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PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 7:17 am 
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Hi!
Can you guys suggest me some good FZ literature?
So far I've read:

"The real Frank Zappa book"
"The lives & times of Zappa"
"Zappa" by Barry Miles
"Necessity Is...: The Early Years of Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention" by Billy James
"The Words and Music of Frank Zappa" by Kelly Fisher Lowe
And I've got "Zonx" (German translations of Zappa lyrics) lying around here somewhere.

What to get next?
Thanks

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 7:42 am 
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 7:48 am 
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Well, the Ed Mann quote makes me very curious :D

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2013 1:00 pm 
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Dangerous Kitchen by Kevin Courrier is, I think, the best bio besides TRFZB. It's the least opinionating and the least blatantly wrong of the ones I read.
You could also try the Negative Dialects of Poodle Play by Ben Watson, the educational value is doubtful but Zappa himself apparently found it hilarious.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 4:07 am 
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BBP wrote:
Dangerous Kitchen by Kevin Courrier is, I think, the best bio besides TRFZB. It's the least opinionating and the least blatantly wrong of the ones I read.
You could also try the Negative Dialects of Poodle Play by Ben Watson, the educational value is doubtful but Zappa himself apparently found it hilarious.


Thanks BBP
Both of the books you mention were quoted several times in "The Words and Music of Frank Zappa", so I guess they must be a good source for other biographers. The Kevin Courrier book is quite expensive, about 50€, so I ordered the Ben Watson book for 10€ incl. shipping. 8)

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:02 am 
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My 2 cents on the Negative Dialectics of Poodle Play:
Skip the intro, forward, preface whatever he calls it and go right to the main section of the book. If you still like the book after reading the main body, THEN go back and read of the imaginary effects of Adorno on FZ's subconscious. If you start at the beginning you will no longer wish to continue and imo, the main body of the book is good.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:21 am 
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Ok, good to know.

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PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 10:19 am 
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I've read virtually every FZ book out there (including the 'insider' books by former associates). I think the Neil Slaven biography is best because it's relatively unbiased and it's publication was well after FZ passed away.

If you're interested in detailed history of his music on a track-by-track basis you may also want to check out the series of books by Scott Parker.


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 Post subject: re: more zappa books
PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2013 8:51 pm 
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what didja think of the lowe book ¿ kinda pseudo-intellectual & over-ambitious, too many ideas never coming to any conclusion ... poodle play is far more readable, you can jump around without missing too much, be sure to read it all

3 recent books are very easy on the brain and have previously unpublished entertaining stories of the authors' zappa adventures; howard kaylan's book & h.t.brown's confessions of a zappa fanatic, great zappa stories ... also check out the book by zappa's former secretary in the early days titled freak out!

the 1st few scott parker books covers a bootleg discography of sorts, the unique content is the transcriptions of zappa dialog during the bootlegged concerts, between songs, during breaks in songs etc ... his zappa supplement book is also very interesting reading about his research into the 10-lp box that zappa intended to release but never did; 2nd half of this book is the story of studebaker hoch, the guy who started the bootleg label mudshark records, ultimately got popped by the fbi & did some time behind bars [very heavy at times]

if you can find a semi-decent copy of the fz songbook v.1; great artwork, & if you like the music transcription, look for the fz guitar book ...either book, 70 bucks or less, go for it

zappalog is one of the first zappa reference guides ever published, a bit dated these days, but you can get a 2nd edition for ~$20 ... much cooler to read and still use as a reference are the torchum books v.1 thru v.4 about 200 pages each packed with artwork, scans, articles & research & misc. commentary covering everything from official albums & singles, tapes, cd's etc. also boots, books, mags, fanzines, tours, video appearances on so on

them or us written by zappa in '84 was re-published in 2010; it's a screenplay made up from different separate stories, partly narrated by francesco zappa, not for intellectuals or other dead people, tons of conceptual continuity

viva zappa by chevalier & miles' visual documentary, both these are large softcover book with lots of photos & artwork not published in other books ... definitely worth having

3 foreign editions worth considering:

zappa in france; large format coffee table book - get the hardcover - with excellent photos of each year that zappa appeared in france, by christian rose, photographer for a bunch of french rock mags

grand zappa; fine german publication, very large format hardcover book with super hi-res scans of zappa's lp labels ... if yer into vinyl, this is well worth the investment

zappa vox: high quality japanese 2-volume box set with the japanese translation of viva zappa, plus zappa breath, in the year of the plague. v.1 amazing artwork put together by graphic illustrator yasuo yagi

cheapest vox ever:
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Last edited by slime.oofytv.set on Sat Jan 11, 2014 11:33 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 21, 2013 2:39 am 
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Thanks slime, that's a lot of stuff :D

At the moment I prefer reading books with interesting/funny informations and stories about FZ. Some of the books you mention are more like reference works. It's nice to have them if you need to know a very special fact, but you don't really read them. But if I get any of these for a reasonable price I will take them 8)
I forgot to mention it, but I got "Torchum Vol. 3" about a year ago quite cheap, but I barely looked in it. I think all of the informations can also be found in other books or on the internet.

