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PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, 2007 10:23 am 
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I have been a Zappa fan since 1969. Frank Zappa had a great influence on me, especially during the 70s. I recently wrote a semi-autobiographical book called Mea Saurus to be published in 2008. It is not about Frank Zappa. It is about my struggle with the question of religion and the afterlife and was inspired by my mother's recent death. I needed to quote Frank Zappa in my book because my admiration for Zappa (and then, Aleister Crowley) caused me to pursue a music career and drop out of the Catholic Church in back in 1970.
I still agree with Zappa's criticism of Evangelicals like Jerry Falwell and am still inspired by his music. My late quest in life has been how to integrate the questioning nature Zappa encouraged in me with faith. That's what my book is about.
Please tell me how this old fan can get copyright permission to quote a few old songs by Frank Zappa. The last thing I want to do is get on his family's bad side. Thanks to anyone providing me with an address to write to.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, 2007 10:29 am 
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ha ha ha ha


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, 2007 10:32 am 
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According to an interview I heard Gail give on Air America Radio a few years ago, it helps if people ask nicely. Of course, she may have just been kidding.

8)

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, 2007 11:00 am 
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I'm asking nicely. As nice and as respectful as I can. I'm trying to be up front about it. After all, I am a fan - not an enemy - and I am publishing my book at my own expense. I am not looking to make money on Frank Zappa's legacy. I only mention that he inspired me years ago in my book. I can detail every quote used and in what context. I'm not going to spell that out here in this forum. Just give me Gail Zappa's address and I'll mail my request directly to her, that is, if she is the copyright holder to Frank's songs. Is she?


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, 2007 11:21 am 
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MeaSaurus wrote:
I'm asking nicely. As nice and as respectful as I can. I'm trying to be up front about it. After all, I am a fan - not an enemy - and I am publishing my book at my own expense. I am not looking to make money on Frank Zappa's legacy. I only mention that he inspired me years ago in my book. I can detail every quote used and in what context. I'm not going to spell that out here in this forum. Just give me Gail Zappa's address and I'll mail my request directly to her, that is, if she is the copyright holder to Frank's songs. Is she?


gail@zappa.com

tho' I advise against it.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, 2007 11:31 am 
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MeaSaurus wrote:
I'm asking nicely. As nice and as respectful as I can. I'm trying to be up front about it. After all, I am a fan - not an enemy - and I am publishing my book at my own expense. I am not looking to make money on Frank Zappa's legacy. I only mention that he inspired me years ago in my book.

You sound defensive in response to my comment. No need to be defensive. I agree with you. 8)

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, 2007 11:31 am 
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gail@zappa.com

Good Luck!


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, 2007 12:52 pm 
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I emailed Gail Zappa with my permissions request. (I think I did anyway.) Why should I be scared to ask her permission? Why is everyone so afraid of Gail Zappa? From the old pictures of her in books on Zappa, she looks like a perfectly nice person. She's protecting her husband's legacy. Nothing wrong with that.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, 2007 1:16 pm 
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I was only wishing you good luck. No sarcasm implied...


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, 2007 9:04 pm 
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Time passed...

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 20, 2007 9:41 am 
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MeaSaurus wrote:
I emailed Gail Zappa with my permissions request. (I think I did anyway.) Why should I be scared to ask her permission? Why is everyone so afraid of Gail Zappa? From the old pictures of her in books on Zappa, she looks like a perfectly nice person. She's protecting her husband's legacy. Nothing wrong with that.


Gail can be quirky. But, so is the whole family, starting with Frank. However, I email her with my inane comments once in a while, and about half the time she responds. So, keep trying. Good luck.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2007 10:33 am 
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MeaSaurus wrote:
I emailed Gail Zappa with my permissions request. (I think I did anyway.) Why should I be scared to ask her permission? Why is everyone so afraid of Gail Zappa? From the old pictures of her in books on Zappa, she looks like a perfectly nice person. She's protecting her husband's legacy. Nothing wrong with that.

"If you would like to request authorization to perform Frank Zappa's works from the Zappa Family Trust, you may do so by contacting this law office by email at osloane@bergerkahn.com or by U.S. mail at:

Owen J. Sloane, Esq.
Berger Kahn, A Law Corporation
4551 Glencoe Avenue
Suite #300
Marina del Ray, CA 90292-7925

Very truly yours,

JASON WALLACH"
- (excerpt from letter to Ugly Radio Rebellion dated 12-21-07)

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 27, 2007 11:16 pm 
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jimmie d killed the forum wrote:
Berger Kahn, A Law Corporation

I wonder how many calls they get from someone who wants a Double Whopper with cheese...

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 Post subject: Insurance
PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 4:56 am 
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Doesn't matter how many ask for permission (or burgers). I'm doing it for insurance because I don't have a lawyer and don't know all the legal intricacies of copyright law. My book is a personal and social critique, and I quote many more snippets from pop culture than Frank Zappa alone. For example, I also quote Paul Kantner, and began to search for the copyright owner to his 38 year old song lyrics, but couldn't find it. Then I read some "copyright" law articles and found out about "fair use." All of my quotes in the book should fall under "fair use"- even Zappa's. In no way do I pretend these quotes to be my own and give due credit to each source. But hearing about the Zappa Family Trust's litigious tendency, I am asking for copyright permission as insurance, that is, just in case I'm wrong about the fair use. I'm no lawyer and can't afford one. My book is coming out shortly. I emailed Berger Kahn. Owen Sloane is out of the office until January 2nd. I hope I obtain written permission before publication, but my book is being published. Iy has been over a year in the making. Sometimes I wonder if I'm overly paranoid, but then again: better safe than sorry.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 5:25 am 
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Let's hope you don't get one of these from Gail.
Poor slob just wanted to record his own version of Chunga's Revenge for his website.

