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Zappa "a jack-off of all trades, and master of none"
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Edited Aug 28, 2013, 10:00
Re: Zappa "a jack-off of all trades, and master of none"
Aug 28, 2013, 09:20
I saw him at Hammersmith in 79 and at the time it was musically mind altering. An amazing band playing music of a complexity that beat the Prog masters hands down at the degrees-of-musical-difficulty game.

At the time I hadn't heard any of the music that influenced him and the only Zappa album I had owned was Zoot Allures which I bought after hearing Black Napkins on Nicky Horne when I was in a major Santana phase.

Now I know the sources it is all a lot less impressive though only in the same way that early Led Zeppelin pales a little when you hear Blind Willie Johnson or Garnet Mimms. I would be sad to be without Yellow Shark, Burnt Weeny Sandwich, the Guitar series, Roxy and Elsewhere and maybe the first two volumes of YCDTOSA though I have to say a lot of that Penman article had me wincing in recognition.

"Zappa early on got saddled with a job description of iconoclast, and there is nothing more wearing than nearly 30 years of neat, tidy, conscientious, sniping iconoclasm"

The best part of half a century later I think that's pretty fair really. Though I would put him and George Clinton in more or less the same pot rather than putting Clinton in the pantheon of true otherness with Miles and Sun Ra, Cage and Feldman. I think that's the difference between true originality and original eclecticism.

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