Frank Zappa Meets The Mothers Of Prevention

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Frank Zappa Meets The Mothers Of Prevention
Released November 1985
See also:
IINK,Patio,KUR
Chalk Pie

Players

Tracks

US LP

Side One

  1. We're Turning Again (4:55)
  2. Alien Orifice (4:03)
  3. Yo Cats (3:31)
  4. What's New In Baltimore? (5:21)

Side Two

  1. Little Beige Sambo (3:02)
  2. Porn Wars (12:04)
  3. Aerobics In Bondage (3:16)
European LP/Cassette

Side One

  1. We're Turning Again (4:55)
  2. Alien Orifice (4:03)
  3. Yo Cats (3:31)
  4. What's New In Baltimore? (5:21)

Side Two

  1. I Don't Even Care (4:43)
  2. One Man - One Vote (2:35)
  3. H.R. 2911 (3:35)
  4. Little Beige Sambo (3:02)
  5. Aerobics In Bondage (3:16)
US CD
  1. I Don't Even Care (4:44)
  2. One Man - One Vote (2:36)
  3. Little Beige Sambo (3:01)
  4. Aerobics In Bondage (3:17)
  5. We're Turning Again (4:55)
  6. Alien Orifice (4:12)
  7. Yo Cats (3:34)
  8. What's New In Baltimore? (5:25)
  9. Porn Wars (12:05)
European CD,
coupled with Jazz From Hell
European CD, Second Edition
  1. Porn Wars (12:05)
  2. We're Turning Again (4:56)
  3. Alien Orifice (4:12)
  4. Aerobics In Bondage (3:16)
  5. I Don't Even Care, Shortened version (3:48)
  6. Little Beige Sambo (3:03)
  7. What's New In Baltimore? (5:20)
  8. One Man - One Vote (2:35)
  9. H.R. 2911 (3:36)
  10. Yo Cats (3:34)
Current CD
  1. I Don't Even Care (4:39)
  2. One Man - One Vote (2:35)
  3. Little Beige Sambo (3:02)
  4. Aerobics In Bondage (3:16)
  5. We're Turning Again (4:55)
  6. Alien Orifice (4:10)
  7. Yo Cats (3:33)
  8. What's New In Baltimore? (5:20)
  9. Porn Wars (12:03)
  10. H.R. 2911 (3:35)

Release Notes

Liner Notes

WARNING/GUARANTEE: This album contains material which a truly free society would neither fear nor suppress.
In some socially retarded areas, religious fanatics and ultra-conservative political organizations violate your First Ammendment Rights by attempting to censor rock & roll albums. We feel that this is un-Constitutional and un-American.
As an alternative to these government-supported programs (designed to keep you docile and ignorant). Barking Pumpkin is pleased to provide stimulating digital audio entertainment for those of you who have outgrown the ordinary.
The language and concepts contained herein are GUARANTEED NOT TO CAUSE ETERNAL TORMENT IN THE PLACE WHERE THE GUY WITH THE HORNS AND POINTED STICK CONDUCTS HIS BUSINESS.
This guarantee is as real as the threats of ther video fundamentalists who use attacks on rock music in their attempt to transform America into a nation of check-mailing nincompoops (in the name of Jesus Christ). If there is a hell, its fires wait for them, not us.

On the back of the european version : The original version of this album contained political material which would not have been interesting to listeners outside the U.S. This special european edition contains three new songs not available in the U.S. album. We hope you appreciate the difference.

Background Information

In an e-mail to this writer [CF], Matt Koegler explained that he "watched the Senate hearings and had a conversation with friends that night, and 'Mothers of Prevention' kind of came out of my mouth. I wrote Frank a letter a few days later, requesting a Z-Pack [Frank's anti-censorship collection of mental ammo]. The letter opened, 'Mr. Zappa: Thanks very much for standing up against the Mothers of Prevention.' A few months later, I was standing in line at Spec's Music in Lakeland, Florida with my brand-new, hot-off-the-presses copy [of the Prevention album] in my hand, and while reading the back cover, I found my name."

"Yo Cats" is a jaunt along Vegas-type musical lines that emphasize the lyrical jeers at aesthetically apathetic studio musicians, with Tommy Mars (who's listed as co-composer Thomas Mariano, his real name) playing appropriately cheesy lounge organ. Session musicians' stylishness-feigning word "yo" is turned into "yo-yo" (loony). "Blow" means cocaine, of course, and to "Play some footballs on your hole" means to play easy whole notes (shaped like footballs in music notation) while keeping the bow level with the widest part of the violin's "F-holes" (F-shaped openings). Your Girl and Arlyn's were studio musicians' answering services.

The long musical collage "Porn Wars" is largely made up of Frank's retorts to the oppressive politicians and their wives (in their own voices) to whom he spoke at the 9/19/85 hearings on the Parents' Music Resource Center's extortionate demands on the music industry. The "vocals" begin with a brilliantly exposed contradiction: Chairman John C. Danforth assures Frank that no legislation's intended, just before South Carolina Senator Earnest F. Hollings vows, after an exemplary Zappa time-jump edit, to find "some Constitutional provisions, tax or approach...to limit this outrageous filth." Hollings' admission "Maybe I could make a good rock star," initially spoken as a self-effacing comment on his own oft-unintelligible southern accent, floats into the piece on several occasions; Frank's aligning Hollings' secrets—his own "outrageous filth"—with the groupie-oriented activities narrated in many Zappa songs over the years. This exposes Hollings' hypocrisy in attacking song lyrics. By including the phrase "inaudible filth," Frank's asking, "If he can't hear it, why is it filthy?"

