Tube Snake Boogie


  • What is a Tube Snake? Billy Gibbons answered that question in a 1985 interview with Spin magazine: "Originally, it was a surfboard. A friend of mine, for obvious reasons, liked the sound of the name. I guess it's the first cousin to a tube steak."

Comments: 6

  • Jack from The State Of BewildermentTiff, don't you be so naive. Lots of ZZ Top music has lyrics about sex or with innuendo. Pearl Necklace is a particularly raunchy example. La Grange is about a whorehouse. Mexican Blackbird is about a Mexican whore (everyone calls her puta, cause no one really knows her name), Bedroom Thang is about an underage runaway. In the verse he wants her to leave him alone, but in the chorus it's a different story.. She loves my Automobile. Etc Songs like Tush and Tube Snake Boogie may not literally mean anything naughty, but I wouldn't be surprised if they wrote them with a sort of double entendre in mind (and if you read the quote from Billy Gibbons here on Songfacts, he said that Tube Snake originally meant a surfboard, that a friend liked the sound of the name "for obvious reasons," and that it's a first cousin of Tube Steak. So Billy himself saw the connection). No one told them to do these songs because "sex sells," and I seriously doubt anyone could have made them do something they didn't want to do. These guys are Texans, and in my experience Texans aren't so easily pushed around.
  • Jadk from The State Of BewildermentYeah, guys, I'm sure they knew what a tube steak is (I've known it since I was a child, before that album came out). But the song is Tube SNAKE Boogie, not Tube Steak Boogie.
  • Tiff from Michigan If you EVER heard the explanation of the band and WHAT they wrote about it was ACTUALLY writing about SURFING/BOOGIE BOARDING. Don’t be so naive! ZZTop had all the hot chicks etc bc some video production ‘expert’ said “sex sells” and had the videos made that way. NOT THE BAND!
  • Seventhmist from 7th HeavenQuite right, George. Considering what ZZ usually sang about, that's the only conclusion to draw.
  • George from Vancouver, CanadaConsidering other lyrics, I think they knew tube steak is a slang term for a penis, sexually speaking. It's also a slang term for a frankfurter (also used sexually often)
  • Cyberpope from Richmond, Canada&, of course, a tube steak is a man's erection -- just one more of the many sexual central themes in ZZ Top songs!
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Richard Marx

Richard MarxSongwriter Interviews

Richard explains how Joe Walsh kickstarted his career, and why he chose Hazard, Nebraska for a hit.

Jim Adkins of Jimmy Eat World

Jim Adkins of Jimmy Eat WorldSongwriter Interviews

Jim talks about the impact of "The Middle" and uses a tree metaphor to describe his songwriting philosophy.

70s Music Quiz 1

70s Music Quiz 1Music Quiz

The '70s gave us Muppets, disco and Van Halen, all which show up in this groovy quiz.

Top American Idol Moments: Songs And Scandals

Top American Idol Moments: Songs And ScandalsSong Writing

Surprise exits, a catfight and some very memorable performances make our list of the most memorable Idol moments.

Black Sabbath

Black SabbathFact or Fiction

Dwarfs on stage with an oversize Stonehenge set? Dabbling in Satanism? Find out which Spinal Tap-moments were true for Black Sabbath.

Alice Cooper

Alice CooperFact or Fiction

How well do you know this shock-rock harbinger who's been publicly executed hundreds of times?