By BRENT ANGELO //
Billy Gibbons is truly an rock icon of our time. As the musical focal point in ZZ Top, he has seen numerous music scene shifts, changing trends, but remains the same musician through it all. Not to mention, could this guy be any cooler? With that, his deep love of the blues has been at the very core of his playing style. To see him play music outside of ZZ Top is a real rarity and his new album, Perfectamundo is also a real departure from his trademark ZZ Top style. It was from a simple invite that Billy Gibbons played at the Havana Jazz Festival, and this album was born. What emerged was a new Cuban-influenced sound, that bluesy guitar is still there, but with a twist.
The news came that Billy would do some touring behind the album and luckily Revolution Hall got one of these rare shows. This venue is the new jewel in our city, so to have him come through adds more clout to the Hall's already large image. The venue is intimate and has great sound, which made for the "perfect(amundo)" stop for the tour. When Billy Gibbons first came out, he was greeted to a thunder of applause. He blasted through his new album playing most of the new material. Live song highlights included "Treat Her Right", "Quiero Mas Dinero", and "Sal Y Pimiento", which really is a shining example of his new Cuban style direction. Billy didn't forget his love of the blues though playing "Baby Please Don't Go" and even treating ZZ fans with "Ten Foot Pole", a deep cut from 1981's El Loco. It was also the ZZ Top staple, "La Grange" that let Billy truly rock. In the encore, Billy Gibbons and the BFGs closed with Led Zeppelin's "Whole Lotta Love". This show was truly unique, long time fans enjoyed seeing this rock guitar legend just let go in such an intimate location. He seemed to enjoy the journey and his fans did as well. To the BFGs, thanks for coming to Portland and really Treating Portland right!
Openers, Tyler Bryant and the Shakedown really got the show off to a great start. They have been to Portland before first playing with Jeff Beck and now opening for Billy Gibbons. The Shakedown played songs including ones from their new cd, The Wayside. We recommend checking them out as well. Watch Billy talk about his new sound and his new album in the videos below: