Trivia / Joe's Garage

  • Real Life Writes the Plot:
    • Zappa too was once jailed for "conspiracy to make pornography" (just a tape full of sex noises) and spent much of his prison time imagining guitar solos in his cell.
    • Zappa regularly traveled by plane and while waiting in the lobbies of many American airports he would hear the announcement "The White Zone is for loading and unloading only. If you got to load or unload go to the White Zone!" over and over again. (For non-American readers: this phrase informs passengers and travellers that they can load or unload luggage in the white curb of the airport.) One can imagine how tedious listening to the mind numbing pointless phrase could get. Zappa included it during many songs on this album.
    • The plot of this Concept Album about a society where music is made illegal was directly inspired by the 1979 coup in Iran by ayatollah Khomeini. During a radio broadcast aired on July 23rd, 1979, Khomeini called for a ban on any form of music, however no specific law was edicted at the time. Khomeini said: "Music should not be broadcast over the radio and television. Music is something that everybody is attracted to naturally, but it takes them out of reality to a futile and lowly livelihood. Like opium, music also stupefies persons listening to it and makes their brain inactive and frivolous." It was only some months later that the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran, adopted by referendum, granted the Leader full power to appoint and dismiss the head of the Radio and Television (Chapter XII [Article 175]). Zappa even mentions this fact in the liner notes of the album.
    • "Dong Work For Yuda" is full of inside jokes and anecdotes regarding Frank's then bodyguard John Smothers and his strange way of talking. His wife Freckles is referenced too. In a 1990 interview with Zappa named "They're Doing the Interview of the Century, Part 3" he explained:
    Once upon a time, on his first trip to Copenhagen, we were playing at a place called the Falkoner Center (...) and we didn't have a limousine. I had to take a cab to the place. We get in the car. It's just this little tiny car, (laughter) not a Fiat, but maybe, slightly larger than a Fiat. You know how big John is (...) and it's a cab, and the driver is Danish, and he doesn't speak English. I get in the back, and John gets in the front, and the cab driver is just sittin' there, 'cause he doesn't know where to go, and John finally realizes that he must tell the driver where to go, so, he just turns to him, and goes, "FALCUM." (laughter), and the guy looks at him, y'know, kinda lookin' up like this, and John goes, "FALCUM." (...) and the guy DOESN'T KNOW WHAT'S GOING ON! And then, John gets vehement. He goes, "TAKE ME TO THE FALCUM!.
  • Throw It In!: The final track "A Little Green Rosetta" has nothing to do with the rest of the story, but is just thrown in as a more amusing closing song.