Category Archives: Stevie Ray Vaughan

Rocks In The Attic #111: ZZ Top – ‘Degüello’ (1979)

Rocks In The Attic #111: ZZ Top - ‘Degüello’ (1979)ZZ Top’s first album after their beard-growing hiatus is a gem. I guess this is where that clean production sound on blues albums of the 80s (eg. Stevie Ray Vaughan) started. On Degüello, it’s very noticeable that the band sound very different to their earlier albums. The guitar tone is very clean, and both the bass and drums sound clearer, with more separation than on their five earlier albums.

It’s more of a transition album really – bridging the gap between their earlier, dusty, swamp blues, to the more electronic – and contemporary  – work on their 80s album. The album after this, El Loco, would hint further towards the New Wave sound they would employ to great success on Eliminator.

During the sessions for this album, a couple of songs required a horn section. Instead of doing what most bands would do, and employing a group of studio musicians, they recorded the horn parts themselves, calling themselves The Lone Wolf Horns. A photo of the trio as the horn section on the album’s inner sleeve shows Billy Gibbons and Dusty Hill showing off their new chest-length beards, standing next to Frank Beard displaying a decent bit of facial growth himself, putting the dampener on that oft-recycled fact that he’s always the clean-shaven one.

Hit: Cheap Sunglasses

Hidden Gem: I Thank You

Rocks In The Attic #32: Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble – ‘Couldn’t Stand The Weather’ (1984)

Rocks In The Attic #32: Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble - ‘Couldn’t Stand The Weather’ (1984)If you ever wonder what a Jimi Hendrix album in the 1980s would sound like, you only have to listen to this. Paying tribute to him on Voodoo Chile, the rest of the album sounds like it might have been recorded by Hendrix, with only the crisp 1980s production dating it to that decade.

This is Vaughan’s second solo album – a year after he played guitar on Bowie’s Let’s Dance. It’s a fine album, aside from the aforementioned dated 80s production.

It’s a shame Vaughan died so young. As Dennis Leary – or was it Bill Hicks? – once said, “Stevie Ray Vaughan is dead, and we can’t get Jon Bon Jovi onto a fucking helicopter!”

Hit: Voodoo Chile (Slight Return)

Hidden Gem: Tin Pan Alley