Ship Arriving Too Late To Save a Drowning Witch

Ship Arriving Too Late To Save A Drowning Witch

(Zappa, LP, Barking Pumpkin FW 38066, May 3, 1982)

  1. No Not Now 5:50
  2. Valley Girl (FZ/Moon Zappa) 4:50
  3. I Come From Nowhere 6:09
  4. Drowning Witch 12:03
  5. Envelopes 2:45
  6. Teen-age Prostitute 2:41

Live recordings: September-December, 1981
Studio recordings: Summer, 1981-early 1982

Produced by Frank Zappa
Mark Pinske engineer for basics & overdubs
Bob Stone engineer for overdubs & re-mix
UMRK Mobile remote recordings
UMRK Central overdubs & re-mix

Roger Price cover illustration
John Vince graphics

Music Performed By:
FZ—Lead Guitar, Vocals
Steve Vai—Impossible Guitar Parts
Ray White—Rhythm Guitar, Vocals
Tommy Mars—Keyboards
Bobby Martin—Keyboards, Sax & Vocals
Ed Mann—Percussion
Scott Thunes—Bass on Drowning Witch, Envelopes, Teen-age Prostitute and Valley Girl
Arthur Barrow—Bass on No Not Now and the first part of I Come From Nowhere
Patrick O'Hearn—Bass on the guitar solo in I Come From Nowhere
Chad Wackerman—Drums
Roy Estrada—Vocals
Ike Willis—Vocals
Bob Harris—Vocals
Lisa Popeil—Vocal on Teen-age Prostitute
Moon Zappa—Vocal on Valley Girl

1. No Not Now 5:50

No not now
No not now
No not now
No not now
Maybe later
Maybe later
She say I'm free
She say I'm free
She say I'm free
She say I'm free
But I like her sister
But I like her sister
She can't decide
Whom she wanna ride
She can't decide
Whom she wanna ride
Tonight—tonight—tonight

She changed her mind
She changed her mind
She changed her mind
She changed her mind
And I don't blame her
And I don't blame her

No not now
(No no not now)
No not now
(No no not now)
No not now
(No no not now)
No not now
(No no not now)
Maybe later
Maybe later
(Shut up! You need a vacation, boy!)
The big ol' hat
(The big ol' hat)
The cowboy pants
(Those cowboy pants)
Transcontinental
(It's a transcontinental)
Hobby horse
(A hobby hobby horse)
String beans to Utah
(That's right)
String beans to Utah
Tonight

Ah, the wife
(Ah, the wife)
Oh, the waitress
(And the waitress too)
Oh, the drive
(Yes, yes the drive)
All night long
(All night long)
String beans to Utah
(Yum yum)
String beans to Utah
Deliver string beans
To Utah tonight
(Giddyup)
I better go fast
Or they won't be all right
(All right)
Deliver string beans
To Utah tonight
(Yum yum)
Donny 'n Marie
Can both take a bite
(Bite it Marie)
Hawaiian—Hawaiian—Hawaiian
Lunch
(Hawaiian lunch!)
Boog, boog 'em Dano . . . Murder One!

No not now
(No no not now)
No not now
(No no no no not now)
No not now
(No no not now)
No not now
(No no no no not now)
Maybe later
Maybe later

She changed her mind
(She changed her mind)
She changed her mind
(You know she changed her mind)
She changed her mind
(She changed her mind)
She changed her mind
(You know she changed her mind)
And I don't blame her
And I don't blame her
She's sorta wild
(She wild, she wild)
She's sorta wild
(Really wild, really wild)
She's sorta wild
(She wild, she wild)
A crazy child
(Crazy child, crazy child)
Tonight—tonight—tonight

There she goes
(There she goes)
Up and down
(Up and down)
Ride that bull
(She's ridin' the bull)
All around
(All around)
The best in town
(She's the best in town)
Oh she goes
(She go up, she go down)
Up and down
(I said up and down)
Oh the bull
(The whole bull)
The whole bull
(The whole bull)
The whole bull
(The whole damn thing)
The best in town
(Where she go? Ebzen Sauce . . . )

2. Valley Girl 4:50

(Frank Zappa/Moon Zappa)

Moon Zappa—lead vocal

Valley Girl
She's a Valley Girl
Valley Girl
She's a Valley Girl
Okay, fine . . .
Fer sure, fer sure
She's a Valley Girl
In a clothing store
Okay, fine . . .
Fer sure, fer sure
She's a . . .

