from  (if someone here has an account and gets this,  
maybe they can set up a vine for those of us who are not on DaD).     
that is, IF it is for real......


Frank Zappa
Amougies (Belgium), Actuel Festival
24 to 27 October 1969

source: audience recording

This is an amazing find that I'm sure will delight fans of Frank
Zappa and the bands concerned alike. A little background : the Actuel
festival was organized by the publication of the same name (who,
under different editorship, went on to become a prime mover of the
French counterculture in the early to mid-70s) in collaboration with
the fledgling BYG label. It was originally going to take place in or
near Paris, but French authorities forbid it and the marquee was
eventually set up a few miles outside the French border, on Belgian
soil. It took place over 5 nights, entertaining an audience of 15-
20,000 to a unique mixture of progressive pop, free jazz and
contemporary music.

Frank Zappa was present at the festival (well, the first four days,
it seems) in a twofold capacity. First, as Captain Beefheart's road
manager; secondly, as M.C., assisting Pierre Lattes, a famous
radio/TV presenter at the time (and the pop music editor for Actuel
magazine). The latter task proved problematic given FZ's very limited
mastery of French, the prevailing language among the audience, who
themselves didn't seem to understand much English. Instead, FZ
relinquished his M.C. job for one of occasional guest guitarist.

As far as I know, with the exception of FZ's performance with Captain
Beefheart, this collects all of his jams with participating bands. A
couple of films, directed by Jerome Laperrousaz and Jean-Noel Roy,
came out in 1970 but were instantly banned because of objections from
various bands (most notably Pink Floyd) whose permission hadn't been
properly secured. Zappa's performance with Beefheart is included in
one of them, and since the audio of the film (unlike the film itself)
is in circulation, possibly in better sound than I could provide, I
decided not to include it.

The whereabouts of the master tapes for the festival, if any exist,
are unknown. What recordings are circulating are either the
soundtrack of the film, or taken from radio broadcasts (on
Luxemburg's RTL and Belgium's RTBF). The source used here is an
audience recording made by a young French member of the audience
using a now antiquated amateur tape recorder. The original tapes have
been newly transferred, but even so, the sound quality is rather
poor. Still, it seems to be the only source available at this time,
so that will have to do for now.

Most legendary, of course, is Frank Zappa's jam with Pink Floyd on a
very extended "Interstellar Overdrive". Apparently, despite the
wealth of Pink Floyd bootlegs in circulation, no one seems to have
their Amougies set, so this will probably delight a lot of people.
Browing various PF-related websites, there even seems to be a debate
on whether the jam ever took place. Well, here is the final proof
that it did.

Now, the tracklist:

1. Aynsley Dunbar's Retaliation: unknown title (7:08)
[October 24]
Victor Brox (vocals, harmonica); John Moorshead (guitar); Alex
(Erroneous) Dmochowski (bass); Aynsley Dunbar (drums)

2. Pink Floyd: Interstellar Overdrive (20:25)
[October 25]
David Gilmour (guitar); Richard Wright (organ); Roger Waters (bass);
Nick Mason (drums)

3. Caravan: If I Could Do It All Over Again, I'd Do It All Over You
[October 26]
Pye Hastings (guitar & vocals); David Sinclair (keyboards); Richard
Sinclair (bass & vocals); Richard Coughlan (drums)

4. Blossom Toes: unknown title (26:10)
[October 26]
Brian Godding (guitar, vocals & keyboards); Jim Cregan (guitar &
vocals); Brian Belshaw (bass & vocals); Kevin Westlake (drums)

5. Sam Apple Pie: unknown title (6:04)
[October 27]
Sam Sampson (vocals & harmonica); Danny Barnes (lead guitar); Andy
Johnson (slide guitar); Bob Renny (bass & vocals); Lee Baxter Hayes
Jr (drums)

(Note: I understand FZ jammed with some of the free jazz players.
Sadly the taper was into rock, not jazz, and didn't bother recording
any of the jazz acts.)

I intend to seed some of the individual performances in the near
future, so watch out. I must thank the taper, JJB, for his permission
to seed these rare treasures, making them available freely to all via
DaD in affinity with its non-profit philosophy.

For further Z-related fun, please visit or , thank you. 
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