Don't Eat The Yellow Snow

FZ album(s) in which song has appeared


Tour(s) on which song is known to have been performed (main source: FZShows, v. 7.1)



Foggy G, "The Songs That Were Played," We're Only In It For The Touring

1973: Of the four parts of the "Don't Eat the Yellow Snow" medley present on this tour which would make it onto "Apostrophe", it is this part which appears in its most different form. Instead of the appropriately plodding nature of the official version (which does a wonderful job of musically conveying the sense of walking through snow), this version is taken at a rather hyper pace, with an extended, busy intro, and some funky, Duke keyboards underlying the vocals. The vocals are not as fully developed as they eventually would be, and the whole tune comes off as rather messily composed. Not the best of debuts, but an interesting look at the working mind of Frank. For this tour, this song always appears as part one of the five part "Don't Eat" medley (including part two "Nanook Rubs It", part three "St. Alphonso's Pancake Breakfast", part four an extended "Father O'Blivion", and part five the this-tour-only "Mar-juh-rene").

1974 Jul-Dec: Arranged somewhat differently on this tour than on the official release and on subsequent tours. Essentially, it was the hyperactive, lots of extraneous music version. It starts off as normal until the conclusion of the first vocal line. But after this line, and almost every subsequent line, the band would play the opening theme of the song, but in a very loud, very overdone style. After playing this theme, the next line would be sung, then the aforementioned theme, then a line, etc., until we reach "Nanook". Interesting. This song was always played as part one of the four part "Don't Eat" suite.

1978: Essentially performed as on "Saarbrucken" from Beat the Boots Volume I. This song was always performed as part one of the five part suite. [DETYS- part one, Nanook Rubs It- part two, St. Alphonso's Pancake Breakfast- part three, Father O'Blivion- part four, Rollo- part five]

1979: Essentially played as on YCDTOSA Volume I, and always appeared as the first part of the five part suite which Frank just called "Don't Eat the Yellow Snow." [one- DETYS, two- Nanook Rubs It, three- St. Alphonso's Pancake Breakfast, four- Father O' Blivion, five- Rollo]

1980 Mar-Jul: Essentially performed as on "Apostrophe (')", allowing for obvious differences in instrumentation. For the first time in its career, this song is performed as a solo piece, without the other songs commonly found in the "Don't Eat" suite.

1980 Oct-Dec: Essentially performed as on "Apostrophe (')", accounting for obvious differences in instrumentation. For the second time in its career (the first being the previous '80 tour), this song is performed as a solo piece, without the other songs commonly found in the "Don't Eat" suite.

From ASCAP ACE Title Search:


The Yellow Snow Suite

Thanks to Charles Ulrich for the first draft.

Original 1973 Version Sydney, June 25, 1973 Apostrophe (') London, 1979 (YCDTOSA Vol. 1) (see edits)
Soundboard Tape OSD / YCDTOSA Vol. 6
I. Don't Eat The Yellow Snow
Don't Eat The Yellow Snow 0:00-0:19   (0:25-0:27) (0:13-0:16)
0:19-1:16 0:05-0:57 1. Don't Eat The Yellow Snow 0:00-2:24
Nanook Rubs It 1:16-1:18 0:57-1:00 2. Nanook Rubs It 2:24-13:23
1:28-3:22 1:00-2:53
4:08-4:48 2:53-3:33
4:53-9:01 3:33-7:41
9:03-9:04 7:41-7:42
II. St. Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast
St. Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast 9:04-9:24   3. St. Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast 13:23-14:33
9:24-10-19 7:42-8:37
Rollo Interior 10:21-11:04   14:33-15:10
Father O'Blivion 11:04-13:24   4. Father O'Blivion 15:10-17:26
St. Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast (reprise) 13:24-14:25      
Mar-Juh-Rene 14:25-17-56 8:37-12:05    
17:58-18:12 12:05-12:20    
18:15-18:21 12:20-12:26    
Father O'Blivion (reprise) 18:21-19:15      
19:15-19:24 0:00-0:09    
19:33-21:44 0:09-2:21    
Rollo Goes Out       17:26-20:16
III. Farther Oblivion
Join The March And Eat My Starch 21:50-22:18      
The Steno Pool At Big Swifty's 22:18-27:01      
Transitional section 27:01-27:26      
The Be-Bop Tango 27:26-37:05      
Drum solo 37:05-42:27      
Cucamonga 42:27-43:46      
Charles Ulrich (July 15, 2008)

