Dweezil Zappa says it costs “over $10,000 a day” for him to go on tour

Dweezil Zappa says it costs “over $10,000 a day” for him to go on tour

Touring is expensive – even if you’re an established musician. So expensive, in fact, that guitarist Dweezil Zappa has been forced to flog his own gear to afford his latest tour.
In a recent interview with Guitar World, Zappa opens up about the reality of touring expenses. “People think, ‘oh, you rehearse and then you go out there and you start making money,’” he says. “People don’t realise you don’t make money until the tour is almost finished. It’s over $10,000 a day that you’ve got to be dealing with.”

READ MORE: Frank Zappa’s daughter’s new memoir examines the difficulties of “growing up an inimitable icon’s daughter”

According to Zappa, his most recent tour will cost “roughly $200,000” before even setting out. Rather than paying it out of pocket, he’s been forced to flog off his own gear to make ends meet. “When you finish a tour, you usually have some money left over for the startup costs for the next tour – but I had not worked for four years, so there was no money left over,” he says.
Zappa will be auctioning off his gear through AnalogR. The auction boasts a staggering selection of unique guitars, including a custom recreation of his father Frank Zappa’s Hot Rats Gibson Les Paul.
“My father famously played a Gibson Les Paul gold top during the recording sessions for his classic album Hot Rats,” says Zappa. “The guitar was stolen from him while on tour in Europe between 1969-1970. I worked with Jim DeCola at Gibson to faithfully recreate the guitar in exacting detail. I added a few things the original did not have, a piezo pickup and a modification to the Bigsby bridge to make it easier to restring.”

The piece aims to capture the original’s spirit, even designed with missing knobs just like his father’s guitar. There’s also PRS’ first ever Dweezil Zappa signature guitar available, which is also signed by Paul Reed Smith.
Elsewhere, there’s a Jackson Dinky that bears the cover of Madonna’s 1986 record, True Blue. To top it off, it’s also hand-signed by the superstar herself. “That guitar is great!” Zappa tells Guitar World. “I used it on a lot of things. If it becomes an important thing in someone else’s life, it’s worth releasing into the wild… I want people to have interesting, fun tools and enjoy them.”

“I’m trying to create an opportunity of goodwill for people to enjoy cool gear,” he continues, “but it’ll help me do what I need to do to play music and play the tour.”
Every sale will go towards the Zappa Plays Zappa tour, which will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of Frank Zappa’s Apostrophe(‘) record. So, in a way, each auction sale is helping keeping Frank Zappas’ spirit alive.
“I’ve played my dad’s music for many years and there is always challenges and surprises in it,” Zappa reflects. “But we have a new band, a couple of new members; we’re going to mix it up just by virtue of having new energy in the group.”
“We’re going to be playing some music that we’ve played before, but not the way we’ve played it before – different arrangements – and there are going to be several new things that we’ve never played before at all,” Zappa notes. “That’s the excitement of doing this.”
The Zappa Plays Zappa tour starts 1 August in Phoenix. Curious punters can also check out what other gear Zappa is selling over on AnalogR.
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Source: www.guitar-bass.net