May 17, 2013 – 5:18 am

Click on the panels for a better view or to download artwork.

Los Angeles 1970 [no label, 2CD]
Music Director - Zubin Metha; Guest Conductor - Pierre Boulez

Contempo 70; live at the Pauley Pavillion, UCLA, Los Angeles, CA; May 15, 1970. Good to fairly good audience recording.

“The musicians union wanted royalties for recording rights, so Frank declined to record that show. But somebody in the crowd did have a tape recorder, and the resulting music has wound up on a variety of bootlegs.”
- Splat’s Zappapage

Frank Zappa & Peter Occhiogrosso, The Real Frank Zappa Book, 1989, p. 109-111:

Sometime in 1970, I had an offer for a major concert performance of the orchestral music accumulating in my closet. During the M.O.I.’s first five years, I had carried with me, on the road, masses of manuscript paper, and, whenever there was an opportunity, scribbled stuff on it. This material eventually became the score for 200 Motels (based on an estimate of the number of gigs we played in the first five years - forty jobs per year?).

The performance was to be held at UCLA’s Pauley Pavilion (a basketball arena seating about fourteen thousand people), with Zubin Mehta conducting the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra. A pretty big deal.

There was a ‘catch,’ though - the orchestra didn’t really want to play the stuff - they wanted AN EVENT; something ‘unique’ - like - uhh, maybe a ROCK GROUP and - uhhhhh - a REAL ORCHESTRA sort of - uhhh - well you know - ‘rocking out together.’ It didn’t matter what the music was.

This eventually led to a few problems. First of all, I didn’t have a ‘ROCK GROUP’ - the M.O.I had been disbanded for about a year. Second, there were no parts copied for the scores, and I was being asked to pay for this enormous job (seven thousand 1970 dollars). The third problem was that I wanted some kind of tape of the show, and the Musicians’ Union wouldn’t allow it. (They didn’t do anything when some asshole in the audience ran a cassette and made a bootleg album out of it, but they were promising stern action if I made one for my own use - just to find out what my pieces sounded like… but let me slow down here.)

We solved problem number one by putting together an interim one-shot ‘Mothers-Of-Invention-Sort-Of-Group.’ It did a short tour to warm up, maybe half a dozen dates, and returned to L.A. for the show.

The second problem was solved by me spending the seven thousand bucks on a team of copyists.

The third problem never got solved, and I never got a tape of the show.

It was the most successful indoor concert of the L.A. Phil’s season that year - sold out. Somewhere in the mass of spectators were Mark Volman and Howard Kaylan, a.k.a. Flo & Eddie.

They came backstage after the show, said they liked it, and told me that the Turtles had split up and they were looking for something to do. The rest is history.

Click here for more write-ups on this show.

Thanks to the person who shared these tracks on the net in 2005.

Thanks also to Drumage for the artwork.

Aud Master Reel > Reel > Reel > M-Audio Transit > Cool Edit > CD Wave Editor > Flac

Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (192 kbps). As far as we can ascertain, these tracks have never been officially released on CD.

Please Do Not Hammer The Links. Due to the size of some of the files, please be very patient when downloading the tracks. It could be that the server was very busy. The tracks should still be around. Please try again later. Kindly email us at [email protected] if you encounter persistent problems downloading the files.

Disc 1
Track 101. Frank’s Introduction (3.4MB)
Track 102. My Boyfriend’s Back/I’m Gonna Bust His Head/Tiny Sick Tears/Argon (14.1MB)
Track 103. Call Any Vegetable (including Integrales) (15.2MB)
Track 104. Blowing Discordant Sounds (2.0MB)
Track 105. 200 Motels introduction (3.6MB)
Track 106. Pound For A Brown (6.8MB)
Track 107. 200 Motels/Duke Of Prunes/Who Needs The Peace Corps/Oh No - Part A (15.7MB)
Track 108. 200 Motels/Duke Of Prunes/Who Needs The Peace Corps/Oh No - Part B (13.9MB)
Track 109. 200 Motels/Duke Of Prunes/Who Needs The Peace Corps/Oh No - Part C (11.2MB)
Track 110. 200 Motels/Duke Of Prunes/Who Needs The Peace Corps/Oh No - Part D (12.1MB)
Track 111. 200 Motels/Duke Of Prunes/Who Needs The Peace Corps/Oh No - Part E (12.5MB)

Disc 2
Track 201. King Kong intro (1.7MB)
Track 202. King Kong explanation (2.9MB)
Track 203. King Kong (9.9MB)
Track 204. Plastic People/Lumpy Gravy/Orange County Lumber Truck (17.2MB)
Track 205. Wino Man/Concentration Moon/Mom & Dad (13.9MB)
According to the artwork, Disc 2 Track 5 was recorded at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, August 21, 1970.

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  1. 18 Responses to “FRANK ZAPPA - LOS ANGELES 1970”

  2. Wow! Before all the trolls who seem to live on this site get here I actually have a chance to jump in and say “thanks for the Frank, Big O!”

