Tres Hombres (English: Three Men) is the third studio album by the American rock band ZZ Top. It was released by London Records in July 1973 and was the band's first collaboration with engineer Terry Manning. It was the band's commercial breakthrough; in the US, the album entered the top ten while the single "La Grange" reached number 41 on the Billboard Hot 100.
The two tracks "Waitin' for the Bus" and "Jesus Just Left Chicago" nearly seamlessly segue one into the other. Houston Chronicle entertainment writer Andrew Dansby wrote in 2013 that this fusing together of the two songs was not the original plan. Dansby claimed that the album's engineer was splicing tape and cut too much, leaving the two songs without any gap between them.
The album's engineer Terry Manning, who performed the edit, counter-claimed in a 2017 blog post that this edit was no accident. Although Manning admitted that this specific edit was not planned beforehand, as an engineer he was "... always looking very carefully at the timings between songs ... counting time, feeling how different time sigs (signatures) go together, different keys, different feels ..." Manning wrote that he, "... tried several things to see how those two (songs) would go together" when it dawned on him that they could "... come together as one song, exactly as if played that way."
Manning wrote that when he initially presented this specific edit, Billy Gibbons loved it but the album's producer Bill Ham was confused and wary of it, "... but after several plays, it was obvious (to) everyone that there was no other way they could ever exist again."
Waitin' For The Bus
Have mercy, been waitin' for the bus all day Have mercy, been waitin' for the bus all day I got my brown paper bag and my take-home pay
Have mercy, old bus be packed up tight Have mercy, old bus be packed up tight Well, I'm glad just to get on and home tonight
Right on, that bus done got me back Right on, that bus done got me back Well, I'll be ridin' on the bus till I Cadillac
Songwriters: Billy F. Gibbons / Joe Michael Hill Waitin' For The Bus lyrics © BMG Rights Management
Jesus Just Left Chicago
Jesus just left Chicago And he's bound for New Orleans Well now, Jesus just left Chicago And he's bound for New Orleans Yeah, yeah Workin' from one end to the other and all points in between
Took a jump through Mississippi Well, muddy water turned to wine Took a jump through Mississippi Muddy water turned to wine Yeah, yeah Then out to California through the forests and the pines Ah, take me with you, Jesus
You might not see him in person But he'll see you just the same You might not see him in person But he'll see you just the same Yeah, yeah You don't have to worry 'cause takin' care of business is his name
Songwriters: Frank Beard / Billy Gibbons / Dusty Hill Jesus Just Left Chicago lyrics © BMG Rights Management