Dweezil Zappa has released a new song “Dinosaur,” which features a guitar solo from Frank Zappa. In addition to the posthumous segment from his father, the song is pieced together from old riffs and vamps that Dweezil wrote as a thirteen-year-old musician. The song got the name “Dinosaur” because “it’s in phase with the practice of paleontology.” The new release is presented as part of a PledgeMusic campaign to raise money for a legal defense fund to take on the Zappa Family Trust in his ongoing battle to save his own performance name.
The Frank Zappa guitar solo comes from a performance sometime in 1977, Dweezil tells Rolling Stone. “I selected a few analog master solo tracks from live concerts and edited them together to fit over my song.” He continues, “This was a technique developed by my dad in the Seventies. He would collect performances he liked from his live concerts and isolate them from their origin, then pair them with an unrelated performance in the same or relative key, thereby creating a new performance or composition. He called this process ‘xenochrony.'”
Zappa adds, “It is far easier to experiment with xenochrony using computer technology. Back in the Seventies it required brilliant razor blade tape edits and ingenious fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants synchronization between three tape machines.”
Listen to “Dinosaur” below:
In the release of this new track, Dweezil also included a five-part documentary about the process. You can watch the first two below:
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