1975: Wow! This premieres as an "in-yer-face" instrumental, following hot-on-the-heels of an as wicked "Camarillo Brillo". No lyrical nonsense, just the blistering riff followed by Frank's most biting guitar work. Lyrics eventually surfaced by the time Austin rolled around, although a "T'Mershi Duween" reader contends that the Austin perfrormance was actually an instrumental, and that the album lyrics are overdubbed. Whatever the case, the lyrics definitely lessen the impact of the song, though the tune still carries plenty of force as the "Bongo Fury" version demonstrates. [John Henley, lucky enough to be there, write: "It's been a hell of a long time, but I was there and I'm pretty sure "Muffin Man" had no lyrics in Austin. It was the the riff underlying the guitar solo with which Frank ended the main part of the show. That's how I remember it, though it could have been the encore."]
1976-77: Essentially performed as on "Bongo Fury", from the live portion on, with the standard deviation coming in Frank's solo.
1984: Another travesty of the '84 band. Essentially played as on YCDTOSA Volume VI- that is, horribly. Along with "Willie the Pimp", this is another one of those MONSTER guitar tunes that Zappa reduced to pop music dribble for this tour. At least "Willie" didn't become mock reggae. Like I said, essentially played as on YCDTOSA Volume VI, with the standard deviation coming in Frank's solo.
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