All Time Famous Frank Zappa Quotes

Frank Zappa Quotes

Frank Vincent Zappa(December 21, 1940 – December 4, 1993) was an American musician, composer, and bandleader. His work is characterized by nonconformity, free-form improvisation, sound experimentation, musical virtuosity, and satire of American culture. In a career spanning more than 30 years, Zappa composed rock, pop, jazz, jazz fusion, orchestral, and musique concrète works; he also produced almost all of the 60-plus albums that he released with his band the Mothers of Invention and as solo artist. Zappa also directed feature-length films and music videos, and designed album covers. He is considered one of the most innovative and stylistically diverse musicians of his generation.

As a mostly self-taught composer and performer, Zappa had diverse musical influences that led him to create music that was sometimes difficult to categorize. While in his teens, he acquired a taste for 20th-century classical modernism, African-American rhythm and blues, and doo-wop music. He began writing classical music in high school, while at the same time playing drums in rhythm and blues bands, later switching to electric guitar. His debut studio album with the Mothers of Invention, Freak Out! (1966), combined satirical songs in a seemingly conventional rock and roll format with collective improvisations and studio-generated sound collages. He continued this eclectic and experimental approach whether the fundamental format was rock, jazz, or classical.

Zappa’s output is unified by a conceptual continuity he termed “Project/Object”, with numerous musical phrases, ideas, and characters reappearing across his albums. His lyrics reflected his iconoclastic views of established social and political processes, structures, and movements, often humorously so, and he has been described as the “godfather” of comedy rock. He was a strident critic of mainstream education and organized religion, and a forthright and passionate advocate for freedom of speech, self-education, political participation, and the abolition of censorship. Unlike many other rock musicians of his generation, he disapproved of recreational drug use but supported decriminalization and regulation.

Zappa was a highly productive and prolific artist with a controversial critical standing; supporters of his music admired its compositional complexity, while detractors found it lacking emotional depth. He had greater commercial success outside the US, particularly in Europe. Though he worked as an independent artist, Zappa mostly relied on distribution agreements he had negotiated with the major record labels. He remains a major influence on musicians and composers. His many honors include his posthumous 1995 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and the 1997 Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

Frank Zappa Quotes

1. “Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.”
— Frank Zappa

2. “A mind is like a parachute. It doesn’t work if it is not open.”
— Frank Zappa

3. “So many books, so little time.”
— Frank Zappa

4. “Without music to decorate it, time is just a bunch of boring production deadlines or dates by which bills must be paid.”
— Frank Zappa

5. “Music is the only religion that delivers the goods.”
— Frank Zappa

6. “The universe consists of 5% protons, 5% neutrons, 5% electrons, and 85% morons.”
— Frank Zappa

7. “There is more stupidity than hydrogen in the universe, and it has a longer shelf life.”
— Frank Zappa

8. “Information is not knowledge. Knowledge is not wisdom. Wisdom is not truth. Truth is not beauty. Beauty is not love. Love is not music. Music is THE BEST.”
— Frank Zappa

9. “Writing about music is like dancing about architecture.”
— Frank Zappa

10. “Government is the Entertainment division of the military-industrial complex.”
— Frank Zappa

11. “One size does not fit all.”
— Frank Zappa

12. “Art is making something out of nothing, and selling it.”
— Frank Zappa

13. “It’s better to have something to remember than anything to regret.”
— Frank Zappa

14. “Don’t eat the yellow snow.”
— Frank Zappa

15. “Reality is what it is, not what you want it to be.”
— Frank Zappa

16. “If you want to get laid, go to college. If you want an education, go to the library.”
— Frank Zappa

17. “Don’t forget to vote.”
— Frank Zappa

18. “I don’t want to spend my life explaining myself. You either get it, or you don’t.”
— Frank Zappa

19. “The most important thing to do in your life is to not interfere with somebody else’s life.”
— Frank Zappa

20. “It gets harder the more you know. Because the more you find out the uglier everything seems.”
— Frank Zappa

21. “There are more love songs than anything else. If songs could make you do something we’d all love one another.”
— Frank Zappa

22. “Shut Up and Play your Guitar.”
— Frank Zappa

23. “Jazz isn’t dead. It just smells funny.”
— Frank Zappa

24. “You can’t be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline – it helps if you have some kind of football team, or some nuclear weapons, but in the very least you need a beer.”
— Frank Zappa

25. “I’m not black, but there’s a whole lot of times I wish I could say I’m not white.”
— Frank Zappa

26. “The most abundant element in the Universe is stupidity.”
— Frank Zappa

27. “Moving to Montana soon, gonna be a dental floss tycoon.”
— Frank Zappa

28. “To me absurdity is the only reality.”
— Frank Zappa

29. “Stupidity has a certain charm – ignorance does not.”
— Frank Zappa

30. “There is no hell. There is only France.”
— Frank Zappa

31. “All the good music has already been written by people with wigs and stuff.”
— Frank Zappa

