Category Archives: Fripp ‘y Days

Contributions by Robert (part IV)

In 1992 Fripp contributed to David Cunningham’s “Water” on a single track “Stars” – the saxophone player is Peter (Laurence) Gordon.

Fripp had already been involved with contributions to Cunningham’s group “The Flying Lizard” back in 1981. This time the music was more ambient and minimalistic.


Also in 1992 Fripp contributes on English electronic group The Grid’s album 456. Fripp’s plays on 3 tracks, Ice Machine, Aquarium and Fire Engine Red.

While Fripp is very evident on all the tracks, Ice Machine stands out as the most hilarious and at the same time brilliant. A must know track for any Fripp devotee. Vocals performed by Dieter Meier from Swiss band Yello.

And then, as python said, to something completely different.


In 1993 Fripp played on a track from Lawrence Gowan “…but you can call me Larry” sorry to say so, but to me this is very forgettable.

Anyway here it is, it might be that others will think it is great:

Lawrence Henry Gowan is a Scottish-born Canadian pianist and singer, since 1999 Gowan has been a member of legendary American rock band Styx


Sidi Mansour

One of the most unexpected Fripp collaborations was the creation of Cheikha Rimittis “Sidi Mansour” album from 1994. An amazing blend of Middle East traditions meets Western rock.

Fronted by  Cheikha Remitti, a female 70 years old Algerian Raï singer, often referred to as the Grandmother of Raï, with East Bay Ray (Dead Kennedys) on rhythm guitar, Fripp on lead guitar, Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers) delivers some very very hot bass work throughout the album, all this on top of very crafted percussions and horns. All very talented put together to create a sound I have never heard on any other album.

“Sidi Mansour” was followed by a 1995 mini album: Cheikha [Unreleased Tracks From The Sidi Mansour Album]

Rimitti was one of the most influential singers in the development of the popular Algerian music style known as Rai. She was born in 1923 in French-controlled Algeria. She became an orphan at a young age and grew up living a hard life.

She joined a troupe of traditional Algerian musicians and learnt to sing and dance, and even though she was illiterate all her life, she created more than 200 songs. Mostly of a social realistic nature, about the hardness of poor people living, love, sex, alcohol ect. Her poetry forced her out of Algeria in the 1960’s, she spent most of the rest of her live in France. She died in Paris in 2006, aged 83.


Contributions by Robert (part III)

Ronnie Urini

In 1984 Fripp played mellotron on Austrian new wave/postpunk band “Ronnie Urini & die letzten Poeten” 7″ single 1001 Nacht.

Robert Fripp married English singer and actress Toyah Ann Willcox in 1986, so it would be only natural that he would appear on some of her work. That happened for the first time on her second solo album Desire from 1987  (not counting albums she had already done with her band “Toyah”), Fripp co-wrote and played guitar on the title track. Fripp and Toyah have worked together many times since then.

“Fun Factory” is a single by English Punk band “The Damned”, released in 1990. “Fun Factory”, was recorded back in 1982 but was not released because Damned’s record company Bronze Records went bankrupt in 1983. The track was not on a “Damned” album, but has been issued on several compilations. Fripp plays Guitar on the track.




Contributions by Robert (part II)

Discovering where Fripp has just participated on a few tracks, as a guest guitarist.

In 1979 Fripp played on one track at Walter Steding’s self titled album.
Walter was an avant-garde punk violinist, working in the late 70’s early 80’s New York Punk/New Wave scene. Warhol invited Steding to perform at The Factory and they became friends, Walter was later painting assistant to Warhol. But his musical efforts was not leading him to any success, and he seems mostly forgotten today.

While former XTC keyboardist Barry Andrews joined Fripp for his 1980 “The League of Gentlemen” project, Fripp participated on Barry Andrews 1980 single “Rossmore Road” and the B-side “Win A Night Out With A Well Known Paranoiac”. Andrews later formed “Shriekback” with Dave Allen from “Gang of Four” and others.

The Flying Lizards was a late 70’s early 80’s Heavily Experimental Pop/New Wave act, but not a band in the usual sense of the word, The Flying Lizards were more of a brainchild of David Cunningham, a well-respected avant-garde composer, producer, and visual artist. With a single “money” and a first self-titled albums, doing fairly well, The Flying Lizard was signed for another Virgin album, “Fourth Wall”. Fripp participated on two tracks and co-wrote the track “Lost And Found”.

Contributions by Robert

My first Fripp Friday in a while, today focused on some of the many albums in various styles, where Fripp has just participated on a few tracks, as a guest guitarist.

