Frank Zappa ‘Lumpy Money’ & ‘Road Tapes’ reissues announced

Frank Zappa’s three CD Lumpy Money Project/Object set and his two CD Road Tapes, Venue #1 and Road Tapes, Venue #2 performance albums will be reissued, and Road Tapes, Venue #3 will debut on May 27th from Zappa Records/UMe. All four titles will be available on CD and digitally.

In 2008, to mark the 40th anniversaries of Frank Zappa’s masterworks Lumpy Gravy and We’re Only In It For The Money, the Zappa Family Trust assembled an anniversary edition of their Project/Object Audio Documentary series entitled Lumpy Money Project/Object. The expansive release contains three CDs of unique and rare versions of the legendary albums, including the mono mixes for both, as well as many nuggets from the Vault, from various studio outtakes to single versions, instrumental mixes, and Frank Zappa interview excerpts. Lumpy Money Project/Object also includes a booklet filled with photos, oddities and featuring liner notes from David Fricke and Gail Zappa. Both albums’ mono mixes make their download debuts with the new digital release of Lumpy Money Project/Object.

Zappa worked on Lumpy Gravy and We’re Only In It For The Money during essentially the same time period in 1967 and 1968. The original Lumpy Gravy sessions were produced by Nick Venet and recorded at Capitol Studios with a host of primo studio musicians, including members of the famous Wrecking Crew. After delays from Zappa’s record company, Lumpy Gravy began anew. Armed with the Lumpy Gravy session tapes and a razor blade, Zappa sat in his New York City apartment and transformed the project into the masterwork collage we know today. We’re Only In It For The Money has gone down in history as one of the most essential rock albums of our time. With its scathing messages, use of parody, musique concrète & DADA-ist tendencies, there truly is nothing like it.

The Road Tapes series focuses on Frank Zappa concert audio from the Vault that is historical yet sonically less than stellar. Described by the man himself as “Guerilla Recordings,” Zappa tried to document every performance. Road Tapes, Venue #1 takes us to summertime 1968, Vancouver, B.C., where the Mothers of Invention played Kerrisdale Arena to an enthusiastic crowd. Captured on mono reel-to-reel, the concert is inspired and showcases a mixture of classic Mothers and live improvisations.

Road Tapes, Venue #2 takes us back to August 1973 in Helsinki, Finland. The performances, compiled from three shows at Finlandia Hall, were recorded by engineer Kerry McNabb while on his first tour with Zappa. This band consists of a lineup that is often regarded as one of Zappa’s finest. Stars like George Duke, Jean Luc Ponty, and Ruth Underwood shine. The compositions become increasingly challenging yet still maintain the humor expected at a live Zappa show, making for a potent and rewarding release.

New to the Road Tapes series, Road Tapes, Venue #3 features two complete shows from Tyrone Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, MN. The July 1970 Mothers line-up featured Flo & Eddie, George Duke, Ian Underwood, Aynsley Dunbar & Jeff Simmons. Frank Zappa’s vast Vault does not contain many full shows from this time period, making this release a particularly special one. The tapes were recorded to stereo reel-to-reel, but not without problems. Due to their historical relevance, Zappa Records determined it was worth it, warts ‘n all! Venue #3 does not disappoint.

Frank Zappa: Lumpy Money Project/Object

CD 1

Lumpy Gravy (Primordial)
Frank Zappa’s Original Orchestral Edit for Capitol Records
Original tracking sessions at Capitol Studios, Produced by Nick Venet
Mono Version, 4-Track Master Tape Sequence
Source: ¼” Analog – Master Tape T-2719 dated 19 May 1967
CD 1 mastering & audio restoration engineer: John Polito, 2008

1. I Sink Trap
2. II Gum Joy
3. III Up & Down
4. IV Local Butcher
5. V Gypsy Airs
6. VI Hunchy Punchy
7. VII Foamy Soaky
8. VIII Let’s Eat Out
9. IX Teen-Age Grand Finale

We’re Only In It For The Money
1968 Original Mono Mix, Produced by Frank Zappa
This is not a fold-down mix from stereo to mono. This is a separate discreet mono mix created by Frank Zappa with Dick Kunc in 1968.
Source: ¼” Analog Master

