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Frank’s contribution to world peace?… his Berlin Wall idea presented to the Soviets 16 months before it happened.


Tonight Show June 29, 1988…






One Comment

  1. 6/29/88- The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. After having told about being
    invited to Russia to play for the Reagan/Gorbachev summit, FZ had this to

    Jay Leno: Well the newspapers got that story wrong. They probably got this
    wrong too. You wanted to do something about tearing down the Berlin Wall.
    What was that?

    Frank Zappa: Well I’ve been talking about that for a few years. The first
    time it was put into a German newspaper. While I was on the phone with this
    guy from Moscow.. .You know these phone calls are tapped…

    JL: Right especially when you talk to this guy Beglov (?)

    FZ: Always! So after we settled it that we weren’t going to play the show, I
    said ‘you got a couple of minutes because I’ve got an idea I want to talk to
    you about. And he said, ‘yeah, sure.’ I said why don’t this. You guys
    need some good PR.I mean this whole Perestroika business is basically… ‘we
    need to restructure because the word is out communism doesn’t work. We want
    to still call it communism so we look good for a minute, but it doesn’t
    work. You want to be capitalists. Let’s be honest about it. So here’s what
    you do. You need good PR in order to get people with real money into your
    country to invest and set stuff up. You’re taking the troops out of
    Afghanistan. That’s nice. You shouldn’t have gone there in the first place.
    But OK, that’s done. What have you got left?

    JL: And he’s still on the phone through all this?

    FZ: He’s still here. He’s laughing. He speaks good English. So you’re going
    to Mars with the United States. That’s nice, but it’s going to be real
    expensive and it’s going to be a long time before you get the PR results.
    Whatta you got left/Just the wall-you gotta take down the wall. The way you
    do it is, you have to do it on May Day, which is the Communist Labor Day.

    JL: Yeah I would guess May Day would be my choice.

    FZ: So I propose they do it on May Day 1989 and the reason is the new US
    president will not have been in office long enough to even think of the
    Berlin Wall. So he won’t be able to take credit for it. Because they don’t
    usually start talking about the wall until the last few minutes of there

    JL: Now are you paying for this call or is he? I’m curious.

    FZ:I am, but this is my contribution to world peace.

    JL: So the wall…you tear it down…

    FZ: Yeah, but I gotta tell you the details because it’s really sick! You
    have to do it exactly on a May Day and the way you do it is… You invite
    the strongest men of labor from around the world, committees. And they’ll go
    to Berlin and within a week they rip it down with their bare hands. And
    they’re assisted by the US Caterpillar Company and their Japanese
    competitors who send big earth moving equipment. And they’re ripping it down
    24 hours a day. Every kind of music is going on. There’s concerts-it’s a
    festival. The wall is coming down. They don’t need the wall anymore. You
    already know where the dividing line is. The people in the eastern are not
    coming into West Berlin, There’s unemployment there. So they’re staying
    home. And after you take the big chunks, you give those to sculptors from
    around the world. They make a nice piece of sculpture, you bring it back to
    Berlin and you make a peace pyramid and you leave it there as a tourist
    attraction. And he says, “well, we’ll…it’s not exactly what… .Well I’ll
    think about it. Thanks for the call.’

    JL: They were thinking more in terms of giving one of the gunners off for
    the afternoon.

    5/27/88 Radio FFN, Germany – Zappa special

    FZ: The wall must come down and I proposed at a press conference in Berlin
    (4/11/88) a way to bring it down and I would like to see it come down. And a
    strange thing happened two days after I did that press conference in Berlin
    and talked about the wall. Sixty meters of the wall fell down all by itself.
    Did you hear about this? It just crumbled down onto the west side. Power of

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