There Must Be A Better Way

A box-set collection of Knebworth Festival-related memorabilia is available to accompany a book of memoirs by Knebworth organiser Freddy Bannister; including some Beefheart material.

Frederick Bannister was the promoter of many of Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band’s UK concerts in the 70s. He also organised the famous Knebworth Festivals at which not only Captain Beefheart and Frank Zappa appeared but a host of other important acts too.

Bannister has written his rock ‘n’ roll memoirs (which include quite a few Beefheart anecdotes) and has published them under the title ‘There Must Be A Better Way’.

The book is available as part of a boxed set which includes a portfolio of Knebworth photographs, a DVD of Knebworth performances, copies of Knebworth flyers, programmes and tickets and 4 CD-Rs of complete performances, including Beefheart’s 1975 set.

The set is available at the discounted price of £49.99 to visitors (mention us when ordering to get the cheaper price) and includes the following:

  • Programmes, flyers and the ticket from 1975 Captain Beefheart Knebworth festival
  • An original 1978 Frank Zappa Knebworth pass, with a letter of authenticity (which normally sells for £15)
  • 12 photos of the 1975 Knebworth festival
  • 330 page book on the behind the scenes hassles of promoting the Knebworth festival and also working as Captain Beefheart and Frank Zappa’s European representative in the seventies.
  • A bonus gift of four CD-Rs and a DVD, all live from Knebworth

The four bonus CD-Rs include audience recordings of the following sets:

  • 1975 Captain Beefheart
  • 1978 Frank Zappa
  • 1978 The Tubes
  • 1974 Tim Buckley

A 50 minute DVD of various Knebworth festivals between 1974 – 1979, including The Rolling Stones, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Led Zeppelin and Genesis. More details are available from


  1. Just so you don’t get too excited and spend your money needlessly … the music CDs that accompany this boook are not soundboard recordings. They are the same audience recordings that have been circulating amongst collectors for many years.

  2. I was very upset to read Steve’s post. We are not selling the CDs and DVDs, but they are an extra free gift with the set. I do not claim they are soundboard recordings as I do not believe that any soundboard CDs of Captain Beefheart and Frank Zappa’s Knebworth performances exist and in fact we know The Tubes CD is very rare, because one of the band asked us for a copy as they had been looking for a live recording from their Knebworth performance for many years.

    The idea of the sets is to give people who were at the various Knebworth festivals between 1974 -1979 something to remind them of this amazing era, where the likes of Frank Zappa and Captain Beefheart and the Magic Band will never be seen again. I consider the price of the set, even without the free gift, to be extremely reasonable especially as we include with the set to visitors to an original 1978 Frank Zappa arena pass, with a letter confirming its provenance.

    Incidentally, they must be quite good value because one of these 1975 Knebworth commemorative sets purchased for £49.99 just before Christmas recently sold on ebay for £102. (ebay item number 7590441526)

    from Wendy Bannister

  3. It sounds like a complete bargain to me.

  4. Sorry to sound cynical but “There Must Be a Better Way” of checking out the audio and video dubiously ‘given’ to those who shell out that much cash for the book and other paraphenalia. Although they probably dont do it for the book, at any rate the real attraction is the ‘gift’-sort of like “donating” money to PBS to get a hold of their overpriced “free gift”.
    Why cant the bootleg shows be sold on their own? Is there a copyright issue here? Does Don, ZFT, or anyone else get anything off of this, or is this why it is offered as a gift. I myself dont mind bootlegs too much (unless there is a soundboard master stolen or some studio work pilfered) but I’d prefer to call them what they are. That being said, it sounds like there is some really amazing artifacts, even if they are bootlegs, perhaps someone should offer them as a download ala n’est pas?

  5. Wendy said “I was very upset to read Steve’s post.”

    No need to be upset – Steve was just providing a useful warning to live tape collectors that the bonus items which come with this set may well be the same as they already have, from a similar source.

    Thus, if anyone already has these shows but is tempted to buy the set purely because of their inclusion, they may want to think again.

    If, on the other hand, anyone wants to buy the set because of the book, the memorabilia, etc. then go for it.

  6. I seem to have hit a sensitive spot … sorry Wendy! As Graham rightly says my intention was to alert people to the fact that these recordings are audience recordings. They may be ‘gifts’ or ‘freebies’ or whatever but is it not made clear anywhere that they not soundboard recordings which some unsuspecting person might expect them to be from the festival organisers.

  7. Hi, recently i found a Captain Beefheart Loading Zone at the Paramount Theater. A pretty good find , it's orange and was purchased at Music Millenium 3144e.burnside No.1975 June 25th, $3.00 in advance $3.50 at door. It's in good shape and fun nostalgia!Unfortunately, i do not remember the music very well. Any thoughts on what to do with such a ticket?
    Clayton Bearden

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *