ZZ Top / Wide Mouth Mason
Save On Foods Centre
June 06, 2010
By: Jason Lamb
Photos By: Louise Major
"We’re the same three guys, playing the same three chords, for the last 40 years." Those were the words of Billy Gibbons, the lead guitarist for ZZ Top, who brought their famous brand of Texas blues-rock to Victoria on Sunday night. Gibbons, along with bassist Dusty Hill and drummer Frank Beard (the one without the beard) performed nearly two hours of their hits to a lively (and mostly graying) crowd.
The fact that ZZ Top is the only major band that has not changed its line-up in more than four decades is amazing. And more amazing is the fact that they still kick serious ass. The trio played songs spanning their entire career, with a generous helping of tunes from their landmark 1983 album ‘Eliminator’.
A large screen showed video clips and images ranging from crescent wrenches to desert sunsets, as the boys ripped into hits like ‘Sharp Dressed Man’, ‘Cheap Sunglasses’, ‘I’m Bad, I’m Nationwide’ and ‘Just Got Paid’. They also did a blistering rendition of ‘Hey Joe’, as they tipped their hats to Jimi Hendrix, who took the lads on tour with him way back in 1969.
And of course, they brought out the white fuzzy guitars for “Legs’.
What makes ZZ Top great is the fact that have remained cool for more than 40 years, and they’ve done it with a sense of humour and style. Not to mention a huge catalog of great music.
Saskatoon’s own Wide Mouth Mason opened the show and provided the perfect warm-up to the night. The trio has always been well received on Vancouver Island, and lead singer Shaun Verreault let his love for Victoria be known. They also introduced their new bass player, none other than Gordie Johnson of Big Sugar fame. If the two new tracks they played are any indication, their upcoming album should be a treat.