There was no moment more jubilant in the fledgling days of the humble South Texas Popular Culture Museum than the day ZZ Top guitarist Billy Gibbons walked through its doors to take in the Teen Canteen exhibit.
In the earliest days, ZZ Top played Sam Kinsey’s teen club, and TexPop had on display the canceled check for the blues-rock band’s very first gig. Board member Jeff Smith had cajoled Gibbons with the tantalizing thought of seeing that $150 check once again.
It’s possible Gibbons could walk through those doors again for the new exhibit produced by retired music journalist Margaret Moser – “Standing at the Crossroad: Robert Johnson in San Antonio 1936.”
“Exhibit marks Robert Johnson’s S.A. sessions,” Hector Saldana, San Antonio Express-News, November 18, 2016
I didn’t bump into Billy Gibbons at the opening of the Robert Johnson exhibit at the South Texas Popular Culture Center, but that was okay because I was with the Mister.
“So….?,” you might be wondering.
Well, the Mister was in a band, Captain Midnight, that once opened for Billy Gibbons at Sam Kinsey’s Teen Canteen.
There’s no promo poster displaying this connection, but TexPop does have a copy of Sam Kinsey’s roster of bands in 1969. And Captain Midnight is there.
There are no known photos or recordings of Captain Midnight playing during the Mister’s high school years. The Mister thinks might be a good thing, similar to the way a mercy killing can be viewed as positive.
The Mister’s career has come a long way since then; the blues band he plays with definitely rates seeing. So plan to kick off the New Year with the After Midnight Blues Band at The Pig Pen behind the Smoke Shack on Broadway.
Who knows? Maybe Billy Gibbons will be overcome by a wave of nostalgia and show up to see the guitarist who opened for him at the Teen Canteen.