Friday, December 5, 2008

Zappadan story time.

I know, I've written about this before, but this "brush with greatness" was a big day for me.  On 9/17/1977 (my 24th birthday) Frank Zappa played a concert at the LSU Assembly Center in Baton Rouge, LA.  It was a big deal, IMO, that FZ was playing in the south but a bigger deal that it was my birthday, cause it is all about me ya know. 

The concert was just amazing. Never have I heard a band so tight with such amazing musicianship. Not a single note was out of place and yet it all felt so spontaneous and free. The only problem was the sound system was a little fuzzy and distorted at times. We were 30th row center, orchestra level so we should have been in a real sweet spot acoustically.

So the concert is over and we decide to stay overnight at the Hilton instead of driving back to New Orleans. The next morning we head down to the coffee shop to have breakfast and every, single place in the coffee shop was a big mess except for *gasp* the four seats at the counter right next to Frank Zappa!!!  We didn't want to disturb him so we were going to leave when he looked over and motioned us to come take a seat. The second we sat down his body guard, a dead ringer for Mr. Clean, rushed over and stood next to him. FZ motioned to him that all was okay and we told him how much we enjoyed the concert. I asked him who did the sound and he said it was his own system and his own guys running it. I just said, "oh" and he was quickly wanting to know if there was a problem. We all described as clearly as possible where we were sitting and what the issues were. He was very thoughtful, thanked us for letting him know, and said he had an idea what the problem could be. BTW, two of the people I was with are musicians and good, knowledgeable ones at that, so they were able to describe clearly the problem.

FZ could not have been kinder or more gracious. Well, he could have bought our breakfast, but that's okay. 


susan s. said...

You lucky thing, you!!! I'm jealous!

SamL said...


I had no idea you were a Zappa fan. I had the good fortune to see him twice in Memphis when I was there. Both times were during the mid-70's. Of course I can't remember exactly.

Grandmère Mimi said...

What a great story, Roseann. That he motioned you to join him is beyond exciting.