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 Post subject: ZPZ and RTF IV
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 1:30 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 27, 2010 6:00 pm
Posts: 273
Hi,

Review of the show in Eugene, Oregon on Sept 23rd,2011

Zappa Plays Zappa:
1 Pojama People
2 Don't You Ever Wash That Thing?
3 Dancin' Fool - SEGUE
4 Fifty Fifty
5 Big Swifty - Ben, Pete, Joe, Jamie
6 City Of Tiny Lites - DZ , Scheila
7 King Kong - Chick Corea, DZ
8 Yellow Snow - SEGUE
9 Nanook Rubs It - SEGUE
10 St Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast - SEGUE
11 ROLLO - Devin Villary, Trombome Ninja

Return to Forever IV:
Medieval Overture
Senor Mouse
Sorceress / Shadow of Lo
Renaissance
After the Cosmic Rain
Romantic Warrior
Spain
School Days

Honestly, I went to this show in Eugene, OR because I wanted to see ZPZ. RTF was always big enough and all that and we all already knew the musicianship and all that, and I guess that I could tell you that I figured I would see some of the best known names in the old'e fusion thing ...

Well, let me tell you ... that it was no contest, and ZPZ looked like an opening band, and sounded like one! It was however, a nice evening and the music thing was good too, and ZPZ was good ... not as good as the video that brought it out a couple of years ago, but maybe Dweezil is now a bit tired of this, and losing his excitement over it. It is a bitch living for a God and realizing that you can not be as good as the God, isn't it Dweezil?

The highlight of ZPZ's show, might have been a nice version of King Kong with Chick Corea playing the Moog on stage for them ... a bit weird if you ask me, considering that Jean Luc Ponty also played with Frank -- don't think Chick ever did -- but it was not going to happen, and perhaps Dweezil did not want to share the stage with someone that was probably going to blow him out in the first place -- because he certainly stood his ground in the next set with RTF! And that would be a much tougher set of folks and musicians to work with!

All in all, I thought that music itself and the set list was rather nice and was soft enough to not be offensive to the audience and the appreciation to the material showed, and I am one of those folks. It was a fine show, that, sadly, got blown away by a band that has far more energy and care in playing their music, that Dweezil showed with this band ... and maybe Dweezil might consider having some guest guitarists, and he can then conduct and do other fun things on the stage that would help the music get stronger instead of ... just plain rock'n'roll, which might be the issue here with the show ... I always thought that some of Frank's shows on DVD showed that he had some rock'n'roll on it, but he was making some serious fun of it, more than anything else. I felt like ZPZ was not trying to make this music into the r'n'r side of things and less into the musicianship and work itself ... all complete with individual solos, that take away from the music itself.

All in all, the show gets a B for sentiment, otherwise it would get a C. I love the music and appreciate the musicianship, but there is no excuse for the "tired" attitude in these shows, which take away from a lot of what the music was about in the first place.

And then RTF started their thing. And it didn't take very long to show, why they are so appreciated and have lasted so long ... and why a ZPZ show/band can not get better and develop if they do not learn from this ... in the end, if anything, these folks showed off what master musicians can do TOGETHER that the previous band could not do beforehand. And what a magnificent and powerful show they put on, a veritable showcase and lesson for any musician that believes in their work, and on top of it, knows how to play it even better than the albums possibly could ... as if the wine gets even better with age, for your palate's appreciation.

It is not everyday that you see a show that stands out as well as this one did, and it is an amazing achievement, that the band itself never flinched and just played on, like they were starved and needed the attention ... it was all about the music, and how well they played it, and the professionalism that they displayed was one of the best thigns I have ever seen on any stage in all my years of catching shows, and RTF was not even a favorite band of mine, although I did know and recognize many of the pieces when I heard them, even if I did not know their titles!

