• Ross Halfin
Here's a snippet of the interview with Billy Gibbons that didn’t make it into this week’s Sound Check. I could have talked about their beards for another three hours. Interesting side note: A younger, pre-beard Billy Gibbons was one of Jimi Hendrix’s favorite guitar players.

When did the beards begin? How did you all decide to have matching chest-length growth?
Gibbons: Our first phase as a band wasn't as heavily bearded. We worked pretty much without stopping for seven years. It was 1976, and we decided to take a break, and do some traveling. Dusty went to Mexico, I went to Europe, Frank went to Jamaica. Our break ended up being two years. During that time, Dusty got as lazy as I did with shaving. We both had basically thrown our razors away. We were on break, why shave? Our manager had called a meeting, and it was time for us to come off sabbatical and start making music again. My beard had grown to doormat proportions. When I walked into that meeting, I saw that Dusty had done the same thing. It wasn’t a glowing holy moment or anything, but we did decide to roll with it for a while.

ZZ Top plays Sunday March 23 at the Moore Theatre.