Zappa Family Trust Releases AAA Edition of Frank's "Burnt Weeny Sandwich"

And this is how you do it correctly!: Supervised by the ZFT, the record was specially mastered for this release by Bernie Grundman with all analog production and cut directly from the 1970 ¼” stereo safety master tape in 2018.

Unavailable on vinyl for more than three decades, Zappa last released this on vinyl in 1986 in the rare Old Masters Box Two. The LP, which will be pressed at Pallas in Germany, will feature the album's distinctive original cover art by frequent Zappa collaborator Cal Schenkel and include the original album's black and white poster, which has never been reproduced in any of the album's CD editions.

'Tis the season for "White Port and Lemon Juice"!

Anton D's picture

I am more than happy to buy Zappa re-issues.

Still mourning after all these years.

The town of Lancaster, CA is very over-represented in the pantheon of music influence!

atomlow's picture

AAA finally! Hopefully you'll review it and maybe compare it to an original. I already have an original but this could be a special thing. Bonus with the insert.

Tom L's picture

...especially for $22.99, very reasonable. Looking forward to comparing this to my Bizzare pressing, which does have some clicks and pops but is otherwise terrific sounding.

mauidj's picture

Were the other recent re releases like Weezils, Lumpy and Money done this way?

rip38-65's picture

Including Absolutely Free, Joe's Garage, others. In my opinion, all these AAA remasters sound great, using superior vinyl. I can't compare them to Original Masters since I've never owned it, but I have no problem buying new vice fishing for used sets--something about encouraging ongoing new releases, etc. But it's nice to get AAA vinyl done well as compared to the majority of vinyl coming out these days with masters produced from 44.1kHz files. As far as Ahmet is concerned, he got the family business as specifically determined by Gail. There's lots of interesting material on the web regarding Ahmet vs. Dweezil and how Gail factored in but I won't get into that further here.

cundare's picture

Actually, OM Box 2 has long been my go-to for mid-period Mothers albums, & I doubt if this release will change that. The OM sets were a labor of love, every aspect personally supervised by Frank himself (even sold by the family -- I ordered my copy directly from Moon) as his way to "fix" the origial releases. Including new mixes. The Old Masters mix of Peaches en Regalia, for example, was significantly different than the original release (& from a 3d mix on the Warner/Reprise promotional sampler "October 10, 1969.") So I wonder which mixes of Chunga's, Burnt Weenie Sandwich, etc., are on these new reissues. Barking Pumpkin, Reprise, or Verve?

FWIW, although it's great to have these old Mothers albums back on vinyl, I still have to award Ahmet Zappa this year's "shameless exploitation of a deceased family member" award (narrowly beating out the Hendrix Estate). Since a dying Gail ceded her son control of the catalog in 2016, over a dozen Zappa albums have been released, & almost none of the new material IMO is worth more than a single playing. I know this first-hand -- like a dumbass fanboy, I bought most of them.

I'm pleased as punch to see BWS on everybody's radar again, but if you can justify a few hundred bucks for a very collectible, beautifully produced box that is a personal statement of the artist's vision, with absolutely faithful original artwork, inserts, and even an unreleased "mystery disk", I suggest waiting for NM Old Masters boxes to pop up on eBay. All 3 volumes are great.

That's just my 2c. I understand that this is an issue upon which reasonable minds may differ...

shawnwes's picture

I think they did a fantastic job on this reissue. Flawless sonics, pressing and packaging.

Neward Thelman's picture

What a horrible human being he was. Full of hatred towards anything and everything; seething with acidic contempt and spewing venom; and all of it blatantly on display in his phonograph records.

No one seems to realize that this was a person who gave the name of Dweezil to his own son - Dweezil! And, it didn't end there. The innocent female child born into that household was named ---- Moon Unit!

Spend your life as....Moon Unit.

A hateful and hate-filled individual. It was no surprise to me that cancer finally claimed his life. After all, he'd been nurturing it for the whole length of his existence.

mauidj's picture

And it’s you.
He hated right wing zealots. Religious nut jobs and the us government war machine. So I assume this is your reason for reviling this great man. Oh and the names he chose for His kids. Not yours.......his.
Thanks for adding such insight to this discussion.
The only think it told me anything about is YOU!

Anton D's picture

I could practically feel the spittle hitting your keyboard.

Where is the hate on his records?

I give you props for your high level troll. What music do you endorse?

Tom L's picture

Frank was a passionate guy who had a lot of energy. He was certainly not always a gentleman and often expressed himself in very blunt terms. Having said that, he was not a hateful or vengeful person. His children were named by both Frank and Gail, and they were free to change their names to anything they wanted, just like everyone else.
I fail to see how he could deserve your venomous comment, which only reflects badly on you.

