Saturday, December 18, 2010
Frank Zappa at 70
Frank Zappa was born and died in the month of December. This year, the mighty Frank would have been or should have been 70 years old. My dad is 72 and he's fine, so I miss Frank.
I suppose he shouldn't have subsisted on a diet of coffee and cigarettes, but no matter, it was that creative genius and mind that was and is still amazing. Of course, he's most noted for his more scatological-type song and lyric, but he was well-versed in numerous forms including Classical, Avante Garde, Pop, Rock, Country, Jazz, etc.
And unlike some of Zappa's contemporaries that dabbled in other genres of music like Paul McCartney, Zappa really embraced these forms and made them his own and effortlessly. For me, McCartney sometimes seems awkward when he's doing Classical work, while Zappa was always completely at ease.
What's also kinda sad is that they make this big deal that it would have been John Lennon's 70th birthday, but apart from one magazine tribute I saw, little has been mentioned about Zappa's 70th. It probably has to do more with how these men died, than the unique talents they both possessed.
And they certainly worked together, back in 1971. The results appear on Lennon's "Some Time in New York City" and on Zappa's "Playground Psychotics".
At least son Dweezil keeps the torch lit high for his father and is continuing to tour around with his excellent "Zappa Plays Zappa" show. A definite must-see if you love Zappa's music...and even if you don't.
Frank Zappa: December 21, 1940 - December 4, 1993