The 1980 Zappa lineup with Bob Harris also included guitarists Steve Vai, Ray White and Ike Willis, keyboardist Tommy Mars, bassist Arthur Barrow and drummer Vinnie Colaiuta. When Zappa heard The Great Nostalgia in 1986, he loved the song Ageless Love" and recommended it as the lead-off track. Bob Harris had already pressed the album and couldn't afford to redo it, but with Crossfire's reissue more than 21 years later, Bob has now taken the opportunity to follow Zappa's advice and present Ageless Love" as the album opener. This presentation of Ageless Love" includes violinist Jeremy Barber, who replaces Harris's keyboard emulation of that instrument.
Bob Harris' wife Suzannah, better known to Zappa fans as Thana Harris when she sang on Zappa's revised CD version of Sleep Dirt, is featured throughout The Great Nostalgia. Bob and Suzannah's duets on Ageless Love," The Flower," and the bonus tracks Somewhere Over The Rainbow" (live at the Zappanale 13 festival) and White Bird" (the classic by It's A Beautiful Day) are just a few of the many highlights on this reissue.
Guitar maestro Steve Vai played electric sitar on Autumn In Nepal," and a remix of There's Still Hope" featuring a new electric guitar solo by Vai is included on this edition of The Great Nostalgia. Autumn In Nepal" also includes another FZ alumnus, Tommy Mars. Noted bassist Stuart Hamm contributed to the track The Flower." Billy James, known to music fans as the Ant-Bee, played percussion on the entire album. James' tasteful use of percussion throughout The Great Nostalgia (instead of typical 1980s drum programming) is the reason that this album sounds so fresh today.
An instrumental recorded in 1986, The Blue Gazebo," joins the brand new recordings Magnet And Iron" (a striking piano ballad) and Nobody Wins In A War" as the other bonus tracks. Nobody Wins In A War" includes sped-up vocals from Bob, Thana and son Nathan Harris in a very Zappa-like context.
The Great Nostalgia is available at retail and through dozens of paid download services.