ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons Responds To Backlash Following Australian Tour Controversy

Written by Tom Williams on January 12, 2018

ZZ Top frontman Billy Gibbons has responded to the backlash which saw him cut short his Australian tour after a number of fans demanded refunds and criticised his local appearances earlier this week.

In a statement posted to ZZ Top and Gibbons’ Facebook pages today, the guitarist’s management have accused Australian tour promoters The Brewer Brothers of “miscommunication to ticket holders that a substantial musical performance would be part” of the musician’s latest Australian tour.

“Audience expectations regarding Billy Gibbons’ role as a performing musician in the recent Up Close & Personal dates through Australia seem not to have been in line with what he was asked to do when his services were engaged last year,” the statement reads.

“Mr. Gibbons was contracted to appear on those dates to discuss his passion for custom cars and hot rods with Jimmy Shine and to sign autographs and greet fans with no musical component called for or anticipated in the arrangement. It should be noted that, based on that understanding, he didn’t even bring, nor did he request musical equipment appropriate to such a performance.

“It appears that these dates were promoted in such a way as miscommunicate to ticket holders that a substantial musical performance would be part of these events. Billy Gibbons, ever the consummate professional, had not planned nor prepared that kind of program and regrets that his role in those dates appears to him been grossly misstated.”

Gibbons’ Australian tour was billed by promoters as an ‘Up Close & Personal’ tour. An official tour poster read, “Kick back with Billy as he also plays and reflects upon some of his favourite tunes and famous riffs.”

Some fans described Gibbons’ Australian shows as “disappointing”, claiming that only a handful of songs were played and that paid meet-and-greets were lacklustre.

Gibbons performed two shows in Thirroul and one in Newcastle before cancelling the only remaining show of his Australian tour in Brisbane, after police were called when fans allegedly threw bottles at the stage during his Newcastle concert.

Music Feeds has contacted The Brewer Brothers for comment.

UPDATE: Billy Gibbons’ Australian tour promoters The Brewer Brothers have now released a statement, which reads:

“The Brewer Brothers sincere [sic] apologize for fan’s [sic] that have been disappointed by Billy Gibbons’ appalling performance in his recent show’s [sic] in Australia. Gibbons was clearly engaged to perform the same show he did for the Brewer Brothers in 2016 at the Gold Coast Arts Centre, which was a success and was the basis for the the recent tour. All documents with time line will be post here directly.”

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