10. Are You Hung Up?
11. Who Needs The Peace Corps?
12. Concentration Moon
13. Mom & Dad
14. Telephone Conversation
15. Bow Tie Daddy
16. Harry, You’re A Beast
17. What’s The Ugliest Part Of Your Body?
18. Absolutely Free
19. Flower Punk
20. Hot Poop
21. Nasal Retentive Calliope Music
22. Let’s Make The Water Turn Black
23. The Idiot Bastard Son
24. Lonely Little Girl
25. Take Your Clothes Off When You Dance
26. What’s The Ugliest Part Of Your Body? (Reprise)
27. Mother People
28. The Chrome Plated Megaphone Of Destiny

CD 2:

Lumpy Gravy 1984 UMRK Remix
CD 2 mastered by Bernie Grundman, 2008
Although this version was unreleased until 2008, Frank Zappa did include a track entitled “Lumpy Gravy (Excerpt)” in a promotional disc for The Old Masters, Box One. All 3:01 of it is here. This promo disc was serviced to radio station program directors. Lucky them.
Source: 1630 Digital Master

1. Lumpy Gravy – Part One
2. Lumpy Gravy – Part Two

We’re Only In It For The Money 1984 UMRK Remix, Produced by Frank Zappa
Originally released on CD, 1986
Source: 3324 Digital Master

3. Are You Hung Up?
4. Who Needs The Peace Corps?
5. Concentration Moon
6. Mom & Dad
7. Telephone Conversation
8. Bow Tie Daddy
9. Harry, You’re A Beast
10. What’s The Ugliest Part Of Your Body?
11. Absolutely Free
12. Flower Punk
13. Hot Poop
14. Nasal Retentive Calliope Music
15. Let’s Make The Water Turn Black
16. The Idiot Bastard Son
17. Lonely Little Girl
18. Take Your Clothes Off When You Dance
19. What’s The Ugliest Part Of Your Body? (Reprise)
20. Mother People
21. The Chrome Plated Megaphone Of Destiny

CD 3:

All music produced/composed & performed/conducted by Frank Zappa
All recordings were transferred from original 2-track analog tapes, except tracks 4 through 6 & 13.
CD 3 mastering & audio restoration engineer: John Polito, 2008

1. How Did That Get In Here?

Recorded on Sunday, 13 February 1967 at Capitol (original multi-track masters are currently not in evidence). This is a Frank Zappa construction. Small excerpts from this material appear in Zappa’s Masterwork, Lumpy Gravy. Source: ¼” stereo mixdown.

2. Lumpy Gravy “Shuffle”

Recorded 21 February 1969 at The New School, NYC, during Frank Zappa lecture/Q&A

3. Dense Slight

Lumpy Gravy Building Block by Frank Zappa

4. Unit 3A, Take 3
5. Unit 2, Take 9
6. Section 8, Take 22

Tracks 4-6 recorded for Lumpy Gravy 14 March 1967 at Capitol. Mixed from the original 4-tracks by Joe Travers, UMRK, 2008.

7. “My Favorite Album”

Interview excerpt, 22 October 1971, KBEY- FM, Kansas City

8. Unit 9

In Lumpy Gravy, this piece is VSO-controlled by Frank Zappa. Recorded at Capitol Records

9. N. Double A, AA

Lumpy Gravy Building Block by Frank Zappa

10. Theme From Lumpy Gravy

In Lumpy Gravy, this piece is VSO-controlled by Frank Zappa. Recorded & mixed by Frank Zappa at Studio Z, Cucamonga

11. “What The Fuck’s Wrong With Her?”