What a Fripp

Peter Hammil : Fripp played on some of “Van der Graaf Generator” early albums, as well as front man Peter Hammil’s first solo album “Fool’s Mate” (1972). Several track include contribution from Fripp, but I personally prefer the calm and beautiful “The Birds”, with it’s interplay between Hammil’s piano and Fripp’s guitar.

Blondie : Fripp played on a single track on Blondie’s 1978 album Parallel Lines, an album that was Blondie’s worldwide break. Blondie was an American Rock band, with roots in the mid 70’s New York’s Punk/New Wave underground, later developing into a more POP/Rock oriented band.

Talking Heads : Due to his close friend Eno’s involvement with the band, it is not surprising that Fripp would show up on a Talking Heads album, sooner or later, that happen on their second Eno production “Fear of Music” in 1979, on the original album, Fripp only plays on “I Zimbra”, but for Fripp enthusiast it a lot more fun, what he does on the alternate take of “Life During Wartime” released later on CD, although it seems the mix may be focusing too much on the guitar.

To be continued

Discipline & Indiscipline

Friday is Fripp day
What a Fripp
Time to dance the Fripp.
Sometimes when I think of something to be just too great, its often something I have listened too many many times. Then I also think everyone else has and know all about it, as if it was The Beatles, Pink Floyd or Mozart. The thing is, that may often not be the case, just because I know Discipline by King Crimson, and have listened to it crazy many times, it’s not the case for everyone. If You dont, here is the chance to change that.
An album elevating the consept of Rock Music.
Elephant Talk

Stylistically the new King Crimson, is a style of music in its own, explored over three albums in the early 80’s. Having some connection what Talking Heads, David Bowie and Peter Gabriel did at the same time, but with a level of complexity on one side and minimalism on the other, that is very King Crimson, and especialy this short lived version of King Crimson.
Frame By Frame

After dropping King Crimson in 1974, Fripp did a lot of other things for the duration of the 70’s, but in 1980 he called King Crimson ex. drummer Bill Bruford, to form a new band called Discipline, they agreed to do something together. Fripp called guitarist Adrian Belew, at the time known for his work with Frank Zappa, Talking Heads and David Bowie, Belew was happy to be part of the team, he was younger, and knew of Fripp and Bruford as Progressive Rock giants.

Fripp and Bruford went to New York, making auditions for a Bass player, a tape with a recording of a 17/8 riff, was played during audition, as to check if the bassist’s would be Discipline materiel, they should be able to play the riff. On the 3.rd day of audition Tony Levin came in, Fripp knew him from playing together at Peter Gabriel’s albums I II and III, the case was settled, Fripp later commented, that he would have expected Tony to be too busy; otherwise he would have called him without hesitation. Levin was known to also play the Chapman stick, something that would suit the project very well.

Even though Fripp was unsure about the idear of renaming the Project, King Crimson, the Americans did not like “Discipline”, as that was not a term ringing well in their ears, not friendly, and Bruford would agree : Robert will talk endlessly about icons and things, but to us plain Englishmen it just seems a very good idea. In the end while still touring, they changed the band name from Discipline to King Crimson. The album was released in September 1981
The Sheltering Sky

Another Wierd World

Friday is Fripp day
What a Fripp
After working together at No Pussyfooting Fripp was again working with Brian Eno, on his mid 70’s Art Rock/Glam Rock albums. Starting with 3 tracks on ”Here Comes the Warm Jets” recorded in 73, and released in 74.
From Before and After Sience 1977

”Here Comes the Warm Jets” in my opinion is the funniest and best Art Rock album ever recorded, so ahead of it time, avantgarde and naive at the same time. Eno’s ability to create moods and unbelivable rythm pattern is stunning, ad Fripp soloing like mad, and it blows my mind. Its not nearly as easy listening as Roxy Music was, its definately an acquired taste, but its absolutely worth the effort.
From Here Comes the warm Jets 1974

(fan made video)
On Enos third solo album Another Green World from 1975 Fripp was again invited as Guest Guitarist. It marks Eno’s first attempt to move away from song based Art/Glam Rock towards instrumental music, Today seen as the transformation album pointing against Eno ambient era. At the time it was not recived well, most likely because the changes was too unexpected.
From Another Green World 1975

Today it is probably his highest praised album, and has often been on Rock media’s top album lists, like Roling Stones 500 greatest albums of all times, and New Musical Express list of greatest albums of the 70’s. Fripp again fires some stunning solo’s on the album.
From Another Green World 1975

Fripp also played on Eno’s “Before and After Sience” and “Music for Films”, Eno would later invite Fripp to works with him on a series of album he would produce for other artists, and they would make albums together, but that is material I will get back to later.
From Here Comes the warm Jets 1974

Ten Seconds… of Frippotonic Rieflinism

Friday is Fripp Day
What a Fripp
Lets go totally Fripp

Guitarist/Singer Bill Forth and Keyboard player Jeff Fayman created the demo. The two contacted different labels, some labels seemed to like the music, but they were not able to sign. Mark Perry of (Robert Fripp’s) Possible Productions finally expressed interest in distributing the music, and when David Singleton played the tapes for Fripp, he decided to release it.

