Flashback to December 17 2008, when KUR received the following email:
I’m recording a new project soon and I wrote NEW music for The Black Page. If I sent you guys a copy of the album and you like it would you mind saying so on killuglyradio? (It is going to be a digital release via my own site so I don’t stuck w/a shitty bitrate.)
Whereupon I responded:
New music for The Black Page? Sounds exciting! I’d love to hear this so by all means, do send us a copy if you want. I’ll be sure to give it a listen and give it a mention at KUR. Do you have a site where I can download the track(s)?
Fast Forward to the present:
As you can tell by the date stamp on the email, it took me a lot longer to get this project done than I thought. New music for the Black Page is here:
Glass Ghost, Burning Castle. Check it out.
During 2010, Crossfire rolled out 35 download volumes (a total of 417 tracks) from Paul Buff’s archives of Pal and Original Sound recordings. Many of you wanted lossless files rather than MP3s, so we’ve gone and done it!
So what’s the deal?
We’re offering the entire 35-volume set of recordings as WAV files along with a large, 138-page PDF featuring Greg Russo and Paul Buff’s historical liner notes, photos and credits. The whole thing comes on a flash drive. Of course, all of the tracks that feature Frank Zappa as a performer, writer, producer or engineer are part of this set. Not only that, you also get 56 bonus tracks (two featuring Zappa) that were not part of the series. All of these bonus tracks were discovered and/or remastered after the series was completed, and you have to buy the entire set to get them.
The Collection, a total of 473 tracks, is $350 US for the flash drive (including shipping). Order yours here.
Those of you who’ve been reading this weblog for more than just a couple of years may remember our coverage of Adam Fiorenza’s documentary on FZ’s Cucamonga days, aptly titled “Freak Out In Cucamonga”, featuring interviews with the likes of Paul Buff (PAL Studios), Dick Barber, Jim “Motorhead” Sherwood, Don Preston, Roy Estrada, and Weird Al Yancovic. Although at the time, seven years ago no less, this project had gained traction and interest, it sort of withered away and went into hibernation. Here’s the initial trailer, with artwork from Sharleena and me:
Having [re]discovered this rather sublime trailer on my hard disk drive just a week ago, I had to email Adam to find out if the project is still en route in some way, making its way to an official release.
Funny how some people who adore FZ’s “regular” music tend to shy away from his “more serious”, “classical instrumental” music. They tend to see it as impenetrable, obscure, entirely inscrutable — in short, way over their heads.
The key, I think, is to listen to Zappa’s instrumental tunes as if they were cinematic accompaniments to one’s very own imaginary movie. They are visceral soundtracks wanting to cater to the stories that are in your very own mind.
Case in point: this rare, unreleased version of Mo’s Vacation below. I’ll hit play, close my eyes, listen, and make up my very own story – you try it too:
There… Was it as good for you as it was for me?
What was your story?
Yes, the entire internet may have beaten me to it, but what the hey.
Happy New Year everyone!
… and I quote:
…an enormous bare legged peasant seated on the stump of a freshly cut tree singing a two-syllable nonsense song and accompanying himself with what we as kids used to call “arm farts.”
… and so:
The young composer-to-be rushed home to his family summer place in the Ukrainian countryside and practiced the technique assiduously until he was so successful at it that his parents forbade him to indulge in such an indecent accompaniment. (“Igor, stop that this instant, or go to your room!”)
Be sure to read John Adams full post.
Hat tip: Jonny Butter