Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

Could Be Worse. Could Be Wuthering Heights.

You’re Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain!
With an affinity for floating down the river, you see things in black and white. The world is strange and new to you and the more you learn about it, the less it makes sense. You probably speak with an accent and others have a hard time understanding you and an even harder time taking you seriously. Nevertheless, your adventurous spirit is admirable. You really like straw hats.

… or so says The Book Quiz

Zappaaaaahhhh!

It is said that true immortality is achieved only when one becomes part of the popular culture’s collective consciousness. This being said, I wasn’t too surprised to find this reference to Frank Zappa in the Serpent’s Tail anthology, Intoxication: an anthology of stimulant-based writing, edited by Toni Davidson:

“Rancy had only ever been in at Whitey and Bammo’s the five times. It would always be the same — one of his mates would be wanting a bit blow, and what with every other source in the town run dry, they’d've ended up at Whitey and Bammo’s; where, ritually, you got teased by the kids, got attacked by the cats and you had to listen to Frank fucking Zappa. ‘Zappaaaaahhhh!’ as Whitey called him. ‘Zappaaaaahhhh!’”

“Moving Target” by Gordon Legge, p.91

intoxication anthology

So It Goes

RIP Kurt Vonnegut.

Yet Another Zappa Book

It’s called Hungry Freaks Daddy, and it’s written by Scott Parker:

(…) “HUNGRY FREAKS, DADDY the Recordings of FRANK ZAPPA and The Mothers Of Invention Volume One 1959-1969″. It’s the first of what may be a four or five-volume series documenting the recorded documents of FZ from his earliest recordings (dating back to 1959) to his final recorded work (in 1993) and beyond.

The Idiot Bastard has a short review:

Imagine someone picking up where Norbert Obermann’s Zappalog left off and correcting all of the bootleg track list errors left be by the Torchum Team, and you’ve got an idea of what this book’s like. Add to that some helpful narrative along the way and you’d best zip your anorak’s up tight ’cause you’re in for a thrilling ride. Scott doesn’t try to emulate Greg Russo’s detailed tome, but it is similarly a labour of true love.

Frank Zappa En El Infierno

Spanish author Manolo de la Fuente writes in about his newly published book “Frank Zappa En El Infierno” (Frank Zappa In Hell):

It analyzes the role that Zappa developed as a political activist in the 80s. In those years, Zappa ran intensively against the conservative government of Ronald Reagan. [...] It’s the first time that an analysis on Zappa’s work is carried out in Spanish, and it’s also the first time that a book deals with the links of his songs in American politics, a totally new topic even for the bibliography in English.

The Frank Zappa Memorial Fund

The Frank Zappa Memorial Fund:

The American Library Association’s (ALA) Office for Intellectual Freedom and the Freedom to Read Foundation have been designated by the Frank Zappa family as among the organizations to receive contributions made in his memory. The Foundation leads efforts to stop censorship wherever it arises by defending First Amendment freedoms in court and providing legal and financial help in cases involving libraries and librarians, authors, publishers and booksellers.

Lizard Queen

Meet Patricia Kennealy: author, Celtic priestess, retired rock critic, wife of Jim Morrison. She had a brief relationship with David Walley — “probably the closest friend I have ever had“.

Kill Ugly Radio World Tour

Remember those scrapbooks that were passed around when you were a kid? A friend would ask you to write or draw something in his/hers and then you’d give it back. Some of the pages would turn out rather cheesy, while others would consist of really cool doodles or collages.

I was thinking: why not do something similar with the entire KUR readership? It would work something like this: I buy a blank sketchbook, put my contribution on page one, and then pass it on by snailmail to the next person in line, who in turn passes it on once s/he’s finished — much the way an Uncle Beat vine works. Once all the pages are filled up (or there no longer is anyone next in line), the last recipient sends it back to me. I would then scan in every single page and post them here and/or on Flickr.

Entries for each page could be anything Zappa- or KUR-related: writing, collages, drawings, glued-in scraps of paper, pictures, prints, etc. With a bit of luck we’d end up with the coolest Zappa scrapbook ever!

What do you think? Would you participate? I have a feeling this is going to be one of those posts with zero comments… :)

Update: Looks like we can take this baby on the road! I’ve set up a thread at the Uncle Beat Forum where you can add your name (and location) to the chain. For those who hadn’t signed up there yet: registration has been re-enabled. Hey Ho Let’s Go!

Comics Dot Org

Oooooooh comics heaven: “We intend to catalog key story information, creator information, and other information which is useful to readers, fans, hobbyists, researchers. Our goal is to include all the comic books ever published.” Just looking up Robert Crumb yielded 240 results! You’ll know where to find me the next couple of hours or so.

Ban Fahrenheit 451!

Texas dad wants Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury’s novel whose plot deals with book banning, to be banned — during Banned Books Week. What’s the temperature at which rational thinking experiences a meltdown?

Time And Those Waves

Nigey Lennon remembers David Walley.

Anyone who knew David, or read his work, or picked his brain for editorial suggestions, or made even the most casual contact with him, generally found that they’d been changed, transformed by the contact. It was his peculiar gift, to question and, by questioning, to help people find answers.

Another Zappa Book

Yet another book on Zappa is hitting the shelves: The Words and Music of Frank Zappa by one Kelly Fisher Lowe. And just to make this post a bit more interesting: on the cover, the typeface used is the same one I applied to the very first layout of KUR. Fascinating stuff, eh?

One Of The Lads

Norah Vincent spent 18 months disguised as a man, mingling with the opposite sex. And then wrote a book about it. A funny read, I’m sure:

One night Jim was talking about his plans for a ski trip. He wanted to find a location that had good skiing, but he also wanted some lively nightlife. “I’d like to find a place that has a good titty bar,” he said. Bob chimed in, “Yeah. Count me in on that. I’m definitely up for that.”

First Lines

The 100 best first lines from novels. Maybe they should have added this one: “This book exists on the premise that somebody, somewhere, is interested in who I am, how I got that way, and what the fuck I’m talking about.”

The Vortex Of Zappa’s Maximalism

You didn’t think I could write a title like that, eh? Well actually I didn’t. It’s a term taken from Michel Delville & Andrew Norris, both living in Brussels, who have written a book on Zappa, Cpt. Beefheart and Californian freakdom entitled “Frank Zappa, Captain Beefheart and the Secret History of Maximalism”. Keep your dictionaries at the ready as I present you with a quote:

The vortex of Zappa’s maximalism is a toilet, and here we see him seizing on a creative détournement of the human body: the penis becomes a heart, a conflation of two organs of love — the literal and the symbolic are fused together in an anthropomorphic leap of imagination curiously prophetic of Van Vliet’s later pictorial style with its Wellsian miscegenations.

I love the smell of Watsonian prose in the morning!