Image

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 Post subject: Scary
PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 9:27 am 
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That's scary. Especially since I'm holding the final proof to send back to my publisher for publication. What would happen if I publish anyhow? I don't have a lot of money. A lawsuit could crush me out of existence. Makes me wish I never heard of Frank Zappa!

My case is different. I'm only quoting snippets from song lyrics, such as:

Quote:
"Better look around before you say you don't care,
Shut your fucking mouth about the length of my hair,
How would you survive if you were alive, shitty little person?"


To tell the story of my teenage years, the above quote, which was nearly an anthem to me as a teenager, is fairly essential. I don't know how to tell it if I have to omit it.

Perhaps, because I am not taking a whole song, nor attempting to record the music, nor embellishing the material in any way, maybe my fate will be better than the guy who wanted to re-record Chunga's Revenge.

Another thing in my favor is that my book is mainly a non-fictional critique of religious beliefs. Scholarly critiques are allowed "fair use" to quote various sources. If so, copyright permission is not required. I quote a lot of sources. However, since "fair use" is a gray legal area, I only fear Zappa's lawyers may want to make an issue out of it. For example, I quote a line from Humphrey Bogart in an old movie too. I don't think anyone is going to come after me for that. But Zappa's people worry me.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 9:43 am 
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Stephen King obtains numerous copyright permissions for his novels.
Too bad you're not him. 8)

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 Post subject: Stephen King!
PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 11:18 am 
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Stephen King is a superstar like Frank. I am a first-time author, and struggling painter. I'M A NOBODY. I don't even have a regular "job" and, at the moment, stand right at the edge of losing everything. The two thousand I'm investing in my book is is like a last ditch effort to attract interest in my painting. Let me add my voice to the chorus: BEING AN ARTIST SUCKS!


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 1:54 pm 
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dear mr/ms. measaurus:

you came to the right place, this is it; i'm sure we can negotiate an equitable arrangement for the use of the aforementioned quotes...just private message me and we can discuss the details; a license for one-time use generally runs in the low 6-figure range (150,000 euros), depending on the context, as long as the intent of the quotee isn't compromised...carte blanche limited use of all fz quotes, requires a nominal one-time 250,000 euro license fee
    we accept:

  • 3rd party cheque$
  • money order$
  • ca$h (euros only, well concealed, low denominations)
  • gold bullion
  • Image
thank-you for your interest

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 Post subject: Re: Stephen King!
PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 2:18 pm 
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MeaSaurus wrote:
Stephen King is a superstar like Frank. I am a first-time author, and struggling painter. I'M A NOBODY. I don't even have a regular "job" and, at the moment, stand right at the edge of losing everything. The two thousand I'm investing in my book is is like a last ditch effort to attract interest in my painting. Let me add my voice to the chorus: BEING AN ARTIST SUCKS!

McDonalds is ALWAYS hiring.

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 Post subject: Yeah, I know
PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 2:54 pm 
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Yeah I know Mc Donalds is always hiring. I'm not above working in retail dumps to support my art habit. Ya know, after I quit working at the frame shop earlier this year, I worked for a spell at WalMart, and I mention that in the preface of my book. 2007 was not a good year. Only sold about five grand worth of paintings this year, and I sold some too cheap. Not good. I was lucky to sell my mobile home during this housing crisis for about half the assessed value, which enabled me to move into an even cheaper one. Believe it or not, I have a BFA and am going for my MFA, even if it puts me $40k in debt, but art degrees don't matter to retail. That and a subway token will get you on the subway, as we say in NY.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 4:02 pm 
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Gail said that recording a version of Chunga's Revenge for a website and/or downloading would be inconsistent with the composer's intent. But Chunga's Revenge dates from 1970 doesn't it? Long before the internet or downloading had been thought of - even by Mr Zappa, who first alluded to a similar concept in the so-called 'Real Frank Zappa Book' published in 1989. So how does she know?

I think you should go ahead with your book Measaurus. She's all hot air.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2007 12:48 am 
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xorg wrote:
Gail said that recording a version of Chunga's Revenge for a website and/or downloading would be inconsistent with the composer's intent. But Chunga's Revenge dates from 1970 doesn't it? Long before the internet or downloading had been thought of - even by Mr Zappa, who first alluded to a similar concept in the so-called 'Real Frank Zappa Book' published in 1989. So how does she know?

I think you should go ahead with your book Measaurus. She's all hot air.


She has the COPYright to know his 1970 intent. But seriously, she would of course not allow anyone to make the composition free for donwloading by the world. That is essentially the same as giving up the copyright. The intent stuff in that case is probably just part of a standard answer. So that "poor slob" could just write his own tune at put it up for free....

As for the three-line quote in a book, my guess is that if due copyright notice is provided, such a snippet would constitute fair use.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2007 6:36 am 
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HJ wrote:
she would of course not allow anyone to make the composition free for donwloading by the world. That is essentially the same as giving up the copyright.

BFD.....it's not even Frank's version.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2007 7:45 am 
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The main reason an artist copyrights their intellectual property is so they don't get ripped off. That's how I see it.

If you publish, broadcast or disseminate your work in any other way to the public, you basically relinquish some control of how your message is received. You hope people will get it right, but they're gonna spin all kinda interpretations of your stuff. Can't be helped- it's human nature.

You can't control their thoughts and you certainly don't want them to stop thinking about your message, so you cut them a little slack.

It's only when they start making a buck on your stuff without paying you a dime that you call the lawyer. That's why you got your stuff copyrighted.

But how does it hurt you if you words are quoted in the press? We get so much negative press anyway, how can a little praise hurt? Call it advertising. People that never heard of you may read about you. It's a good thing. Really.


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