32. “The only difference between a cult and a religion is the amount of real estate they own.”
— Frank Zappa

33. “Music is the most physically inspiring of all the arts.”
— Frank Zappa

34. “I never set out to be weird. It was always other people who called me weird.”
— Frank Zappa

35. “Love of my life, I love you so. Love of my life, don’t ever go.”
— Frank Zappa

36. “One of my favorite philosophical tenets is that people will agree with you only if they already agree with you. You do not change people’s minds.”
— Frank Zappa

37. “Drop out of school before your mind rots from exposure to our mediocre educational system. Forget about the Senior Prom and go to the library and educate yourself if you’ve got any guts. Some of you like Pep rallies and plastic robots who tell you what to read.”
— Frank Zappa

38. “I can take about an hour on the tower of power, as long as I get a little golden shower.”
— Frank Zappa

39. “Ram it up your poop chute.”
— Frank Zappa

40. “I enjoy irritating the people who enjoy being irritated.”
— Frank Zappa

41. “The whole Universe is a large joke. Everything in the Universe is just subdivisions of this joke. So why take anything too seriously.”
— Frank Zappa

42. “Tobacco is my favorite vegetable.”
— Frank Zappa

43. “The United States is a nation of laws: badly written and randomly enforced.”
— Frank Zappa

44. “A wise man once said, never discuss philosophy or politics in a disco environment.”
— Frank Zappa

45. “I’m probably more famous for sitting on the toilet than for anything else that I do.”
— Frank Zappa

46. “The crux of the biscuit is: If it entertains you, fine. Enjoy it. If it doesn’t, then blow it out of your ass. I do it to amuse myself. If I like it, I release it. If somebody else likes it, that’s a bonus.”
— Frank Zappa

47. “The disgusting stink of a too-loud electric guitar; now that’s my idea of a good time.”
— Frank Zappa

48. “Drugs will turn you into your parents.”
— Frank Zappa

49. “The most important thing in art is The Frame. For painting: literally; for other arts: figuratively – because without this humble appliance, you can’t know where The Art stops and The Real World begins.”
— Frank Zappa

50. “Take the Kama Sutra. How many people died from the Kama Sutra as opposed to the Bible? Who wins?”
— Frank Zappa

51. “Why do you necessarily have to be wrong just because a few million people think you are?”
— Frank Zappa

52. “Don’t mind your make-up, you’d better make your mind up.”
— Frank Zappa

53. “The crux of the biscuit is the apostrophe!”
— Frank Zappa

54. “My best advice to anyone who wants to raise a happy, mentally healthy child is: Keep him or her as far away from a church as you can.”
— Frank Zappa

55. “There will never be a nuclear war; there’s too much real estate involved.”
— Frank Zappa

56. “I think that if a person doesn’t feel cynical then they’re out of phase with the 20th century. Being cynical is the only way to deal with modern civilization – you can’t just swallow it whole.”
— Frank Zappa

57. “Call any vegetable and the chances are good that the vegetable will respond to you.”
— Frank Zappa

58. “Information doesn’t kill you.”
— Frank Zappa

59. “The essence of Christianity is told us in the Garden of Eden history. The fruit that was forbidden was on the Tree of knowledge. The subtext is, All the suffering you have is because you wanted to find out what was going on.”
— Frank Zappa

60. “This is a stupid song and that’s the way I like it.”
— Frank Zappa

61. “Anything played wrong twice in a row is the beginning of an arrangement.”
— Frank Zappa

62. “The first thing you have to do if you want to raise nice kids, is you have to talk to them like they are people instead of talking to them like they’re property.”
— Frank Zappa

63. “I write what I like to write. Those who like to listen to it, listen to it. And the ones who don’t, watch football and drink beer, jog, go to discos and so forth. I never claimed to be a man for all seasons.”
— Frank Zappa

64. “My balls feel like a pair of maracas.”
— Frank Zappa

65. “The computer can’t tell you the emotional story. It can give you the exact mathematical design, but what’s missing is the eyebrows.”
— Frank Zappa

66. “If classical music is the state of the art, then the arts are in a sad state.”
— Frank Zappa

67. “Republicans stand for raw, unbridled evil and greed and ignorance smothered in balloons and ribbons.”
— Frank Zappa

68. “Whatever you have to do to have a good time, let’s get on with it, so long as it doesn’t cause a murder.”
— Frank Zappa

69. “I think that if you use the so-called “strong words” you’ll get your point across faster and you can save a lot of beating around the bush. Why are people afraid of words? Sometimes the dumbest thing that gets said makes the point for you.”
— Frank Zappa

