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ZZ Top Sharp Dressed, Simple Man Tour

Photos & Words by Richard Roesler 

July 30, 2023 - Never could I have imagined oh so many years ago when hearing ZZ Top for the first time back in the 70s that either one of us would still be here in 2023!  Granted we have lost Dusty, yet he will never be forgotten, I’d imagine he’s still out on that stage cheering the boys, now with the addition of Elwood Francis in Dusty’s place stage right, I’m sure he approves!  I’ve been fortunate, blessed to have photograph That Little Ol’ Band from Texas four times, twice Clandestinely, yet only the 86 Nurse Goodbody show gets an actual count as the 84 adventure no one remembers who I went with or how I got my camera into the show and the images all s__k!  Most likely a combination of too much partying, too slow a film speed and a few nerves possibly?

In 86 the O So Beautiful Nurse Goodbody came up with the plan to sneak my camera in wearing  maternity clothes!  And we got some good shots, which I included with this years pics.  ZZ Top has been a fixture in my life continually, from the early on, way before the internet and the misguided rumors the name came from a couple of brands of left handed smoking rolling papers.  To the verse “She likes cocaine and flippin’ Out with Great Danes” from Under Pressure, which everyone who knew my neighbor MaryJane and her blue Dane Max to this day believes it was written about her!  MJ’s boyfriend at the time was always telling us he knew Billy I believe, but we were all like ya okay.  Until one day my girlfriend was living in the guest house out back of MaryJane’s and had the only working phone, I answered to “This is Griz, tell MaryJane to come around to the back” and he hung up.  It was interesting how, we only got to cover one song Sunday and guess which one it was!
The next day while going through all the stuff they had returned with from the previous night, stuff you don’t get at the merch stand, I learned Master of Sparks was for sure a true story!  I was once stuck in traffic on I-10, the Katy freeway about Silber when I looked over at the two door Mercedes as it it began to move forward and thought that looked like Billy?  Traffic was not as bad in the early 80s and I got up next to him again, trying to confirm, but my lane began to move, finally he pulls up beside me again, realizing I’m looking and gives me a thumbs up!  I’ve also seen ZZ Top in two countries Texas and Canada, when while drinking at a local establishment in Winnipeg the local rock station Power 97 I believe, got a shirt somewhere, was doing a ticket promotion.  I went over and suggested a contest for a pair of tickets, first person with a Texas drivers license gets them!  They just started laughing and said we’ll hook you up!  I became friends with them and they would take care of me ticket wise when I was in town.
I even got catch Billy on The Big Bad Blues Tour in 2018!  I even had Billy share my image Dashboard Jesus on his Instgram page!  For a native Houstonian concert photographer that was so frickin cool!  These artist see tons of images of themselves, espically in today digital world, so if some is unique enough that it catches their eye, that rocks!
I’ve been blessed to do concert photography for 10 years, I’m winding down some, don’t recognize most of the new artists coming to town nowadays.  But as long as the Top is touring, I’ll be requesting every time!
Till next time
  Page 1 of 1 — 23 pictures in album  























Page 1 of 1 — 23 pictures in album