Zappa Plays Zappa Again on Summer Tour
Frank Zappa’s music will return to the stage this summer, once again under the direction of his son Dweezil. Zappa Plays Zappa will embark on a North American tour beginning July 18 at Winnipeg’s Centennial Hall. A total of 30 performance dates are set for the tour’s first leg, which concludes in Los Angeles at the end of August. Following a break, Zappa Plays Zappa embarks on a 17-city European tour that includes dates in the U.K., Netherlands, Switzerland, Germany, France, Belgium, Denmark, Norway and Sweden.
In concept and performance, Zappa Plays Zappa offers audiences an opportunity to spend an evening with Frank Zappa’s music, performed by a group of top-flight musicians who have been schooled in its subtleties. Rather than approach Zappa’s music as a tribute band, the musicians in Zappa Plays Zappa perform the late composer’s works as a symphony orchestra would present pieces by a master composer.
Zappa Plays Zappa is an undertaking with a higher purpose in mind beyond filling seats with concert goers. Dweezil Zappa explains, “I think my Dad's music deserves to be heard by a wider audience. I really think he's been misunderstood for far too long, which brings me back to why I'm doing this: I'm so in awe of his accomplishments and want more and more people to know about him, and I think the best way for people to first discover his music is on a visceral level in a live situation. I think you have to be confronted with the complexity and the beautiful subtlety of all of it to fully appreciate the artistry of it."
Frank Zappa died in 1993 after a career that saw him record more than 80 albums. Today, the younger Zappa and his bandmates are taking full advantage of the wealth and breadth of the material contained therein. "What we're preparing to do for this tour is perhaps even more complex than what we did on the first tour," says Zappa. "Last year we learned about 40 songs from a very popular period of Frank's career, and this year we will be learning about 30 more new ones that are somewhat more obscure. The tour will include material from [the albums] We're Only In It for the Money, Absolutely Free, Weasels Ripped My Flesh, Joe's Garage, You Are What You Is, The Yellow Shark and much more, including orchestral works.”
The music will be accompanied by large-screen videos of Frank Zappa. Dweezil will rotate Frank Zappa video performances over the course of the tour.
As with last year’s tour, Dweezil will perform on lead guitar. Performers include veterans from last year’s tour: Joe Travers (drums), Billy Hulting (percussion), Scheila Gonzalez (keyboards, saxophone, vocals), Aaron Arntz (keyboards/trumpet), Peter Griffin (bass) and Jaime Kime (rhythm guitar). Joining the tour this year is Ray White, the vocalist who toured and recorded with Frank Zappa during the period of such albums as Tinsel Town Rebellion, You Are What You Is and Zappa in New York (his is the lead vocal on the song "The Illinois Enema Bandit").
Dweezil is also working on bringing Zappa Plays Zappa into the home with a feature-length performance DVD that documents the 2006 tour. It is expected to be released early this summer, concurrent with the 2007 tour.
Zappa Plays Zappa 2007 Tour Dates:
18 Winnipeg, Manitoba, Centennial Concert Hall
19 Detroit Lakes, MN, 10,000 Lakes Festival
20 Chicago, IL, Centennial Concert Hall
21 Milwaukee, WI, The Rave
22 Indianapolis, IN, Egyptian Room
24 Cincinnati, OH, Moonlite Gardens
25 Erie, PA, Warner Theatre
26 Columbus, OH, LC Pavilion
27 Detroit, MI, Meadow Brook Festival
28 Cleveland, OH, Cain Park
30 Toronto, Ontario, Hummingbird
31 Montreal, Quebec, Metropolis
1 Quebec City, Quebec, Albert Rousseau Hall
2 Hampton Beach, NH, Hampton Beach Casino
4 Boston, MA, Fleet Boston Pavilion
5 Red Bank, NJ, Count Basie Theatre
6 Westbury, NY, North Fork Theatre at Westbury
8 Philadelphia, PA, Electric Factory
9 Baltimore, MA, Ram's Head Tavern
10 Norfolk, VA, NorVa
11 Asheville, NC, Thomas Wolfe Auditorium
13 Tulsa, OK, Cain's Ballroom
15 Albuquerque, NM, Kiva Auditorium
16 Tucson, AZ, Fox Theatre
17 Phoenix, AZ, Dodge Theatre
18 Las Vegas, NV, House of Blues
20 Berkeley, CA, Berkeley Community Theatre
21 San Diego, CA, House of Blues
22 Anaheim, CA, House of Blues
23 Los Angeles, CA, Wiltern Theatre
25 London, UK, Shepherds Bush Empire
26 Tilburg, Netherlands, Koncerthus
27 Amsterdam, Netherlands, New Melkweg
29 Fribourg, Switzerland, Le Fri-Son
30 Munich, Germany Circus Krone
1 Frankfurt, Germany, Jahrhunderthalle
3 Stuttgart, Germany, Beethovensaal
4 Erfurt, Germany, Messehalle
5 Paris, France, Grand Rex
6 Antwerp, Belgium, Elisabeth Hall
8 Arhus, Denmark, The Music House
9 Stavanger, Norway, Koncerthus
10 Bergen, Norway, Peer Gynt
12 Oslo, Norway, Sentrum Scene
13 Lund, Sweden, Olympen
14 Stockholm, Sweden, Cirkus
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