FZ used the title Don't Eat The Yellow Snow in three different ways. On Apostrophe, it refers to the opening section of the suite, before the arrival of the fur trapper. The Don't Eat The Yellow Snow single, on the other hand, corresponds to the first two tracks on Apostrophe, including Nanook Rubs It as well as Don't Eat The Yellow Snow in the narrow sense. FZ also used the title in this sense when introducing the suite in concert in 1973:

This is a collection of musical events that work together to form another big event. The first event is called "Don't Eat The Yellow Snow".  It's about baby seals and lead-filled snowshoes. The second song, which is actually sort of part two of "Don't Eat The Yellow Snow", is called "St. Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast", and it's a religious number. Then, as if that weren't enough, ladies and gentlemen, and folks, it goes into an instrumental mish-mash entitled "Farther Oblivion" that has-hey!-a drum solo in it. Hey! And some other stuff. Okay? ... the Sydney premiere. —FZ, 6/24/73 Sydney

This is a collection of three pieces glued together. The first one is called "Don't Eat The Yellow Snow". The second one is called "St. Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast". And the third one is called "Farther Oblivion". —FZ, 6/28/73 Melbourne

These introductions show that FZ saw I+II+III as a single composite work ("another big event", "a collection of three pieces glued together"). But it's not clear whether, in 1973, he would have used the title Don't Eat The Yellow Snow to refer to I+II and/or to I+II+III. On YCDTOSA 1, however, he did use the title Don't Eat The Yellow Snow for the entire 1978/1979 suite.



  April-June 1973     studio, 1973-1974 October-November 1974 August 1978-March 1979
  Sydney, Australia, June 24, 1973       New York, NY, October 31, 1974 (late show) Chicago, IL, September 29, 1978
  The Crux Of The Biscuit (2016) The Roxy Performances (2018) The Crux Of The Biscuit (2016) Apostrophe (') (1974)   Chicago '78 (2016)
  6. Don't Eat The Yellow Snow/St. Alphonzo's Pancake Breakfast (Live) 6. 11. Don't Eat The Yellow Snow—In Session 12. Don't Eat The Yellow Snow (Basic Track—Alternate Take) 1. Don't Eat The Yellow Snow 11. Yellow Snow Suite 2.05. Don't Eat The Yellow Snow
fast "Midnight Sun" instrumental intro 00:01-00:22          
"Don't Eat The Yellow Snow" (fast 7/8 version) 00:22-01:10 0:06-9:42        
"Don't Eat The Yellow Snow" (slow 7/4 - 7/8 version)     0:00-2:08 0:00-1:58    
"Don't Eat The Yellow Snow" (slow 7/4 - 7/8 version with interpolations)         01:37-04:29 00:00-02:14
"Watch out where the huskies go" (4/4 - a capella)   9:42-9:49   1:58-2:05 04:29-04:35 02:14-02:21
    6. 12. Nanook Rubs It—In Session 13. Nanook Rubs It (Basic Tracks—Outtake) 2. Nanook Rubs It    
"Nanook Rubs It" (including "Midnight Sun") 01:10-04:58 0:00-3:21 0:00-0:42 0:00-3:05 04:35-07:47 02:21-08:40
("I can't see" brass section)       3:05-3:26    
("He took a dog-doo...") 04:58-06:11 3:21-5:04   3:26-4:37 07:47-08:56 08:40-09:35
      14. Nanook Rubs It (Session Outtake)      
("patron saint...") 06:11-06:51 5:04-5:41 0:00-0:48   08:56-09:19 09:35-10:13
    6. 13. St. Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast—In Session   3. St. Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast    
"St. Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast" (intro) 06:51-07:19 0:00-0:24   0:00-0:23 09:19-09:45 10:13-10:35
"St. Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast" 07:19-08:11 0:24-2:05   0:23-1:09 09:45-11:03 10:35-11:23
"Rollo" 08:11-08:58 2:05-2:46   1:09-1:50 11:03-11:47 11:23-12:01
    6. 14. Father O'Blivion—In Session   4. Father O'Blivion    
"Father O'Blivion" 08:58-11:24 0:00-2:12   0:00-2:12 11:47-14:19 12:01-14:25
"St. Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast" (intro) 11:24-11:53 2:12-2:31   2:12-2:17 14:19-14:22  
"St. Alfonzo's Pancake Breakfast" (fast) 11:53-12:28          
"Mar-Juh-Rene" 12:28-16:07          
"Father O'Blivion" (reprise) 16:07-18:55          
"Farther Oblivion" 18:55-19:23          
"Rollo"           14:25-16:52


Conceptual Continuity


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This page updated: 2023-11-16