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The Mothers Of Invention - Wollman Rink, Central Park, NY, August 3rd 1968 Album

The Mothers Of Invention - Wollman Rink, Central Park, NY, August 3rd 1968 Album

  • Performer: The Mothers Of Invention
  • Genre: Rock
  • Title: Wollman Rink, Central Park, NY, August 3rd 1968
  • Released: 2014
  • Style: Prog Rock, Psychedelic Rock
  • Label: Keyhole
  • Catalog: KH2LP9020
  • Country: UK
  • MP3 version size: 2821 mb
  • FLAC version size: 1245 mb
  • Rating: 4.6
  • Votes: 633


1Baby Love0:56
2Trouble Every Day11:34
3Jazz Rock Improvisation4:24
4Holiday In Berlin10:12
5Orange County Lumber Truck17:17
6Help I'm A Rock12:34
7Big Leg Emma3:37


CategoryArtistTitle (Format)LabelCategoryCountryYear
KHCD9020The Mothers Of Invention Wollman Rink, Central Park, NY, August 3rd 1968 ‎(CD, Album, RM, Unofficial)KeyholeKHCD90202014


  • Liner NotesTeenSet


Recorded at the 1968 Schaefer Music Festival held at the Wollman Skating Rink in New York City's Central Park.


  • Barcode: 5291012902016
  • Matrix / Runout (Side A Stamped): 123366E1/B
  • Matrix / Runout (Side B Stamped): 123366E2/A
  • Matrix / Runout (Side D Stamped): 123366E4/A
  • Matrix / Runout (Side C Stamped): 123366E3/A


  • Copyright (c) – Keyhole
  • Recorded At – Central Park, New York



huckman huckman
Wow, There's a lot to say about this one!

Frank Zappa's original lineup of the mothers of invention boasts a relatively sparse catalogue of decent to great sounding live bootlegs, but unfortunately vinyl releases of these shows (besides common releases like "Tis the season", "the ark" and the somewhat-recent B13 reissue of the artisan acetate) is limited to either rare or collectors-only type releases that go for ridiculously high prices that would limit them to only the most devoted of Zappa fans and record collectors. This double LP of the Wollman rink performance is the first original mothers release i've seen that appears to be targeted at casual bootleg collectors, as well as devoted fans, and it's pretty great, despite a few flaws.

First, the good things. This show captures the mothers at a somewhat transitory period of their career in which they were moving away from the comedy/parody rock that they had become known for on albums like "Freak Out" and "We're only in it for the money" and moving more into instrumental, bizarre compositions that would become recognized on yet-to-be-released albums like "Uncle Meat", "Burnt Weeny Sandwich" and "Weasels". It's captured around the same period as the Zappa family trust release "Road Tapes: Venue #1", except one major difference is that the band still had Ray Collins as their vocalist at this point (this is the last known recorded date where he recorded with the band) and he does a good job. The whole performance is gold and the band does an excellent job, with a nice intro where Zappa listens to Bunk Gardner's flute solo and tries to figure out which songs he's playing (a total music nerd, he's able to point out the last movement of "Le Marteu Sans Maitre" by peter boulez), an explosive feedback-laden version of "Help, I'm a rock", which segues into a short snippet of the Supreme's "Baby Love" and then "Big Leg Emma", the band's so-called "Smash Flop Single" and a concert regular. The most interesting song in the set is definitely the early version of "Holiday In Berlin" (then titled "Shortly"), which like "Help, I'm A Rock" is incredibly heavy and feedback driven, with intricate playing from the band and excellent jamming, easily the best version, just barely topping the Vancouver one. Following my personal favourite version of "Trouble Every Day", they play a long encore with a unique version of "The Orange County Lumber Truck Medley" which follows a somewhat different pattern than previous or following versions (Let's Make The Water Turn Black, Harry You're A Beast, Orange County Lumber Truck Pt. 1, Oh No, Improvisation, Drum Duet, Oh No [Reprise], Orange County Lumber Truck Pt. 2), ending the whole set with a bang. Though it's not as strange (Family Dog, May 3rd 1968) or cool (Grande Ballroom, April 28th 1968) as some of the bands other recordings at the time, this is definitely one of the most solidly performed, making for one hell of a great listen. The Sleeve is pretty good too, boasting cool designs on the front and back and coming with a cool written insert talking about the band and Zappa.

Second, the bad things. The performance itself if barely over an hour long, which I understand would make it difficult to fit onto a single LP, but it makes for an awkward track listing on a double LP (Side 1 = 16 Minutes, Side 2 = 14 Minutes, Side 3 = 11 Minutes, Side 4 = 17 Minutes), which could have been remedied if they fit the concert onto the first three sides and instead put some bonus material on the fourth side from another live venue (a good one would have been the 1968 BBC colour me pop gig, which is just under 25 minutes long). Another flaw which may turn some listeners off of it is that while it is a great quality stage recording (recorded by Keyboardist Don Preston), the recorder appears to be located really close to the keyboard, which causes the keyboard sounds to overpower the rest of the instruments in some spots, and on a surface that vibrates a lot, leading to a LOT of excessive distortion on some songs, namely "Help I'm A Rock" and "Holiday in Berlin". A bit of a disappointment is that while Ray Collins is there, he doesn't sing on many songs (just baby love and big leg emma), which while not the fault of the bootleggers, is a bit of a shame. Another flaw is that this particular tape recorder only recorded this show in fifteen minute intervals, so there are some interruptions in the flow of the concert due to tape flips, resulting in parts of some of the songs missing (Part of help i'm a rock, the ending of holiday in berlin, the beginning of trouble every day and part of the orange county lumber truck) and overall, an incomplete concert experience.

Despite these flaws, I still recommend the hell out of this release to Fans of early Zappa, especially the original Mothers. It captures a great performance and some of the groups most classic songs, and at such an affordable price too. Though it's far from perfect, it's one of the Best New Zappa Boots I've seen in a while, it's up there with "Freaking out in 1969", "Providence 1975", and "Puttin On the ritz". Four out of Five stars.
Celak Celak
I just ordered my copy! So awesome to finally see an Original Mothers of invention concert bootleg on vinyl that isn't for collectors only (ie. limited pressings, acetates)! I see that this particular company does bootlegs by many artists, and I would love to see more Original mothers of invention stuff from them in the near future!