Classic Rock Magazine: Billy Gibbons Interview – ZZ Top guitarist reveals all

Billy Gibbons talks about his first guitar, names his musical nemesis, and reveals the album he’d like to be buried with…

It’s been a busy year for Billy Gibbons. Last July he released hisdebut solo album Perfectamundo, while ZZ Top have been on the road for much of this year. A new album, Live: Greatest Hits From Around The World is released on Friday, and the band appear on the cover of the new issue of Classic Rock. We spoke to Billy in London.


The song that made me want to pick up the guitar was…

Anything by the great bluesman Jimmy Reed. His music drew me like a magnet. If you want a specific song then it was his first single, High And Lonesome.

The first guitar I owned was…

A 1962 Gibson Melodymaker, a single pick-up, single cutaway. A nice guitar to start off with – it was a full on solid body. I used it with a Fender Champ tweed amplifier.

My first guitar teacher was…

Chuck Berry. Or Bo Diddley. It would have been one or the other of those.

The first thing I learned on a guitar was…

What’d I Say by Ray Charles. Is it a hard one to begin with? Well, it all depends on the player. That first guitar I mentioned was dragged out from beneath the Christmas tree, I’d just turned 13; I plugged it in, cranked it up and by the end of the afternoon I’d worked out that opening figure.

The best bit of advice another guitarist has given me is…

I picked up quite a bit from BB King during a friendship that lasted for many years. One of the best things he said to me was, ‘I always found it handy to learn to play what I wanted to hear’.

The most underrated guitarist in history is…

My cheeky and hopefully humorous answer to that is… you know what? I can’t place his name at the moment. [He laughs]: haw, haw, haw.

The one thing Billy Gibbons can do on guitar that no one else can is…

Oh gee. Since it all emanates from the hands, it would be difficult to swap with anyone else. So I guess my answer is everything.

The most I’ve spent on a guitar is…

A dollar’s too many and a hundred ain’t enough.

On a scale of 1 to 10, I rate myself as…

[In an amazingly accurate Nigel Tufnell voice]: Does it go to 11?

The album I want to be buried with is…

Anything by Jimmy Reed. The best one to start with is the self-titled one, I’m Jimmy Reed.

continue reading here: http://teamrock.com/feature/2016-08-10/billy-gibbons-interview-zz-top-guitarist-reveals-all

Share Post :

More Posts

Leave a Reply

Billy F Gibbons VIP List
Join the VIP list and you'll receive the weekly newsletter (never miss a post)
Join us now and you automatically have a chance to win a T-Shirt designed by Billy Gibbons - you choose which one - new winners each month!
Don't Show Me Again