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Electric Don Quixote: The Definitive Story Of Frank Zappa Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
Compared to other sources of all things Zappa, Electric Don Quixote is like a spotlight that illuminates not only the facts and chronology, but also the mood and mentality surrounding Frank and the key individuals in his immediate circle. I'm reminded of how much a step forward the new Jimi Hendrix biography (Musician, by Keith Shadwick) is in comparison to the competition. Musician takes the reader into the musical mind of Hendrix and Electric Don Quixote does the same for Zappa, except that Frank's years in the industry were longer, his story more complex, his art less popularly appreciated and his psyche far more difficult to analyze. But Slaven was up to the challenge and we are all the richer for his ability and dedication.
As good as Electric Don Quixote is, I do not consider it adequate to stand completely on its own. It stands on the shoulders of past Zappa bios and without reading at least one or two of them, the reader might lose the sublety Slaven has incorporated. I'd recommend "No Commercial Potential" and "The Real Frank Zappa Book" as possible starting places.Read more ›
THE REAL FRANK ZAPPA BOOK by Frank Zappa and Peter Occhioigrosso
ELECTRIC DON QUIXOTE: THE DEFINITIVE STORY OF FRANK ZAPPA by Neil Slaven
NECESSITY IS... THE EARLY YEARS OF FRANK ZAPPA AND THE MOTHERS OF INVENTION by Billy James
COSMIK DEBRIS: THE COLLECTIVE HISTORY AND IMPROVISATIONS OF FRANK ZAPPA by Greg Russo
NO COMMERCIAL POTENTIAL: THE SAGA OF FRANK ZAPPA by David Walley THEM OR US by Frank Zappa
UNDER THE SAME MOON by Suzannah Thana Harris
BEING FRANK: MY TIME WITH FRANK ZAPPA by Nigery Lennon
With no doubt in my mind, ELECTRIC DON QUIXOTE is most creative title among the Zappa biographies. Clearly this title accurately reduces Zappa's musical contribution to the fewest read possible words. Thus, the title is a masterpiece of composition and creativity.
In many ways, the book's content is similar to THE REAL FRANK ZAPPA BOOK. However, Slaven doesn't offer that whimsical and playful flavor that is found in Zappa's and Occhioigrosso's words. Slaven lays out the facts in a well-written and humanistic manner. Of books in my Zappa library, Slaven offers the most even-handed approach. I didn't find this even-handed approach in any of the other Zappa books I have read. However, being even-handed can lead to some dry reading, but nonetheless still worthy for those interested in Zappa's life.
One significant reaction emerges in my head. I hope young musicians read ELECTRIC DON QUIXOTE. Zappa made some critical errors of judgement early in his career that effected his entire life. The evil characters - in this and other Zappa biographies - are record company executives.Read more ›
If someone is interested in the person Frank Zappa my advice would be to read interviews (with F.Z., colleagues and bandmembers), his own biography (with Peter Occhiogrosso) and brwose through the contents of F.Z. devoted websites.
A deeper analysis of F.Z.'s musical works, if at all possible, would be noting short of a heroic task. This work does not attempt to do so, and the smaller passages where some musical aspects are discussed, the content is - for my taste - barely touching the surface.
On the positive side, the author tries to remain balanced and writes from a clearly neutral perspective, which seems appropriate. Most of the political, sociological and/or anthropological (if you will) viewpoints - for which Frank Zappa was also famous - are kept at a minimum in this book.
All in all I can recommend the book as a chronological guideline through F.Z.'s life, but would warn readers (or fans) not to expect answers or a portrait of F.Z. as a person.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Superb and well-written biography. Very well researched and full of insights into this creative genius. The title says it all ... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Amazon Customer
If you're looking for stories of the usual rock musician fringe benefits (wink wink) and bad behavior, this is not that book. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Shoeman
Decent read nice history of Frank and the mothers tends to get a little monotonous at times bit a good history of one of the greatest musicians in the 21st centuryPublished 22 months ago by Thomas A. Costa
Amazingly detailed journey into Frank Zappa's musical universe. But somehow, Neil Slaven doesn't really get to the heart of the man. What really made Frank tick? Read morePublished on May 28, 2014 by Jeffrey Crawford
This book is "definitive" only as a general guide to Zappa as musician and composer across his 25 year career. Read morePublished on October 25, 2013 by Jordan
Awesome if you love frank Zappa. A good comprehensive look at the genius that is frank. I highly recommend this bookPublished on July 22, 2012 by Guido
A biographer should at the very least know the correct name of his subject. The man's name is Frank Vincent Zappa. Read morePublished on January 16, 2010 by Donald A. Lockler
Neil Slaven is honest about his personal love for Frank Zappa music. Unfortunately the result is a sycophantic homage which tends to be a bit pedestrian. Read morePublished on October 23, 2009 by Charles Platt
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