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PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2003 2:38 pm 
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I grew up in the United States.  I started listening to FZ's music in about 1977-78ish.  At that time, I also listened to the radio.  As you probably know from FZ's writing, his music was hardly EVER on the radio when he was alive (I don't listen to radio anymore, but I doubt this injustice has improved).  Most people I encountered in everyday life did not know of FZ's music, just that he had some songs with dirty words in them.  I soon realized that my hero was not terribly popular or appreciated in my home country.<br><br>Many years later, around 1990-91, I was a high school teacher geography teacher.  I usually had at least one "foreign exchange student" in at least one class each year (that is, students from other counties would attend school in the USA for a year; all of mine were from Europe).  I used to show this documentary video about the fall of the Berlin Wall and the events in Eastern Europe in 1989-90 as all freedom broke loose etc. . . There was a segment of the vidoe that was a video collage of these events that had some dumb John Williams kinda sounding movie soundtrack music in the background; during that part of the video, I'd play Muffin Man and explain to my students that Vaclav Havel was an FZ fan blah, blah . . . <br><br>WITHOUT FAIL, my American students asked: "Who's Frank Zappa?"  The European students ALWAYS knew who he was, and usually knew a song title or 2 (usually Bobby Brown Goes Down).  Of course, there is the FZ statue in Lithuania.<br><br>Was (is) FZ "popular" in Europe?  I mean, is/was his music on the radio?  Did many people know who he was?   Did people admire him?  <br><br>Or was the FZ fan crowd pretty much a click of freaks who know the REAL truth like in the US?<br><br>VCF

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 02, 2003 3:48 pm 
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Regarding this particular case.<br><br>Europe = 1<br>USA = 0  <br><br>In general, they do have more culture than north american (including Canada in a lesser degree).<br><br>Frank don't sell. So, US radios ignore him. America is a money-based institution. Europe tends to be more inclined to a certain 'joie de vivre'. A big part of Zappa is cultural and funny. I always thought he would have been better off in Europe (a thread I started long ago) and I take a wild guess that he would have been, to a lesser degree of course, a whistleblower about Uncle Sam magnificient way of life. <br><br>But we could have heard some funny ones about Europe as well. Uncle Sam would have preferred it that way for sure.<br><br>My 3 canadian cents                 8)

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2003 3:19 am 
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Zappa's music is not on any classic rock station, contemporary music stations, nothing.  I actually did catch Valley Girl on much music, which is provided through satellite tv and other cables channel things.  It was on the "new wave" channel.  ha! That's the only time I heard Zappa on any sort of broadcasting medium.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2003 8:57 am 
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"Novelty."  Crimeney.  <br><br>It sounds like my music theory teacher in Galveston, Texas.  When I suggested that the "music club" at the college attend an FZ concert in Houston in 1984, he explained, to those who don't know FZ, that he is admired as much as Bill Cosby!  Of course, they voted not to go, so I had to go without them.<br><br>VCF

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2003 9:52 am 
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Yes, I think so. Of course, he's not the only one who's music was more popular in Europe than the U.S. After Faith No More's time in the U.S. mainstream spotlight ended (which was the end of the Angel Dust era and the beginning of the King for a Day era), their popularity in Europe exploded. I wouldn't be surprised if King for a Day, Fool for a Lifetime really did sell more in Europe than it ever had in the U.S.

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2003 11:36 am 
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to get a top 40 hit in the states is a much bigger deal and much more difficult to achieve for any band / musical genre  than it is in european countries for a vairety of reasons - more choice, more competition etc... <br>every british band that aspires to go big has this thing about breakin into the north american market - its a hard thing to do. <br><br>anyway, as may be obvious from observations regardin who posts here, zappa is very much a north american and north european phenomona. the vast majority of his fans are yanks, brits, krauts , cannucks and cloggies.<br>as far as i know we only have one asian - and old cor bovium in turkey hardly qualifys as that - only on a ( dubious ) technacality. any from africa ? south america ?  <br><br>go forth and spread the word. <br><br>mungo

