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Frank Zappa - Cosmik Debris - Live 1974

It concerns the Mystery Man, a typical guru or psychic, offering to help the narrator reach Nervanna [sic] for a "nominal service charge," and the narrator's refusal to buy into his act, "Look here, brother, who you jiving with that cosmik debris?" When the Mystery Man gets pushy, Zappa as the narrator tells how he snatched the crystal ball, hypnotized the Mystery Man, stole his stuff and blew his mind.

The song was popular on the Dr. Demento Show in the 1970s, and in Zappa's concerts, with memorable guitar solos from Zappa, also featuring George Duke on keyboard and Napoleon Murphy Brock on sax. The song was featured in the late-2010 Zappa Plays Zappa tour, where through video and editing (from 1970s-era shows), Frank Zappa on a large video screen both sang and played a guitar solo while the ZPZ band provided a live backing. This song was also a b-side to the single "Don't Eat the Yellow Snow."


The mystery man came over

And he said I'm outta sight

He said for a nominal service charge

I could reach nirvana tonight

If I was ready, willing and able

To pay him his regular fee

He would drop all the rest of his pressing affairs

And devote his attention to me

But I said look here brother

Who you jiving with that cosmik debris?

Now who you jiving with that cosmik debris?

Look here brother, don't waste your time on me

The mystery man got nervous and he fidget around a bit

He reached in the pocket of his mystery robe

And he whipped out a shaving kit

Now I thought it was a razor

And a can of foaming goo

But he told me right then when the top popped open

There was nothin' his box won't do

With the oil of aphrodite, and the dust of the grand wazoo

He said you might not believe this, little fella

But it'll cure your asthma too

And I said look here brother

Who you jiving with that cosmik debris?

Now what kind of a guru are you, anyway?

Look here brother, don't waste your time on me

(Don't waste your time)

I've got troubles of my own, I said

And you can't help me out

So, take your meditations and your preparations

And ram it up your snout

But I got the crystal ball, he said

And held it to the light

So I snatched it, all away from him

And I showed him how to do it right

I wrapped a newspaper 'round my head

So I looked like I was deep

I said some mumbo-jumbo, then

I told him he was going to sleep

I robbed his rings and pocketwatch

And everything else I found

I had that sucker hypnotized

He couldn't even make a sound

I proceeded to tell him his future, then

As long as he was hanging around

I said the price of meat has just gone up

And your old lady has just gone down

Look here brother

Who you jiving with that cosmik debris?

Now is that a real poncho or is that a Sears poncho?

Don't you know, you could make more money as a butcher?

So, don't waste your time on me

Don't waste it, don't waste your time on me (om shanti, om shanti, om shanti, shanti)

Songwriters: Frank Zappa

Cosmik Debris lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.


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