Just prior to an unauthorized performance of “Joe’s Garage” at Martyrs’ in Chicago on July 27th, 2009, The Chicago Zappa Collective performed an exceptional version of “Billy the Mountain” as an opening set:
Billy the Mountain – The Chicago Zappa Collective, Martyrs’
[audio:20091110-Billy The Mountain.mp3]
The Chicago Zappa Collective:
Colby Beserra, Matt Reed, and Ben Wilson – vocals
Chris Siebold and Mike Pinto – guitars
Paul Mutzbaugh – keyboards
Chris Clemente – bass
Rick Vitek – drums
One of the reasons Frank Zappa’s music has been so appealing to me throughout the years is because so many of his compositions like “Little House I Used To Live In” function as a canvas for his musical ideas (a microcosm of his musical universe you might say) in which a new song might very well emerge within them during each new performance. Continue reading “Little House I Used To Live In, Berlin ’78”
Roger Steen (Lead Guitar) takes on vocal duties (I suspect, while Fee Waybill is off stage during one of many costume stages) while Rick Anderson (Bass) are backed up by drummer Jonathan Mover (filling in for an absent Prairie Prince — and he definitely looks like he’s having a ball!). A great version of this classic Mothers of Invention tune.
Roger Steen is another truly underrated guitarist. Click here to find out what he’s currently up to with The Roger Steen Band, as well as links to some online songs and his interview with Ultimate Guitar.
Though, technically, no longer performing with The Tubes, original group founder, Bill Spooner has been keeping busy with his own project, The Folk-Ups. Click here to learn more.
Finally, let’s end off this post where it began, with Frank Zappa and band performing “Trouble Every Day” at KCET Sound Stage B on August 27, 1974.
Grammy Award aside, Peaches en Regalia is a fantastic song regardless of when it is performed and by whom. These videos show Zappa Play Zappa performing the song from their live DVD; FZ and his 1988 Best Band performing the song live in Stadthalle, Wien, Austria on May 8th; the original version from Baby Snakes VHS; and students from The Paul Green School of Rock performing the track at the Baby Grande, respectively.
The following three field recordings of Peaches reveal how FZ and his bands never performed the song exactly the same way from show to show (it’s excellent fun for a Zappa freak, like myself, to listen for the similarities and differences):
Palladium, NYC, 28 Dec 1976
Montreux Casino, Montreux, Switzerland, 4 Dec 1971
Hammersmith Odeon, London, UK, 28 Feb 1978
I was going through my Zappa collection the other day, and I noticed I had quite a few versions of Pygmy Twylyte. The first four are covers by Tribute/Cover Bands, and the fifth is one of my favorite proto-versions from 1973, Texas:
Ed Palermo Big Band (Sonar, Baltimore, MD, 21 Sep 2006)
Quintette Gaucher (Quintette Gaucher Plays the Music of Frank Zappa)
Project/Object (Visualite Theatre, Charlotte, NC, 5 Jan 2002)
Great Googly Moogly (Fasching, Stockholm, 15 Mar 2007)
Frank Zappa (Armadillo World Headquarters, Austin, TX, 26 Oct 1973)
How do you think these later versions match up to the earlier version performed by FZ’s own band?