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Serving drummers and percussionists since 1996.

Frank Zappa (December 21, 1940 – December 4, 1993) started his musical career at the age of 13 on the drums. He later switched to guitar and made his mark as a singer/songwriter/guitarist. Zappa has always kept a strong interest in rhythm and percussion which is why his bands have been noted for the excellent drummers and percussionists. Works such as The Black Page (see drum chart below) are notorious for virtuosity and complexity in rhythmic structure and arrangement, featuring radical changes of tempo and meter as well as short, densely arranged passages contrasted by free-form breaks and extended improvisations. Terry Bozzio, who played for Zappa in the late 1970's is on record as saying that Zappa's writing for percussion is as difficult and complex as anything else he has played.

The tune Alien Orifice appears on Frank Zappa Meets the Mothers of Prevention as well as You Can't Do That On Stage Anymore - Vol. 6. Here's a video clip of live performance of this tune from back in 1981 where you can see a very young Chad Wackerman (drums) and Ed Mann (percussion). I won't get into all the political and social satire that Zappa's music focuses on; you can research that for yourself if you are interested.

pdfFrank Zappa - "The Black Page" drum chart

pdfFrank Zappa - "Alien Orifice" drum chart

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