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Captain Beefheart & the Magic Band



Born Don Van Vliet, Captain Beefheart was one of modern music's true innovators. The owner of a remarkable four-and-one-half octave vocal range, he employed idiosyncratic rhythms, absurdist lyrics and an unholy alliance of free jazz, Delta blues, latter-day classical music and rock & roll to create a singular body of work virtually unrivalled in its daring and fluid creativity. While he never came even remotely close to mainstream success, Beefheart's impact was incalculable, and his fingerprints were all over punk, New Wave and post-rock. In their original incarnation, Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band were a blues-rock outfit which became staples of the teen-dance circuit; they quickly signed to A&M Records, where the success of the single "Diddy Wah Diddy" earned them the opportunity to record a full-length album. Label president Jerry Moss rejected the completed record as "too negative," however, and a crushed Beefheart went into seclusion. After producer Bob Krasnow radically remixed 1968's hallucinatory Strictly Personal without Beefheart's approval, he again retired. At the same time, however, longtime friend Frank Zappa formed his own Straight Records, and he soon approached Van Vliet with the promise of complete creative control; a deal was struck, and after writing 28 songs in a nine-hour frenzy, Beefheart recorded the seminal 1969 double album Trout Mask Replica. After 1982's Ice Cream for Crow, Van Vliet again retired from music, this time for good; he returned to the desert, took up residence in a trailer and focused on painting. In 1985, he mounted the first major exhibit of his work, done in an abstract, primitive style reminiscent of Francis Bacon. Like his music, his art won wide acclaim, and some of his paintings sold for as much as $25,000. In the 1990s, he dropped completely from sight when he fell prey to multiple sclerosis. Van Vliet died of complications from multiple sclerosis on December 17, 2010 in California; he was 69 years old. ~ Jason Ankeny
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Top Tracks

  1.   Track
  2.   Diddy Wah Diddy
  3.   Zig Zag Wanderer
  4.   Sure 'Nuff 'n' Yes, I Do
  5.   Dachau Blues
  6.   Pena
  7.   Who Do You Think You´re Fooling
  8.   China Pig
  9.   Debra Kadabra featuring Captain Beefheart
  10.   Moody Liz (Take 8)
  11.   Nowadays a Woman's
  12.   Safe as Milk
  13.   Flavour Bud Living
  14.   Mellotron Improv
  15.   Kandy Korn
  16.   Abba Zaba
  17.   Untitled 4
  18.   Tarotplane
  19.   King Bee/Sugar Mama
  20.   Hobo Chang Ba
  21.   I Wanna Find a Woman That'll Hold My Big Toe Till I Have to Go
  22.   Tropical Hot Dog Night
  23.   My Human Gets Me Blues
  24.   Brickbats
  25.   Triple Combination
  26.   Steal Softly Through Snow
  27.   One Nest Rolls After Another
  28.   Old Black Snake
  29.   Frownland
  30.   China Pig / Railroadism
  31.   Band Introduction
  32.   Dirty Blue Gene
  33.   Hair Pie Bake III
  34.   Veterans Day Poppy (The Country Club, Reseda, CA, USA 29/1/1981)
  35.   The Dust Blows Forward 'N' The Dust Blows Back (Texas Opry House, Houston, USA 1/12/1978)
  36.   China Pig/Railroadism (Red Creek Inn, Rochester, New York, USA 3/11/1977)
  37.   Kandy Korn (Rotters, Liverpool 29/10/1980)
  38.   25th Century Quaker
  39.   Untitled 8
  40.   Untitled 6
  41.   Untitled 5
