The Official Frank Zappa Messageboards
It is currently Fri Jun 18, 2021 12:13 pm

All times are UTC - 8 hours

Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 4 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Frank Freak
PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2016 12:42 pm 

Joined: Tue Oct 18, 2016 3:12 pm
Posts: 13
Location: Western US (Please don't stalk me)
It was beneficial for Frank Zappa to have that freakiness in the music world to broaden the definition of what could be released that an audience hears. Personally, I only like 40% of his music. There is talent in every profession that he did. An inventor, a father, a husband, a musician, an intellectual, a voice actor, a film director, etc. He seemed to want to live his way as much as he could without seeming to become a complete asshole, overly emotional, and overly submissive to so much stupidity.

 Post subject: Re: Frank Freak
PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2016 1:10 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Tue Oct 29, 2002 12:41 pm
Posts: 18514
Location: City Of Tiny Lites
The reason I enjoy 95% or more of his output is because it has so much character and expression. Also the vast array of styles and moods and, of course the impossible music I can't whistle along even after 21 years listening and learning...


 Post subject: Re: Frank Freak
PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2016 1:37 pm 
User avatar

Joined: Mon Apr 03, 2006 4:04 pm
Posts: 4050
Location: Chicago, sort of.

Yup. What he said.

Everytime we picked a booger we'd flip it on this one winduh. Every night we'd contribute, 2, 3, 4 boogers. We had to use a putty knife, man, to get them damn things off the winduh. There was some goober ones that weren't even hard...

 Post subject: Re: Frank Freak
PostPosted: Wed Jan 04, 2017 3:21 am 
User avatar

Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2005 7:51 pm
Posts: 42932
Location: >>==> Pōneke, Wellington, Aotearoa, New Zealand.
Welshman Billy Barton brings spirit of Frank Zappa to Wanaka pest control


Last updated 12:41, January 4 2017

When Billy Barton played in Newport city's concrete gutters as a child, he dreamed of rabbiting in Wales' lush and verdant fields.

​He achieved that dream and became a hunting dog breeder to boot.

But by 2008, the qualified fabricator and welder (also known in dog breeding circles as Steve Barton) wanted a change of scene.

He took a punt on New Zealand's rabbit-infested high country and emigrated with his favourite hunting dog, Zappa, a Greyhound-German Shepherd cross named after Barton's favourite musician and filmmaker, Frank Zappa.

Now Barton runs one of the country's few Ministry of Primary Industries-authorised hunting ferret and dog teams and in April this year, he moved to Wanaka to work with John May's Longview Environmental Trust.

His two hunting ferrets raised eyebrows at first because the bird-murdering predator is on the Biosecurity Act's blacklist of unwanted organisms.

However, Barton and the ferrets have won people over with their work for public and private landowners, taking out hundreds of rabbits from reserves, farms and gardens.

Breeding ferrets is banned in New Zealand so Barton catches them in the wild, selects the two most docile predators for training, dispatches unsuitable candidates and sends the surviving boy to the vet for a vasectomy.

Just like dogs, the ferrets quiver with excitement when they are about to go to work.

"But they still are a little bit wild . . . I've had ferrets hanging off my fingers," Barton said.

Throughout his life, the father of three adult children has woven his passion for hunting around jobs in the steel industry.

But hunting is where his heart is.

"I was brought up on a council estate. And that was just houses, as far as you could see, houses. My playing ground was the road and the gutter. I used to dream. I knew there was a river over the way . . . But we weren't allowed to go. My father had a mate who used to do rabbiting and all that and he said he would take me out, but he never did."

Eventually, Barton got into fishing and in the 1980s he learned the craft of game keeping.

"I met an old time game keeper, what you call old, old school. He was old even back then. He taught me all about trapping and things like that. Then I met another trapper and he taught me more."

Barton eventually took up a game keeping job at Blackbrook Manor, Skenfrith, near the border town of Monmouth, and he and his then wife bought their own place on the edge of a forest.

He would pit his ferret and dog teams against others at agricultural-style shows and fairs and was eventually selected to represent Wales at field trial competitions.

He also began his 30-year career breeding "lurchers" - a type of British working dog used in pest control - and continues this passion in New Zealand.

Before Barton moved in with his Wanaka partner Mary Hunt, she lived with her two daughters, Jasmine and Acacia, and 10-year-old white labrador, Tom.

Now, the blended family has 14 dogs and two hunting ferrets, which Mary has calmly taken in her stride.

Barton's original imported dog, Zappa, has reached the veritable age of 13 and is still hanging on in there.

Barton admits but for Mary's intervention, he would have had Zappa put to sleep by now, as he has collapsed a bit out the back end and doesn't do much except sit under a tree and smile.

Another Greyhound-German Shepherd cross lurcher, Becca, is now following in Zappa's paw prints.

Becca is also one of the few dogs Barton has not given a Frank Zappa - themed name.