Like, OH MY GOD! (Valley Girl)
Like—TOTALLY (Valley Girl)
Encino is like SO BITCHEN (Valley Girl)
There's like the Galleria (Valley Girl)
And like all these like really great shoe stores
I love going into like clothing stores and stuff
I like buy the neatest mini-skirts and stuff
It's like so BITCHEN cuz like everybody's like
Super-super nice . . .
It's like so BITCHEN, like . . .

On Ventura, there she goes
She just bought some bitchen clothes
Tosses her head 'n flips her hair
She got a whole bunch of nothin' in there

Anyway, he goes are you into S and M?
I go, oh RIGHT . . .
Could you like just picture me in like a LEATHER TEDDY
Yeah right, HURT ME, HURT ME . . .
I'm sure! NO WAY!
He was like freaking me out . . .
He called me a BEASTIE . . .
That's cuz like he was totally BLITZED
He goes like BAG YOUR FACE!
I'm sure!

Valley Girl
She's a Valley Girl
Valley Girl
She's a Valley Girl
Okay, fine . . .
Fer sure, fer sure
She's a Valley Girl
So sweet 'n pure
Okay, fine . . .
Fer sure, fer sure
She's a . . .
It's really sad (Valley Girl)
Like my English teacher
He's like . . .
(Valley Girl)
He's like Mr. BU-FU (Valley Girl)
We're talking Lord God King BU-FU (Valley Girl)
I am SO SURE
He's like so GROSS
He like sits there and like plays with all his rings
And he like flirts with all the guys in the class
It's like totally disgusting
I'm like so sure
It's like BARF ME OUT . . .
Gag me with a spoon!

Last idea to cross her mind
Had something to do with where to find
A pair of jeans to fit her butt
And where to get her toenails cut

So like I go into this like salon place, y'know
And I wanted like to get my toenails done
And the lady like goes, oh my God, your toenails
Are like so GRODY
It was like really embarrassing
She's like OH MY GOD, like BAG THOSE TOENAILS
I'm like sure . . .
She goes, uh, I don't know if I can handle this, y'know . . .
I was like really embarrassed . . .

Valley Girl
She's a Valley Girl
Valley Girl
She's a Valley Girl
Okay, fine
Fer sure, fer sure
She's a Valley Girl
And there is no cure
Okay, fine
Fer sure, fer sure
She's a Valley Girl
And there is no cure

Like my mother is like a total space cadet (Valley Girl)
She like makes me do the dishes and (Valley Girl)
CLEAN the cat box (Valley Girl)
I am sure
That's like GROSS
(Valley Girl)
BARF OUT! (Valley Girl)
OH MY GOD (Valley Girl)

Hi!
Uh-huh . . .
(Valley Girl)
My name?
My name is Ondrya Wolfson
(Valley Girl)
Uh-huh
That's right, Ondrya
(Valley Girl)
Uh-huh . . .
I know
(Valley Girl)
It's like . . .
I do not talk funny . . .
I'm sure
(Valley Girl)
Whatsa matter with the way I talk? (Valley Girl)
I am a VAL, I know (Valley Girl)
But I live in like in a really good part of Encino so it's okay (Valley Girl)
Huh-ah . . . (Valley Girl)
So like, I don't know (Valley Girl)
I'm like freaking out totally (Valley Girl)
Oh my God! (Valley Girl)

