Frank Zappa: Hot Rats Sessions Trio Edits

The 2019 Frank Zappa boxed set, “The Hot Rats Sessions,” is a cornucopia of delights for fans of Zappa’s serious early work and admirers of the players he assembled for the sessions.

The set is full of formative rehearsals, mature outtakes, unedited master takes, extended jams, and other pleasures.

Three tracks provide a documentary experience of Zappa directing two trios toward the master take. Zappa’s cogent, playful direction and the musicians’ adept responsiveness are really impressive. 

The tracks presented in this post are edits of those documentary tracks, combining as many of the fragmentary musical pieces as possible into continuous instrumentals. That means they do not take the same form as Zappa’s compositions, and they sometimes repeat the same passage – but performed again, after additional direction, so you’re hearing the evolution as a performance. 

If you’ve got the box, these are bonus tracks. If you don’t have the box, consider that these are made from the smallest scraps on it, and visit the Zappa store for the main course.

12-minute mp3 mix zipped up here

Transition (20 Small Cigars) (session edit) 2:50

It Must be a Camel (session edit) 4:57

  • Ian Underwood: piano
  • Max Bennett: bass
  • John Guerin: drums

Peaches en Regalia (session edit) 4:29

  • Ian Underwood: piano
  • Shuggie Otis: bass
  • Ron Selico: drums