Robert Fripp and drummer Bill Rieflin of Ministry, joined in on the studio recordings, with a few other studio musicians, and what we got, was the one shot wonder, Ten Seconds.

The album is a hard cocktail of Industrial noise rock with catching melodies, and something very Fripp . Crimson’ish sounds and Fripp’s soundscapes are giving the project its feel, but at the same time it is clearly a very unique album, unlike anything else Fripp has been involved in.

Fripp and Steven Wilson, No-Man : Flowermouth

Friday is Fripp day
What a Fripp
Turn the lights down please, relax, lay back and Fripp !

If you discover No-Man today, it will most likely be because you know about Porcupine Tree, and/or Steven Wilson, and find out that he has got this “side” project going called No-Man. The truth is, it is not a side project, he started Porcupine and No-man, almost simultaneously. Anyway in that case you might not think about checking “Flowermouth” because it from 1994, and it is the 2nd album, who wants to check the 2nd ? But that would be a shame, because it’s a darn good 2nd. Flowermouth draws inspiration from 80’ New Wave and Synthpop, adding art rock elements and ambient textures. With Steven Wilson mixing, as expected, “Flowermouth” is a rich sonic experience.

Flowermouth : Simple (with:Fripp, vocal sample of Lisa Gerrard (Dead Can Dance)

Besides the core duo of Steven Wilson (multiple instruments) and Tim Bowness (vocal) “Flowermouth” was spiced with guest performances from prominent names, Robert Fripp and Mel Collins from “King Crimson”, Richard Barbieri and Steve Jansen from “Japan”, Ian Carr from “Nucleus”, and drummer Chris Maitland.

Flowermouth : Animal Ghost (with Fripp, Mel Collins, Chris Maitland)

Richard Barbieri recorded an fine album “Flame” with No-Man vocalist Tim Bowness, the same year as “flowermouth” was recorded, Richard Barbieri and guest drummer Chris Maitland, joined Wilsons psychedelic solo project Porcupine Tree and together with Colin Edwin (bass) turned it into a very successful Progressive Rock Band.

Flowermouth : Shell Of A Fighter (with Fripp, Richard Barbieri)

In between his work with other projects and his flagship Porcupine Tree, Steven have kept No-Man going and they have released 6 studio albums, latest in 2008. Wilson and Fripp remained friends and Wilson have been working on, reissues of the King Crimson catalog in 5.1 surround sound. Fripp played a guest performance on Porcupine Three’s 2007 EP Nil Recurring, with a guitar solo on the title track.

Porcupine Tree : Nil Recurring

King Crimson – The Lizard Suite

If you did not read “Lizard” part one and two, start here.

Just as unexpected as side A of the album may have sounded, to anyone hoping to get another “In the Court of The Crimson King”, just as unexpected come Jon Andersons vocals, at the beginning of the 23 minute “Lizard”, a beautiful symphonic Rock classic, subtitled “Prince Rupert Awakes” (4.36).

Lizard : Prince Rupert Awakes & The Peacock’s Tale

Andersons vocals sends thoughts in the direction of early Yes albums, but the music definitely Crimson, not unlike The Crimson we know from the two previous albums. The 2nd Part of the Suite “Bolero – The Peacock’s Tale”, is yet another sharp turn in style, first a soft melodic piece, moving into a jazzy jam, but this time not frantic as the side A jams, much more polite, with great piano and horn sections, in the end returning to the soft melodic style.

Lizard : The Battle Of The Glass Tears – Big Top

The third part of the suite “The Battle Of The Glass Tears (10:58)”, opens with a soft vocal section from Haskell, from there moves into a wild section, of almost chaotic (symphonic?) Jazz Rock, most likely illustrating the battle itself, and from there into a calm section where Fripp’s guitar solo tops a bass rhythm. The album ends with a short piece “Big Top” a circus like piece, pointing back to the track opener. Just like if the record wants you to start again.
According to Eric Tamm, Fripp should have stated about Lizard : “We’ve made it so that the 24th time things’ll really begin to go Zap. Im not sure he was right about that, think it depends on the listener, but yes, Lizard is hard to get into music, and you should definitely give it more than a few runs, to make it “Zap”. But I guess with most albums, you should, except those made specifically for mass consumption.