Hi—I have to go to the orthodontist (Valley Girl)
I'm getting my braces off, y'know (Valley Girl)
But I have to wear a retainer
That's going to be really like a total bummer
I'm freaking out
I'm SURE
Like those things that like stick in your mouth
They're so gross . . .
You like get saliva all over them
But like, I don't know, it's going to be cool, y'know
So you can see my smile
It'll be like really cool
Except my like my teeth are like too small
But NO BIGGIE . . .
It's so AWESOME
It's like TUBULAR, y'know
Well, I'm not like really ugly or anything
It's just like
I don't know
You know me, I'm like into like the clean stuff
Like PAC-MAN and like, I don't know
Like my mother like makes me do the dishes
It's like so GROSS . . .
Like all the stuff like sticks to the plates
And it's like, it's like somebody else's food, y'know
It's like GRODY . . .
GRODY TO THE MAX
I'm sure
It's like really nauseating
Like BARF OUT
GAG ME WITH A SPOON
GROSS
I am SURE
TOTALLY . . .

3. I Come From Nowhere 6:09

includes Mystery Song #1 and a quotation from Big Swifty

Roy Estrada—lead vocal

I come from nowhere
And you should go there
Just try it for a while
The people from nowhere
Always smile

Their eyes are all frozen over
The sides of their faces pooch out at the corners
Because that's what happens when their mouths turn up
On both sides
Which is why we can tell they're smiling

They never frown
They never let their eyebrows turn down
They like going around with their teeth showing
All the time

They are from nowhere
Your teeth are showing
So maybe you been there

You could have the disease of nowhere people
Where the air gets stuck all over their gums
When their nowhere lips roll back
For real excitement
They stand still
They shut up
Then they don't do nothing
Out there in nowhere

4. Drowning Witch 12:03

includes quotations from a Hawaiian Punch commercial, Dragnet (Schumann/Rósza) and from Le sacre du printemps (Stravinsky)

Intro, group vocal section and ending:
Santa Monica Civic Auditorium
December 11, 1981

1st guitar solo:
Ritz, NYC
November 17, 1981

FZ vocal section and first part of the 2nd solo:
Uptown Theatre, Chicago
November 27, 1981

Rest of the 2nd solo and other parts:
Unknown dates and locations

There's a ship arriving too late
To save a drowning witch
She was swimmin' along
Tryin' to keep a date
With a Merchant Marine
Who told her he was really rich
But it doesn't matter no more . . .
She's on the ocean floor
'N the water's all green down there
'N it's not very clean down there
'N water snakes
'N rusty wrecks
Is all that she can see
As the light goes dim
And she's tryin' to swim
Will she make it?
(Boy, we sure hope so . . . )

Not even a witch oughta be caught
On the bottom of America's spew-infested
Waterways, hey-hey . . .
She could get radiation all over her
She could mutate insanely . . .
She could mutate insanely . . . (that's right)
You know, she could go on the freeway and grow up to be 15 feet tall
And scary-lookin'
And then . . .
Cars could crash all over the place
As a result of people with Hawaiian shirts on . . .
Lookin' up to see her face

Sardines in her eyebrows . . .
Lobsters up 'n down her forehead
All of them HORRIBLY LARGE FROM RADIATION . . .
And smelling very bad
And DANGEROUS!

Maybe a submarine could save her,
And bring her home to the Navy . . .
For some kind of
Oo-oo-oo-ah ah
Ah-oo-oo oo-oo-oo
Ah-oo-ahhh
Ritual sacrifice . . .

5. Envelopes 2:45

Unknown location
c. September-December, 1981

 

6. Teen-age Prostitute 2:41

Santa Monica Civic Auditorium
December 11, 1981

Lisa Popeil—lead vocal

She's only seventeen
She's really sort of cute
She's working in the street
She's a teen-age prostitute

She ran away from home
Her mom was destitute
Her daddy doesn't care
She's a teen-age prostitute

"I have got a pimp
He treats me like a dog . . . "

(All the stuff she's shooting
Keeps her in a fog)
"I would really like to try and get away . . . "
(But if she gets caught he will cause her some dismay)
"No no no no no!"

Tiny little pants
Chain around my boot
Shakin' in the dark
I'm (She's) a teen-age prostitute

 

All compositions by Frank Zappa except as noted
Site maintained by Román García Albertos
http://globalia.net/donlope/fz/
Lyrics from the album booklet
Corrections and additions by Patrick Neve and Román
This page updated: 2017-09-24