Concert Vault

ZZ Top

Capitol Theatre (Passaic, NJ)

May 4, 1980

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  1. 1 Full Concert 1:25:45
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Liner Notes

Bill Gibbons - lead vocals, guitar; Dusty Hill - bass, vocals; Frank Beard - drums

While they have always referred to themselves as "just a little ole' band from Texas," ZZ Top has become one of the most loved and enduring rock 'n' roll institutions ever to strike an E major power chord and follow it up with a screeching blues lick. This short but tasty set dates back to 1982, when the band had reinvented itself with a new look: nudie cowboy outfits and three-foot long beards. The band was also embracing a somewhat new sound, as suggested on El Loco, the album they had released the year prior.

The blues-rock trio still delivered their trademark blues guitar licks, launched from a driving rhythmic riff, but their songs had become more lighthearted, almost comical. "I'm Bad, I'm Nationwide" is an amusing look at the cooler than cool character, who thinks he is "badder" than he really is. "Arrested For Driving While Blind" is an absurd concept, but somehow ZZ Top makes it work. "Cheap Sunglasses," another look at the world of the ultra-cool and ultra shallow, was a worldwide hit that put ZZ back in the same league they had been in when songs like "Tush" and "La Grange" were dominating radio playlists in the mid-'70s. The trio brings it home with a nine-minute medley of Elmore James' "Dust My Broom;" the Elvis classic, "Jailhouse Rock;" and the band's own Top 10 hit, "Tush." An exciting set by these boys of boogie, and not to be missed.

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More ZZ Top

Bill Gibbons - lead vocals, guitar; Dusty Hill - bass, vocals; Frank Beard - drums

While they have always referred to themselves as "just a little ole' band from Texas," ZZ Top has become one of the most loved and enduring rock 'n' roll institutions ever to strike an E major power chord and follow it up with a screeching blues lick. This short but tasty set dates back to 1982, when the band had reinvented itself with a new look: nudie cowboy outfits and three-foot long beards. The band was also embracing a somewhat new sound, as suggested on El Loco, the album they had released the year prior.

The blues-rock trio still delivered their trademark blues guitar licks, launched from a driving rhythmic riff, but their songs had become more lighthearted, almost comical. "I'm Bad, I'm Nationwide" is an amusing look at the cooler than cool character, who thinks he is "badder" than he really is. "Arrested For Driving While Blind" is an absurd concept, but somehow ZZ Top makes it work. "Cheap Sunglasses," another look at the world of the ultra-cool and ultra shallow, was a worldwide hit that put ZZ back in the same league they had been in when songs like "Tush" and "La Grange" were dominating radio playlists in the mid-'70s. The trio brings it home with a nine-minute medley of Elmore James' "Dust My Broom;" the Elvis classic, "Jailhouse Rock;" and the band's own Top 10 hit, "Tush." An exciting set by these boys of boogie, and not to be missed.