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ZZ TOP guitar player and lead singer Billy Gibbons performing live. Billy Gibbons is an American musician, singer, songwriter, record producer, and actor, best known as the guitarist and primary lead vocalist of American rock band ZZ Top. He began his career in the Moving Sidewalks, who recorded Flash (1968) and opened four dates for the Jimi Hendrix Experience. Gibbons formed ZZ Top in late 1969 with Dusty Hill (vocals, bass), and Frank Beard (drums). The band released ZZ Top's First Album in 1971. Subsequent releases, such as their first top-ten album Tres Hombres (1973) and the singles "La Grange" and "Tush", gained extensive radio airplay. By the mid-1970s, they had become renowned in North America for their live act, highlighted by their performances during the Worldwide Texas Tour from 1976 to 1977, which was a critical and commercial success. ZZ Top reinvented themselves in the late 1970s with a new musical direction and their now-famous public image. Beginning with their albums Degüello (1979) and El Loco (1981), they experimented with instruments including clavinets, saxophones, and synthesizers. They gained international favor with the records Eliminator (1983) and Afterburner (1985). The popularity of their music videos, including those for "Gimme All Your Lovin'", "Sharp Dressed Man", and "Legs", helped propel them onto the television channel MTV and made them one of the more prominent artists in 1980s. Their Afterburner Tour set records for the highest-attended and highest-grossing concert tour of 1986. After additional acclaim with the release of their 10th album Recycler (1990) and its accompanying tour, their experimentation continued on the albums Antenna (1994), Rhythmeen (1996), XXX (1999), and Mescalero (2003). The group most recently released La Futura (2012) and Goin′ 50 (2019), the latter of which is a compilation album commemorating the band's 50th anniversary. ZZ Top has released 15 studio albums and sold an estimated 50 million albums worldwide. They have won three MTV Video Music Awards, and in 2004, they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Rolling Stone ranked Gibbons number 32 on its list of the "100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time". Gibbons has made appearances with other artists and acted on television shows, most notably Bones. He was ranked at number 32 on the 2011 Rolling Stone list of the 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time.
March 8th, 2021
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