People walk the streets outside The Englert Theatre on Thursday, April 6, 2017. (Ben Allan Smith/The Daily Iowan)

Dweezil Zappa to perform at The Englert Theatre


Acclaimed guitarist Dweezil Zappa, son of Frank ‘Call Any Vegetable’ Zappa, will perform at the Englert at 8 p.m. May 5.

By Matthew Kinney

Grammy-winning guitarist Dweezil Zappa’s 12th-annual tour, “Choice Cuts,” will come to the Englert, 221 E. Washington Street, at 8 p.m. May 5. Zappa is the son of acclaimed musician, composer, and activist Frank Zappa.

Dweezil Zappa has been committed to honoring the legacy of his father’s music since 2006, when he formed the band Zappa Plays Zappa. Assembling a group of top-notch musicians, his live concerts have preserved the music of Frank Zappa to deliver a concert for Zappa fans old and new. Dweezil Zappa has described the concert as a “protein-enriched program designed to create new awareness of the depth and variety of my dad’s music.”

Zappa was born into a culture of music and was exposed to his father’s music at a young age. He took a lot of interest in classic rock music at a young age and was inspired by the way guitarists could manipulate the guitar to create unique sounds. The unique experimental style has stuck with Zappa throughout his career.

Zappa received his first guitar at age 6, and learned guitar directly from legendary guitarists Steve Vai and Eddie Van Halen. At age 12, Zappa released his first single titled “My Mother is a Space Cadet,” which was produced and featured guitar by Van Halen.

Since the release of his first single, Zappa has had a prolific solo music career, guest appearances on his father’s albums, and numerous film roles. In 1984, at the age of 14, Zappa contributed guitar solos to two songs on his father’s album *Them or Us*. Zappa appeared in the 1986 film *Pretty in Pink* and starred alongside Arnold Schwarzenegger in the 1987 film *The Running Man*.

Zappa has more than honored his father’s legacy, being nominated for numerous Grammy awards over his career; he was first nominated for a Grammy in 1987 for best rock instrumental performance with the song “Wipe Out.” In 2008, Zappa won the Grammy for best rock instrumental performance with a cover of his father’s song titled “Peaches En Regalia” and was nominated once again for best rock instrumental performance in 2010 with a cover of his father’s song “The Deathless Horsie.”

Along with the concert, Zappa will host a guitar masterclass at 3 p.m. In the class, Zappa will display his guitar techniques and teach some of the concepts he has learned over the years trying to perfect his father’s most challenging musical compositions. The class before the concert is just a taste of what Zappa teaches at his four-day music camp, “Dweezilla.”

Filled with new takes on old Frank Zappa compositions, the concert will be a trip through the expansive catalogue of Zappa music from the person most qualified to do it justice. Spanning different genres, decades, and compositional styles that Frank Zappa used, the concert will be an attraction for Zappa fans old and new.

When: 8 p.m. May 5

Where: Englert, 221 E. Washington

Admission: $31.50-$75

Special Sections

Print Edition

Front Page PDF

Text Links