Frank Zappa

On this date in 1940, Mothers of Invention musician Frank Zappa was born in Baltimore, and moved at age ten with his family to California. His father was a Sicilian-born meteorologist. Zappa became a rock icon as bandleader, guitarist, composer, satirist and political commentator. His children were memorably named Valley Girl Moon Unit, Dweezil, Ahmet and Diva. The London Symphony Orchestra performed "Zappa Volume One" and "Zappa Volume Two." Zappa won a Grammy for "Jazz from Hell," an instrumental album. He released more than 50 albums before his untimely death at 52 from prostate cancer. D. 1993.

“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 necrodestination.”

—Frank Zappa, cited by Warren Allen Smith in Who's Who in Hell

Compiled by Annie Laurie Gaylor; Photo by Sergey Goryachev,

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