Captain Beefheart and Frank Zappa, giving your Indie musicians a run for their money
There was nothing more far-out and mainstream all at once than Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention.
The word “mothers” would have been a red flag not to let your mother hear any of the Zappa albums. “Hey mom, listen to this cool album Freak Out by Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention.”
Zappa could actually get his LPs released, all 60 of them. Plenty of other groups like The Fugs were just too far out to hit the mainstream.
Zappa produced Captain Beefheart, who died yesterday at the ripe old age for a rocker of 69. Don Van Vliet, known as Captain Beefheart on stage, lived with MS and died from complications of his disability. When rock music petered out, he went back to his first love – art.
Zappa died at 53 from prostate cancer which seems ironically mundane for such a crazy rocker.
Despite listening the Freak Out and We’re Only In It For the Money, I don’t remember any of the songs except those two lines. “Suzy Creamcheese where are you” and “Suzy Creamcheese honey what’s got into ya?” They were “in” jokes that separated the “cool” from the “square.”