Cucamonga Years is a two-year period in Frank Zappa life,
from 1963 to 1964.
Rancho Cucamonga itself is the point on the map of South California where
was located Frank Zappa' first recording studio, originally owned
by Paul Buff and finally by Frank himself.
"Going west out of San Bernadino, Route 66 becomes Foothill Boulevard
and 16 miles later reacheas Cucamonga, where it crosses Archibald Avenue.
Just north of the interseption at 8084 North Archibald in 1963 was
Pal Recording Studio, owned by Paul Buff. Buff had learned electronics
in the US Marines and on his discharge had rented the three-room premises
and set about constractinig a record studio. The control room contained
an eight-channel Presto mixixng desk, a Hammond spring echo unit and
Rec-O-Cut cutting lathe for acetats. More importantly, he built his own
'I think he's genius guy', Frank told William Ruhlmann. 'He built his
own five-track recorder at a time when four-track was an absolute exotic
piece of equipment in the industry. Three-track was somethying that they
use for filmwork. Four-track was rare'.
. . .
Frank was introduced to Buff by Ronnie Williams, 'a guitar-player that
I was working with in some local bands at that time. Ronnie had joined
him up there and was putting guitar parts on some on his thinks and
then Ronnie brought me over and I worked with him one some stuff'. Some
stuff turned out to be 14 singles over the course of two years by
sundry real and invented artists. The first record from the alliance was
'Breaktime' and '16 tones', the a-side written by Buff, Williams and Zappa
and released by the Mastres on Emmy 10082, a label owned by Buff 'Gotta
Find My Roogolator', written by Frank and sung by Paul Jameson, followed
on Penthouse 503, of which only promotional copies survive.
Ten singles on various labels were issued during 1963, including 'Love
Of My Life' and 'Tell Me' (Daani 101) by Rom Roman, 'Dear Jeepers' and
'Letter From Jeepers' (Donna 1380) by Bob Guy, 'Cradle Rock' and
'Everytime I See You (Donna 1381) by the Heartbeats, 'The Big Surfer'
and 'Not Another One' (Vigah! 001) by Brian Lord and Midnighters, 'Hey,
Nelda' and 'Surf ALong' (Vigah! 002) by Ned and Nelda and 'Tijuna Surf'
and 'Grunion Run' (Original Sound 32) by the Hollywood Persuaders."
And so on, and so on. Read Cucamonga chapter in Neil Slaven's book
Electric Don Quixote. pp.34-37
Immortalized:-) in a FZ song Cucamonga.BONGO FURY
CUCAMONGA YEARS - THE EARLY WORKS OF FRANK ZAPPA (1962-1964) or
MSI 10037 is the most complete (but not complete:-) anyway) legal
collection of both Zappa and Buff Cucamonga's era sound
Another known to mankind compilation is Del-Fi's CUCAMONGA album
that lacks Frank compostions (notable Memories Of El Monte and Grunion
Run) owned by Original Sound and with a lot more Buffs as a compenstaion.
Much more details, dates and catalog numbers here