Chris Opperman on stage with various members of Project Object -- André Cholmondeley, Eric Slick, and Jordan Shapiro in New York City
(Oh, and wait until the Emitt Rhodes song stops playing and then click on the play button of the above film so you can hear/see an amazing rendition of "I am the Slime"...although it's only a minute long film and ends rather abruptly. And am I crazy or is that Gary walking in front of the stage at the beginning of the clip?)
So I finally found a couple reviews of the recent Project Object shows on the Frank Zappa Forum Board:
"I was able to go to this one and planting smooches on Ike and Andre' was the highlight. Of course, the shows was great too.
The 19 year old drummer is fantastic! So sorry, I can't recall his name right now.
The drummer is Eric Slick. Ha!
"Tonight's show at Martyr's was so fucking good. Eric Slick and Seahag totally blew me away. I had never seen them with P/O before. WOW.
Everyone was just incredible and the setlist was gold. Hearing stuff from You Are What You Is was quite a treat. I lost count, but I think there were at least 5 pairs of underpants tossed up on stage by the end of the night.
I enjoyed seeing ZPZ, but I'll take P/O over them anyday. I'm looking forward to night 2"
Oh god. Underpants were thrown at my son. Well, it was just a matter of time, I suppose. Next thing you know women will be asking him to sign their breasts.
If they haven't already.
Eric, if they have, please do not tell me. The underpants thing is quite enough for your poor mother's heart.
And while the management of this blog is very pleased with the above review on the Zappa forum board, we do not share the sentiments of "taking P/O over ZPZ anyday" because both are incredible and I personally know and have toured with Napoleon Murphy Brock during his Rock School guest professor days, Eric adores him and loves playing drums with him, and he is an awesome, awesome musician as are all of the musicians in ZPZ -- I mean, come on, they have Terry Bozzio (one of Eric's heroes) and Steve Vai! So enough of this P/O vs ZPZ stuff. What's fantastic about P/O and ZPZ is that they are both getting Frank's music out there to audiences of all ages and turning both young kids and oldheads (like me) on to the music for the first time.
Yeah, that's right. Me, the biggest rock fan in the world. Every concert I attend where Eric and Julie are performing, whether it's with Adrian Belew or Project Object...whatever...fans always ask me "How many times did you see Frank?"
I am forced to admit "Never".
Gary and I were die hard British rock/blues fans. Ask us how many times we've seen Clapton, The Who, David Bowie, or the Kinks, and we're talking triple figures. Wasn't Zappa that weird guy who sang about dental floss?
And then the kids came home from Rock School -- Paul Green started playing Zappa for them when they were like eleven/twelve years old -- and I heard City of Tiny Lights for the first time and then as baby Rock School All-Stars Julie and Eric performed it and I was like "Oh my god, this is the most amazing song I've ever heard." And then in 2003 the kids performed at Zappanale with Ike Willis and Napoleon Murphy Brock and Jimmy Carl Black...
And so it began.
Gary and I now own every CD, vinyl, t-shirts, etc.
By the way, I didn't want to mention it but I feel I must - the newspaper article I posted yesterday had several errors in it - Napoleon is obviously not with Project Object, he's with Zappa Plays Zappa; Eric is not a former member of Project Object who formerly pounded drums with Adrian Belew -- Eric is a current, active member of both bands; Dave Dreiwitz is not a member of P/O but he plays bass with Ween and Crescent Moon, and Crescent Moon, which also features Eric on drums, opened for Project Object last night and tonight in Chicago as well as in Baltimore and NJ and I'm hoping this Tuesday night in Philadelphia...but no, as far as I know, Dave was never a member of P/O.
And um, Ike Willis "jammed" with Zappa? Ike did a hell of a lot more than jam...he was Frank Zappa's lead singer and rhythm guitarist for nearly 15 years. Mr. Reporter, sir, in case you find this blog while googling your name, here's a link for you.
As a writer, I get kind of offended by other writers who do not properly do their research so while I thank this fellow for writing the article and for the most part I enjoyed it -- well, all I can say is, sloppy job, dude.
So speaking of The Who, last night Gary was assistant music director for Rock School's production of Tommy, and it was amazing. Several parents came up to him and told him what an awesome show it was and Mike Sabolick, who was the show's Director, mentioned Gary in the program by writing thanks "To Gary Slick for being a king amongst men".
That is very cool.
Gary will alas not be at tonight's show because his co-worker bought us tickets to see Rain tonight at the Academy of Music and we're actually having a Saturday night date -- dinner and a show with another couple. Ha ha - this is not our usual weekend M.O. but we're both looking forward to a nice dinner out and an evening of Beatle music, which is what Rain is.
I hear it turns into a sing-along, which means I must have copious amounts of wine with dinner pre-show.
Heh. Luckily, Gary sounds like a cross between John and Paul when he sings while I am, at best, an out of tune Ringo who would never, ever sing in public but drunk...well, who knows. What the fuck, I can't be any worse than the late Linda McCartney or Yoko Ono, right? Right.
But err...a sing-along? Make that two bottles of wine with dinner for me, waiter, and let's start with a vodka martini and finish it up with a post-meal cognac.
I'm just kidding. This should be a fun experience.
My writing news will have to wait...I am seriously considering doing two separate posts a day where I isolate writing from music or maybe setting up another "just authors" blog altogether, but while Eric is on tour and the news continues to flow in regarding both kids' career, I'd rather be their unofficial publicist because, well, it's just too, too cool.