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7 questions with ZZ Top before Dayton concert this weekend

Published: Wednesday, September 20, 2017 @ 6:00 AM
By: Don Thrasher - Contributing Writer

ZZ Top, performing at Rose Music Center in Huber Heights on Sunday, Sept. 24, is one of most enduring American bands of the rock ’n’ roll era. Since 1969, the Texas group has featured the same three musicians: Billy Gibbons (guitar), Dusty Hill (bass) and Frank Beard (drums). 

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Gibbons recently answered some questions about the group known for hits like “I Thank You” and “Sharp Dressed Man.”

Q: What’s going on today?

A: “Up to the same old stuff as usual — just finished a mega tour of Europe and now chilling out in Spain in anticipation of coming back home and rockin’ it all over again.” 

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Q: If you could only play one guitar for the next five years, what would it be?

A: “And what crime would I have been convicted of to receive a sentence like that? OK, if it’s gotta be just one, it’s gotta be the one and only ‘Mistress Pearly Gates,’ the magic ’59 Les Paul that’s been a key part of our ‘guitarsinal’ since even before ZZ Top’s first album.”

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Q: How well does your latest release, is “Live – Greatest Hits From Around the World,” represent the live ZZ Top experience?

A: “We waded through hundreds of hours of tapes to the find the definitive performance of each of the songs. It’s a great representation of ZZ Top being the best possible ZZ Top. We released it because, well, because it seemed like a good way of keepin’ the groove goin’ even when we’re off the road — a rare circumstance, to be sure.” 

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Q: I know the live album was released just a year ago but what are the plans for a new ZZ Top studio album

A: “We’re actually in the process of wrapping the latest recording aimed for release as a free-standing collection. We may release it in dribs and drabs or, possibly, in drabs and drips. Stay tuned.”

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Q: What is the status of guitar rock in 2017 and what are its prospects for the future?

A: “As far as ZZ is concerned, it’s alive and well because it’s all based on the blues and, as we’ve all been taught, the blues will never die.”

Q: It’s only two years until 2019, the 50th anniversary of the band forming. How will ZZ Top celebrate that milestone?

A: “Remember, we mentioned we’re into the same stuff as usual. That but, perhaps, more of it.”

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Q: What’s next for ZZ Top?

A: “We’re gonna get out there and turn it up and make things loud. That’s definitely next.”