Herb Cohen dies

Beefheart’s one-time manager, Herb Cohen, has died aged 77. Cohen was a larger than life character, a hard nosed businessman who seemed to have a penchant for obscure talent. Not only did he have Don on his roster but he also managed Zappa, Tim Buckley, the GTOs, Wild Man Fischer and Tom Waits.

Unfortunately his relationship with Zappa soured and they fell out in 1976 amidst a nasty legal wrangle which left Cohen with the rights to many of the albums released on the Straight label. None of these albums have had a decent release on CD … Lick My Decals Off Baby still awaits a proper remastering and CD issue.

A detailed obituary can be found here – Frank Zappa’s manager: A smile on his lips, and a pistol under the bar


  1. that was a great story…"psychedelic broma-seltzer", indeed. R.I.P Herbie.

  2. I hope Decals doesn't die with him

  3. A propos Herb Cohen: a few years ago keyboardist and Zappa alumnus George Duke played a one-off concert in my hometown Groningen (NL)together with the renowned Metropole Orchestra.

    The guitar player in the orchestra happens to be a friend of mine and introduced me to a very friendly mr. Duke after the show.

    An elderly gentleman in shades joined the conversation and, after he was introduced by George Duke as "Herb Cohen, my manager", he gave me a menacing look, shook my hand and whispered: "Nice to meet you. Don't mention the Z-word…"

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