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Frank Zappa

Frank Zappa

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Did Frank Zappa Invent Music Streaming?

Way back in 1982, Frank Zappa said “Ordinary phonograph record merchandising as it exists today is a stupid process which concerns itself essentially with moving pieces of plastic wrapped in pieces of cardboard from one location to another” in his Proposal For A System To Replace Phonograph Record Merchandising.

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Getty Images
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47 Years Ago: Frank Zappa Releases His First Solo Album Away From Mothers, ‘Lumpy Gravy’

Frank Zappa's first solo album, Lumpy Gravy, was released in May 1968.

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Ron Case, Getty Images
Ron Case, Getty Images
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46 Years Ago: Frank Zappa Mixes Genres on the Experimental ‘Uncle Meat’

By the time Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention released their fifth album, Uncle Meat, in April 1969, it was evident that he was a creative, prolific and adventurous force.

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Zappa Records
Zappa Records
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36 Years Ago: Frank Zappa Releases ‘Sheik Yerbouti’

On many levels — creative, personal, and business-related — 1979 would go down as a banner year in the long and storied career of Frank Zappa.

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Frank Zappa
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Remembering Frank Zappa

December 4, 1993, a one of a kind musical artist and vary cool dude Frank Zappa died of prostate cancer. During his life Frank put out 62 albums starting with Freak Out which was released in 1966. His last collection The Yellow Shark, came out in the first week of November 1993, a month before his untimely death.

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Frank Zappa
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20 Years Ago: Frank Zappa Dies

Frank Zappa was one of the most innovative and versatile rock musicians of his generation, creating a vast body of work that encompassed almost every genre of music -- but he wouldn't have wanted to hear it. The mercurial genius actively resisted those kinds of labels and effusive public praise, focusing instead on the work itself in a career that spanned more than three decades. He died on Dec. 4, 1993 at the age of 52 after a long battle with prostate cancer.

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Smoke on the Water
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42 Years Ago: Frank Zappa Concert Fire Inspires ‘Smoke on the Water’

On Dec. 4, 1971, the small town of Montreux, Switzerland, became a place forever linked to rock history. A fire at the Montreux Casino during a concert by Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention inspired Deep Purple's classic 'Smoke on the Water.'

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45 Years Ago: Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention Release ‘Cruising With Ruben & the Jets’

On Dec. 2, 1968, a mysterious group of pompadoured cartoon faces turned back the clock of music history to highlight the golden era of doo-wop with their self-referencing album ‘Cruising With Ruben & the Jets.’

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Warner Bros.
Warner Bros.
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35 Years Ago: Frank Zappa Releases ‘Studio Tan’

If Frank Zappa was still alive, you can bet he'd be the last person who'd want to celebrate the anniversary of 'Studio Tan,' an album he didn't sanction, sequence, or even approve cover art for. He was caught in a legal battle with Warner Bros. Records and former manager Herb Cohen at the time. On top of that, none of the songs included on 'Studio Tan' were even recorded in 1978; most of the tracks allegedly date from sessions between 1974 and 1976, with a couple of cuts even going as far back as 1969.

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George Duke
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George Duke of the Mothers of Invention Dies

Keyboard pioneer George Duke, whose long list of credits included a lengthy stint with Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention, has reportedly passed away at the age of 67.

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Frank Zappa
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25 Years Ago: Frank Zappa Releases ‘You Can’t Do That On Stage Anymore, Vol. 1′

One of the most confounding musicians ever to grace the rock genre, Frank Zappa had a penchant for taking what essentially amounted to full-blown avant garde compositions and arranging them for rock ensemble playing. His bizarre, conceptual live performances were an astonishing mix of exceptional musicianship, onstage theatrics and pop culture satire. On May 16, 1988 Zappa showcased some of the standout live tracks from various eras of his development by releasing a career-spanning double live album titled 'You Can't Do That On Stage Anymore, Vol 1.'

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Evening Standard/Hulton Archive, Getty Images
Evening Standard/Hulton Archive, Getty Images
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Two Frank Zappa Albums To Be Reissued On Vinyl

The Zappa Family Trust, headed by Frank Zappa's widow Gail, has announced that select titles from the massive Zappa catalog will be finding their way to vinyl this summer. In June, Zappa's Barking Pumpkin label will put out editions of 1973's 'Over-Nite Sensation' and the 1966 classic 'Freak Out!,' joining the recently released 'Finer Moments,' a collection of live material from the early-'70s.

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