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Frank Zappa's last ever US show set for release as a live album

Frank Zappa
(Image credit: Paul Bergen/Redferns)

Frank Zappa's last ever show – which he played with his 11-piece band at the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, New York on March 25, 1988 – will be released as a new live album, Zappa ’88: The Last U.S. Show.

Arriving via Zappa Records/UMC on June 18, the live album is the first posthumous archival release from Zappa's ‘88 touring band, and features 29 unreleased performances including two additional ones from the same tour. 

They are Zappa's rendition of the Allman Brothers Band's Whipping Post from a show in Providence, Rhode Island on March 16, and a version of Led Zeppelin's Stairway to Heaven from the band's show at March 23 show in Towson, Maryland.

The album will also feature the first official release of Zappa's much-talked-about The Beatles Medley, as well as a performance of I Ain't Got No Heart – taken from The Mothers of Invention's debut album Freak Out! You can listen to that below.

The show itself was recorded using two Sony PCM-3324 DASH 24 track tape recorders synced together using a Lynx Time Code Module, and have been mixed by engineer Craig Parker Adams.

In terms of format, the album will be released digitally, on 2CD and as a 4LP vinyl box. Variants of the latter include black and purple vinyl discs. The physical formats include detailed liner notes by Zappa Vaultmeister Joe Travers and Zappa ’88 drummer Chad Wackerman, as well as photos from the tour.

Shortly after the show at the Nassau Coliseum, Zappa's band headed to Europe for a string of shows, but split up during the run. At the time, no-one knew the show would be Zappa's last in the US.

Check out the tracklisting for Zappa ’88: The Last U.S. Show below.

Disc 1

  1. “We Are Doing Voter Registration Here”
  2. The Black Page (New Age Version)
  3. I Ain’t Got No Heart
  4. Love Of My Life
  5. Inca Roads
  6. Sharleena
  7. Who Needs The Peace Corps?
  8. I Left My Heart In San Francisco
  9. Dickie’s Such An Asshole
  10. When The Lie’s So Big
  11. Jesus Thinks You’re A Jerk
  12. Sofa #1
  13. One Man, One Vote
  14. Happy Birthday, Chad!
  15. Packard Goose Pt. 1
  16. Royal March From “L’Histoire Du Soldat”
  17. Theme From The Bartok Piano Concerto #3
  18. Packard Goose Pt. II
  19. The Torture Never Stops Pt. I
  20. Theme From “Bonanza”

Disc 2

  1. Lonesome Cowboy Burt
  2. The Torture Never Stops Pt. II
  3. City Of Tiny Lites
  4. Pound For A Brown
  5. The Beatles Medley
  6. Peaches En Regalia
  7. Stairway To Heaven
  8. I Am The Walrus
  9. Whipping Post
  10. Bolero
  11. America The Beautiful

Frank Zappa

(Image credit: Zappa Records/UMC)
Sam Roche

Sam is a Staff Writer at Guitar World, also creating content for Total Guitar, Guitarist and Guitar Player. He has well over 15 years of guitar playing under his belt, as well as a degree in Music Technology (Mixing and Mastering). He's a metalhead through and through, but has a thorough appreciation for all genres of music. In his spare time, Sam creates point-of-view guitar lesson videos on YouTube under the name Sightline Guitar.