Frank Zappa: The Negative Dialectics of Poodle Play

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St. Martin's Griffin, 1996 - Music - 621 pages
2 Reviews
He has either been condemned as a cynical purveyor of "smut" and scatalogical humor aimed below the lowest common denominator, or championed as the twentieth century's most eclectic composer - definitions that are both inaccurate when isolated. In Frank Zappa: The Negative Dialectics of Poodle Play, Ben Watson explains that these characteristics are not mutually exclusive; it is misguided to suppress either aspect of Zappa's genius. His socially transgressive shocks - designed to show up the repressions of contemporary culture - are central to his art, . Watson brings serious critical attention to the musician, dissecting Zappa within his context, and analyzing him alongside such artists as John Cage and Pierre Boulez. Zappa's ideas are interpreted as an extension of a Western radical tradition that encompassed the Marquis de Sade, the Surrealists, and beyond, from musique concrete to doowop, Theodor Adorno to Suzy Creamcheese, Plato to Punky Meadows, the Situationists to the PMRC. Zappa's politics, as well a his wit and relentless attempts to break standard forms, are integral to his music.

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - DCavin - LibraryThing

Had a tough time with this one. Comparing Zappa songs to pieces of art. Waaay over my head. Giving it a three to be fair since this pretty "did not apply" to me. Read full review

ZAPPA: The Negative Dialectics of Poodle Play

User Review  - Kirkus

A self-proclaimed ``Zappographer'' overanalyzes the work of one of modern music's most outrageous iconoclasts. Frank Zappa (194093) began his career as the guiding force behind the Mothers of ... Read full review

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About the author (1996)

Ben Watson is an automotive technician upgrading instructor for industrial training services and theCanadian Institute of Technology.

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