“By this time, Memphis had made its mark with us in a really positive way. I don’t think that anyone can go there and not be affected by all of the great music, especially stuff from the Stax/Volt era.
“Before we left Memphis, the song I Thank You came on the car radio. Isaac Hayes played this badass clavinet part that made the Sam & Dave version so distinctive. I was in the studio, talking to the engineer, and I remarked about how magical the sound of the clavinet was on that song, and he said, ‘Well, lo and behold, that very same clavinet is right out there in the other room.’ I said, ‘Well, that’s it. We’re going to have to incorporate it in our version.’
“ZZ Top, in the studio, sometimes became a five and six-piece band, by way of whatever we were adding to the sound. One of the key pieces here was the use of that clavinet. We put it on I Thank You, Cheap Sunglasses – it started showing up on a lot of tracks.
“Sometimes change is hard to take for some people, but we knew how far we could push things for our fans. Also, we knew that we had to go out and do the songs live, so we avoided any elements that would have made that impossible.”