Loeb & Leopold

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Loeb & Leopold was one of the names used by Zappa and Ray Collins when they performed as a duo during 1963. The name came from the notorious teenage murderers Nathan Leopold, Jr. and Richard Loeb who were convicted in 1924.


You know, Memories Of El Monte was co-written by Ray Collins and myself, and a long time ago, 'bout the same time Memories Of El Monte was written, he and I worked at The Troubadour on 'talent night' as Loeb & Leopold. And we went down there and were singing songs about pimples and all kinds of other far out things that seemed like uh, well, that was the basis of some of the things The Mothers eventually wound up doing.
-FZ in KPPC, Pasadena radio show (November 27, 1968)


The names Loeb & Leopold were later used as nicknames for a couple of regulars at the Garrick Theater.

During their stay in New York, the Mothers successfully performed for six months at the Garrick Theatre doing a cleverly animated, pornographically delightful musical review. Some people liked it so much they came back repeatedly. Two Long Island school boys, affectionately dubbed Loeb and Leopold, held ticket stubs for some sixty-five performances. A classic study in compulsive behavior.


There were two suburban Jewish guys who attended the Garrick shows relentlessly. They called themselves Loeb & Leopold (not the real 'Loeb & Leopold,' but an incredibly lifelike simulation). They came to at least thirty shows.

At the end of our run they came backstage, opened up their wallets and, with tears in their eyes, showed me all their ticket stubs. They loved the Garrick shows. One of the guys – I'm pretty sure his name was Mark Trottiner – liked to run up the aisle, jump on stage, grab the microphone out of my hand and scream into it as loud as he could. Then he would fall on the stage, roll over like a dog and urge me to spit Pepsi-Cola all over his body. What a crowd- pleaser.[1]

Ten years later, I was doing a Halloween show at the Palladium, and I looked out into the audience and thought I saw him. It had to be him. I said, "Aren't you the guy who used to ...?" It was him. He grew up to become a record distributor in Queens.

Loeb & Leopold were included in the list of names on the cover of Freak Out!

Notes

  1. See Stink-Foot, Halloween; 2:11–2:13