West Village Apt., NYC, working on Lumpy Gravy, late 1967

12. Intelligent Design

Alternate Frank Zappa building block of the Gary-Kellgren-whispering/JCB-dialog. Includes the famously censored line infamously deleted by MGM from the Masterwork. Recorded at Mayfair

13. Lonely Little Girl (Original Composition – Take 24)

From the original 8-track masters recorded at Mayfair. Mixed by Joe Travers at UMRK 2008

14. “That Problem With Absolutely Free”

Interview, Mixed Media, Detroit, 13 November 1967

15. Absolutely Free (Instrumental)
16. Harry, You’re A Beast (Instrumental)
17. What’s The Ugliest Part of Your Body? (Reprise/Instrumental)
18. Creationism

Recorded during the “Money” sessions, Mayfair, 6 September 1967

19. Idiot Bastard Snoop

Mayfair Studios 1967, Vocal Overdub session snippet as-is

20. The Idiot Bastard Son (Instrumental)
21. “What’s Happening Of The Universe”

Interview with David Silver, Boston, 1969

22. “The World Will Be A Far Happier Place”

Recorded at Mayfair

23. Lonely Little Girl (Instrumental)
24. Mom & Dad (Instrumental)
25. Who Needs The Peace Corps? (Instrumental)
26. “Really Little Voice”

Recorded during the Money sessions, Mayfair Studios 1967

27. Take Your Clothes Off When You Dance (Instrumental)
28. Lonely Little Girl – The Single [C P 1967]

Released prior to the album in November, 1967. Curiously, Frank Zappa considered this thoroughly discrete construct (yes, that’s right, this is a collage) potentially commercial.

29. “In Conclusion”

Recorded at Mayfair

Frank Zappa: Road Tapes, Venue #1

Kerrisdale Arena, Vancouver B.C. (25 August 1968)

CD 1:

1. The Importance Of An Earnest Attempt (By Hand)
2/3. Help, I’m A Rock/Transylvania Boogie
4. Flopsmash Musics
5. Hungry Freaks, Daddy
6. The Orange County Lumber Truck
7. The Rewards of a Career in Music

CD 2:

1. Trouble Every Day
2. Shortly: Suite exists of Holiday In Berlin Full Blown
3. Pound For A Brown
4. Sleeping In A Jar
5. Oh, In The Sky
6. Octandre (written by Edgard Varèse)
7. King Kong

Frank Zappa: Road Tapes, Venue #2

Finlandia Hall, Helsinki, Finland (23, 24 August 1973)

CD 1:

Show 3

1. Introcious
2. The Eric Dolphy Memorial Barbecue
3. Kung Fu
4. Penguin In Bondage

Show 1

5. Exercise #4
6. Dog Breath
7. The Dog Breath Variations
8. Uncle Meat

Show 3

10. Montana
11. Your Teeth And Your Shoulders and sometimes your foot goes like this….. / Pojama Prelude
12. Dupree’s Paradise

Show 1

13. All Skate/Dun-Dun-Dun (The Finnish Hit Single)

CD 2:

Show 3

1. Village Of The Sun
2. Echidna’s Arf (Of You)
3. Don’t You Ever Wash That Thing?

Show 2

4. Big Swifty

Shows 2, 3

5. Farther O’Blivion

Encore, Show 1

6. Brown Shoes Don’t Make It

Frank Zappa: Road Tapes, Venue #3

Tyrone Guthrie Theater, Minneapolis, MN (5 July 1970)

CD 1:

Show 1

1. Tyrone Start The Tape…
2. King Kong
3. Wonderful Wino (Zappa/Simmons)
4. Concentration Moon
5. Mom & Dad
6. The Air
7. Dog Breath
8. Mother People
9. You Didn’t Try To Call Me
10. Agon – Interlude (Stravinsky)
11. Call Any Vegetable
12. King Kong / Igor’s Boogie
13. It Can’t Happen Here
14. Sharleena

Show 2

15. The 23rd “Mondellos”
16. Justine (Harris/Terry)

CD 2:

Show 2, continued

1. Pound For A Brown
2. Sleeping In A Jar
3. Sharleena
4. “A Piece Of Contemporary Music”
5. The Return Of The Hunchback Duke (incl.: Little House I Used To Live In, Holiday In Berlin)6. Cruising For Burgers
7. Let’s Make The Water Turn Black
8. Harry, You’re A Beast
9. Oh No/Orange County Lumber Truck
10. Call Any Vegetable
11. Mondello’s Revenge
12. The Clap (Chunga’s Revenge)

Buddy Iahn
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:

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