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 03, 2003 11:42 am 
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Considering FZ's music had "No Commercial Potential", he was doomed in the USA.   And he prospered in spite of it!<br><br>Gotta give Europe alot of credit for keeping jazz alive and well. Thanks for helping sustain FZ as well.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2003 1:30 am 
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[quote author=LumpyGravy link=board=legends;num=1057192702;start=0#3 date=07/03/03 at 05:03:35]Well, I don't know if he was more poular in Europe, but he was definitely more accepted. Musicians and composers had a lot of respect for him. I am from Sweden and I remember seeing the Mothers Of Invention on TV back in 1968, and, everytime he released a new album, they played him on the radio. When he did the '88 tour, and came to Stockholm, he was on the news talking politics.[/quote]<br><br>Yeah, I've heard alot of that.<br><br>Bad I don't know anyone with tapes form that period :'(<br><br>*snrf*<br><br> -/dr_grogg<br><br><br>

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2003 4:34 am 
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If he was born in Europe, one thing for sure is that he would have seen another doctor. Maybe his cancer would have been detected earlier. Just a guess.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2003 5:09 am 
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[quote author=Mij link=board=legends;num=1057192702;start=0#13 date=07/05/03 at 07:34:11]If he was born in Europe, one thing for sure is that he would have seen another doctor. Maybe his cancer would have been detected earlier. Just a guess.[/quote]<br><br>Yeah, maybe in that case he would still be alive today.<br><br>Don't you think so?<br><br> -/dr_grogg<br><br><br>

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2003 8:42 am 
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Hi. I'm from Europe, a small country called Estonia. Believe me or not, but Zappa is still well known in Estonia (and in neighbouring countries). Rarely, but sometimes you can even hear some Zappa song in a radio. For sure the most popular is Bobby Brown. <br><br>About 10 years ago I used to be a radio dj in a youth oriented program of our national radio  (analogue to BBC Radio 1). In my country radio is formatted too but not so 100%. Especially national radio. Every dj can have some freedom to select songs to play. I've played of course several Zappa songs from my home CD collection. Even instrumentals like Cleetus Awreetus Awrightus  ;D<br><br>One example more. We have right now a beer festival in my home town. On this festival several bands are performing. One progressive music band from Australia is listed too. On keyboards Allan Zavod! And of course this band is introduced in newspapers as a band who's keyboard player has played with Frank Zappa.<br>

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2003 11:41 am 
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[quote author=on another thread, Woof link=board=concerts;num=1030451636;start=90#95 date=07/05/03 at 00:56:08]....I'm a FZ fan from late 60s. I have all officially released FZ CDs. But I haven't attended any of FZ shows! Just because I spend my years in a funny place called Soviet Union  ;D <br>[/quote]so woof, how did you satisfy your zappa-jones for 20 years? was it available on the radio for taping?, or bootleg lp's? were you at risk of confiscation of unauthorized music?<br><br>[quote author=VCF link=board=legends;num=1057192702;start=0#0 date=07/02/03 at 17:38:22]...WITHOUT FAIL, my American students asked: "Who's Frank Zappa?"  The European students ALWAYS knew who he was, and usually knew a song title or 2 (usually Bobby Brown Goes Down)....[/quote]one of my sociopolitical theories based on a few years of travelling was that people who travelled are usually not representative of the typical citizen of their country, they're generally a cut above in terms of intelligence & awareness of culture beyond thier own borders....<br><br>how many zappa forumistas have done some extended travelling?.... [sub][img width=66 height=16] http://216.127.92.67/webgraphics/arrows ... ed_030.gif  [/img][/sub] post travellers tales here<br><br>[quote author=Woof link=board=legends;num=1057192702;start=15#15 date=07/05/03 at 11:42:50]...For sure the most popular is Bobby Brown. ...[/quote]i never would have guessed bobby brown, but now that you mention it, it's one of frank's most-likely-to-offend so it's logical that it would appeal the the most oppressed....i remember a few times interpretting some of the lyrics to fellow travellers and watching them laugh hystericcaly as the discovered the true meaning of 'tower of power', 'golden shower<br>