Anton D's picture


Neward Thelman's picture

Everyone here defending the indefensible, as if any of you had personal contact with the guy. I sure didn't - but my comments are based on those who knew him, worked with and around him over the course of his career. That, and his actions - which are on view for everyone to behold.

"...children were named by both Frank and Gail.." - Oh. Oh!!! Oh, yesh yesh yeesh. That makes it completely OK. As long as both were involved - sure, totall fine. Like that parental pair from earlier this year who kept some dozen of their children imprisoned and without food. Totally fine.

In reality, by all accounts Zappa's wife was even more vicious than he was, and continued to be. Her most recent act of parental love and caring was to take legal action to prevent her guitarist son Dweezil from being able to legally perform his father's music, thus cutting his livelihood right out from under him. No more Zappa Plays Zappa.

Those who visited the Zappa household during Dweezil's youth would remark how she would humiliate and disparage the child in front of guests.

Two peas in pod. A fine, warm, and caring couple. DCFS?

Tom L's picture

I can only hope you have the same concern for every person with a strange name...not exactly proof of parental abuse!

Then you attack Gail, who was not the subject of your original attack.

You are far too concerned with the purported negative behavior of someone who's dead and gone, whom you never met and have no real knowledge about. This column was about Zappa's MUSIC, but you have used it to launch personal attacks on the musician, which is pointless and dumb. Nobody here cares about your hateful opinions, so feel free to hate Zappa and leave me and my fellow music lovers alone. Instead, I urge you to get a life.

Anton D's picture

I remember you from your days of getting booted from Audio Asylum.

Do you simply roam the internet looking for bridges to hide under?

Chriswilford1's picture
Chriswilford1's picture

I’ll simply point out a couple facts here.
1. Moon (Unit is her middle name) has been quoted as stating that she never felt her name was that odd. She comments that “Moon” in different languages is a commen name for girls all over the world.
2. Dweezil’s legal name is Ian Donald Calvin Euclid Zappa, as the nurses at the hospital where he was born refused to accept the name Dweezil on his birth certificate. As such Frank wrote down a number of names of friends and guys in the band. When Dweezil turned 18 he chose to legally change his name to Dweezil, as his parents had intended.

In all honesty, someone with name like yours is really one to talk.

Frank is widely considered to be a genius and your words will do little to change that. As for Gail, I had the pleasure of spending an afternoon with her at the house and she was wonderful. Additionally, on the front of the disagreements between the brothers, your facts are woefully inaccurate. I won’t go into it here but the brothers are speaking directly again and are working through their issues.

One should really have their facts straight before commenting in a public forum, but I guess that seams to be the norm these days.

Neward Thelman's picture

>>Moon (Unit is her middle name)<<

Whew! That makes it so much better. Much, much better. Whew.

>>nurses at the hospital where he was born refused to accept the name Dweezil<<

Idiot, piece of crap, deplorable, meddling, big-government nurses. One might say that at least someone in the room had some common sense - at least back in the day - but today? Hell, that's a lawsuit right there.

>>have their facts straight before commenting <<
>>the brothers are speaking directly again<<

Let's see...not hard to keep straight. Oh, except that the legal actions taking by the family matriarch to shut out offspring Dweezil are a matter of public record - not speculation. One should really have their facts straight before commenting in a public forum...

>>Frank is widely considered to be a genius<<

Rockers consider pretty everyone outside of The Partridge Family to be genius. Every drug-soaked thumper/thrasher/pounder is a genius. My comments about F. Zappa were directed only at him as a person - I didn't address his music at all. In my highly musically informed opinion, the two issues are completely separate. To clarify for your rock and roll brain, Richard Wagner was mostly a terrible person. His music is among the greatest every created.

Oh - wait - who? Richard who? Wagner? Do he rap? Nevermind.

I'm glad for you that Gail Zappa treated you civilly. If only she'd extended the same courtesy to her children.

Chriswilford1's picture

My facts are straight. It’s not all what’s been published. And as for thinking I’m some rap enthusiast who knows nothing outside of contemporary music, google my father, Ronald. Once again, facts really do matter.

Anton D's picture

Your father's qualifications qualify you in what way?

If not Lamarck, a simple appeal to nepotism to qualify your opinion?

Chriswilford1's picture

You have made a number of flawed assumptions. I am merely pointing out some factual corrections. I do not need anyone to “qualify” my opinions. That wasn’t the point. I guess you missed that. You implied I had a lack of knowledge of classical music. I simply demonstrated that I grew up in a classical home as my Dad was in the business and I had Uncle’s who’s last names ended with Ozawa, Rostropovich and Karajan. So yes, I am familiar with Wagner...

Your attitude is demonstrative of overcompensating for your own ridiculous and pompous name.

I’m threw with you. So long Jacky (short for, well, you know).

