Alternative version of Frank Zappa’s ‘Magic Fingers’ released

Track appears on the forthcoming 200 Motels reissue

Ahead of the December 17th release of Frank Zappa’s 200 Motels 50th Anniversary Edition, the Zappa Trust and UMe are giving another glimpse into some of the extraordinary unreleased and rare material unearthed from FZ’s vault that will be available on the monstrous new six-disc box set that boasts a new remaster of the original soundtrack, demos, studio outtakes, work mixes, interviews and movie ads, along with newly discovered dialog reels, revealing an early audio edit of the film. Also included in the collection is a wealth of never-before-heard audio documentary material surrounding the project.

Available now is an exciting, previously unreleased alternate version of “Magic Fingers (Version B, Mix Outtake),” from the demo sessions, recorded in August 1970 at Whitney Studios, and featured on Disc 2 alongside a handful of outtakes and alternate takes of other soundtrack standouts like “Tell Me You Love Me,” “Road Ladies,” “What Will This Morning Bring Me This Evening,” and “What Will This Evening Bring Me This Morning.” “Magic Fingers (Version B, Mix Outtake)” starts off like the original but then takes a wild detour halfway through, trading Zappa’s extended guitar workout for a rollicking mix of rock and roll motifs crammed into an exhilarating three minutes.

This latest outtake comes on the heels of the recently released non-music track, “What Is 200 Motels,” culled from the 200 Motels commercial and trailer recording session, recorded in November 1971, and featuring Frank Zappa, Howard Kaylan, Mark Volman and Jim Pons parodying a news interview about the surrealistic documentary film. This track, available on Disc 5: 200 Motels – Alternates and Outtakes, followed the October release of “Mystery Roach” (Dialog Protection Reel) taken from Disc 3, which houses the “Dialog Protection Reels.” Found in the Vault, these work in progress tracks reveal an early version of the movie. The music mixes are in mono and were created before Zappa went into Whitney Studios for over-dubbing and sweetening.

Fully authorized by the Zappa Trust and produced by Ahmet Zappa and Zappa Vaultmeister Joe Travers, the expansive 200 Motels 50th Anniversary Edition is a definitive super deluxe six disc box set of the beloved, yet hard to find, soundtrack that has been lovingly assembled in celebration of the film and soundtrack’s golden anniversary. The set will be housed in a 64-page hardcover book in a handsome 12” x 12” slipcase. The packaging replicates the original booklet updated with revealing new liner notes from Pamela Des Barres, Ruth Underwood and Joe Travers, as well as Patrick Pending’s essay from the 1997 reissue, and is chock full of motion picture artwork, stills and images, from the film and its making, many which have never been seen before. This must-have collector’s release will also include a custom “200 Motels” keychain and Do-No-Disturb motel door hanger and a full-size replica of the original movie poster. Years in the making, all the audio was meticulously identified and transferred over several years as Travers dug through the Vault to create a new high resolution 96K/24B digital patchwork stereo master from the original analog tapes. The Vault material was mastered by John Polito in 2021.

The remastered 200 Motels soundtrack will also be reissued on vinyl as a 2 LP pressed on 180-gram black vinyl and also as a limited edition red vinyl pressing on 180-gram vinyl, which will only be available exclusively through Zappa.com, uDiscoverMusic.com or SoundofVinyl.com. Both will be pressed by Optimal Media in Germany and be the first time the album has been available on vinyl in decades. The soundtrack will also be released on 2 CD and all formats will include a smaller version of the movie poster. Additionally, the entire Super Deluxe Edition box set will be available digitally for streaming and download, marking the soundtrack’s digital debut, in both standard and hi-res audio.

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Buddy Iahn
Buddy Iahn founded The Music Universe when he decided to juxtapose his love of web design and music. As a lifelong drummer, he decided to take a hiatus from playing music to report it. The website began as a fun project in 2013 to one of the top independent news sites. Email: info@themusicuniverse.com
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