Lone Star Brewing: Beer, Progressive Country Music, and the 'Texas Mystique'
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In the April 1976 edition of the music magazine Hit Parade, Bruce Meyer writes about an interview he conducted with the Texas rock band ZZ Top. The group had just finished a performance before 20,000 people at Atlanta's Omni Stadium, and all three band members, wearing cowboy hats, western belt buckles, and jeans, went to a nearby hotel ballroom to mingle with fans and drink beer. "You've got to be a Texan to love Lone Star beer," says Meyer. He describes Lone Star beer as tasting bad but also remarks that, because the beverage had become an icon of Texas Popular culture at that time, "no self-respecting Texan would think of tarnishing his image by admitting the stuff turns his stomach. So, he chokes it down and smiles, knowing that, after the fourth or fifth battle, it won't matter." At the far end of the ballroom, stainless steel tubs (resembling horse troughs) contain bottles of Lone Star beer on ice. When ZZ Top enters the room, the musicians make their way back to the tubs. According to Meyer, guitarist Billy Gibbons grabs a beer, chugs half of it down with one swallow, and then looks around the room "with an elfish grin and a glint of triumph in his eye."