Anton D's picture

I simply implied your "Jacky" bonafides.

My name is a common name, should be no problem for a person like you, with Uncles Seiji, Mstislav, and Herbert!

I am glad you are "threw" with me, my 7 great-uncle, Noah Webster, the renowned lexicographer, would be appalled by you. I grew up in a house that contained his dictionary, along with other fine dictionaries.


Chriswilford1's picture

I was replying to Newark... After seeing some more of his posts it’s clearly pointless. Sorry for the mix up.

Chriswilford1's picture

Now spell check kicks in. Brutal.

Anton D's picture

Did the hospital at least try try to restrain her evil intentions?

Sorry, but you not liking the name "Moon Unit" is as crazy as your claim not to be judging Zappa's music on a thread that is only about Zappa's music.

You douched it up, then want to retreat into "I'm only into wagner's music?"

To sum up, so far:

Thread is about Zappa reissues.

Neward gets diarrhea of the keyboard about Frank and Gail Zappa as people.

Other readers point out your douchery.

You double down, then claim you are only about the music.

You should head back over to Audio Asylum and see how that goes.

cundare's picture

At the risk of perpetuating this unpleasant thread, I propose the very unfasionable argument that maybe both sides make valid points.

In the interest of fair disclosure, I've been a rabid fan of Frank's music back to the original release of Absolutely Free and although I generally prefer his instrumental work, I consider him one of the 2 or 3 most important influences on my own music.

I can't contest the fact that he was an angry, often vicious human being. But ya know, if he wasn't, masterpieces like Uncle Meat and WOITftMoney would never have existed.

OTOH, I did have one experience with Gail, albeit indirectly, and found her repellent. In the 1990s, with Dweezil's tribute band in full swing, she started threatening local bands around the country with lawsuits if they played Frank's music. OK, that's vile enough, but I considered her threats to be frivolous, based on an interpretation of copyright law that made no sense. I suspect that the idea was to abuse copyright law in order to strong-arm local bands who could not afford legal aid. I was involved to the extent that a colleague of mine (an IP attorney who did a lot of pro bono work for local musicians) defended a singer who had been hit with one of Gail's cease-and-desist letters. Gail's ridiculous claim was that Frank's works were dramatic performances (like a play), not musical compositions, and should thus fall under the area of copyright law that protects dramatic works. IOW, performing content from "Joe's Garage" -- which would have been a permissible musical performance -- was actionable under the more constraining law that protects dramatic performances.

So I don't think too much of Gail, and I consider Frank to be in the same category as geniuses like F. Scott Fitzgerald, Picasso, and Pollack: Their work enriched my life, but I hire them to babysit.

Although understanding an artist's work often requires understanding the artist, it's certainly possible to reconcile differing opinions of the two. Reasonable minds may differ re: the assertion that Zappa was an unpleasant human being, but even if that's true, it's not credible to denigrate his work for that reason. The world will remember "Peaches en Regalia" long after they cease cringing at the anger of "Mothers of Prevention."

jlstrat's picture

1. You're an idiot.
2. Artists are often despicable.

Neward Thelman's picture

1. I disagree with what you've said ---- so, you're an idiot.
2. Artists are often despicable ---so, you're an idiot.
Rock on*.

*The only thing musically rockers know.

jlstrat's picture

Guess I'm burned. I don't think Zappa was a rocker, though. His music was pretty sophisticated and I think every member of his bands had to sight read. If you don't like it, fine, but the assumption that his bad behavior was specific to him or to rock musicians alone seems to be a little naive.

Neward Thelman's picture

Yep. Here we go again. This is like expecting to find the Bahamas on Pluto, or knowledge of science during the Middle Ages. You know - dem mid evil times. OTOH, we may he heading into a new medieval period of pugnacious, stubborn ignorance. Look over your shoulder, and you'll see a growing population who adamantly insist that the earth is flat. And, everyone knows that dinosaurs and Adam and Eve walked together - everyone, 'cept them Godless scientists.

As I've repeatedly stated elsewhere, most homo sapiens sapiens [genus species subspecies] crawling around the surface of the earth today listen to some form of pop/rock music. Yep. Polish heavy metal, Russian rap, Sulawesi pop - no matter where you go in the world today, you'll find human beings listening to something rock.

Rock? Rock???!!!

As any pimply-faced, vape-smoking, pierced/tattooed, green-hair adolescent will tell you with righteous confidence - that - THAT - that's not rock. It's punk. It's cowntry. It's soul. It's R&B. It's techno. It's prog. It's metal/speed metal/death metal/psycho mental. It's ---- ad nauseam.

If the [endlessly pounding] drums happen to bash out pop-whap-whap-WHAP, rather than pop-WHAP-whap-whap, then it's NOT rock. Everyone knows it's actually ______fill in the blank_____.