Kudos go to Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke and Jean Luc Ponty ... but it's hard to not appreciate the amazing connection and appreciation for their ability to work together, either on stage or on a studio ... it is not something that you see a whole lot of anywhere today, where the ego of one person usually dominates ... and here? ... they were all on teh same level, and showed it ... and this made for an amazing concert ... for people whose talents and ability deserves to be listed in the annals of music, as incredible masters of the work they do. And with that, all one can say to ZPZ, is ... go back to play that rock'n'roll because they got blown off the stage!

Who wanted it more, and who wanted to play better and stay tighter? ... you got it ... it wasn't ZPZ, it was RTF. And who played it better? .. the ones that believed in their music, or ...??? ... that is the difference, and I'm not sure that Dweezil stood up this time.


Last edited by Moshkito on Tue Oct 18, 2011 3:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: ZPZ and RTF IV
PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 12:12 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 27, 2004 4:31 pm
Posts: 140
A good, fair, and interesting review. I had read a few others on the dweezilzappaworld.com that echoed your thoughts. That said, I had just the opposite experience just a few nights before at the Warfield in SF California. ZPZ was on fire and the enthusiasm from the crowd was a reflection of the band's. There were more standing ovations for longer periods of time for ZPZ than RTF at the Warfield show (I was up the balcony and could see pretty much the whole seated area). I wet in with huge expectations for RTF. I have been a fan of theirs for years, seen them before, and know what to expect. I also have seen ZPZ many times and knew what to expect from them. Every band has good nights and bad nights. I have heard of ZPZ having some lackluster shows, just never been to one myself. RTF was a bit disappointing (but still amazing) and ZPZ was the highlight of the evening for me last Thursday night.


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 Post subject: Re: ZPZ and RTF IV
PostPosted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 5:12 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 27, 2010 6:00 pm
Posts: 273
Hi,

^sorry guys, but I really don't get it.
What's actually the problem? People are getting tired? Or is Dweezil palying badly, or what?

I replied:
Between you and I, what I saw was a bored man! And the only thing that was left was for him to add a few moments of rock'n'roll glory, complete with dumb solo moments, to get the musicians more excited ... which in my book brought down the music to the level of rock'n'roll and not what Frank was doing -- the first thing he would do is tell the kid in the audience to shut up and leave and then put down the guitar and paly the tea spoons while conducting the rest of the band ... or something like it.

Honestly, and I can not verify this, I think that Dweezil feels that he has to do this for his mom in order to help maintain the Zappa Trust and further the name of the family and music. The problem with that is, that he is sacrificing his own work. However, Dweezil is NOT what dad was, and his music is quite conventional when compared to dad's, which means that his chances are extremely limited and he can do better by playing dad's music! Which is what he is doing ... but he's gonna have to do something different and find some guests to help energize the show, because I doubt that Geritol is the problem.

I love a lot of this music. It is by very far, some of the most creative things ever written in music in the 20th century, despite it having a few too many un-necessary bows to rock music, or what not. But a lot of the fun in it for all of us, is the strength with which it is put out and the un-repenting and un-compromising attitude towards what the music really means ... and I think that Dweezil is missing that step ... and it hurts!

My recomendation is to take a break ... and if he does it again, do it with new people and do it differently instead of trying to duplicate what is already know and have seen ... the comparison which does nothelp him much ... because there are many versions of the original that are better! And he automatically becomes 2nd rate! But I would probably turn it upside down ... like instead of the Moog solo in King Kong, I would do it with a Harmonica, or a Kazoo, and blow out the audience ... wow ... that was different ... that was cool ... and make people "remember" the piece of music ...

I can go back to the album and listen to the original ... I can go put on Babe Ruth's awesome version too ... and listening to Chick play the Moog solo is cool ... but it didn't make the song better ... because it was just trying to be faithful to the original. You know what is like? ... you trying to duplicate Chuck Berry ... and you already know how many people have done that ... but you only enjoy it because you had a few drinks, and then go home and you don't care! ... you either blow out the audience to be understood and noticed, or forget it ... you're just another wannabe Frank Zappa band in the New York jazz clubs showing off their musicianship in this fusion!

