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Our Kickstarter has ended, but you'll still be able to join us to help save the Vault & tell Frank's story. Check back soon for more details!
Our Kickstarter has ended, but you'll still be able to join us to help save the Vault & tell Frank's story. Check back soon for more details!
8,688 backers pledged $1,126,036 to help bring this project to life.

WHILE YOU WERE ART: A Cal Schenkel Kickstarter reward!

Posted by Alex Winter (Creator)

Home stretch, Freaks!

Wow, guys, we're barreling toward that $660K for tomorrow — which is the start of our 10-day countdown — and I cannot wait to show you some of the stuff that's in store!

For one thing, we're just finishing up T-SHIRT DESIGNS (and those are looking fucking awesome) — I'm going to send out designs tomorrow, so keep an eye out!

For another, I can't tell you exactly what it is yet, but it has to do with two things that mean a lot to many people... 1) titties; 2) beer. Yes, it's going to be a great Wednesday!

In the meantime, though, I'm honored to present today’s update about another one of the truly legendary artists who came out of the early Laurel Canyon Zappa days. Not to mention, another amazing Zappa collaborator who’s come out to help us answer the question Who the F*@% is Frank Zappa by offering a totally amazing exclusive Kickstarter reward. 

Who the f*@% am I talking about? None other than...

Cal Schenkel, the genius behind the incredible art on dozens of Zappa albums!

Cal met Zappa all the way back in the mid ‘60s when Freak Out was being recorded, and first collaborated with him on We’re Only In It For The Money; a musical masterpiece that was met with a no less ambitious and extraordinary cover concept from Schenkel. 

And yep, that’s a young Cal in the cover art, amongst Frank, Gail, Hendrix and many other notables. He’s the guy holding a crate of eggs… and the guy holding the accordion.

He went on to work with Frank in many capacities, production designing the movie 200 Motels, and appearing in both Uncle Meat and Video From Hell. 

I’m a huge Beefheart fan, so I also love the story of how Cal bought a giant fish head for the cover of that album, and then convinced the good Captain to wear this fetid, stinky thing and be photographed in it! Oh to have been a fly on that wall…

Speaking of walls, if you saw Joe Travers give us a tour of FZ’s office last Friday, you saw the original artwork for Burnt Weeny Sandwich hanging on the wall in the office, only slightly less vibrant than its heyday a couple decades ago. As Joe T. observed, the orange is looking particularly aged...

Cal and Frank had a pretty balanced artistic collaboration, just responding to each other’s crazy whims and tastes. Check out this interview to hear the origin stories of some of the nearly 30 Zappa album covers he designed, including One Size Fits All and Uncle Meat.

So it's HUGE to me that as part of this campaign, you can find, in the great company of original work and art prints by Bruce Bickford:

Original art + limited-edition signed prints by Cal!

Cal sent us this great note about the campaign:
"I can't wait to see what gems you find in the Vault! It’s great to see so many people coming together to make sure Frank's world is preserved — the Zappa fan base is the most loyal and energetic ... the best!"
Check out these limited-edition prints in the Add-Ons store!

I’m out of my mind about how cool it is to have both Bickford and Schenkel on board to help #savethevault and make sure Frank's story gets told — what a week! 

WHAT’s gonna happen next? Keep an eye out — and keep helping us GET THE WORD OUT! The more we raise, the more of the Vault we can save.


 Alex Winter


Only 10 DAYS LEFT to back @zappamovie & be part of preserving @Zappa's legacy—Give $25 & get some of the Vault!


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    1. Jim Evans on

      I wish I could do more but I've done what I can and I have shared this with everyone I know, I hope this helps to get the word out and the goal gets slammed, we need all the Frank in the world we can get.

    2. Missing avatar

      Vincent & Victoria Cannata on

      @Captain I too, have my "T-n-B" shirt , from the '88 Tour!
      I, for one, would LOVE to hear Mr. Ryko's stories about Frank and 'the business'!
      I must thank him, for it was the SPACING of his FZ releases that truly made me a 'hard-core'!
      It's a simple case of 'overload'!; I understand how anyone nowadays can look at all of Zappa's albums and go, "THAT'S a little MUCH!" I consider myself lucky to be at the age I was went the first batch of Ryko's came out. The next thing I knew, I went to see two of the '88 shows, and was ready to start buying them all!
      I would also like you to thank him for making that two-disc 'best of' RESIDENTS CD's, too!
      I am a 'hard-core' Residents fan, too!

    3. Chris Sharrock on

      @Captain Richard Berlin - I once had a 1/3rd share in a boat called "Thing Fish" ,we used it to go .... fishing .

    4. Missing avatar

      Captain RichardBerlin on

      Awesome, Alex! While I still have my original T&B T-shirt, it no longer fits my sixty-five year old frame as well as it did 30 years ago, and not long ago I contacted Cal Schenkel about commissioning a repro of the Chunga's Revenge "Industrial Vacuum" album liner. Having just spent a long weekend with Don Rose --RykoDisc co founder, you really should have a chat with him for your research on the doc. Lastly-- I was at the marina yesterday in Key West working on my boat "Cosmik Debris" when a crusty old dude walked over to me, took a look at the hull and said," Is that a Mexican Poncho?
      We Zappahiles are all so stoked for all you and your team are about to unfurl from FZ's vault!

    5. Ruby Red Tootsies on

      So you got something for the boy who love titties & beer.
      Whatcha got for the women who love shmeckles & wine?

    6. Bill Horton on

      The addition of Cal is awesome. I have a few Schenkel originals and I have to tell you they are awesome. Don't miss out, you won't disappointed with one of these gems.