And, that's how - musically speaking - we're trapped in the a medieval world. Musically, every one knows - just fundamentally knows - that the earth is flat, blood letting cures cancer - and everything else. Parkinson's is caused by evil spirits. It's NOT rock, it's _______.

Ever since music education has been cut from schools, several generations have passed and folks have slid into a true abyss of profound ignorance about music.

Here's a little jolt for you - and your fellow rockers. It's all rock. Pop/rock - it's all pop/rock. In a general way, just as we use the rather silly word "classical" music to describe more than 6 centuries of widely diverse styles, and similarly we use jazz to describe a wide variety of music, so we use Rock or pop/rock to describe all of that hopeless crap to which you cling.

So yes, your "punk", or surf-techno, or whatever - it's all rock. There's no argument or discussion about this - your job is to stop typing, read, digest, and attempt to understand. Enlarge your understanding of music, rather than running your mouth.

Your Frank Zappa is rock. Admittedly, late in his career he attempted to actually compose for orchestra, and at that point recorded some pieces that - using atonality - pushed the boundary of conventional pop/rock [for one thing, there were no vocals - which - right there - jerk-whips the medieval, mid eviler in you to gasp "dat ain't rock!!!"], but rock it remains.

And, yes, Frank Zappa did something that's beyond the wildest imagination of most rockers - he used - or attempted to use - music forms other than the song form. Variations form, for example. Still, his efforts remained tethered to the rock world from which they sprang; interesting and - for rockers - bold experiments - tho nothing special and totally routine for classical or jazz listeners. That's not to deny their quality, which is a completely different issue. Rather, it's a matter of correct analysis and recognition.

"...the assumption that his bad behavior was specific to rock...". I made no such assumption or statement. YOU did. Don't accuse me of your own cranial activity [or lack thereof].

Rock on.

jlstrat's picture

I did some searching and, to my great surprise, found no magazine or newspaper that carries Mr. Thelman's byline. Imagine he shares his wisdom WITHOUT BEING PAID FOR IT! Really, we're so lucky, we readers of Analog Planet.

weirdo12's picture

You sound just like my ex-wife!!! HATE? He might have been devastatingly disappointed with his fellow man but I don't think HATE is accurate. You're a monster. I can't believe I actually hope you don't contract an infection following the sterilization procedure.

Neward Thelman's picture

Your ex-wife lectured you about Frank Zappa? Wow.

You were right to dump her. Or, did she dump you ----- WEIRDO?

"... I don't think HATE is accurate..." -- how do you know? Ja know Zappa personally? Worked as his plumber, or his garbage collector?

I posted evidence available in print and online by those who had close contact with F. Zappa. My only change was to condense it into a few short paragraphs. Any may fact check my statements, some of which appeared on this very site.

"You're a monster" -- Boo. lol.

mauidj's picture

Can anyone comment on how the recent re releases stack up against The Original Masters albums.
I have Vol 3 and wonder if I should get the other ones or just be content with these new releases.

Chriswilford1's picture

While I don’t have the Old Masters box, I did compare it to an original white label promo and it sounds just as good, and much quieter. Killer job and a steel for the $$

jlstrat's picture

Burn Weeny is even better than my treasured Bizarre Recs pressing. I've also owned a tri-color steamship pressing from the UK and a Simply Vinyl pressing (digitally sourced, don't bother). This is the best version I've heard--plenty of low frequency energy but more top end detail and space. Absolutely Free sounds vastly better than the original, in part because Verve pressings are often crummy. I order Chunga's Revenge and I think I'm gonna grab Lumpy Gravy. By the way, if you can find a Classic Recs pressing Hot Rats (also mastered by Grundman), grab it.

mauidj's picture

I am also a Zappa nut. Have all his stuff in multiple versions.
I just received Lumpy, Burnt, Absolutely. Yet to listen due to my rig being down.
Weasels will be of my all time faves! Along with Waka and Wazoo.
Yes I have the Classic Hot rats. Love it!

jlstrat's picture

Didn't know that was out on vinyl. Gotta add that one, too.

mauidj's picture I just snagged an Old Masters Vol 1 box on eBay. So now I can do a comparison with my Absolutely Free remaster and this one too. I will report back.

Anton D's picture

Excited to see what you think!

TommyTunes's picture

I’ve been a Zappa fan and collector since 69, both the Burnt Weenie and Weasles reissues sound incredible, now the original Blue Bizarre label pressings were no slouch but these might just edge them out in detail and low end definition. The added bonus is they play with zero surface noise. The key word is Presence. The only draw back is the covers would have been nice to have tip-on sleeves and the original Bizarre labels but....
Can’t wait for Waka Jawa and Grand Wazoo. For those wondering how they compare to the Old Masters boxes, no comparison those used digital masters that were terrible.