yep, you need "Chunga's Revenge"
also Mothers "Filmore East 1971" for the sheer exhuberance that Mark Volman and Howard Kaylan contribute.
and then, of course Zappa & Beefheart "Bongo Fury"
oh, and "Shut up 'n play yer guitar"
Roxy and elsewhere ( double live)
Vinnie Colaiuta plays drums on it and being a drummer that is like musical heroin. Oh yeah don't follow the blue light....
I really like "One Size Fits All". Great guitar work and all the songs are excellant.
I second Shut Up And Play Your Guitar, will make you want to cry... And the Grand Wazzu.
I'm a Zappa fan too, saw him live several times. When I feel like Zappa instrumental, I turn to The Grand Wazoo. I've been listening to it for 30+ years, and I'm not sick of it yet.
I agree with Rooster: "Roxy and Elsewhere".
Imaginary Diseases is a great all instrumental collection of his live recordings from the family archives released in the past year or so.
I found a copy of "Burnt Weenie Sandwich" recently, and it is heavy on the instrumental. It's early, raw and quite good.
Don't recall exactly how instrumental:
Weasels Ripped My Flesh
Grand Wazoo, Make a Jazz Noise, and Wazoo are essential and mainly instrumental
I just do not get the Grand Wazoo, I recently bought it based on a Stereophile "To Die For rating" and just think it sounds 'noisy' after several listenings,
oh well, different strokes...
"Just Another Band From LA"
BONGO FURY & Zoot Allures ! if you like Zappa you must have them all ! I have around 70 Zappa cds
london symphany is my fav
Belief that there is one best FZ release requires defective playback equipment or more likely egregious user/listener error. A lot of his ideas mutate and resurface throughout the catalog. Uncle Meat, Lumpy Gravy and Weasels Ripped My Flesh lay down a fair chunk of early compositional foundation. Hot Rats, Waka Jawaka (Hot Rats II) and Grand Wazoo are also superb. The good poop doesn't stop here though. Overnight Sensation, Apostrophe, Roxy and Elswhere, One Size Fits All, Zoot Allures and the Joe's Garage stuff all have some amazing parts on em'. Trying to sum up Zappa's output is not a small task, but compositions like Twenty Small Cigars, Peaches en Regalia, The Black Page, Echidna's Arf, King Kong, Zoot Allures, Sofa, Easter in Watermelon Hay, The Little House I Used To Live In and Inca Roads will probably stick around for quite awhile.
'Weasels Rip My Flesh' & 'Live At The Fillmore', both Mothers albums, were released around the 'Hot Rats' & 'Chungas Revenge' period, and while not being totally instrumental (although there are some amazing instrumental cuts on both!), they totally fit in the sound amd mindset of FZ at that point in time. He was on fire at this point of his career! These records are must-haves for any FZ fan.
You can't do that on stage anymore vol 2 +6; Uncle Meat ;200 Motels,for the awesome classical music performed by the Royal Philharmonic orchestra ;and FZ plays FZ. Uncle Meat is about my top fav.I couldn't live without any of the above.I saw him live every year starting in 1970 at the fillmore east when his grayhair mother walked down the isle to introduce him and band.Awesome.
Somewhat redundant to previous posts...
Burnt Weeny Sandwich
Shut Up and Play Your Guitar
Absolutely, get "Chunga's Revenge".
"Orange County Lumber Truck" on Weasels is fantastic.
I love the stuff on Hot Rats.
(Good recordings on Rycodisc)
Zappa was so musical that even his stuff that has vocals could arguably be considered in this list. That said, I would recommend some that have not yet been mentioned: On Sheik Yerbouti, Wild Love and Yo Mama are some phenomenal instrumental pieces with Terry Bozzio on drums and the Brecker Brothers on horns. Same with Zappa Live in NY, check out Purple Lagoon, same band as Sheik. I didn't see Sleep Dirt mentioned. This was another Terry Bozzio era album that has some rare acoustic guitar playing by Frank. Simply awesome. I tried listening to that LP the other night and just couldn't get through it because of all the pops. I just wore that album out. Gotta replace it. And to finish it off, Cruising with Ruben and the Jets, We're Only In It For The Money, Absolutely Free. I just ordered Trans-Fusion and I see the family just released Philly '76 (more Bozzio). As you can see I am a former drummer so I would say anything with Terry Bozzio, Ralph Humphrey, Chester Thompson, Ansley Dunbar and of course the greatest - Vinnie Colaiuta and you can't go wrong. Sorry for rambling and going off topic but .......
Yo Mntnman62 - great stuff. Do appreciate the 'rambling'
fillmore live , maybe because of all the weed. flo and eddie . mudsharke
I just got the live album Buffalo. Some people have said the sound is tinny, but I disagree. Some phenomenal Vinnie Colaiuta. One of Frank's best bands after the Roxy and Elsewhere band. Frankly they are very different in style. I devour anything Zappa lately.
i like the stuff with bozio and adrian belew, zoot allures, shiek yerbouti era..black napkins was always one of my favorite solos and i love adrian belew's vocal on city of tiny lights...some of my fondest concert memories too.
Adrian Belew is amazing! I once saw him at a venue with only 100 people and he rocked it until 1:30 AM. We were all crowding the stage to get closer to this dynamo and you could tell he loved it too.
I will look into those albums...
ahhh yes, mr belew is a master! i saw him many times... first few with king crimson, then many times solo (and of course with zappa). i used to take a lot of heat when i was a kid for wearing my twang bar king t shirt everyday!
TWANG BAR KIIIINNNNGGGGG!
I am jealous you saw him with King Crimson. What an awesome group as well...
it was special. saw them on the discipline tour, then beat and three of a perfect pair. all in small venues. those were some of the greatest assemblies of musicians i have ever seen, just remarkable.
I love that era as well. Terry Ted was most definitely Frank's most monster drummer in a theatrical sense. The Family Trust just released a double cd of a 1976 show in Philly. Ray White, Patrick O'Hearn, Bozzio, Eddie Jobson. Great version of Black Napkins to open the second cd. I've seen Dweezil's tribute to his Dad many times. While he and the band keep getting better, Dweezil can't come close to replicating his Dad's guitar playing. I appreciate it though because they are the only ones playing Frank's music in a way that does it justice.