Ed Mann has been "a drummer and piano dabbler since childhood", who formed a band with Tommy Mars in mid '73. By the end of that year, he was studying with John Bergamo at Cal-Arts. In 1977, Frank asked Bergamo to do some overdubbing on the Zappa In New York album - Bergamo in turn recommended Mann.
A few months later, Ruth Underwood told Ed that Frank was looking for a 2nd keyboard player. When Ed called to recommend Tommy ("at midnite, the only time when you could reach Frank by phone"), Frank invited him to "come up to the house". Mann went over, where Terry Bozzio, Patrick O'Hearn, and Adrian Belew were "jamming" with Frank and by 2:00AM Ed was "in the band". Ed Mann: "It took a few days for that all to sink in."
Ed provided percussion and/or vocals for Zappa In New York, Sheik Yerbouti, Joe's Garage Act I, Joe's Garage Acts II & III, Tinseltown Rebellion, Shut Up 'N Play Yer Guitar set, You Are What You Is, Ship Arriving Too Late To Save A Drowning Witch, The Man From Utopia, Baby Snakes, London Symphony Orchestra Vol. I, Them Or Us, Thing-Fish, Frank Zappa Meets The Mothers Of Prevention, Jazz From Hell, London Symphony Orchestra Vol. II, Guitar, You Can't Do That On Stage Anymore Sampler, You Can't Do That On Stage Anymore Vol. 1, You Can't Do That On Stage Anymore Vol. 3, The Best Band You Never Heard In Your Life, Make A Jazz Noise Here, You Can't Do That On Stage Anymore Vol. 4, You Can't Do That On Stage Anymore Vol. 5, You Can't Do That On Stage Anymore Vol. 6, Frank Zappa Plays The Music Of Frank Zappa, Halloween, Quaudiophiliac, Trance-Fusion and The Dub Room Special; also for the Beat The Boots series disks As An Am (BTB), Anyway The Wind Blows (BTB), Saarbrücken 1978 (BTB) and At The Circus (BTB).
Ed Mann is a band member of The Band From Utopia.
Ed Mann can be heard playing Mallet and Gongs on J21's "Yellow Mind:Blue Mind" album.