Zappa's music 'connected with sex'

Thursday 24 October 2013.

A notorious piece of music once denounced as "filth for filth's sake" is going to be performed live in this country for the first time.

Frank Zappa's 200 Motels, a colossal work for full orchestra, rock band, singers and actors, was banned on the grounds of obscenity in 1971.

Now more than 40 years later, it will be performed at the Royal Festival Hall next week.

Frank Zappa died in 1993 and, in a rare interview, his widow Gail Zappa spoke to the BBC's arts correspondent Rebecca Jones.

One woman explained why the performance was rejected by the Royal Albert Hall.

"You could say it was connected with sex," she said.

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4's Today programme on Thursday 24 October 2013.
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  1. It was disgraceful that the Albert Hall cancelled Zappa's 200 Motels concert: And shameful that the judge ruled in favour of the Royal Albert Hall when Frank Zappa sued for breach of contract. Sadly, I will not be able to attend the concert at the Festival Hall on Tuesday 29th October. "Music is the best" FZ.

  2. Howard Kaylan, in his recent book, maintains that the concert at the Albert Hall was never meant to be and that it was one gigantic publicity stunt dreamed up by Herb Cohen. I don't know how he could write that and why no one has challenged him, given that Frank and Herb Cohen went to the length of suing the Albert Hall for cancellation and went to court and in the process, lost a lot more money.


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