What do you do to follow up the biggest hit album of your career? Umm, try to replicate it, right? That is exactly what ZZ Top did with Afterburner.

It really was Eliminator Part II. The synthesizer driven period continued with it’s release in the fall of ’85. And, it paid off for them. Afterburner was a another huge commercial success featuring the hits, Sleeping Bag, Velcro Fly, Can’t Stop Rockin’, Rough Boy, and Stages.


On June 3, 1986, that “lil’ ol’ band from Texas” returned to Portland for their 5th appearance at the Civic Center. ZZ brought along their futuristic melding of blues guitar and dance beats to the stage for the first of two sold-out nights.

The two beards and a Frank Beard made music in the 80s that defined the decade for many (including this guy) as significantly as Michael, Prince and Madonna.


Wow! We found ZZ Top performing live on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson in 1986 just a couple weeks before the show here in Portland. The play Sharp Dressed Man and Tush backed by the legendary trumpeter Doc Severinsen and The Tonight Show band. Johnny and Doc put on long beards in their honor...this is freakin' cool!

ZZ Top are back in Blimpville with Cheap Trick this summer! These classic rock titans will be together at the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion in Gilford on September 14th