Get Your Freak Out

Tony Magee, the iconoclastic owner/brewer of Lagunitas Brewing has been a big Frank Zappa fan most of his life and this year marks the anniversary of the release of Zappa’s first album, the Mothers of Inventions’ Freak Out. Tony spoke with Frank Zappa’s widow, Gail Zappa (who runs the Zappa Family Trust), and obtained permission to use the colorful album cover on the beer label for their new Freak Out Ale. Very different in appearance from most Lagunitas labels, the beer nonetheless is in keeping with their rebel chic ethic. And as mentioned on the label, let’s not forget Frank Zappa’s most famous beer quote:

You can’t be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline — it helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer.

— Frank Zappa

Click on the label for a larger view.


  1. Frank says

    An interesting gimmick, perhaps, but what would Frank say about his music and likeness being used to promote a beverage of he was known for not being particularly fond?

  2. Tom says

    Hey Justin, there’s a store in Davis Square (Somerville, MA) called Downtown Wine & Spirits
    which regularly stocks Lagunitas varieties but I haven’t seen this one yet.

  3. says

    My only thoughts on Frank Zappa are how they relate to Steve Vai, and, by extension, Devin Townsend.

    In other words, Frank was cool, but the guys he influenced later on more than surpass Frank’s talented-yet-very “out-of-left-field” efforts…..

  4. monkeythepig says

    > Frank was cool, but the guys he influenced later on more than
    > surpass Frank’s talented-yet-very “out-of-left-field” efforts…..

    no doubt vai and townsend would be flattered by this statement, but they’d also likely beat you in the alley behind a nightclub for such heresy… frank was, besides varese and ligeti, *the* composer of the 20th century.

  5. thejonesfactor says

    I just picked up 4 bottles today and have 1 chillin’ in the fridge as I type.
    Great idea and I hope other ones come out.
    On another note…HERE HERE! ZAPPPA was w/out a doubt “THE” great
    composer of our time!!!

  6. Chef Jem says

    I first saw the familiar-looking “Freak Out” label at a natural foods co-op and being that I’m an original Zappa “freak” myself, it immediately captured my attention! However, sorry to say, I didn’t buy it. If only it were unpasteurized!
    Then again, I could cook with it and “sneak” a little taste! (Cheers Frank! I know you don’t care about what people think about you, yet I want to at least mention that your musical freedom has yet to be defined and I am still amazed after 41 years!)

  7. Johnnie Midnite says

    I just came back from Arizona where I found “Absolutely Free” beer. It was $3.99 a bottle
    and I wanted to take them home full, but forgot about the 3oz. of liquid carry-on and had
    to drink them before leaving. Tasted sweet with a bitter after taste. So…. I came home
    with two empty re-capped bottles for my room.


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