Musicians talk about mixed feelings when they remember their auditions for Mastermind Frank Zappa. Nevertheless they consider it a musical accolade to have been part of one his band Projects or the other. Zappa was considered very demanding and meticulous when it came to the realization of his complex musical ideas and required the highest level of virtuosity and professionalism. But for a 16-year-old teenager from Stockholm this strict rules did not seem to apply: 1988 – Zappa is on his last big world tour – there is a meeting between the two. Before the concert in Stockholm Mats Öberg, blind from birth, presents a recording of T’Mershi Duween to Zappa, which he recorded together with Morgan Ågren and their former band Zappstetoot. Consequently he and Morgan are immediately invited as guest musicians for that evening’s show. And this concert in Stockholm becomes a highlight of the "Broadway The Hard Way" tour. For Mats Öberg it is the beginning of a solid musical career, which, in addition to his own projects, leads him into various Zappa bands over and over again until today. For example "Zappa's Universe", along with Mike Keneally, Steve Vai, Scott Tunes and Dweezil Zappa.
About a year ago, his musical paths crossed for the second time with those of Napoleon Murphy Brock. As early as 2003 they performed together with Denny Walley, Mike Keneally, Ed Palermo, Morgan Ågren, Tommy Thordsson and Paul Adamy as "Zappa Corner Band" at the Chamber Music Festival in Umeå (Sweden). So the two of them decided to join forces last year. The result is a program exclusively consisting of Zappa compositions, "reduced" to keyboards, saxophone and vocals.
Until now, you could experience the duo with their unusual arrangements in Scandinavia only, but with considerable success, as evidenced by the attendances.
For this year's Zappanale Mats and Napi have put their shoulders to the wheel and developed a show that should be a must for all friends of zappaesque sounds.
Mats Öberg (key)
Napoleon Murphy Brock (voc, sax, flute)