Bognor Regis

FZ album(s) in which song has appeared


Strange Days, September 11-25, 1970

Frank Zappa Warner Bros. (Preview)

(...) The abridged version of ["Sharleena"], backed by a song "Bognor Regis", will be Zappa's next single, released under his name.

One person whose name will remain a secret (quoted by Geir Corneliussen, affz, March 4, 1999)

Looking through my old boxes...I came across a record Frank gave me some years ago......a single edit of Sharleena......on the B is "Bognor Regis".

Jeff Dexter (Jazzwise #71, December 2003-January 2004) (special thanks to Hywel Davies)

One summer Sunday in 1970 my best friend and house mate, the late great producer Ian "Sammy" Samwell is up early looking after Frank Zappa while he is in London. As it's a Sunday, that means, Implosion at the Roundhouse in Chalk Farm which was my baby, not just as the MC/DJ, but I was responsible for putting together most of the shows. Before I set off to Chalk Farm, Sammy tells me Frank has an edited version of a tune that may be a single, hoping that he might get some airplay, but he's not to sure about it. Frank wants to know if he can hear his record that afternoon on the Roundhose PA, would I mind giving him the chance to hear it played there?

Before the masses arrived at about 3.45 in the afternoon Sammy shows up with Frank in tow. Frank hands me a 10" Artisan Sound Recorders acetate. Printed on side one, is "Sharleena" (vocal) 3:54 which has been crossed out but written in ballpoint it says 2.54, a real single edit, under three minutes. So on one of my Thorens TD124 Mk IIs it goes. Frank and Sammy wander round the house listening intently while looking at the few faces that are already inside. As the record finishes Frank comes closer to the stage, he doesn't look too convinced. I quickly flip the disk and play side two "Bognor Regis" (instrumental) 4:48. I crack up laughing at the title, it just seemed so funny, but I loved it. I then plopped on another record and put Frank's acetate back in its brown bag to hand it back. Frank holds up his hand and say, "you keep it, play it again if you want, it's the only one, let me know what you think," then he heads off round the back of the stage.

Manning Bartlett (affz, May 3, 1999)

If said tune exists, then there are a number of reasons why Zappa would have called it Bognor Regis. Bognor Regis is a well known village for a number of reasons, mainly because it is dank, dirty, tiny and has a funny name. Most British people would know of Bognor Regis for this very reason, and I know it gets mentioned in at least one Monty Python sketch.

Its humour value comes from a number of sources. For one, 'bog' in British english is slang for a toilet. The "Regis" part means "royal", which is quite amusing, as it vaguely implies "Royal shithouse". Additionally the expression "Bog off" is equivalent to "screw you". Plus "Bognor" is just a funny word, like 'enema', 'bondage', 'dacron' and 'echidna'.

Jon Naurin (affz, May 16, 2002)

Yep, as many people have hinted, this is Bognor Regis. For those of you who are unfamiliar with it, read all (well, as much about as we know about it) on:

Conceptual Continuity


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This page updated: 2015-12-08