70. “Rock music was never written for or performed for conservative tastes.”
— Frank Zappa

71. “Communism doesn’t work because people like to own stuff.”
— Frank Zappa

72. “Maybe you should stay with your mama, you’re kind of stupid and ugly, too.”
— Frank Zappa

73. “If your children ever find out how lame you really are, they’ll murder you in your sleep.”
— Frank Zappa

74. “In order to deviate successfully, one has to have at least a passing acquaintance with whatever norm one expects to deviate from.”
— Frank Zappa

75. “The last election just laid the foundation of the next 500 years of Dark Ages.”
— Frank Zappa

76. “Just because somebody hears something you say, or reads something that you write, doesn’t mean you’ve reached them.”
— Frank Zappa

77. “Mr. Gorbachev has apparently stumbled onto one of the best-kept secrets in recent Soviet history: Communism doesn’t work.”
— Frank Zappa

78. “I am the slime oozing out from your TV set. You will obey me while I lead you, and eat the garbage while I feed you.”
— Frank Zappa

79. “Jazz is the music of unemployment.”
— Frank Zappa

80. “If we can’t be free at least we can be cheap.”
— Frank Zappa

81. “The more boring a child is, the more the parents, when showing off the child, receive adulation for being good parents – because they have a tame child creature in their house.”
— Frank Zappa

82. “Bad facts make bad law, and people who write bad laws are in my opinion more dangerous than songwriters who celebrate sexuality.”
— Frank Zappa

83. “Sometimes you got to get sick before you can feel better.”
— Frank Zappa

84. “Nobody looks good with brown lipstick on.”
— Frank Zappa

85. “She is an office girl, her name is Betty. Her favorite group is Helen Reddy.”
— Frank Zappa

86. “Beware of the fish people, they are the true enemy.”
— Frank Zappa

87. “I’m the devil’s advocate. We have our own worshipers.”
— Frank Zappa

88. “Fact of the matter is, there is no hip world, there is no straight world. There’s a world, you see which has people in it who believe a variety of different things.”
— Frank Zappa

89. “Our big prize tonight is fifty American dollars to the girl with the most exciting mammalian protuberances.”
— Frank Zappa

90. “It isn’t necessary to imagine the world ending in fire or ice. There are two other possibilities: one is paperwork, and the other is nostalgia.”
— Frank Zappa

91. “You are what you is, you are what you am, you ain’t what you’re not. So see what you got?”
— Frank Zappa

92. “Did you ever consider that LSD was really one of the most dangerous drugs ever manufactured because the people who took it turned into yuppies?”
— Frank Zappa

93. “You can’t always write a chord ugly enough to say what you want to say, so sometimes you have to rely on a giraffe filled with whipped cream.”
— Frank Zappa

94. “The plumber he says, never flush a tampon. This is great information, cost me half a week’s pay.”
— Frank Zappa

95. “I ain’t the type for begging, I am not the type to plead. If she doesn’t change those evil ways, I’m gonna make her bleed.”
— Frank Zappa

96. “Cocaine decisions that you make today, will mean nothing later on when you get nose decay.”
— Frank Zappa

97. “I think you should leave it up to the parent because not all parents want to keep their children totally ignorant.”
— Frank Zappa

98. “I want a horny little Jewish princess.”
— Frank Zappa

99. “Anyone who is disturbed by the idea of newts in a nightclub is potentially dangerous.”
— Frank Zappa

100. “Listen, honey, would I lie to you to get in your pants?”
— Frank Zappa

101. “Their stupidity does not amaze me, it’s when they’re smart that amazes me. It’s baffling whenever you find someone who’s smart – incredible. Soon you’ll have zoos for such things.”
— Frank Zappa

102. “My guitar wants to kill your mama.”
— Frank Zappa

103. “Do your job and do it right, life’s a ball, TV tonight.”
— Frank Zappa

104. “Anybody who wants religion is welcome to it, as far as I’m concerned – I support your right to enjoy it. However, I would appreciate it if you exhibited more respect for the rights of those people who do not wish to share your dogma, rapture, or necro destination.”
— Frank Zappa

105. “The bigger the cushion, the better the pushin’.”
— Frank Zappa

106. “Modern Americans behave as if intelligence were some sort of hideous deformity.”
— Frank Zappa

107. “Censoring what you say is one of the ways in which people who are not nice can take away your personal freedom.”
— Frank Zappa

108. “There’s a big difference between kneeling down and bending over.”
— Frank Zappa

109. “Only thirteen, and she knows how to be nasty.”
— Frank Zappa

110. “Scientists believe that the universe is made of hydrogen because they claim it’s the most plentiful ingredient. I claim that the most plentiful ingredient is stupidity.”
— Frank Zappa