    By Adam Dean on May 17, 2013

  3. attaboy adam!

    By barth on May 17, 2013

  4. Ditto. Thanks, bigO.

    Let the flaming begin.

    By NAMoosedog on May 17, 2013

  5. hey bigo, thanks!!! will get. i’ll say it again. i got every zappa you’ve offered, starting with weasel music acetate 1969 in 2008.

    one zappa i could use, if you have it in your archives, is stockholm 9.14.84. i had it a cd-r of it, but i gave it away cause it was missing two songs.

    now all the song titles appear to be correct. however, i can’t find anything on argon or integrales. what albums are those on? now the artwork says oh no!, but on the actual lp of weasels ripped my flesh it’s oh no. on the cd version of we’re only in it for the money there’s a question mark on who needs the peace corps and no question mark on the lp. i like it with the question mark. mom & dad is correct. that’s how it’s listed on we’re only…


    By Ed Saad on May 17, 2013

  6. Thanks!
    Great job, as ever

    By Claes Berglund on May 17, 2013

  7. I love Frank Zappa and I love Ed Saad!

    But most of all - I LOVE BIG-O !!!

    By TDC on May 17, 2013

  8. hey bigo, i played this entire show just now, and i still don’t know what argon and or integrales is, but i left them as they are. it’s actually “the orange county lumber truck”, and there’s a drum solo in the same track. thanks again for this cool show!


    By Ed Saad on May 17, 2013

  9. hello ed saad-

    im a zappa fan too, i went to and found some info that might help. this zappa concert is orchestral music. as u know frank was an admirer of the music of edgard varese. varese had a composition titled “Integrales” and another called “Arcana”. its possible these are the two songs; Arcana may be misspelled as Argon.

    here are the varese links:

    hope this helps!

    By barth on May 17, 2013

  10. hey barth, thanks for writing. i think, i figured it out. it’s “agon” by igor stravinsky. i will fix that and add drum solo on my tags.

    also, one more correction. it’s “a pound for a brown (on the bus)”. that should do it.


    By Ed Saad on May 17, 2013

  11. I just love Frank Zappa roios !

    By Theo on May 17, 2013

  12. theres certainly no shortage of em. not counting studio rarities the entire tours for 84 and 88 are out there. most of 79 80 and 81/82 are out there. about half of 73 is out there and a 4th to a 3rd of 74 is out there. nearly none of 67-68 is out there but there are some. now im not counting garbage quality recordings mind u. if its not worth listening to i dont even bother counting it. lets say on a scale of 1-10… it has to be a 7 or better. altho even a 5 or 6 would make the cut of ‘out there’ cut. i just wouldnt bother with it personally. theres enough that is 7 or better that one neednt worry about the crap.
    and with his various series like you cant do that on stage anymore and the 2 bootleg boxes that he put out himself of previously released boots - 22 boots if i remember correctly. and all the other live items he or his people have released over the last 20 yrs there is more than enough to satisfy most fans. the man has over 54 official albums. well over 200 roio’s. he always said he doesnt care if hes remembered or not. like there was a chance that he wouldnt be.. yeah right. 20 yrs since hes gone. i miss him terribly. back in the days of the greek philosophers they had what were known as philosopher kings. imagine fz as our sicilian philosopher king of the modern political era.
    theres over 500 fz items on sugar megs btw. course that includes studio items and tributes and so on. if u still need more.. theres something wrong with u. haha.

    By darth on May 18, 2013

  13. zappa makes me wanna crappa.

    By frank furter on May 18, 2013

  14. thanks for the update, ed.

    By barth on May 18, 2013

  15. sure barth. were you lucky enough to get the complete zappa-cowtown ballroom, kc, mo 12.2.72 show from bigo two years ago? it’s the best, even if the cd’s the rips came from were a bit scratched up. you can hear skips and other flaws in the rips. well they offered it in jan 2011, and it was missing one song. i debated on getting it cause where am i going to get the missing track? then i went ahead and got it. i figured maybe one day i’d find it. i did on zeppelin-earls court arena 5.24.75. anyway, then bigo wrote sent me an e-mail and said they omitted the wrong track so i did end up getting the complete show. life is good, barth.

    got 77 zeppelin shows and one on a cd-r. the cd-r i have is their atlanta soundtrack from 1973. it’s pretty good. i have 73 boc shows. i have a bunch of thin lizzy, ufo, judas priest, etc… i have some good jeff beck group and cream shows too.


    By Ed Saad on May 18, 2013

  16. Thanks for the Frank BigO!!! :)

    By DanC on May 18, 2013

  17. yes i got that one ed its a fine set. life is pretty good its been a little weird lately but it beats the alternative!

    By barth on May 18, 2013

  18. anyone interested in more Frank should have a look at ZAPPATEERS were evry known Zappa concert recording is available….

    By pete on May 22, 2013

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