"She was named after a friend of mine. She'd got a terrier and named it Billy. That was a bit of a wind up thing, a bit of fun between us."

But the late Frank Zappa lives on in Barton's other dogs.

​​For example, Moon, a white shepherd who leads the hunting pack, was named after Zappa's daughter. Another white shepherd, Muffin, refers to the song Muffin Man.

Welsh springer spaniel Susie Creamcheese is named after a devoted Zappa fan while foxy-cross beagle Dinah Moe gets her name from the song Dinah-Moe Humm.

Sherman, another young Welsh springer spaniel, is named for Kay Sherman, Zappa's first wife. And recently, Barton imported a pedigree whippet from Australia. He's Willie, from the song Willie the Pimp.

Barton follows in the footsteps of 19th century Welsh settlers who worked as hunters, trappers, sealers and miners in the South.

Fewer Welsh settlers came down under than any from the other three British countries (just 233 Welsh were recorded in 1858), but Te Ara Encyclopaedia records the Welsh were among the earliest to arrive in the South Island and gave names to features such as Pembroke Peak and the Cleddau River, in Fiordland, and the Cambrian Mountains, in Central Otago.

By 2013, New Zealand's Welsh-born resident population was 6,708, just a few hundred more than the total population for Wanaka (6,471).

But only 3,705 residents indicated in the 2013 Census that they identified their ethnicity as Welsh (the number includes those who indicated more than one group).

Wanaka is a small village compared to Barton's home of Newport, 19 km northeast of Cardiff.

The medieval city is home to a mainly working class population and at a 2011 census, was Wales' third largest city, with 145,700 inner city residents and a total urban population of 306,844.

To get a sense of Newport's sprawl, consider it occupies about 190sq km, which just about fills up Lake Wanaka (area of 192sq km).

Barton cannot believe his luck - "I guess 250 acres is a reasonable farm over there but over here, that's a back garden isn't it?" - but his decision to immigrate was not a hasty one. He'd just gone through a divorce and a family bereavement, so visited before making up his mind.

"I took about six months off work and spent two months in New Zealand and four months in Australia. I came to New Zealand first and really enjoyed all the conservation. I liked Australia and the wildlife but it was too hot for me.

"Back home, I kept talking about New Zealand. And then on a spur of the moment, I said "I've had enough of talking. Let's go"."

He got a job at Hillside Engineering and lived with his then partner, Bron, in Dunedin before moving to Waikouaiti.

"It is an amazing place, New Zealand. I was unsure for the first two years. Then I went back home for a visit and I stood on the corner in Birmingham and saw what was going on, everyone involved in mobile phones. I caught up with my mates and nothing had changed."

But something had changed within him. In New Zealand, he had his first encounter with anxiety, after a period of ill health and surgery. It led him to study hypnotherapy, which he now practices part time. "But that is a completely different story to rabbiting!"

It was important to get on top of his health because Barton had got a job he really wanted to do - a 14-month stint eradicating rabbits on Macquarie Island.

The isolated World Heritage site is 1116km south of Invercargill, in the middle of the Southern Ocean, and is governed by Australia.

It covers an area of 127.8sq km and in February 2013 Barton joined the small team of trappers and dog handlers who removed the last rodents and rabbits.

The island is not the best place for man or dog to have an accident or need medical assistance so before they departed, team members were taught basic surgical procedures for humans and their canine companions.

Barton had got in on the last year of a seven year project that used poison, calicivirus, dogs and hunters to eradicate predators. All the wild cats had been removed in a previous programme.

His job was to sweep the 34km-long, 5km wide island for rabbits with two Spaniels and a gun.

"I walked three thousand, two hundred and something kms. A few others walked more, the younger ones. The dogs did a hell of a lot more."

"You would just walk with a GPS. They didn't have fences. You would pick a point and walk a line and decide to turn around and come back and then 20 metres from that line you would do another line and you would do that all day long."

"It was an amazing experience. Not one to be forgotten," Barton said.

​Shortly after he got back home, Barton began controlling pests at the Department of Conservation's skink reserves at McRaes Flat, which led to his current Longview Environmental Trust contract in Wanaka.

Barton's work particularly suits public or private landowners who allow public access, or are close to public reserves, and are restricted in shooting or poisoning for public safety reasons. Barton doesn't like poisons anyway and regards them as "too available".

When the Department of Conservation let him "have a whirl" at Cromwell's very public Chafer Beetle reserve two years ago, his ferrets and dogs took out 150 rabbits in one week, and followed up with a similar kill rate in one week the following year.

So, if his dogs are (mostly) guided by the spirit of Frank Zappa, what does Barton call the ferrets?

"Just "ferrets". Depends if they bite me. They get various names then. Little Shits mostly. Little Shit and Stinky."

- Stuff ... st-control

hey punk, where you goin' with that button on your shirt?

Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 4 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 8 hours

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group