s work in a project.

Also interesting is that Zappa was performing “Inca Roads” before it came out on on a record; “Inca Roads” was on the album “One Size Fits All” which wasn’t at your local record store until 1975.

This is typical; for instance, the TV Special’s title – “A Token Of My Extreme” – is a song that didn’t come out on record until the three record set “Joe’s Garage” until the mid-1980′s, but was played in concert in the early 1970′s as an opening number — see “You Can’t Do That On Stage Anymore Vol. 2 (The Helsinki Concert)”, the September 1974 concert that wasn’t released until 1984.

Also worthy of note is the band line-up throughout this post is the band that played the old St. Paul Civic Center on November 27th, 1974. A fun fact from that show, billed as a “Turkey Trot,” was the bassist, Tom Fowler had recently broken his hand. James “Bird Legs” Youmans filled in with Tom on-stage for the show pointing out the notes on a music stand to be played. So while Frank was directing the band with the cues he always does, Tom Fowler was directing his replacement! I had an old black and white photo of it; if I can find it in places I haven’t already looked I’ll post it later.

This band line up, Frank on guitar, George Duke on keyboards, Napoleon Murphy Brock on sax, Ruth Underwood on percussion, Tom Fowler on bass and Chester Thompson on drums, was one of Frank’s most entertaining if not best. The Helsinki Concert is a “must have” as is the studio album, “One Size Fits All.”

***

“On The First Day Of Zappadan, YouTube Brought To Me…” by TPT on Monday, December 4th, 2012

“Zappadan 2011, Day 18 – Pew d’Etat Post!” by TPT on Tuesday December 20th, 2011

“Zappadan 2011, Day 11″ by TPT on Wednesday December 14th, 2011

“Zappadan 2011, Day 6″ by TPT on Friday December 9th, 2011

“Zappadan 2011, Day 4″ by TPT on Wednesday December 7th, 2011

“Zappadan 2011, Day 2″ by TPT on Monday December 5th, 2011

“That’s right folks, don’t touch that dial!” by TPT on Saturday November 19th, 2011

“One Year Later – Who Opposes HCR? Or…a picture says a thousand words.” by TPT, Thursday March 24th, 2011

“Watermellon In Easter Hay – May 17th, 1988, Barcelona, Spain” by TPT, Friday August 21st, 2009

“Progressive Nation 2009 Concert Tour” by TPT, Wednesday June 17th, 2009

***
Where I get my Zappa music: The Electric Fetus

… a report of Frank’s death on MTV.

Frank Zappa, American Composer, was born in Baltimore on December 20th, 1940 and “departed on his final tour” December 4th, 1993. Zappa fans consider the period between December 4th and the 21st as “Zappadan” – a period (apostrophe?) to celebrate Frank’s life and accomplishments.

And there were many. In the YouTube that follows, you’ll watch a reference to Frank’s political involvement, and his battle with censorship. Frank did an album on it, “Frank Zappa Meets The Mothers Of Prevention” — liner notes credit, and I quote:

SENATOR DANFORTH (R-Missouri) SENATOR HOLLINGS (D-South Carolina) SENATOR TRIBLE (R-Virginia) SENATOR HAWKINS (R-Florida) SENATOR EXON (D-Nebraska) SENATOR GORTON (R-Washington) SENATOR GORE (D-Tennessee)

Yes, while Frank really didn’t like Republicans, he wasn’t real fond of those Democrats that misbehaved either.

So, on the first day of Zappadan, here’s a YouTube!

I just took this image, to the right, from the album “The Mothers Filmore East – June 1971.” I bought it new; way back when. Way down on the bottom, if you look real close, it reads “Don’t forget to register to vote. F.Z.” All these years later, and what was one of the major battles this last election? Republicans attempting to suppress the vote.

Zappa had a lot to say, and we have eighteen days of Zappadan to cover it. We’ll also focus on his music, as played by his bands and also as played today. So, stay tuned!!

