Frank Zappa

Frank Zappa would have been 80 years old this week.

He was one artist who everyone found hard to pigeonhole which is good. He composed everything from pop, jazz and rock to orchestral.

His debut album in 1966 was called Freak Out and then released a further six albums before the sixties had finished. Arguably, his best-known album is Hot Rats from 1969. In 1970, he released three albums, Burnt Weeny Sandwich, Weasels Ripped My Flesh and Chunga’s Revenge.

Throughout his early career he was back by his regular band known as the Mothers of Invention until he broke up the band in 1969.

In December 1971 whilst on stage at Casino de Montreux in Switzerland, the band’s equipment was destroyed when a flare set off by an audience member started a fire that burned down the casino. This incident was immortalised in the song Smoke on the Water by Deep Purple.

He died of prostate cancer in December 1993 shortly before his 53rd birthday.

Let’s enjoy this live performance of Dancing Fool from 1981.

2 comments for “Frank Zappa

  1. Dave VanMusicMaster
    December 20, 2020 at 12:47 pm

    pure coincidence that you should post this song now

    I was playing a cassette tape I recorded from Radio 1 in early 1980, and this track is on there.
    It was something Peter Powell would play occasionally

    I used to record stuff using a microphone placed in front of a 1950s transistor radio – so the quality isn’t too brilliant, but it’s still listenable

    Quite an unusual choice of song for Radio 1 … but always good to hear it

  2. December 20, 2020 at 12:50 pm

    It was indeed and I remember Peter Powell saying he like Frank Zappa even though you wouldn’t think it was his type of music. Maybe he was just trying to be trendy. But then again, his all-time favourite single (then) was Love and Affection by Joan Armatrading.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.