One Size Fits All is the tenth studio album by Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention, released in June 1975. It is the last studio album of the band. A special four-channel quadraphonic version of the album was advertised but not released.
|One Size Fits All|
|Studio album by|
|Released||June 25, 1975|
|Recorded||August 27, 1974– April 1975|
|Studio||Record Plant Studios, Los Angeles, CA; Caribou Ranch, Nederland, CO; and Paramount Studios, Los Angeles, CA|
|Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention chronology|
|Singles from One Size Fits All|
|Christgau's Record Guide||C+|
The album features the summer/fall 1974 lineup of the Mothers of Invention, with keyboardist/vocalist George Duke, drummer Chester Thompson, percussionist Ruth Underwood, bass guitarist Tom Fowler and saxophonist/vocalist Napoleon Murphy Brock. “Can’t Afford No Shoes” features James Youman instead of Fowler. When Fowler had broken his hand while on tour, Youman temporarily replaced him.
The album features one of Zappa's most complex tracks, "Inca Roads". One of Zappa's heroes, Johnny "Guitar" Watson, guests on two tracks ("flambé" vocals on the out-choruses of "San Ber'dino" and "Andy"). Captain Beefheart also appears under a pseudonym.
Zappa stated in the liner notes that the album was recorded simultaneously with their next album, but this "next album" would be replaced by Bongo Fury, consisting mostly of live recordings with Beefheart from May 1975. From comments Zappa made in radio interviews in April 1975, it seems likely that the unreleased next album would have included "Greggery Peccary," which first appeared three years later on Studio Tan.
Early U.S. LP pressings of One Size Fits All are notable in that they have the catalog number "BS 2879" inscribed - and crossed out - in the runoff matrix, indicating that at one point One Size Fits All was (perhaps mistakenly) planned to be released on Warner Bros. Records, whose Reprise Records subsidiary distributed Zappa's DiscReet Records label. The album was ultimately released on DiscReet with a catalog number in Reprise's sequence, DS 2216. Warner Bros. did not reassign the number BS 2879 to another album.
One Size Fits All was first released on CD by Rykodisc in 1988. It was reissued by Rykodisc in 1995 with restored cover art, but with identical sound quality. In 1996 a 24-karat gold Au20 edition was released with significantly improved sound quality. In 2012 it was remastered and reissued yet again by the Universal Music Group under the Zappa Records imprint.
Village Voice critic Robert Christgau wrote in his review: "Zappa's music has gotten a little slicker rhythmically—which is what happens when you consort with jazz guys—but basically it's unchanged. And his satire has neither improved nor deteriorated—if his contempt would be beneath an overbright high school junior, there's also a brief lieder parody that I'd love to jam onto WQXR. What's changed is the tastes of his erstwhile lionizers—they've gotten bored with his repertoire of stylistic barbarities. Us smart people just got bored faster."
All tracks are written by Frank Zappa.
|2.||"Can't Afford No Shoes"||2:38|
|3.||"Sofa No. 1"||2:39|
|6.||"Evelyn, A Modified Dog"||1:04|
|9.||"Sofa No. 2"||2:42|
- Frank Zappa – guitar, lead (4, 6, 9) and backing vocals
- George Duke – keyboards, lead (1, 8, 9) and backing vocals, synthesizer
- Napoleon Murphy Brock – flute, lead (5, 8) and backing vocals, tenor saxophone
- Ruth Underwood – marimba, vibraphone, percussion
- Chester Thompson – drums, sound effects, voices
- Tom Fowler – bass guitar (all but 2)
- James "Bird Legs" Youman – bass guitar (2)
- Johnny "Guitar" Watson – vocals (7, 8)
- Captain Beefheart (credited as 'Bloodshot Rollin' Red') – harmonica (7)
- Kerry McNabb – engineer, remixing
- Cal Schenkel – design, illustrations, paintings
- Mike D. Stone of the Record Plant – engineer
- Michael Braunstein – engineer
- Unity – assistant engineer
- Dick Barber – assistant engineer, assistant
- Gary O. – engineer
- Ferenc Dobronyi – design
- J.E. Tully – design
- Coy Featherstone – assistant engineer
- Paul Hof – assistant engineer, assistant
- Matti Laipio – voices, assistant engineer
- Bill Romero – voices, assistant engineer
- Richard "Tex" Abel – assistant engineer, assistant
- Jukka – engineer
|United States (Billboard 200)||26|
|Australia (Kent Music Report)||81|
- Couture, François (2011). "One Size Fits All - The Mothers of Invention | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 21 July 2011.
- Christgau, Robert (1981). "Consumer Guide '70s: Z". Christgau's Record Guide: Rock Albums of the Seventies. Ticknor & Fields. ISBN 089919026X. Retrieved March 23, 2019 – via robertchristgau.com.
- Henderson, Paul (28 January 1989). "Slippery Customers". Kerrang!. No. 223. p. 18. ISSN 0262-6624.
- "Unreleased Records". www.lukpac.org. Retrieved 2016-04-11.
- "One Size Fits All".
- "Charts and Awards for One Size Fits All". Allmusic. Retrieved 2008-08-22.
- Kent, David (1993). Australian Chart Book 1970–1992 (illustrated ed.). St Ives, N.S.W.: Australian Chart Book. p. 348. ISBN 0-646-11917-6.