Recounts the life and career of the inventive and controversial rock musician, and includes information on his philosophies on art, his opinions on the music industry, and his thoughts on raising children.
Few names carry such formidable mystique and rabid cult status as Captain Beefheart, who led various lineups of his Magic Band to make some of the most startling, ground-breaking albums of the last century. In 1982, he retired to concentrate on painting, leaving the mythology he’d stoked himself to grow untamed over the years. John French is better qualified than anyone to talk about Beefheart, joining the Magic Band in 1966 at the age of 17 just before recording their Safe As Milk debut album, finding himself plunged into a tyrannical regime which would dominate his life for the next 14 years as he played a major role in eight subsequent albums, including translating the mindblowing avant-blues assault of 1969’s Trout Mask Replica into readable music for the Magic Band from the Captain’s piano poundings under torturous conditions he likens to a cult. Spanning nearly a thousand pages, French’s remarkable memoir starts with a vivid description of the rarely-documented early 60s Lancaster garage-rock scene which also spawned names like Ry Cooder and Beefheart’s childhood friend and later nemesis Frank Zappa, whose appearances in the book will enthrall his own legion of fans. As his spellbinding, often shocking tale unwinds, he encounters names including jazz giant Ornette Coleman, Jim Morrison and Paul McCartney, writing with dry, sometimes surreal humour and disarming honesty about his old boss and even himself, occasionally bringing in his old Magic Band comrades to jog his memory. The book is packed with new revelations, many previously-unseen photos and enough anecdotes to keep the Beefheart faithful ruminating for years, French finally crystallising and bringing to life over 40 years of legend and speculation in what has to be the ultimate book on the mercurial genius of Captain Beefheart.
Barry Miles knew Frank Zappa intimately and was present at the recording of some of his most important albums. This sparkling biography brings the Zappa the musician and composer, Zappa the controversialist and Zappa the family man (despite his love of groupies, he was married for more than 30 years) together for the first time. Barry Miles' biography follows Zappa from his sickly Italian-American childhood in the 1940s (when his father, Frank senior, worked for the US military and was used to test the efficacy of new biological warfare agents) to his death from cancer in the 1990s. Miles shows how Zappa's goal had been to become a classical composer, until he realised that he would starve to death pursuing this ambition in post-war America. In an effort to make music people would actually listen to, in the mid-1960s he joined a noisy new band called 'The Mothers of Invention'. Before long, Zappa had taken over as singer, song writer and lead guitarist and together they exploded on to the San Francisco freak scene. Following the release of recordings such as Freak Out, Absolutely Free, We're Only In It For the Money and Hot Rats, Zappa's reputation in the United States and in Europe, especially the UK, Germany and Holland, took off. When the Berlin wall fell, Frank was surprised to learn that his extravagant music embodied sixties liberty for a generation of dissidents (including Vaclav Havel, who invited Zappa to be his minister for culture). Frank Zappa is an authoritative and hugely enjoyable portrait of a singular man and a vivid evocation of the West Coast scene.
The indispensable consumers' guide to the music of Frank Zappa - the genius of the absurd, and one of the most prolific and unpredictable characters of 20th century music.A thorough analysis of Zappa's complete recorded output, from the early days of the Mothers Of Invention, through his more avant-garde compositions and classical projects to the most recent posthumous releases. The guide features:An album by album analysisA full Zappa bibliographyDetails of when and where the music was recorded, including all collaborating artistsA special section concerning compilation, archive and bootleg releasesSixteen pages of full-colour images
Frank Zappa's reputation as one of rock's maverick geniuses has continued to grow since his death in 1993. Revised and updated, Electric Don Quixote is still the most comprehensive chronicle of his extraordinary life and career. Author, Neil Slaven, brings together the complex strands of Zappa's life and work in a book that will please not just Zappa fans but anyone interested in the history of rock music. Fully illustrated and includes a comprehensive discography.
This collection of essays, documented by an international and interdisciplinary array of scholars, represents the first academically focused volume exploring the creative idiolect of Frank Zappa. Several of the authors are known for contributing significantly to areas such as popular music, cultural, and translation studies, with expertise and interests ranging from musicology to poetics. The publication presents the reader with an understanding of the ontological depth of Zappa's legacy by relating the artist and his texts to a range of cultural, social, technological and musicological factors, as encapsulated in the book's title - Frank Zappa and the And. Zappa's interface with religion, horror, death, movies, modernism, satire, freaks, technology, resistance, censorship and the avant-garde are brought together analytically for the first time, and approached non chronologically, something that strongly complies with the non linear perspective of time Zappa highlights in both his autobiography and recordings. The book employs a variety of analytical approaches, ranging from literary and performance theory, 'horrality' and musicology, to post modern and textually determined readings, and serves as a unique and invaluable guide to Zappa's legacy and creative force.
Robert Hirsch’s Exploring Color Photography is the thinking photographer’s guide to color imagemaking. Now in its sixth edition, this pioneering text clearly and concisely instructs students and intermediate photographers in the fundamental aesthetic and technical building blocks needed to create thought-provoking digital and analog color photographs. Taking both a conceptual and pragmatic approach, the book avoids getting bogged down in complex, ever-changing technological matters, allowing it to stay fresh and engaging. Known as the Bible of Color Photography, its stimulating assignments encourage students to be adventurous and to take responsibility for learning and working independently. The emphasis on design and postmodern theoretical concepts stresses the thought process behind the creation of intriguing images. It’s extensive and inspiring collection of images and accompanying captions allow makers to provide insight into how photographic methodology was utilized to visualize and communicate their objectives. The text continues to deliver inspiring leadership in the field of color photography with the latest accurate information, ideas, commentary, history, a diverse collection of contemporary images, and expanded cellphone photography coverage. A "Problem Solving and Writing" chapter offers methods and exercises that help one learn to be a visual problem solver and to discuss and write succinctly about the concepts at the foundation of one’s work. Exploringcolorphotography.com, the companion website, has been revamped and updated to feature more student and teacher resources, including a new web-based timeline: As It Happened: A Chronological History of Color Photography.