Dweezil Zappa Plays "Watermelon In Easter Hay" For First Time

Back on Halloween Dweezil Zappa continued a tradition his father started in the '70s of performing in New York City on October 31, when he played the Beacon Theatre on Manhattan's Upper West Side. For his finale on that fateful night, Dweezil finally performed one of the few songs in his father's repertoire that had previously been off limits - "Watermelon In Easter Hay."

The instrumental "Easter Hay" was debuted in 1978 and soon after not only became a fan- favorite but a favorite of Frank's as well. On the liner notes for 1996's Frank Zappa Plays The Music Of Frank Zappa Dweezil Zappa noted, "When Frank was asked whether or not he felt he had written or recorded anything that was unique or special to him he replied, 'Yes.' He then mentioned the names of 3 guitar instrumentals; 'Black Napkins,' 'Zoot Allures' and 'Watermelon In Easter Hay.' He considered these his 'signature pieces."

Zappa Plays Zappa formed in 2006 and has performed many of Frank Zappa's tunes over the past seven years, but not "Watermelon In Easter Hay." In 2008, Dweezil talked about "Easter Hay" with Lancaster Online, "That one I want to play, but it's always been a tragedy, that song. Emotionally, it's so devastating that I kind of — can't focus on it. When I start playing it, you know, it's too overwhelming. So, eventually I'll overcome that. But that's one where, if I do play it, I will learn the whole thing in its entirety, note for note, because it's so perfect. You can't possibly make it any better."

On October 31 the time was finally right for "Easter Hay." Dweezil nailed his father's distinctive tone and phrasing. Earlier today Dweezil shared video of the performance via his YouTube channel:

[Published on: 11/9/13]

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