I love this music dearly. But I think that what is happening to the trust in the release and showing off the music is restrictive and is starting to hurt the whole thing and in the end, it will hurt the moneys coming in. I have stated before that what Dweezil should do is find a piece or two that have never been done or released from the vaults, and put them on the stage ... and blow out the audience with them! ... but I wonder if Dweezil really has the ear and feel for music beyond the stuff that he plays and is comfortable with ... that one I'm not sure about ... but you know there is more work out there that has never been seen ... but Gayle and the folks around Frank were all rock'ies ... and they only know one thing ... and that rock idolatry that Frank despised and trashed so much ... is not going to help the Estate get better and release more music!

Just what we need ... a remastered version of Sweet Little 16! ... right on ... let's ... you got the idea!


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 Post subject: Re: ZPZ and RTF IV
PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 2:52 am 
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Joined: Wed Dec 09, 2009 2:38 am
Posts: 1071
Location: Centerville, Norway
As I said --
Dark Clothes wrote:
The ZPZ mission won't be accomplished until they have rehearsed, played, recorded and released a complete rock band version of Sinister Footwear plus some other gems, like Mo's Vacation and the 1988 arrangement of Sleep Dirt.

They have the chops, and something like this could be a real contribution to the legacy, more than endless repetititions of the mid-Seventies material.

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We make a special art in an environment hostile to dreamers. Frank Zappa, 1971


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 Post subject: Re: ZPZ and RTF IV
PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 6:33 am 
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Joined: Fri Jul 30, 2010 11:55 pm
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Moshkito wrote:
I went to this show in Eugene, OR


There's your answer. Dweezil wasn't bored or tired, he was stoned out of his mind.


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 Post subject: Re: ZPZ and RTF IV
PostPosted: Sat Oct 01, 2011 5:01 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 22, 2008 8:22 pm
Posts: 2270
I've seen ZPZ 8 times now, but the only reason I went this time was to see RTF and to take my son to see ZPZ for the first time. I loved ZPZ for the first few tours because they had Napolean and Ray in the band and the set-lists were wildly divergent. Since then, 1) I don't dig Ben. He's not the vocalist that Nappy or Ray is (or Ike for that matter) plus his comedic interpretations of the material are annoying at best. Number 2) The set-lists have become increasingly redundant. Number 3) the ZFT attitude towards other tribute bands (and yes, ZPZ is a tribute band) is repellant to me (as a Frank Zappa fan).


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 Post subject: Re: ZPZ and RTF IV
PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 3:14 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 27, 2010 6:00 pm
Posts: 273
Hi,

Correction:

(Admin -- can't clean up the original post ... display issue on this end? or is there a problem with the length of the article on the php board? Used to be an issue before, btw.)

On another post someone mentioned that JLP played with ZPZ several times and done a solo on "Fifty Fifty". It was the comment that JLP made on the show that seemed strange and out of place, or that he felt left out.


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 Post subject: Re: ZPZ and RTF IV
PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 5:05 pm 
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Joined: Sun Apr 12, 2009 11:58 pm
Posts: 13138
Location: Home of The Mondavi Center.
Moshkito wrote:
Hi,

Correction:

(Admin -- can't clean up the original post ... display issue on this end? or is there a problem with the length of the article on the php board? Used to be an issue before, btw.)

On another post someone mentioned that JLP played with ZPZ several times and done a solo on "Fifty Fifty". It was the comment that JLP made on the show that seemed strange and out of place, or that he felt left out.

Moshito,what do you play? I remember when FZ said "Fuck all you writers who would pick up a pen and write a reveiw" anyway thats close,(feel free to correct me folks) do you remember the song? When did you see FZ?...... Eugene eh? Ben Thomas' folks live there.The band had to much of Evelyn's pumpkin pie,fer sure,fer sure.... As for Jean Luc-Ponty with DZpZ the odds be 50/50 that that happend at The Mondavi Center with DZ,JLP and Chris Norton trading solo's.I loved it all! Both groups were superb! Fantastico! I don't know if it transpired again........Eugene eh? You didn't happen to see a rotund red state kinda guy sellin' pears did ya? :mrgreen:

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