Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Strictly Genteel: Classical Introduction
Genres: Alternative Rock, Jazz, Special Interest, Pop, Rock, Classical
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Member CD Reviews
Reviewed on 8/7/2006...
Duplicate, but GREAT
S. M Marson | Lumberton, NC | 01/13/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I like STRICTLY GENTEEL: A CLASSICAL INTRODUCTION TO FRANK ZAPPA for two reasons. First, I find the sound engineering to be particularly impressive. Based on what I understand of the tasks involved in producing this CD, I feel sure that great pains were taken to produce it. Second, I like the music. I particularly enjoy listening to it on long drives when I am alone. The only track that seems a bit out of place is Number Nine: Opus 1, No.3, 2nd Movement, Presto. The writer of this track is Francesco Zappa. He is not Frank Zappa but a musician from Milan who lived near the end of the 18th century. In addition, he is probably an ancestor of Frank Zappa (for more details read the liner notes of a CD entitled FRANCESCO ZAPPA or read Zappa's 1984 book entitled, THEM OR US). The rest of the tracks are interpretations of Zappa's original work.I have been listening to the work of Frank Zappa since I was a teenager in the 1960's. I own his entire listing of LP's/CD's that were produced in the states (most of the European bootlegs are unimpressive). Thus, I can make an important point to the consumer. Every track on this CD can be found elsewhere. However, to acquire all of these tracks would be quite costly. As a result, I think STRICTLY GENTEEL may be the best introduction to Frank Zappa's music - without his lyrics. I highly recommend it."
Classical (rather than classic) Zappa
Dave Deubler | Pennsylvania | 06/25/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This collection of instrumentals is aimed at devotees of classical music who want to understand why many take Zappa so seriously. There's none of the adolescent silliness that has caused some to regard this brilliant freethinker as a misogynist, and almost none of the fervid, wildly imaginative guitar playing that his fans have come to know and love (the exception being the majestic, note-bending, sustain-dripping "The Duke of Prunes"). Eschewing strings as too saccharine, Frank's music (and this collection especially) relies heavily on woodwinds, horns, and the inevitable percussion instruments including piano. Himself a former percussionist, Frank has always favored long staccato runs by marimba and xylophones. This tendency reached its nadir with the synclavier, the programmable keyboard that was Frank's main preoccupation in his later years, represented here by "G-Spot Tornado". Some of these pieces ("Little Umbrellas", "Run Home Slow Theme") feature the insistent beat associated with rock and roll, but others show the influence of Edgar Varese, like the programmatic "Pedro's Dowry" which stumbles along by fits and starts like the recalcitrant mule it describes. Zappa always believed that any sound was a valid tonal color for his art, including non-traditional instruments, and some of these compositions even feature sounds of unidentifiable origin, such as "Dwarf Nebula" and "Uncle Meat: Main Title Theme". The two pieces by "Francesco Zappa" (which this reviewer assumes is one of Frank's put-ons until proven otherwise) have a more staid baroque feel while "Dupree's Paradise" and the title track have plenty of classical grandeur, particularly in the use of horns, reminiscent of Copland. Zappa's legions of devoted fans will probably already have most of these tracks, and may find the shortage of farcical humor and rock and roll instrumentation a serious drawback. This one is really an introduction to the master's serious compositional skills for the uninitiated classical fan who is looking for something a little different. For them, this ranks as a 5-star selection."