Part 2: The Best of Old and New Technologies
Interview by Marsha Vdovin
When I do get the time, I try to really understand what the tools are, and a lot of times some of the stuff can be confusing or daunting when you have so many options. I think I use the tools better when I understand the principles behind them more. Anything in the UAD-1 is really good.
Dweezil also loves classic analog gear, and he owns several vintage 1176s.
"When we're tracking, we go through an analog process and then it ends up in the digital world. Even if we are recording in a digital environment, the chain is usually analog. We do use 1176s on drums and bass. In mixdown, I often use the 1176s for specific effects. I just like the way older records sound in general, so anytime I can keep it in that world I do. I do have some original 1176s and I find that it's just easier to use the one in the computer which has the same character as the hardware."
In addition to all the audio restoration he's been doing, Dweezil has been recording a new solo album titled, Go With What You Know, which is coming out in May 2005.
"I haven't really decided what direction to take this new solo record that' I'm working on," he says. "I have some stuff that's a little more old-school and some stuff that's more modern-sounding. It will include my version of 'Peaches' [Frank Zappa's song 'Peaches en Regalia]. It's going to be a weird combination of things. I went from someone who had zero computer knowledge whatsoever to working on computers eighteen hours a day."
Immediately after the release of his solo album, Dweezil will go into rehearsals with his brother Ahmet and a handpicked band. The brothers Zappa will be touring the world with a project called "Zappa Plays Zappa."
"We have a really big plan for this year, something that we've never done before." Dweezil says. "We're going to put a band together and play only Frank's music. We're going to start in Europe then come back to the states and then go to Japan. We're going to start in October, so we're going to rehearse the band for three months in order to learn close to fifty songs, including a lot of the very difficult instrumentals. I'm learning a lot of stuff on guitar that was never meant to be played on guitar. For me, it will be like training for the Guitar Olympics. We are going to create a core band of people that haven't played with Frank, and then we will have some special guests and Ahmet is going to sing. We want to have our own thing that we do that is free from interpretations of other people's expectations.
"We are going to change the instrumental arrangements. The melodies will be seen and heard in a different way," he continues. "The melodies may be more powerful because they are being played on a louder, more distorted instrument-- guitar instead of keyboard or a marimba. I think [because] my brother and I are related, we have an innate sense of what Frank was going for humor-wise. Those are some of the elements that we'll be able to bring a new and fun interpretation of. The show itself is going to have video footage, and a documentary about Frank will be shown before the show.
For information about Dweezil Zappa and "Zappa Plays Zappa," visit the official .
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