Frank Zappa - (1984) - Thing-Fish premix



Thing-Fish Pre-Release Version

From Jon Naurin:

    The story of the Thing-Fish demos, and three Zappa fans called X, Y and Z:

       1. X acquires the pre-release tapes from Zappa.
       2. X makes a complete copy to Y, and an abridged one to Z, under the condition that they won't spread them.
       3. Z makes a bootleg, and trades his tape.
       4. Several different versions of Z's recording makes it onto other bootlegs and tapes.
       5. X and Y never spread their recordings any further, but play it to friends and at Zappa days. [Jon has heard these tapes - Ed]

    So all bootlegs originate from the same recording, and the only difference betweeen them is the length and sound quality.

From Chris Ekman:

    I noticed you've got no entry for the original Thing-Fish yet, so I thought I'd sent this track listing I'd made for a tape purported to be it. It's 90 minutes long, and some, but not all, of it would seem to be on a couple of bootlegs you've got listed [Thing-Fish - The Real Tapes and Frank Zappa's Thing-Fish]. I don't have the tape here, so I can't check on some of the things that strike me as squirrely now. Tracks are different from the official version only when noted.

        1. Prologue
        2. The Mammy Nuns
        3. Harry & Rhonda
        4. Galoot Up-Date
        5. Approximate [!!]
        6. The Torchum Never Stops
        7. You Are What You Is
        8. Mudd Club
        9. The Meek Shall Inherit Nothing
        10. Dumb All Over
        11. Heavenly Bank Account
        12. Teenage Wind
        13. Suicide Chump
        14. If Only She Woulda
        15. Drafted Again
        16. The Massive Improve'lence
        17. Artificial Rhonda
        18. Amnerika
        19. No Not Now
        20. Briefcase Boogie
        21. Drop Dead
        22. The Crab-Grass Baby
        23. Won Ton On [True Glove version]

    * Track 3 has different backing - Synclavier, I seem to remember.
    * Track 4 is backed by a guitar solo, not by " The Blue Light" - part of this can be heard during the "an' how many think my potato been bakin' too long?" outtake during " Porn Wars" on Frank Zappa Meets the Mothers of Prevention.
    * Track 6 has " The Evil Prince" interposed, but the original Zoot Allures solo and grunts as the backing.
    * Tracks 10-15: Like the other You Are What You Is songs, the vocals are redone and slightly altered. This is a lot of You Are What You Is, isn't it?
    * Track 15 is a very different version: Moon sings a verse and does a Swedish Valley- Girl aerobics routine over most of the song, some of which wound up backwards on " Ya Hozna" on Them Or Us.
    * Track 18 is the Synclavier instrumental, which, oddly enough, doesn't have Napoleon Murphy Brock's vocals.
    * Track 21 has doo-wop vocals backing the conversation between Thing-Fish and the Evil Prince.
    * Track 22 is totally different - it's a mishmash of all of the Baby's lines on the official album, with a different backing.
    * Track 23 has no dialogue, just some of Johnny "Guitar" Watson's exclamations from "He's So Gay" (which, again oddly, doesn't appear in this version). [This "Won Ton On" version was officially released, in Germany, on a maxi single called True Glove - Ed.]

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