can't believe it but I just heard Waters Wright
Gilmore Mason and...and's real
after all the fakes...not to mention jam outs with
FOUR other bands...can't believe it...all praise the
Internet!!!!  None of this was known to the Zappa
world (as far as I know) till today..I guess maybe
some may have known...but this has been a LONG time
coming...thanks again to

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

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

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

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 (7:55)
[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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