Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top recently delved into his musical journey in an interview with The Hudson Independent. He nostalgically remembered the early phase of his career, highlighting the moments he ‘challenged’ Jimi Hendrix.
Before establishing ZZ Top, Gibbons played in a teenage band called The Moving Sidewalks. This group had its fair share of fame, sharing stages with the likes of The Doors, Jeff Beck, and notably, Jimi Hendrix.
It was during one of these tours that Gibbons formed a bond with Hendrix. Although their camaraderie was short-lived due to Hendrix’s untimely demise, Gibbons reminisced about their onstage rapport:
“Jimi was inherently warm and quite reserved. Yet, on stage, he transformed entirely. He embraced us after we joined his Experience tour, acting as a protective figure.”
Post-performance, their budding friendship was evident:
“After our set, he stood there with a wide grin and folded arms, saying, ‘You’ve got some guts… I want to get acquainted.’ From then on, our friendship flourished until his life was tragically cut short.”
To many’s surprise, Hendrix often cited Gibbons as his top choice of guitarists. Responding to this accolade, the ZZ Top frontman cherished the moments they shared and his admiration for Hendrix.
ZZ Top paid homage to Hendrix by performing some of his tracks. Notably, they played ‘Foxey Lady’, taught to Gibbons by Hendrix himself. They also rendered ‘Little Miss Lover’, which Gibbons humorously termed as a drummer’s dream or possibly their worst fear.