Throughout the piece, we're made to hear how people twist words to fit them into predetermined contexts; Zappa's revenge is to do the same thing to the senators. They're heard scolding their own actions: "Now, the effects of such lyrics on a well adjusted child may not be cataclysmic." A senator's made to unwittingly call himself a product of bad parenting, the real reason for which kids turn out crazy: "Rather, the emotional damage is more subtle." Paula Hawkins indicts her own agenda: "...in some twisted mind." She sadistically enjoys the book-burning going on, illustrated by the evil-sounding music: "Burrrn...burrrn...burrrn!" Hollings is heard reciting "Willy-nilly old bear" a few times. Frank's equating that harmless children's lyric about Winnie the Pooh with the words deemed unsafe by the senators. He's also saying that Hollings is a "willy-nilly old bear" himself.

"Objectionable" is attached to "issue." "...in some twisted minds" is attached to "porn rock." The message is clear. Senator James Exon asks, "What's the reason for these hearings?" Hawkins replies with Frank's answer: "Sex," the tool of media distraction as well as the chief fear of these insecure fools. A round of applause follows her answer. The "Yeah!" often heard is from Johnny "Guitar" Watson's vocals in "I Don't Even Care" from the European version of the album (Frank didn't think "Porn Wars" would make much sense outside the USA). Ike Willis as Thing-Fish interjects with transplanted words from "Galoot Up-Date." His conclusion, "I am yo' fuchum [future]!," suggests that we'll all wind up deformed and held back by the government's actions if things continue the way they're going.

A great joke's heard later
"Drive my love inside you." "Is this private action?"

See also: "PMRC List" for an overview of people & things involved in the PMRC saga.

Conceptual Continuity

Alternate Covers

European edition (1986)
Complete edition (1995)
Complete edition (1995) - Detail

Versions

ZFT # Version # # discs Format Catalog # Release
(YYYY-MM-DD)
EAN.UCC-13
(barcode)
Artwork Comment
44 1.1
Original
Stereo,
Tracks 1, 2 & 10 Missing[1]
1 LP Barking Pumpkin
ST-74203
1985-11-21 0013347420318?
(not printed)
  US edition.
1.2
Original
Stereo,
Track 9
Missing[1]
1 LP EMI
EMC 3507
1986-03[2]     UK edition.
1 CS EMI
TC-EMC 3507
1986-03[2]     UK edition.
1 LP EMI
1C 064-24 0492 1
1986? 5099924049214   German/Dutch edition.
1 LP EMI
58390 81 2404921
1986?  ?   Argentinian edition.
1 CS EMI
68390 81 2404924
1986? None   Argentinian edition.
1 LP Capitol
ST 6535
1986 5099924049214   Canadian edition. (Black Cover, white text, with 'European Version'). Under license EMI of Canada.
1.3
Original
Stereo,
Track 10
Missing[1]
1 CD Rykodisc
RCD 10023
1986-09 0014431002328
(not printed)
  US edition, DDD.
1 CD MSI
RCD 10023
1990     Japanese edition, DDD. Includes "The Book of Frank Zappa Meets The Mothers Of Prevention" (inc. message from FZ for Japanese Fans).
1.2
Original
Stereo,
Track 9
Missing[1]
1 CD EMI
CDP 7 90078 2
1986 0077779007820   European edition, coupled with Jazz From Hell. Matrix # CDP 7 90078 2 · ·MASTERED· ·BY NIMBUS·
1.4
Original
Stereo,
1 Track
Shortened[1]
1 CD Zappa
CDZAP 33
1990-09[2] 5016583603328   European edition.
1 CD MSI
RCD 10023
1992?   Japanese edition. Includes "The Book of Frank Zappa Meets The Mothers Of Prevention" (inc. message from FZ for Japanese Fans).
Unknown 1 CS Zappa
TZAPPA 33
 ? 5016583603342?   European edition.
1 CS Barking Pumpkin
4XT 74203
1990-10-17? 0013347420349   US edition, XDR.
1.3
Original
Stereo,
Track 10
Missing[1]
1 CD VideoArts
VACK 5049
1994-11-25 4988112405882   Japanese edition.
1.5
Light
Remaster,
Complete
Edition
1 CD Rykodisc
RCD 10547
1995-05-16 0014431054723   US edition. Matrix # IFPI 2U4C WEA mfg. OLYPHANT ifpi L902 X14009 A4 P2 310547-2 01 M1S1
1 CD VideoArts
VACK 5117
1995-09-25 4988112407770   Japanese edition.
1 CD VideoArts
VACK 5252
1996-05-30? 4988112408524   Japanese edition.
1 CD VideoArts
VACK 1257
2002-11-27 4988112413566   Japanese edition, mini-album papersleeve.
2012 Remaster
Stereo
1 CD Zappa/UMe
ZR 3873
2012-10-30 0824302387320   US edition, manufactured and distributed by UMe[3].
1 CD Zappa/UMG Intl
0238732
2012-10-30 0824302387320   EU edition = Zappa/UMe ZR 3873, manufactured in Germany.

Notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Considering the current CD edition as the reference version.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Martin C. Strong, 2004, The Great Rock Discography, p. 1723.
  3. Email announcement by the ZFT on July 31st, 2012.