The Texas rockers have used the same tone formula for decades, but when it comes to gear and making a statement, they’re kings of style.

Gibbons’ current encore guitar is “Lil Red,” a ’61 Reissue Les Paul SG with a disconnected sideways tremolo. Francis says he disabled it because it’s a tuning nightmare, but he left it visually intact for the mojo. The bridge pickup is a Seymour Duncan Pearly Gates and the stock neck pickup is disconnected. Gibbons uses his signature Dunlop Rev. Willy’s Mexican Lottery strings (.007, .009, .011, .020, .030, .038) on all of his guitars.

ZZ Top’s guitar and bass tech, Elwood Francis, explains the ins and outs of the newest guitars and basses that Billy Gibbons and Dusty Hill have out on the road for 2015.

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