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Progress? Lyrics

Progress? by Frank Zappa  

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Progress? Frank Zappa (guitar, vocals)
Ian Underwood (alto saxophone, piano)
Bunk Gardner (tenor saxophone, clarinet)
Motorhead Sherwood (baritone saxophone, tambourine)
Roy Estrada (bass, vocals)
Don Preston (electric piano)
Arthur Tripp (drums, percussion)
Jimmy Carl Black (drums)
Members of The BBC Symphony Orchestra

(The trio protests the interruption, to which Don responds that performance of diatonic music (and eating meat) will preclude them from seeing his aura. They argue that diatonic music is good and his electronic music is horse-sh*t. He argues that diatonic music is too old-fashioned, and that There must be growth! You've got to eat macrobiotic food -- and study astrology! (It is worth noting that, although the plot was my idea, each band member was responsible for generating his own dialog.)

(?):
Hold it! Hold it!

(?):
Hey, put that down.

Don:
Silence you fools, don't you believe in progress?

Bunk:
Take that progress and stick it under a rock.

Don:
We must overthrow the diatonic system.

FZ:
Yes

Ian:
Bullsh*t.

Don:
We're coming to the beginning of a new era wherein the development of the inner self will be the most important factor.

Ian:
Honey your music is full of sh*t and besides that it ain't disciplined.

Bunk:
Give me four-four.

Art:
Togetherness.

Ian:
Yeah.

Bunk:
Some old melodies.

Don:
Look, playing that kind of music and eating meat will never, you'll never be able to see my aura then.

Art:
I've seen your aura a lot, I think it stinks.

Ian:
You've been drinking, Don?

Art:
I can hear your aura and it's bad man.

Don:
Listen, there are many strange things that science doesn't know.

Bunk:
Discipline, you need discipline. Four, four.

Don:
It's got to be new, it's got to progress, it's got to evolve. THERE MUST BE GROWTH!

(?):
Ah, man.

Don:
You've got to eat macrobiotic food.

FZ:
We're doing a play.

Don:
And study astrology. Delve into the occult world.

Ian:
Well you can delve all you want but were formin' a new group go and do you some yoga excercises. Take care of business.

Don:
Look, mark my words... If you continue playing this music something strange may happen.

Bunk:
Don't threaten me...

FZ:
By the end of the first show...

Don:
By the end of the first show... No the second show.

FZ:
So at this point in the development of our plot the three talented members of the Mothers of Invention have quit the group to form their own band with a lot of discipline.

(?):
Yeah.

FZ:
Listen what we need is a nice disciplined combo!

(This causes the talented trio to quit The Mothers, in order to Form their own band with a lot of discipline. Suddenly, through the magic of stage-craft, their new, disciplined combo (14 members of the BBC symphony) marches on stage, wearing tuxedos, with robot-looking designs painted on their faces. Ian, Bunk and Art put on tuxes, get some bolts and widgits painted on their faces by a roving make-up artist, and take up performance positions within the BBC ensemble.)

FZ:
And so that they would be completely tackished and fit in with the rest of the disciplined combo. The former members of the Mothers of Invention receive their initiation into the robot musical world.

Don:
This makes me nervous I'm gonna go do some yoga.

Ian:
Yeah you better.

FZ:
Meanwhile Dom de Wild under pressure prepares to unwind with some healthy yoga excercises.

(At this point, Motorhead wanders out, piddling with his tambourine. He sees the BBC disciplined combo, covets their uniforms, and demands to join their group. The ensemble rebukes him because he can't read music. In spite of this, he plans to force his way in.)

FZ:
This is Euclid Motorhead Sherwood.

(?):
What's the matter with him?

Ian:
He's nervous cause he couldnt play with our new group.

Motorhead:
Oh, that's nice, look at those suits.

FZ:
Motorhead covets the uniforms of the other band. And also shows some interest in the bum of Underwood.

Ian:
Ayyyy

(?):
Ten years ago I knew a lot of guys down in Switzerland.

Motorhead:
Hey can I play in your band with a suit like that too?

(?):
No!

Motorhead:
But I like the suits and I can play good. I can play . . . play anything.

FZ:
Motorhead is lying. He can't play good, he can't play anything. He's trying to con his way into the other band. He knows they don't want him.

Motorhead:
But I got practicing and play good.

FZ:
He's lying. He hasn't been practicing, he doesn't do sh*t.

Ian:
Ask me you couldn't even count to four.

(?):
Come on beat it man.

Motorhead:
You can't do that to me I'll fix you. I get into your band.

(?):
Okay Motorhead, just get out of the way.

Motorhead:
You can't stop me, I'll get in there somehow.

FZ:
Motorhead explains to the members of the Robot Combo that nothing can stop him he will join their group whether they like it or not.



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