http://petegriffin.blogspot.com/"Progressive Nation tour we just did with Scale the Summit, Big Elf, and headliners Dream Theater.
What an amazing bunch of musicians to be on the road with. The picture is sort of divided by instrument, so I'm standing with the bassists from the other bands.Having more bands on the tour meant shorter shows for us, fewer (and quicker) soundchecks, and overall more downtime, which can easliy lead to certain amounts of road insanity. But we all found ways of using the time productively, I managed to write some more tunes for Gryphon Labs, do the occasional yoga/workout routine, listen to a LOT of music, etc. I think the downtime made us enjoy our time onstage with our instruments that much more, and I think the shows went really well because of that. Or maybe it was ther fact that Dream Theater's incredible drummer (and Zappa superfan) Mike Portnoy watched our set from the side of the stage every night. The best part was watching the obvious Dream Theater fans transition from being skeptical about our show to leaping to their feet to give us a standing ovation, so thank you to them for being so open minded.So, now we're home for a little while. Gryphon Labs is playing the Baked Potato on Tuesday September 29th. The second set is looking like it'll be a cavalcade of guest stars including Bryan Beller, possibly Mike Keneally and many others, so come on down and see what happens! We also have T-shirts and stickers available, as modeled by me in the above picture.Check out the new tourdates for Zappa Plays Zappa, and stay tuned for more ZPZ news, including a possible TV show..."
- Pete Griffin
ZPZs recent Progressive Nation 2009 with Dream Theater, Big Elf, & Scale The Summit had 26 ProgNation Shows
and 3 additional ZPZ Only Shows. In these last few months I have been fortunate to see 2 ZPZ Only Shows and 1 ProgNation.
While the majority of us long time hard cores love to groove to a 2 1/2 to 3 hour ZPZ Only Show I was quite surprised at the
overall enthusiasm of the ProgNation crowd. While some before hand had seemed somewhat questionable as to the fit of Zappa's music
from the first to last notes one could could see the audience including Mike Portnoy amazed by the performances of this music.
While I do not expect each and every Dream Theater fan to immediately go out and purchase the Official Catalog and grasp
the overall Project/Object of FZs Cannon I feel confident that a strong message was not only delivered but viewed sternly with open eyes and ears.
One such example is a friend who I had brought to several ZPZ & Prognation concerts in the last few months.
By the time you reach your mid 50s you just don't go to a show because someone buys you a ticket. Oh you may go but to come away
thinking this is some of the best music you have heard live in seeing more than 1,000 concerts in 40 years is exactly what this story is about.
Yes he did see FZ once back in the 70s but somehow ZPZ have impressed him beyond that chance outing he once had.
Believe it or not there are guys in there 50s who absolutely love for example Jimi Hendrix, Cream and Deep Purple but somehow until seeing ZPZ never quite understood what Zappa was about. My friend John and I last fall heard a friend of ours from the neighborhood say Zappa's music does not have enough of guitar so we immediately wondered where he was getting his information. It's about exposure folks and somehow this guy who loves Rock & Roll and goes to 20 to 40 shows annually was just never exposed enough. So we played him some albums and I took him to a few ZPZ shows. Exposure has created a new Zappahead. He will be there again seeing ZPZ come this November 5th for his 3rd time since July 1st. He can not get enough. He is hooked line and sinker. Now if someone is at all skeptical of this story please come meet us at the Wellmont show on Thursday November 5th and I am sure he can tell it to you.
It's all about exposure.Zappa Plays Zappa - Fall 2009http://www.zappaplayszappa.com/tourdates.html