I share your opinion on the Lowe-book: Some interesting points, but they never get anywhere. And he uses a lot of quotes from other authors so he didn't need to write it himself :wink:

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 21, 2013 8:28 am 
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jaypfunk wrote:
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Thanks, Jayp!

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 21, 2013 6:37 pm 
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How about Greg Russo's book? I've heard it's quite exhaustive and well researched.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 5:49 am 
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There's another book that I ordered yesterday out of pure curiosity.

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http://www.amazon.com/Confessions-Of-A- ... roduct_top

Since I didn't write it, I'm wondering if the author of the book is another poster in this forum? :?


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 6:58 am 
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The Idiot Bastard wrote:
jaypfunk wrote:
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Thanks, Jayp!


No problem. GREAT book with some amazing in depth analysis. Not to mention the fact that the back cover photo was supplied by yours truely. :)


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 7:01 am 
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CityHallFred wrote:
There's another book that I ordered yesterday out of pure curiosity.

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http://www.amazon.com/Confessions-Of-A- ... roduct_top

Since I didn't write it, I'm wondering if the author of the book is another poster in this forum? :?


Tom Brown is a true legend in the ZAPPA collecting world. He has one of the largest collections of FZ memorabilia in the world. I don't know if he's ever posted here but he has posted at Zappateers. A really great guy.

Tom Brown is featured on The Grandmothers' "Lookin' Up Grannie's Dress" album. Tom played the drums in Zoogz Rift band. Tom worked at Rhino Records where he compiled the Beat The Boot series.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 7:04 am 
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Here's a great interview with TB if you want to know more about him...

http://www.arf.ru/Misc/tb_int.html

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 11:27 am 
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jaypfunk wrote:
Here's a great interview with TB if you want to know more about him...

http://www.arf.ru/Misc/tb_int.html


Thanks for this info. I'm looking forward to reading his book. From the interview you linked he seems not only knowledgeable but also like a down-to-earth guy (ie. refreshingly different to pseudo-intellectuals like Ben Watson).


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 25, 2013 12:35 pm 
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CityHallFred wrote:
There's another book that I ordered yesterday out of pure curiosity.

Image

http://www.amazon.com/Confessions-Of-A- ... roduct_top

Since I didn't write it, I'm wondering if the author of the book is another poster in this forum? :?


i read it. it's pretty good.
the guy knows his shit. the best chapter was about how he, while working at Rhino Records, got to extensively tour the vault, for a few days, i think, and take pictures/notes to see what recordings/video existed that could later be released by Rhino. this had the potential to be a pretty big scoop in the Zappa world, but the guys never gives up the goods! he doesn't go into ANY explicit detail about what he saw. i mean, this guy spent days going through shit and can't even tell us what was in there without being vague as hell.
this book would have been 100 times better if he would have just published his notes from the vault.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 29, 2013 11:55 am 
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Can anyone here tell something about the "Zappa meets Havel" book?
It is about quite an interesting subject. Is it worth reading?

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 10:22 pm 
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VacuumCleaner wrote:
Can anyone here tell something about the "Zappa meets Havel" book?
it's written in german, about 300 pages, no pictures

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2013 7:24 am 
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I know that it's in German and that's fine for me 8)
I was just hoping someone could tell me anything about it.
Now I've ordered it for 3,82€ and when I finished it I can tell you evrything!

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 04, 2013 10:40 am 
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I finished this yesterday : Being Frank: My time w Frank Zappa by Nigey Lennon

It was a quick read, found in my local library. Worth the time

and this is up next : Necessity is - : the early years of Frank Zappa & the Mothers of Invention /
by James, Billy .


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 04, 2013 11:23 am 
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As long as you realize Lennon is a nutcase with long thumbs...

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 04, 2013 4:01 pm 
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Detritos Cósmicos (in Portuguese)

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 05, 2013 10:55 am 
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BBP wrote:
As long as you realize Lennon is a nutcase with long thumbs...


I realize lots of things, and believe very little too


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