"Guitar" by Frank Zappa Is Released
Guitar is a 1988 album by Frank Zappa.
It is assumably the follow-up to 1981's Shut Up 'n Play Yer Guitar; like that album it features Zappa's guitar solos excerpted from live performances, recorded between 1979 and 1984. It garnered Zappa his 6th Grammy nomination for "Best Rock Instrumental Performance".
Guitar was originally intended to be a 3-record box set (like Shut Up 'n Play Yer Guitar), but Zappa decided, with this release, to start using compact discs as his primary media rather than records. As such, it was Zappa's first album to be released simultaneously on vinyl and CD. The double CD, released on Rykodisc in the US and Zappa Records in Europe, contained all 32 tracks while the double LP was paired down to 19 tracks and released on Zappa's Barking Pumpkin label .
Aside from "Watermelon in Easter Hay" and the opener "Sexual Harassment in the Workplace", all tracks were derived from performances of other songs, as on Shut Up 'n Play Your Guitar. Solos were taken here from "The Black Page", "Let's Move to Cleveland", "Drowning Witch", "Zoot Allures", "Whipping Post", "City of Tiny Lites", "Advance Romance", "Hot-Plate Heaven at the Green Hotel", "King Kong", "Easy Meat", "Ride My Face to Chicago", "Sharleena", "A Pound for a Brown on the Bus", and "Inca Roads".
Track names, though ostensibly unrelated to the actual compositions, make many references to popular culture and world history. "Do Not Pass Go" refers to the Monopoly phrase that appears to prevent players from collecting a monetary bonus; "Jim & Tammy's Upper Room" recalls televangelists Jim Bakker and his wife Tammy Faye Messner; "Were We Ever Really Safe in San Antonio?", "Sunrise Redeemer" and "Hotel Atlanta Incidentals" are references to the locations of the venues in which the pieces were played; "Move It or Park It" is a colloquialism that could express frustration with an apprehensive driver of a motor vehicle; "Orrin Hatch on Skis" refers to Utah Republican Senator Orrin Hatch; "But Who Was Fulcanelli?" refers to an alias apparently used by a 19th century French alchemist and author; "For Duane", one of Zappa's many readings of "Whipping Post", references Duane Allman; "GOA" is unclear in its reference, and knowledge of the title's origin likely died with the composer; "Do Not Try This at Home" refers to the disclaimer often associated with dangerous or risky feats on television or video.