Swinging through Texas to screen his upcoming film The Rum Diary, Johnny Depp surprised a lucky crowd of concert-going Texans by taking the stage Saturday night with local music mainstay Bill Carter... not to mention Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top.
Following a Q&A session at the Austin Film Festival, Depp busted out his guitar and joined his old friend Bill Carter on stage at the Continental Club. The crowd, which swelled to three times the club's capacity, naturally went wild at the unexpected treat. (To watch the full song, click here.)
Those familiar with Depp's musical history, though, might not have been as shocked to see the usually private actor take the stage that night. Savvy Depp fanatics might recognize Bill Carter as bandmate of Depp's from the short-lived 90s alt-rock group "P," who debuted in Austin 18 years ago (incidentally, P was playing the LA nightclub River Phoenix died in front of in 1993).
Unlike some celebrity musicians, Depp isn't just posturing with his instrument: YouTube videos from the concert demonstrate that Depp knows his way around an electric guitar as well as he does a camera. Backing Carter during a 90-minute set, Johnny Guitar shreds his way through a variety of bluesy stompers.
Even ZZ Top's Gibbons, who traded riffs with Depp, was impressed by the actor's rock chops. The bearded blues-rocker generously fanned Depp with worshipful "we're not worthy" hands during a smoking guitar solo and pointed approvingly at Depp several times, as if to ask the crowd, "You're seeing this too, right?"
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- Savvy Depp
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