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Q&A with Billy Gibbons, of the band ZZ Top — who will be in Idaho Falls in May

IDAHO FALLS — The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame group ZZ Top will be at the Mountain America Center on May 2.
The Idaho stop is part of the Texas-based Rock group’s Raw Whisky Tour.
ZZ Top was formed in Houston in 1969. According to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, it was the world’s longest-running band not to make any personnel changes — with Billy Gibbons, Frank Beard and Dusty Hill performing together under the name for 35 years before Hill’s passing in 2021.
They are known as the “Little Ol’ Band from Texas” and play a Blues-Rock combo genre of music. The band is known for its members signature, beards — with the lone member of the band who does not sport flowing facial hair being Frank Beard.
After Hill’s death, the band’s former guitar technician, Elwood Francis, took over as on bass guitar. Francis is also known to wear a beard.
In advance of their Idaho Falls concert, Gibbons answered some questions submitted by
QUESTION: How has the music industry changed through the years?
ANSWER: Quick answer: In every way conceivable except one: there’s still an abiding appreciation for music that moves people, physically and emotionally. How it’s consumed is constantly changing, but if it’s in the (virtual these days) grooves, folks are gonna respond.
QUESTION: There are some theories around the meaning of the band’s name: what is the meaning?
ANSWER: The meaning is that AA Bottom seemed more like a package of small batteries, so we went to the Top.
QUESTION: Do you have pre-show rituals?
ANSWER: Yes, we do. I try to take a power nap and when I get up I prep a bowl of tomato soup spiced with the famed “Whisker Bomb Have Mercy” pepper sauce. Before taking the stage, we gather for the renowned group hand shake which is not possible to describe.
QUESTION: ZZ Top has been a thing since 1969. How have audiences changed over the years?
ANSWER: They’ve gotten cross-generational. When we started, audience members were mostly the same age as band members. Now we’re getting families that are, so to speak, passing the torch. It’s definitely a family affair.
QUESTION: Which album or song has been the most meaningful to you?
ANSWER: Have to go with “La Grange” as it was the band’s very first commercial success. We adhered to our blues roots that showed we could be accepted for who are. Hearing that track over the radio for the first time was a feeling unequalled to this day.
QUESTION: Losing a teammate is a painful experience for most. How has Dusty Hill’s death affected your perspective on life and work?
ANSWER: The Dust lived life to the fullest. He loved to play and entertain. It can be truthfully said he led a fulfilling life. We strive to do the same and that’s why we keep on keeping on.
QUESTION: Do you think you’ll ever shave the beards?
ANSWER: In a word: no.
ZZ Top will perform at the Mountain America Center on May 2. The concert starts at 7 p.m.
For information about the show or to purchase tickets, visit the Mountain America Center website — here.
The post Q&A with Billy Gibbons, of the band ZZ Top — who will be in Idaho Falls in May appeared first on East Idaho News.

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