Rockers of New York turned out in force for the first Moving Sidewalks gig in 44 years. Though the foursome opened for Jimi Hendrix and the Doors and jumpstarted ZZ Top guitarist Billy Gibbons’ memorable career, they released only one original album, now worth $1500 a pop to collectors. Nevertheless, diehard fans packed B.B. King’s, some toting their LPs along to be signed; one lucky owner handed hers to Gibbons on stage; he signed and walked around to bassist Don Summers, Drummer Dan Mitchell and the incredible Tom Moore on keyboards to add their autographs. Given the number of flashes going off during that break, one will doubt the provenance of that LP.
Gibbons, relaxed and loose, sang lead and joked throughout the psychedelic rockin’ blues that the band ripped through as though they had never split up. Who knows, if two members hadn’t been drafted at the outset of the Moving Sidewalks’ very real success, we might never have seen ZZ Top, but would be clamoring of encores (as the crowd did at B.B.’s) from the Moving Sidewalks. The silver lining is now we have both.
– Suzanne Cadgene
You can read Melissa Caruso’s thoughts on the re-issued Moving Sidewalks album in Elmore #55, in stores now. You can also read an interview we did with Billy Gibbons here.