SUNDAY 12/23


Two days after what would have been Frank Zappa's 72nd birthday, offspring Dweezil Zappa will bring his six-years-running Zappa Plays Zappa tour to the Neptune. I had long avoided listening to Frank Zappa for a variety of shortsighted reasons. With a vast body of work—roughly 60 official albums during his lifetime, and countless live bootlegs and posthumous releases—it's easier to ignore a prolific musician such as Zappa (or the Fall, or Sun Ra, or the Mountain Goats) than waste time picking the "wrong" initial record to get into. And like many others who take rock 'n' roll much too seriously, I believed he committed the heinous and unforgivable crime of making comedic songs with groan-inducing titles like "Why Does It Hurt When I Pee?" and "Don't Eat the Yellow Snow," among others.

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