The Best of ZZ Top – College Cuties

268

Kids had moved away from blues boogie in favor of rock, inspired by ZZ Top’s image. Ham eventually conceded to MTV’s demands and allowed Gibbons, Hill, and Beard to appear in a video featuring a teenage gas-pump jockey with several hot rods as characters.

Tres Hombres

Tres Hombres was released by London Records in 1973 as ZZ Top’s third studio album and referred to their three members: guitarist Billy Gibbons, bassist Dusty Hill, and drummer Frank Beard.

Tres Hombres was their true breakthrough; it fused Texas blues and hard-rocking British variants like Lightnin’ Hopkins’ guitar style with Fleetwood Mac’s Peter Green’s Fleetwood Mac-inspired Peter Green playing. Gibbons took inspiration from both Lightnin’ Hopkins and Green himself and found his sound: boogie rock with its distinct guitar vocabulary (such as “KoKo Blue”) brought by Gibbons on songs like this.

The gatefold-as-artwork photo of ZZ’s first album featured an eye-popping feast of Tex-Mex from Leo’s Mexican Restaurant on Lower Westheimer in Houston. This idea came from an art session between Narum and Bill Konigsberg – Narum was responsible for sketching freehand album covers for many early recordings by ZZ.

Tres Hombres remains an evergreen classic 50 years after its initial release due to its timeless sound and timeless tunes like “Waitin’ for the Bus,” “Jesus Just Left Chicago,” party staple “Beer Drinkers and Hellraisers,” and dashboard pounder “Move Me on Down the Line.” Indeed, this album kicked off their legendary worldwide Texas tour!