Zappa and Varèse

WQXR’s blog, with a rediscovered recording of the Frank Zappa-led 1984 tribute concert to Edgard Varèse.

Zappa’s love for Varèse began long before he became the mustached icon of eccentric rock and jazz. In fact, it began when he was about 13, after he read an article about a New York record store that somehow managed to sell an album called “Ionizations: The Complete Works of Edgard Varèse, Volume One.” The magazine labeled the music as an unpleasant mashup of drums and sounds, a description that inspired Zappa’s obsession to find it

I have to admit, Varèse was never really my cup of tea, but his influence on 20th Century music is incalculable, and you have to admire any composer whose music can put Zappa and Pierre Boulez on the same stage.

One to check out.

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