ZZ Top's Billy Gibbons names favorite guitar riffs, recalls meeting Hendrix in new episode of "Speakeasy"

Written by on February 12, 2019

Credit: Jim Belmont

ZZ Top frontman Billy Gibbons will be the guest on the upcoming fourth season finale episode of the public television interview series Speakeasy that’s premiering this week on select stations.

Recorded last year at New York City’s famed jazz club, The Iridium, the episode features Gibbons chatting about a variety of topics, including highlights from his legendary band’s long career, his brushes with other famous musicians, and his recent solo album, The Big Bad Blues.

Several preview clips from the program have been posted the YouTube channel of Speakeasy‘s sister show, Front and Center.  In one video segment, the 69-year-old Rock & Roll Hall of Famer shares some of his favorite ZZ Top guitar riffs, which include “La Grange,” “Tush” and “Just Got Paid.”

In a trailer for the episode, Billy recalls the first time he met Jimi Hendrix, when his pre-ZZ Top band The Moving Sidewalks served as opening act for the late guitar legend.

“I remember playing ‘Foxy Lady’ and ‘Purple Haze,'” Gibbons remembers. “Looking over into the shadows, there was Hendrix with his arms folded, like, ‘I can’t believe this guy.’ I came off stage and he grabbed me and he said, ‘I want to meet you. I like you. You’ve got a lot of nerve.'”

In yet another clip, Gibbons reveals that when he was a child, he accompanied his father on a business trip to a recording studio where B.B. King was doing a session, an encounter Gibbons says helped him decide to become a musician.

Visit SpeakeasyTalks.com to see when the program will air in your area.

As previously reported, ZZ Top will celebrate its 50th anniversary with three special concerts in different Texas cities on May 17, 18 and 19.

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