111. “She lives in Mojave in a Winnebago. His name is Bobby, he looks like a potato.”
— Frank Zappa

112. “Republican is fine if you are a millionaire. Democrats are fair if all you own is what you wear. Neither of them’s really right, cause neither of them care.”
— Frank Zappa

113. “Your mind is totally controlled, it has been stuffed into my mold. And you will do as you are told until the rights to you are sold.”
— Frank Zappa

114. “Definition of rock journalism: People who can’t write, doing interviews with people who can’t think, in order to prepare articles for people who can’t read.”
— Frank Zappa

115. “I would say that today, dishonesty is the rule, and honesty the exception. It could be, statistically, that more people are honest than dishonest, but the few that really control things are not honest, and that tips the balance.”
— Frank Zappa

116. “I’m more interested in melodic things. I think the biggest challenge when you go to play a solo is trying to invent a melody on the spot.”
— Frank Zappa

117. “Producing satire is kind of hopeless because of the literacy rate of the American public.”
— Frank Zappa

118. “My school spirit is at an all-time low, I’m losing my status at the school.”
— Frank Zappa

119. “The price of meat has just gone up and your old lady has just gone down.”
— Frank Zappa

120. “Give me the enchilada with the pickle sauce shoved up between the donkey’s ass.”
— Frank Zappa

121. “If you pick up a guitar and it says, ‘take me, I’m yours,’ then that’s the one for you.”
— Frank Zappa

122. “The kerosene record player is not a very efficient device.”
— Frank Zappa

123. “Mama stroked his dinger, Daddy got the stinky finger.”
— Frank Zappa

124. “All that we got here is American-made. It’s a little bit cheesy, but it’s nicely displayed.”
— Frank Zappa

125. “Children are naive-they trust everyone. School is bad enough, but, if you put a child anywhere in the vicinity of a church, you’re asking for trouble.”
— Frank Zappa

126. “I want a steamy little Jewish Princess with overworked gums, who squeaks when she cums. I don’t want no troll, I just want a Yemenite hole.”
— Frank Zappa

127. “Most people wouldn’t know music if it came up and bit them on the ass.”
— Frank Zappa

128. “We could improve worldwide mental health if we acknowledged that parents can make you crazy.”
— Frank Zappa

129. “The whole foundation of Christianity is based on the idea that intellectualism is the work of the Devil. Remember the apple on the tree? Okay, it was the Tree of Knowledge. If you eat this apple, you’re going to be as smart as God. We can’t have that.”
— Frank Zappa

130. “Most people don’t bother about their friends in the vegetable kingdom.”
— Frank Zappa

131. “It is always advisable to be a loser if you cannot become a winner.”
— Frank Zappa

132. “The NRA, with the fingers on the triggers when they kneel and pray.”
— Frank Zappa

133. “Don’t go to bed with any woman crazier than you are.”
— Frank Zappa

134. “Let’s not be too rough on our own ignorance, it’s what makes America great.”
— Frank Zappa

135. “When God created Republicans, he gave up on everything else.”
— Frank Zappa

136. “Environmental laws were not passed to protect our air and water, they were passed to get votes.”
— Frank Zappa

137. “As far as rearing children goes, the basic idea I try to keep in mind is that a child is a person. Just because they happen to be a little shorter than you doesn’t mean they are dumber than you.”
— Frank Zappa

138. “Music is always a commentary on society.”
— Frank Zappa

139. “Unbind your mind, there is no time.”
— Frank Zappa

140. “Stuff up the cracks, turn on the gas, I’m gonna take my life.”
— Frank Zappa

141. “People are just waiting around to get certified.”
— Frank Zappa

142. “Outdoors for me is walking from the car to the ticket desk at the airport.”
— Frank Zappa

143. “Some scientists claim that hydrogen because it is so plentiful, is the basic building block of the universe. I dispute that. I say there is more stupidity than hydrogen, and that is the basic building block of the universe.”
— Frank Zappa

144. “The closer you are, the brighter the flames in my heart.”
— Frank Zappa

145. “Wisdom is not the domain of the Wiz.”
— Frank Zappa

146. “Tosses her head and flips her hair, she got a whole bunch of nothing in there.”
— Frank Zappa

147. “Elmore James only knew one lick, but you had the feeling that he meant it.”
— Frank Zappa

148. “Beauty is a pair of shoes that makes you wanna die.”
— Frank Zappa

149. “You’ve got to be digging it while it’s happening ’cause it just might be a one-shot deal.”
— Frank Zappa

150. “He took a dog-doo snow cone and stuffed it in my right eye. He took a dog-doo snow cone and stuffed it in my other eye.”
— Frank Zappa

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