  42.   Odd Jobs
  43.   Harp Boogie I
  44.   Black Snake Moan I
  45.   Untitled 28
  46.   Untitled 26
  47.   Untitled 24
  48.   Untitled 22
  49.   Untitled 20
  50.   Untitled 14
  51.   Untitled 11
  52.   Untitled 7
  53.   Untitled 5
  54.   Untitled 2
  55.   Untitled 1
  56.   Old Folks Boogie
  57.   Sax and Drum Duet
  58.   Her Eyes Are a Blue Million Miles
  59.   Flower Pot
  60.   Big Black Baby Shoes
  61.   My Head Is My Only House Unless It Rains
  62.   Dali's Claw
  63.   When I See Mommy, I Feel Like A Mummy
  64.   Steal Softly Thru Snow
  65.   She's Too Much For My Mirror
  66.   Neon Meate Dream of a Octafish
  67.   Bills Corpse
  68.   Moonlight on Vermont
  69.   Old Fart at Play
  70.   Suction Prints
  71.   Harp Boogie II
  72.   Trust Us (Take 9)
  73.   Beatle Bones N' Smokin' Stones
  74.   Untitled 9
  75.   One Man Sentence
  76.   Somebody's Leaving
  77.   A Carrot Is As Close As A Rabbit Gets To A Diamond (Colonial Tavern Club, Toronto, Canada 2/11/1977)
  78.   Evil Is Going on
  79.   Tupelo
  80.   Veteran's Day Poppy
  81.   I'm Gonna Booglarize You Baby
  82.   Veteran's Day Poppy/Band Intro
  83.   Sam with the Showing Scalp Flat Top
  84.   Low Yo Yo Stuff
  85.   A Carrot Is As Close As A Rabbit
  86.   One Nest Rolls After Another / Harry Irene
  87.   The Blimp / Air Bass-Soft Shoe (Sax Improv)
  88.   Moonchild
  89.   Alice In Blunderland
  90.   Dirty Blue Jean
  91.   Toaster
  92.   Nowadays a Woman's Gotta Hit a Man
  93.   I'm a King Bee
  94.   Carson City
  95.   Nowadays a Woman's Got to Hit a Man
  96.   There Ain't No Santa Claus on the Evenin' Stage
  97.   Band Intro
  98.   A Carrot Is as Close as a Rabbit Gets to a Diamond by Captain Beefheart
  99.   Sheriff of Hong Kong
  100.   Ashtray Heart
  101.   Ashtray Heart (The Country Club, Reseda, CA, USA 29/1/1981)
  102.   Click Clack (Bickershaw Festival 7/5/1972)
  103.   Dirty Blue Gene (The Country Club, Reseda, CA, USA 29/1/1981)
  104.   Smithsonian Institute Blues (The Country Club, Reseda, CA, USA 29/1/1981)
  105.   Drop Out Boogie (Rotters, Liverpool 29/10/1980)
  106.   Floppy Boot Stomp (Bottom Line (late show), New York, USA 25/11/1977)
  107.   Old Black Snake (Bickershaw Festival 7/5/1972)
  108.   Dali's Car (Guildhall, Portsmouth 1/12/1975)
  109.   Big Eyed Beans From Venus (The Country Club, Reseda, CA, USA 29/1/1981)
  110.   Avalon Blues (Avalon Ballroom, SF, USA 1966)
  111.   One Red Rose That I Mean
  112.   Sue Egypt
  113.   Hard Workin' Man
  114.   Frying Pan
  115.   Doctor Dark
  116.   Orange Claw Hammer
  117.   Ella Guru
  118.   Circumstances
  119.   The Smithsonian Institute Blues (Or The Big Dig)
  120.   Woe-Is-Uh-Me-Bop
  121.   When It Blows Its Stacks
  122.   Sugar 'n' Spikes
  123.   Untitled 3
  124.   Untitled 1
  125.   A Carrot Is as Close as a Rabbit Gets to a Diamond
  126.   The Floppy Boot Stomp
  127.   Odd Jobs
  128.   Spitball Scalped Uh Baby
  129.   Black Snake Moan II
  130.   "Overdub"
  131.   "Septic Tank"
  132.   Untitled 18
  133.   Rollin N Tumblin
  134.   Here I Am I Always Am
  135.   Obeah Man
  136.   Where There's Woman
  137.   Deserts of Time
  138.   Poofters From Wyoming
  139.   Bat Chain Puller
  140.   Plastic Factory
  141.   Grown So Ugly
  142.   Call on Me
  143.   Autumn's Child
  144.   Crazy Little Thing
  145.   Clear Spot
  146.   More
  147.   Improvisation
  148.   Woe Is Up Me Bop
  149.   Golden Birdies