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Guitarist, vocalist and songwriter Adrian Belew has collaborated and toured with an enviable list of musicians, including Frank Zappa, David Bowie, Talking Heads, Paul Simon, The Tom Tom Club and King Crimson from 1981 to 2009. He’s also just released “Elevator”, his 25th solo album. As Belew puts it, the COVID shutdown was his longest time without touring in four decades, and he’s raring’ to get back out there and play. Adrian Belew and his band will play on Sunday, August 14 at the Center for the Arts of Homer.

Adrian Belew spoke to the Ithaca Times about what he’s playing these days, his first solo album “The Lone Rhino” and his signature Parker Fly guitar.

IT: When I used to listen to Frank Zappa’s “Sheik Yerbouti” (1979) in high school, I never thought I’d ever get to talk to you.

AB: [laughs] Well, here we are.

IT: You’ve done a lot of work and you have a fairly big bag to grab from. What kind of music will you playing in Homer?

AB: Only my own material and that of the other bands I’ve written with: King Crimson and The Bears. On the last tour we did in 2019, I touched on some of the other artists I’ve worked with. We did some songs from Bowie and Zappa. But now, “Elevator” is the 25th solo record, so I’m feeling like, “Well, my fans are coming to hear my stuff, I hope.” Nearer to the end of our show, we throw a lot of heavy-duty King Crimson at everyone, and it makes the show kind of explode at the end.

IT: When I was a DJ in 1982 in New Paltz, we had the King Crimson record with “Neil and Jack and Me”, and I played that a lot.

AB: Yeah, “Beat” (1982). The second album we did.

IT: We didn’t have a lot of albums but we did have “The Lone Rhino” (1982).

AB: Wow! Glad to hear that! [laughs] This is the 40th anniversary of “The Lone Rhino”. It of course started my solo career. The first song on the album is “Big Electric Cat”. And now I have 25 solo records, which is kind of a milestone.

IT: I wanted to ask you about the guitar I see most often in photographs, the Adrian Belew Parker Fly model.

AB: Well, first of all, they don’t make ‘em anymore, Parker Fly is out of business. So there’s no way for someone to actually buy one. But the Parker guitar, when it was being made, was, I think, the greatest, newest science for guitars. I felt that Ken Parker, who made the guitar, had taken a long, long time, years in fact, to solve all the inherent problems that electric guitars can have, and he did that, and the result was a super-modern great guitar that had just about everything you can have. Now, next year, I’m going to be putting out an Adrian Belew model Stratocaster, and I’ll be using that at a lot of shows, but there’s a difference. The Parker Fly is a MIDI guitar. In other words, you have to plug it into a MIDI device, whereas the Stratocaster is a regular guitar that you plug into an amplifier or a stomp box or something. They’re two different animals.

Adrian Belew will be playing Sunday, August 14 at 8 p.m. at the Center for the Arts, 72 South Main Street, Homer; (607) 749-4900; https://center4art.org/

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