Dweezil Zappa has started a new label, Vaulternative, to make available scores of unreleased recordings by his late father, Frank Zappa. The first release, “FZ:OZ — Frank Zappa Live in Australia,” is already out via the Zappa family’s Zappa.com Web site. The double-CD set of mid-1970s Zappa Australian concert material will be followed by a 1978 Halloween concert from the Palladium in New York, to be released in conjunction with DTS Entertainment.
Future Vaulternative product will continue with live and studio recordings from the voluminous Frank Zappa vaults, which span the artist’s whole career, Dweezil Zappa says, with a focus on the elder Zappa’s band lineups that have been heretofore less represented in the marketplace.
“There were certain lineups where the band was very large or very small, and there aren’t that many recordings of these extreme versions of the band,” Dweezil says. “There will be a lot of material that people have heard, but not with these musicians and arrangements.”
The “OZ” set, Dweezil notes, presents one of only two Down Under concert treks undertaken by his father. “It features his most stripped-down bands, with Terry Bozzio on drums and Roy Estrada on bass and only a couple other musicians. He rarely had a small band like that.”
The copious previously released Zappa catalog remains available on Rykodisc. Dweezil says that Vaulternative will now issue all Zappa product not in circulation already.
Dweezil says he has always wanted to involve himself in overseeing his father’s unreleased output. “I don’t think anybody else would have the same feel for the stuff — and the attention to detail and enthusiasm for it,” he says.