Music

Music

In the former East Germany, Frank Zappa lives on as a beacon of freedom

Who was Frank Zappa? Virtuoso guitarist? Modernist composer? Smutty lyricist? Anti-censorship activist? All of the above ... and much more in the former East Germany. There, his banned records fetched small fortunes among rebellious young men who dreamed of freedom. This episode of The World in Words podcast spends 30 minutes in the company of one such man who now runs a Zappa-themed festival. We also hear from an American translator who explains Zappa's obscure lyrics to German fans, line by line.

Music

Without ska, there would be no reggae

Updated

In the 1960s, rock 'n' roll gave birth to many new styles of popular music. One of those was Ska, which originated in Jamaica and was a precursor to reggae. Filmmaker Brad Klein has just come out with a documentary tracing the history of ska, "Legends of Ska. Without ska, there is no reggae."