Why was Zappa so popular?

Discussion in 'Sidewinders Bar & Grille' started by MetalPedal, Sep 15, 2018.

  1. MetalPedal

    MetalPedal Senior Stratmaster

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    Get that he was a great guitar player but most of his music sounds like an orchestra tuning up before the concert. Was the joke on us?

    Maybe my brain isn’t wired for the enjoyment of harmonic dissonance.
     
  2. Paperback Rocker

    Paperback Rocker Do it or screw it.

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    Capable of great harmony but chose weirdness most of the time instead. I can't get into it, either.
     
  3. Electgumbo

    Electgumbo Not Of This Earth

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    I stumbled on to him quite by accident. But I’m glad I did. At least one of the best lives bands I’ve ever seen was his. He’s like a composer pretending to be a rock musician.

    I was listening to a lot of jazz back then and Fusion was happening. Zappa fit right in with Weather Report or Return To Forever.... but with more humor and sex...
     
  4. MetalPedal

    MetalPedal Senior Stratmaster

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    Aptly put
     
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  5. jed mac

    jed mac Strat-Talk Member

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    I often wondered that my self.
     
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  6. Paperback Rocker

    Paperback Rocker Do it or screw it.

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    I thoroughly enjoy Steve Vai's Flex-able album, which is influenced by Zappa. Highly recommended.



     
  7. blille

    blille Strat-Talker

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    I consider Peaches en Regalia a masterpiece


    And frankly, he had a bunch of accessible hilarious songs




    Etc etc

    All IMHO, YMMV etc
     
  8. circles

    circles Resident Pinball Enthusiast

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    One of my favorite composers and guitar players. 'Dislikers' gonna 'dislike", and to each his own.
     
  9. Stratoman10

    Stratoman10 Dr. Stratster Silver Member

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    Well there's the rock Zappa, the Jazz Zappa, the classical Zappa, the Avant Garde Zappa etc. The man covered a lot of territory. And he was a totally serious musician, no sloppy stuff allowed. It's not for the faint hearted or casual listener. Sure there's the obvious stuff, say Yellow Snow, but even then there's a whole lot going on than appears on the surface. And a lot of the live stuff was heavily improvised but still at a seriously high level and if you aren't a fan a lot of it goes right over your head
     
  10. Paperback Rocker

    Paperback Rocker Do it or screw it.

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    I love his work with Moon Unit.
     
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  11. sp8ctre

    sp8ctre Strat-Talker

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    Political commentary, social awareness, comedy, great composer and guitar player...either you get it or you don't I guess.

    ...did I mention how great he was live? Saw him 7 or 8 times.

    Billy the Mountain anyone?





     
  12. wayoutjohn

    wayoutjohn Strat-Talker

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    Love Zappa, miss Zappa...

     
  13. Paperback Rocker

    Paperback Rocker Do it or screw it.

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    Listening to these posts, the music's cool, but I just can't get past the vocals and sometimes the lyrics.
     
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  14. rolandson

    rolandson Most Honored Senior Member

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    My introduction to mainline Jazz was at the hands of Frank Zappa.

    Got talked into going to a Zappa show in the early seventies that I really didn't have any interest in. Expecting Mud Shark and headless chickens sort of thing.

    But when I was seated in front of a stage with a full orchestra tuning up I suspected that something was afoot.

    What I was treated to was an example of some of the tightest, high quality, big band jazz music ever to grace my city. Such that the next day, trumpet in hand, I auditioned for the NW Jazz Society Big Band.

    It took another year and two more tries before I was accepted. Ya had to actually know something about the genre to play it.

    I thank Zappa for that every day.

    I've never listened to any of his other stuff.
     
  15. Percy

    Percy Most Honored Senior Member

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  16. Bcorig

    Bcorig Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    He was a thoughtful, funny, melodic, skilled guitar player and musician. When a Freak Out was released I was 15 and got it right away.
     
  17. abnormaltoy

    abnormaltoy Mouth draggin' knuckle breather Silver Member

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    Weed and other substances.

    I never liked him/them...I also never hated them, I just did not enjoy them. I found the music neither relaxing, stimulating, emotionally stirring or even pleasantly hum-able. ;)

    But that is my opinion and my opinion is not universal.
     
  18. blille

    blille Strat-Talker

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    I’m afraid you may have matured out of guitar forums. [emoji23]
     
  19. abnormaltoy

    abnormaltoy Mouth draggin' knuckle breather Silver Member

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    How 'bout if I pitch a hissy...can I stay?
     
  20. RaySachs

    RaySachs Senior Stratmaster Gold Supporting Member

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    I saw him a couple of times during his “Shut Up and Play Yer Guitar” period, and that’s exactly what he did. I loved the guy. Hell of a player, hell of a composer, funny as hell before the Shut Up stuff. Had me seriously consider dental floss tycoonery as a career choice (Yippee-I-OH-TYE-AAAY). And he helped bring us the overwhelmingly weird genius that was Captain Beefheart. Those were very different times than these!