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2003 11:51 pm 
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[quote author=slime.oofytv.set link=board=legends;num=1057192702;start=15#16 date=07/05/03 at 14:41:02]so woof, how did you satisfy your zappa-jones for 20 years? was it available on the radio for taping?, or bootleg lp's? were you at risk of confiscation of unauthorized music?[/quote]In soviet time rock fans had tight underground community. The LPs were very expensive (average LP was about 50 rubel on the black market, average monthly salary was 120 rubel). First licensed rock LPs arrived in shops only in 80s. All this time the main source of music was postal packets from relatives living in a western countries. We had not so many exemplars but almost all important LPs were present. The community knew exactly, who is the lucky owner of this or that original LP. You had to loan the album from owner for taping. We all had huge tape libraries of recorded LPs.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2003 12:25 am 
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[quote author=slime.oofytv.set link=board=legends;num=1057192702;start=15#16 date=07/05/03 at 14:41:02]i never would have guessed bobby brown, but now that you mention it, it's one of frank's most-likely-to-offend so it's logical that it would appeal the the most oppressed....i remember a few times interpretting some of the lyrics to fellow travellers and watching them laugh hystericcaly as the discovered the true meaning of 'tower of power', 'golden shower<br>[/quote]When a song is performed in some foreign language (english is foreign for us :) ) people are paying much less attention to lyrics. Even if people try to concentrate to lyrics there is a big chance that they don't understand the (full) meaning of words. And Zappa's offending songs are not so offending anymore. Music is in a foreground and prevails. I think this is true for many European countries and helped Zappas amazing music to be more popular.<br><br>Bobby Brown is a good classical rock tune. Everybody knows and enjoys the melody and nobody is even thinking about the meaning of words.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2003 2:05 pm 
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when i was in school we used to go on skiing trips to Bulgaria - i went on about 3 of these between 1979 and 1982. anyway, at dinnertime whilst we where recovering from severe frostbite due to skiing in jeans with spray on water repellant there was a band that played on a stage in the hotel dining room. these guys all had long hair and looked like shaggy 1970s type hippys - theys where a typical 4 piece - guitar, bass, drums and keyboard. they played electro bulgarian folk music with the odd ABBA song throwan in. one night we persuaded em to  play a couple of AC/DC and iron maiden numbers - which they did. <br>next evening they wernt there - they had got sacked for playing western rock music. <br><br>mungo

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 08, 2003 12:25 am 
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Well, me old kraut ;) went into Zappa when I was a kid.<br>Yes, Boby Brown was on the radio 8and sometime even still is), the broadcasting system is different, due to a variety of information and cultural stuff.<br>To me Fz in the late 70s and erly eighties was a major act. He was not Queen or the Stones, but in the big cities he played the big halls. But it is true, big popularity deals with mass media. FZ never was appealing to that. He was spreat to a large degree via face-to-face or mouth-to-mouth-propaganda.<br>Pop/Rock is very much just product. FZ somehow almost wasnt. Nonetheless he had fans of every age and class here. Workers, bankers, suit-and-tie-guys, students, punks anh hippies. The all came to see him in 88 and enjoyed the Yelow Shark.<br>I sometimes wonder if I had liked him that much, if he was appealing to every jerk or man-in-the-street.. . ??? .

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 21, 2003 2:58 pm 
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I think it's interesting that zliq stated FZ was considered a big group (tho no Queen or Stones) and played the large halls.  <br><br>I was living in the southwest US (Oklahoma and Texas) when FZ was touring and he played smaller concert venues.  I saw FZ at the Brady Theatre in Tulsa, OK in 1981 (I'd guess it holds under 3000 people) while the Stones right around the same time were playing at the Cotton Bowl (gotta hold over 60,000).  Were the venues FZ played in other parts of America the smallish venues too?<br><br>I also think it's interesting that FZ records cost almost 1/2 months pay on the blackmarket during the Soviet era.<br><br>VCF

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There isn't much chance that you'll get people to like you. The best that most folks can hope for is that people will put up with their shit. MTF

Revel in your otherness. MK

STILL pissed at Tipper. VCF


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