Previous posts, referencing Frank Zappa, follow.

“Zappadan 2011, Day 18 – Pew d’Etat Post!” by TPT on Tuesday December 20th, 2011

“Zappadan 2011, Day 11″ by TPT on Wednesday December 14th, 2011

“Zappadan 2011, Day 6″ by TPT on Friday December 9th, 2011

“Zappadan 2011, Day 4″ by TPT on Wednesday December 7th, 2011

“Zappadan 2011, Day 2″ by TPT on Monday December 5th, 2011

“That’s right folks, don’t touch that dial!” by TPT on Saturday November 19th, 2011

“One Year Later – Who Opposes HCR? Or…a picture says a thousand words.” by TPT, Thursday March 24th, 2011

“Watermellon In Easter Hay – May 17th, 1988, Barcelona, Spain” by TPT, Friday August 21st, 2009

“Progressive Nation 2009 Concert Tour” by TPT, Wednesday June 17th, 2009

***
Where I get my Zappa music: The Electric Fetus

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One of the nicest things about getting media credentials is the hospitality afforded! Right now, I’m sitting in a bar in Charlotte, courtesy of VisitMyrtleBeach.com and The Congressional Black Caucus Institute. The streets outside are packed; it’s cool, quiet with a buffet of southern cuisine & cold drinks, power to recharge batteries and secure internet access.

Yesterday afternoon was a meeting/briefing by Veterans And Military Families. Several Veterans organizations gave talks about legislation affecting Veterans; especially IAVA.org (Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America). The IAVA speaker said he was giving the same talk he gave to the GOP down in Tampa at the GOP Convention (said GOP convention being, per the ol’ TwoPutter’s description on Twitter: #Willard’s #WhopperThon). He stressed the importance of Defending The G.I. Bill. This subject will be covered in detail over the next few weeks. A highlight was meeting a 91 year old WWII Veteran and Convention Delegate named Stephen Sherman, who started the Dorie Miller Memorial Foundation.

Last night Team Obama held a new media Happy Hour; it was at a bar (yes, I’ve been in several of ‘em whilst here!) next to The PPL’s HQ. Three staffers talked about what the campaign was doing, and where it would be going post-endorsement. The place was packed with new media types from all over; it was fun renewing acquaintance with a Minnesotan now in NYC who is working with SaveGranny.org; she worked on a quick video about what happens if what Lyin’ Ryan & His Pal Willard get their “plan” passed.

This morning the Minnesota & South Dakota Delegations had the opportunity to hear Newark Mayor Cory Booker – before he trashed his ankle. DFL Chair Ken Martin gave a rousing intro to Governor Mark Dayton, who gave a great talk – and then Booker knocked it over the fence and out of the park. His speech should be on prime-time TV. Luchelle Stevens talked Voter ID and State Senator Scott Dibble finished the morning session with a talk about the anti-equality ballot the GOP stuck on the ballot this fall. If you’re watching the Convention tonight, look for all the Vote No tee shirts in the Minnesota Delegation.

One of the many things I’ve really enjoyed here in Charlotte is the food – to give you an idea of what’s here, here’s a quick YouTube – let’s look!

More, later.

(cross posted at MnProgressiveProject; comments welcome there)

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Notes From DNC Charlotte, Day 3

On September 3, 2012, in Road Trip 2012, Videos, by tommy

Charlotte is proving to be a great pick for the 2012 Democratic National Convention. For last night’s Welcoming Reception for State Delegations, the Host Committee split the Delegations up and sent them to a dozen venues. Minnesotans joined with Louisiana, New York, Puerto Rico, D.C., South Dakota and Texas – and the event was held at Discovery Place, a science museum. Other Delegations had their welcoming receptions at venues such as the National Whitewater Center and the Carolina Raptor Center. It was really cool to attend a major party in a museum!

Today is CarolinaFest, essentially a big party downtown featuring two music stages (James Taylor is headliner; Jeff Bridges and the Abiders is who I’m looking forward to) with local crafts, food, and – of course! – beer! North Carolina is home to a lot of breweries.

