FZ, Lou Reed and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

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From: (John V. Scialli)
Text of Lou Reed Introductory Speech, Rock and Roll Hall of
Fame (2:17 min)
  It's very rare in life to know someone who affects things; changes them in a positive way. I've been lucky enough to have known some in my life: Andy Warhol, Doc Pomus. People whose vision and integrity was such that it moved the world a bit. People who, through the articulation of their talents and intelligence, were able to leave things better than they had found them. People who were not only not in it for the money, to paraphrase Frank Zappa. Frank Zappa was such a person and of the many regrets I have in life, not knowing him a lot better is one of them.
  Whether writing symphonies, satirical broadsides or casting a caustic glow across the frontier of madness that makes up the American political landscape; whether testifying before Congress to put the PMRC in its rightful lowly place, or acting as a cultural conduit for President Vaclav Havel and the Czech government, Frank was a force for reason and honesty in the business deficient in those areas. As we reward some with money for the amusement they supply to the cultural masses, I think the induction of Frank Zappa in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame distinguishes the Hall as well as the inductee. [applause]
  Musicians usually cannot speak. That's why they communicate through their instruments. But Frank was one who could. And because music is pure, the musician is pure as well and when Frank spoke he demonstrated the power of purity. Who will do that now? I admired Frank greatly and I know he admired me. It gives me great pleasure to give this award to his daughter, Moon Zappa.
Text of Moon Zappa's Acceptance Speech (1:44 min)
  This is so nice. Thank you, Lou. I really appreciate that.
  I'm a little dyslexic and earlier I freed my ass.(*) I'm hoping my mind will follow. [sigh, sniff] [Applause] Um, thank you and, uhh, I know you know I had said that this is the year of the end of the bullshit promises and I am really sorry that my father missed that. And, um, uhh, I've almost, almost, forgiven the Wait Staff here because my heart is open from watching all of this. [gestures towards the screen on which Zappa montage had been shown] and it's very odd to be back there [backstage] before you come up because you actually hear the command given but I just want to say that this really belongs to his, his fans and um, music really is a language and I think that some languages are easy to understand than others. I don't think it's any accident that the Slavic countries really appreciated my father the most because it's really hard to get the accents down and everything. And, um, I just really want to say thank you and I think that he would really have enjoyed this. Thank you.
(*) From: (Chris Metzler)
  Sure. It's a musical joke. It refers to the classic George Clinton / Funkadelic album, "Free Your Mind And Your Ass Will Follow." Funkadelic was way cool. Moon is saying that she's dyslexic and did it in the wrong order. Why? I don't know. But I'm sure that's what it's a reference to.
  Here's Gail's interview comments: Slightly edited by the Freditor of T'mershi Duween:
  "Ten days before the actual ceremony," says Gail Zappa, "we still hadn't received invitations. The producer said, 'Oh that's unconscionable! We can give you two free tickets.' Well, there's _five_ of us of course. He said, 'Well, we can sell you additional tickets at fifteen hundred dollars a piece, but you can't sit together.' I just laughed. Moon had expressed an interest in going, so we decided she'd accept the award. A week before the ceremony, they called me and said Edward Van Halen -who would have been perfect - had turned down their offer to induct Frank because he doesn't do these things. So I suggested Johnny "guitar' Watson whom Frank knew, loved and had worked with. They said 'No.' I won't say why because I don't want to hurt Johnny, but I did tell them that Johnny was one of the most lucid and articulate people I'd ever heard interviewed. I suggested Aerosmith, but was told they were going to induct Led Zeppelin. So I suggested Led Zeppelin. Again they said no. I asked them who chooses these things and was told 'The Board.' I asked if there were any musicians on the board, and more importantly are there any black musicians. They had to call me back and they replied 'Yes one: Berry Gordy.'
  "They then said 'We've invited Lou Reed to do it.' I was laughing. It was just _so_ ironic. I said I'd talk to my kids and they were against it; they believed Lou had millions of chances to make up with Frank. So Lou called. I told him 'Listen, you said lots of shitty things about Frank.' We discussed it and he finally said 'If I said anything flip that was _meant_ to be funny, I'm sorry.' Actually Frank admired him as a songwriter; 'Femme Fatale' and 'All Tomorrow's Parties' were two of Frank's favorites.
  "We asked for a car to take Moon to the ceremony. The producer told Moon that I said she'd be giving clearance to use the Frank footage on MTV which was totally not true! He said 'That's OK, the show's running long, so we'll just cut Frank.' Moon called him back and made him apologize for making her father sound insignificant. A limo did take her to the show, but there was no-one to pick her up afterwards! I have this vision of her standing in the rain, flagging down a cab with the award in her hand...
  "I watched the broadcast and they didn't play any of his music, although they played at least one song by every other artist. And then I heard Joe Perry say that Led Zeppelin has asked Aerosmith to induct them months before, so how come we only got word a week before? This is a man who went to Capitol Hill for these people! When Moon said Frank would have enjoyed it, she meant the musicians. As Lou said, it honored the Hall to induct Frank and not the other way round. It was stupid, insensitive and just thoughtless."

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