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When one guitar legend refers to another as the “favorite guitarist,” the world pays attention. This is exactly what happened when Jimi Hendrix, praise Billy Gibbons . But what led Hendrix to make such a bold statement? And how has Gibbons‘ influence permeated the rock and blues realms?

Hendrix and Gibbons: Guitar Giants in Their Own Right

Jimi Hendrix and Billy Gibbons, both exceptional guitarists, hailed from different backgrounds but converged in their love for music. While Hendrix is often associated with his innovative style, raw energy, and unparalleled showmanship, Gibbons is recognized for his Texan bluesy sound and gritty riffs.

Hendrix, with his flair for improvisation and iconic songs like “Purple Haze” and “Voodoo Child,” revolutionized the use of the electric guitar in rock music. On the other hand, Gibbons, as a frontman for ZZ Top, brought hits like “La Grange” and “Tush,” blending rock with a touch of Texas blues.

What Jimi Hendrix said to Billy Gibbons

Billy Gibbons with Moving Sidewalks, second right.
Billy Gibbons with Moving Sidewalks, second right.
Credit: Rancho Deluxe Productions

Beyond the ZZ Top hits, Gibbons’ deep roots in blues have always been evident. His guitar playing is a testament to his dedication to the genre, effortlessly blending traditional blues with rock elements. The Moving Sidewalks, though not as commercially successful as ZZ Top, provided a glimpse into Gibbons’ early prowess and potential.

The Moving Sidewalks joined The Doors and The Jimi Hendrix Experience to support their concerts and tours. It was by this time that Hendrix regarded Gibbons as a master guitarist who he revered in interviews, and frequently mentioned him as a guitarist who he admired.

During this tour, Hendrix was watching their performance, and he came to share his thoughts at the end of the show. In Gibbons’ words, he said“I remember wrapping up the set, coming off the stage… There was Jimi in the shadows – off to the side with his arms folded, but he was grinning, and as I passed by, he grabbed me and said, ‘I like you. You’ve got a lot of nerve!‘”

How Billy Gibbons reacted to being Jimi Hendrix’s favorite?

Later in some interviews, The ZZ Top guitarist’s reaction to being chosen by Hendrix was: “I remember that. I’ve heard that for a long time ago. We were good friends. I still got some fond memories of our time together. I hope that someday we can just bring it out and let it come out. It’s still swirling around up there

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Did the Moving Sidewalks release any albums?

The Moving Sidewalks, an American psychedelic rock band originating from Houston, Texas, marked their musical journey with the release of “Flash” in 1969. This album stands as a testament to the era’s vibrant experimental scene, capturing the essence of late 60s psychedelia. Within “Flash”, listeners find a blend of original tracks penned by the band, reflecting their distinct creative voice, intertwined with their renditions of select cover songs. These covers were not mere replications but were reimagined through the band’s unique lens, adding their own flavor and spirit. Billy Gibbons, who later skyrocketed to fame with ZZ Top, was an integral part of this ensemble, and the album offers an early glimpse into his evolving artistry.

Is just a guy who got tired of bothering his friends talking about music, and decided to create a blog to write about what he loves the most.
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