I’ll also be at a “Daily Briefing” held by National Journal, The Atlantic and CBS; topic for today is “The Digital Campaign and Social Media’s Impact in 2012″ with panelists from Google, Facebook and Twitter.

The following is one of 40 videos the Host Committee produced that focus on different aspects of Charlotte; this one helps explain why Charlotte is such a beautiful city – let’s look!

(cross posted at MnProgressiveProject; comments welcome there)

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DNC Convention Notes, Morning Of Day 2

On September 2, 2012, in DFL Events, Videos, by tommy

Charlotte is turning out to be a great choice for Host City for the 2012 Democraic Convention. It’s big enough, but not too big – and the Host Committee is making the RNC Convention in Tampa look pathetic already. Last night was a Media Reception that was an incredible success. Held at the North Carolina Music Factory and in every venue within it, over 15,000 people partied in a way that sets a new standard for Host Cities. Rather than putting everyone in one big room, it was a series of parties with a genre for everyone, starting with local comedians roasting everything at The Comedy Zone (and I have to say, Dusty Trice’s stand up act was hilarious!) to every kind of music act anyone would want to hear. The Convention’s Host Committee has gone above the call of duty to include as much local influence as it could.

One aspect that hits home for yours truly, the ol’ TwoPutter, is making this convention as acessible as possible for new media – such as bloggers! Literally next door to the Convention Center is a group called The PPL (think=”people”), where I’m headed shortly to check in and receive credentials. Let’s look!

As always, I’ll be tweeting throughout the day – stay tuned!

(cross posted at MnProgressiveProject.com; comments welcome there>

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Road Trip DNC – Ryan’s Fake Lemons

On September 1, 2012, in republiCon, by tommy

Rolling down I-90 through Wisconsin on the way to the Democratic National Convention, the ol’ BS Detector sarted pegging. No surprise; we were near Janesville. Wanting to see what the fuss was about, it led us to the Congressional Office of Teller Of Tall Tales, Paul Ryan. Which led to the following tweet!

Yes, gentle readers, there are indeed fake lemons hanging in the tree in front of Ryan’s Congressional Office! Which, indeed, is fitting.

Sadly, Ryan is is simply today’s example of You Couldn’t Trust The GOP Then, You Still Can’t Now, And Tomorrow Won’t Be Any Different.

Stay tuned; there’s more coming from this Road Trip and excitement at the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte!

(cross posted at MnProgressiveProject.com; comments welcome there)

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Getting Ready for DNC 2012, or…

On August 19, 2012, in Road Trip 2012, by tommy

… #RoadTrip2012, Charlotte Edition!

Two weeks from now, 1200 miles on the road with Brian Baker will be history and the ol’ TwoPutter will be in Charlotte, meeting fellow delegates from Texas, New York, Michigan, South Dakota, North Dakota, Louisiana, District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

And I’m really looking forward to meeting the folk from Cajun Country!!!

This gathering will be in preparation to endorse President Obama for four More YEARS!!!

That graphic is the poster I put up at the 3rd CD Convention, when fellow DFLers gave me the honor to represent them as a National Delegate to the DNC in Charlotte. I’m proud to do it.

I also have the honor of receiving Media Credentials to cover the DNC! Which means, for blogging & twitter purposes, I should be able to get into just about every thing!

As Regular Readers know, we have some tech-savvy folk here on MPP (yours truly NOT bein’ one of ‘em), and with any luck we’ll have some kinda gizmo/widget here to keep our Regular Readers what’s happening, through the gonzo reporting out of Charlotte. So, stay tuned!

And if any one wants to, there’s a Two-fer this upcoming Friday night – you can help out your favorite DFL Candidate and help put a few gallons o’ gas in the ol’ TwoPutter’s tank for #RoadTrip2012 – DNC Edition! Thanks!

(cross posted at MnProgressiveProject; comments welcome there)

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