Great Rock Albums of 1979: ZZ Top- Deguello

Once again, I realise that I missed at least one more great classic album from before 1978. I could have included several albums by ZZ Top in my “Great Rock Albums of the 70s” chapter, but the one I should have definitely visited was “Tres Hombres.” So here it is:


What I love about this album is that it features two of my very favourite ZZ Top songs of all time: “La Grange” and “Jesus Just Left Chicago.” Of course the rest of this album is totally killer too, so without any further ceremony, let us proceed to their great offering from 1979, Deguello.


This is the album that when I heard it in my early military days, had me playing air guitar around the barracks, not caring how silly I might have looked. Billy Gibbons shows why he should be counted among the great guitarists of the 70s on this album. It is a fantastic album. It holds many of what I consider some of the forgotten classics by this trio. Of course, I remember the opener “Thank You” and the next to last song on this album, “Cheap Sunglasses,” another great fave of mine. But in between those two are some of the very tracks I used to bop my head to, drink beer to and cruise down the road to while playing on the cassette or 8-track. (Sometimes, I did all three at once.) “She Loves My Automobile,” “I’m Bad, I’m Nationwide” and “Hi fi Mama” were great anthems for me throughout those days. Plus, the bluesy sound of “Fool For Your Stockings” is reminiscent of my favourite “Jesus Just Left Chicago.” So, what’s not to like about “Deguello?”

Track Listing:

1. Thank You

2. She Loves My Automobile

3. I’m Bad, I’m Nationwide

4. A Fool For Your Stockings

5. Manic Mechanic

6. Dust My Broom

7. Lowdown in the Street

8. Hi Fi Mama

9. Cheap Sunglasses

10. Esther Be the One

ZZ Top

ZZ Top

Billy Gibbons- guitar, vocals

Dusty Hill- bass, keyboards, vocals

Frank Beard- drums, percussion

Four years after this great album came out and I returned to civilian life in New Jersey, many of the slightly younger than me generation were all going nuts over the “Eliminator” album. Yes, it’s a great album and I will visit it, but I was rather amused at the way they thought the Top were some great new thing. For me, I always knew how gifted Gibbons, Hill and Beard were and the Deguello album proves it for me. Thanks for giving me great memories.

Next post: Van Halen II

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4 Responses to “Great Rock Albums of 1979: ZZ Top- Deguello”

  1. This is some of my favourite ZZ Top too. I Thank You…what a cover!


  2. Besides a few earlier songs on the radio, this was my first ZZ Top. I can still sing along to almost all these songs. I can’t pick a favorite; even “Esther” makes me smile still. Deguello roughly translates as “slaughter” – not sure it fits the generally happy tone of the album, but this LP certainly slaughters the otherwise good Eliminator in quality, as you note. Been listening to the new La Futura album by the Top lately and find it a pretty convincing return to form. Thanks for this post, man!


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