Frank Zappa's former bandmates have signed on to tour alongside a hologram of the late musician later this year.
Guitarists Ray White and Scott Thunes, multi-instrumentalist Robert Martin and drummer Joe "Vaultmeister" Travers have agreed to participate in the upcoming "Bizarre World Of Frank Zappa" hologram tour scheduled for late 2018, organizers announced Monday, putting them on path to figuratively share the stage once again with their former bandleader decades following his death from prostate cancer.
They'll be joined during select performances by fellow members of Zappa's former backing band, including guitar virtuoso Steve Vai, woodwind player Napoleon Murphy Brock and drummer Vinnie Colaiuta, among others, the announcement said.
The concerts have been sanctioned by the Zappa estate and are being produced by Eyellusion, a Los Angeles-based production studio, culled from hours of previously unseen footage recorded at the musician's Los Angeles rehearsal space in 1974, according to the announcement.
"As a futurist, and hologram enthusiast, Frank fearlessly broke through boundary after boundary as an artist and in honoring his indomitable spirit we're about to do it again, 25 years after his passing," said Ahmet Zappa, 43, the musician's youngest son and a co-trustee of the Zappa Family Trust.
"We are anthropomorphizing Frank's music, so his own hand-drawn illustrations, classic imagery from his album artwork and characters from his songs can all interact and perform onstage. And let's not forget, Frank himself will be rocking his fans, alongside his bandmates like nobody's business. My father and I actively discussed 3D and 'holography' and it was a concept he actively engaged in," he said in a statement.
Dates for the tour will be announced later this year, the announcement said.
Zappa released more than 60 albums during his career before dying from prostate cancer at the age of 52. He was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1995 and awarded a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award two years later.
Eyellusion recently wrapped up a world tour starring hologram of late heavy metal singer Ronnie James Dio, and a competing company, BASE Hologram of Houston, Texas, plans to tour the U.K. later this year with a hologram of late crooner Roy Orbison.