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Released: April 1969


  1. Brown Shoes Don’t Make It
  2. Mother People
  3. Duke Of Prunes
  4. Call Any Vegetable
  5. The Idiot Bastard Son
  6. It Can’t Happen Here
  7. You’re Probably Wondering Why I’m Here
  8. Who Are The Brain Police?
  9. Plastic People
  10. Hungry Freaks, Daddy
  11. America Drinks & Goes Home

10 thoughts on “Mothermania”

  1. MY FIRST FZ ALBUM! I bought a copy in 1969 and wore it out! This is the only FZ authorized and compiled “hits” compilation of the 1960’s Verve Records material and as such is worth seeking out by serious collectors as it has alternate mixes/ edits of material from “Freak Out!”, “Absolutely Free,” and “We’re Only In It For The Money.”,but it is not an essential album. It hasn’t be rereleased on cd, so the only legit copies are old vinyl from the 1960s.

  2. It was prob my first (but not last) FZ album. OK its a collectable as never on CD – and I have seen some uncomplimentary ‘reviews’, but that is hardly the point – it just mixes/segues thru some early work – everyone who is serious will have some of the originals anyway – so its a collectable curiosity really only.

  3. This was my first exposure to Frank Zappa And The Mothers Of Invention. I bought Mothermania as a cut-out for about 35 cents in ’69. Loved everything about Mothermania, especially the music. Wish this would get a CD release.
    It’s ugly but beautiful in its’ own weird way.

  4. This was my first Zappa album bought back in the late 60s. Fantastic stuff, loved it first time around & still love it (albeit as the fist three albums – especially Absolutely Free).
    Also, it has the uncensored version of “Mother People”. Question – Why was the censored version retained on We’re only in it for the money?

  5. I rarely listen to compilations, but MOTHERMANIA is one of the best compilations if not the best I’ve ever heard. As it was prepared by FZ himself, we get some alternate mixes and – surprisingly – truly the BEST material from the original albums (at least in my opinion). As the tracks seque into each other quite well, it’s almost like a new work, albeit taken from familiar material.

    I’d certainly buy a CD if it were pressed, but I don’t suspect we’ll ever see one. Still, I’d say fans of the early Mothers material would enjoy this one.

  6. Hey fans, this compilation was created by FZ. In addition to some unique edits, it contains unique MIXES of “Mother People” and “Idiot Bastard Son”, that I would argue are superior to versions now available on CD. It is a fine representation of the early Mothers’ work and it’s a pity that it will probably remain out-of-print.

  7. Got at a KMart cut-out bin in 1969-1970, along with five other early Zappa & Mothers. Carried them around with us to parties during our high school years. Get the Carpenters of the turntable and get Zappa going loud. Warped and twisted me to a delicious doneness. Ripping my original vinyl to Mac now, so i am grooving in my youth again.

  8. The Absolutely Free cuts sound way better on these flac downloads than on the Zappa Records CD. The bass is almost not muddy at all! It was quite a revelation to hear exactly what Roy Estrada was doing throughout The Duke of Prunes, after more than 20 years of listening to the CD!

    As a compilation, Mothermania shows just how unique the Mothers were. With Brown Shoes Don’t Make It as the opening piece – it just sounds so outrageous and downright ugly. In a good way. And once again showcasing just how aware Frank was of the different atmospheres created by shifting the contexts of his pieces. The segue from Mother People to Duke of Prunes is one of the most beautiful moments in the whole of the Zappa canon.

    All in all, a worthwhile listen – even for those familiar with the material. Although to me the Freak Out tracks sound somehow less clear than the versions already available on CD (MOFO & elsewhere).

  9. I just hunted down a copy on vinyl… a canadian pressing from back in the day…. it has the censored version of Mother People… I’m so bummed. I don’t like or understand why it’s censored.

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