Frank Zappa & The Mothers of Invention – Rykodisc CDR of Unreleased '68 Live Concert
A Rykodisc CDR of unreleased live Mothers of Invention, in concert at the Royal Festival Hall, London, 1968. In the early 70's a friend gave Recordmecca's Jeff Gold some unreleased 60's Zappa multi-track master tapes of live concerts. To our knowledge, these have never been bootlegged. After trying repeatedly over a number of years to return these to Zappa, in 1999 Gold sent a reel to Rykodisc for review and possible release. Mastering engineer Toby Mountain mixed down the 4 track tape, burned this CD, but ultimately Ryko returned the tape with word that Gail Zappa wasn't interested in releasing it. It is fascinating live material, but for some reason the estate just wasn't interested. Tired of dragging these around Gold donated the tapes to an archive where they would be preserved. This CDR is 26 minutes long, and as it's from the master, is perfect quality. The tape begins with Giorgio Gomelski ringing a gong, Zappa speaks about him, followed by Ian Underwood, Artie Tripp and Bunk Gardner playing 'Trio for Piano, Clarinet and Percussion.' Zappa then narrates a 'play' with music, involving playing avant garde music versus rock and roll. Highlights include Don Preston doing yoga 'to alleviate stress;' Motorhead trying to 'con' his way into the 'other band—the Robot Combo,' who's uniforms he covets (Zappa says he will join them, 'like it or not;' Jimmy Carl Black asking Motorhead how he expects to 'get laid' in London if he isn't playing rock and roll (Zappa says he isn't going to 'get pussy unless he looks like a pop star'); Motorhead being outfitted in a mod jacket and Jimi Hendrix wig; Roy Estrada begging to join the Robot Combo , but Motorhead says they don't accept Mexicans, Roy begs, auditions singing in an operatic/falsetto, but the Robots 'don't like his voice, clothes or anything about The Mexican;' more music, more Zappa narration, and then the tape runs out. While this is only one reel of a 4 reel concert, as the description implies, it's Zappa and the Mothers at their craziest. At one point Zappa instructs Roy to do something 'like he did in the first show,' thus indicating this was the second show at the Festival Hall. Rare as can be.
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