ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons Recalls ‘Provoking’ Jimi Hendrix

ZZ Top guitarist Billy Gibbons recently shared insights on his career during an interview with The Hudson Independent. At one point in the interview, the guitarist recalled his earlier days and how he ‘provoked’ Jimi Hendrix.

Gibbons mentioned the band he formed during his teenage years, The Moving Sidewalks, before forming ZZ Top. The band had a successful career with their hits which led them to tour with The Doors, Jeff Beck, and Jimi Hendrix.

Gibbons made friends with Hendrix on their tour but couldn’t have a lengthy relationship due to Hendrix passing away at a young age. The guitarist recalled his friend and revealed how he acted on stage:

“Jimi was warm and friendly and es­sen­tially, shy. However, when out on stage, he was like man pos­sessed. He took us un­der his ‘not so lit­tle wing’ af­ter we met him while join­ing the Ex­pe­ri­ence tour.”

The guitarist shared how they became friends after the show:

“When we came off stage, he was grin­ning with arms folded and said, ‘You got a lot of nerve… I wanna get to know you.’ And so he did as we were friends un­til the end of his trag­i­cally short life.”

After their tour, the two not only became friends but Gibbons was revealed to be Hendrix’s favorite guitarist. When a reporter asked Gibbons about it, the ZZ Top guitarist recalled the moment and expressed his fondness for Hendrix, saying they had great memories.

ZZ Top covered a couple of Hendrix’s songs, including ‘Foxey Lady,’ which Hendrix himself taught the ZZ Top guitarist. Similarly, they covered ‘Little Miss Lover,’ with Gibbons referring to it as either a drummer’s delight or nightmare. See ‘Foxey Lady’ below.