Friday, March 30, 2018

Music Friday: ZZ Top Ticks Off a List of Jewelry Must-Haves in the 1983 Classic, 'Sharp Dressed Man'

Welcome to Music Friday when we bring you fun songs with jewelry, gemstones or precious metals in the title or lyrics. Today, ZZ Top ticks off a list of jewelry must-haves in its 1983 classic, "Sharp Dressed Man."

According to the song, well-dressed men are irresistible to women, so original band members Dusty Hill, Billy Gibbons and Frank Beard cover the essential jewelry items in the second verse.

They sing, "Gold watch, diamond ring / I ain't missin' not a single thing / Cufflinks, stick pin / When I step out I'm gonna do you in / They come runnin' just as fast as they can / 'Cause every girl crazy 'bout a sharp dressed man."

Written by Gibbons, Beard and Joe Michael Hill, "Sharp Dressed Man" appeared as the third track on ZZ Top's extraordinarily popular 1983 album Eliminator. The album sold more than 10 million copies, earning it a rare Diamond certification. The single topped out at #56 on the U.S. Billboard 100 and remains one of ZZ Tops' most enduring signature songs. In fact, the group performed it live at the 1997 VH1 Fashion Awards and during the halftime festivities of the 2008 Orange Bowl.

"Sharp dressed depends on who you are," Hill told Spin magazine in 1985. "If you're on a motorcycle, really sharp leather is great. If you're a punk rocker, you can get sharp that way. You can be sharp or not sharp in any mode."

Founded in Houston in 1969 as a blues-inspired rock band, ZZ Top has featured its three core members since 1970.

Gibbons told Q magazine that their first gig at a Knights of Columbus Hall outside of Houston in 1970 was attended by just one person.

"We shrugged and pressed onwards," he said. "We took a break halfway through, went out and bought him a Coke."

Over the course of the following 48 years, the band would go on to sell more than 50 million albums worldwide. They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004.

Trivia: According to, Gibbons and Hill have been growing their beards since 1979.

Please check out ZZ Top's live performance of "Sharp Dressed Man." The lyrics are below if you'd like to sing along...

"Sharp Dressed Man"
Written by Billy Gibbons, Frank Beard and Joe Michael Hill. Performed by ZZ Top.

Clean shirt, new shoes
And I don't know where I am goin' to
Silk suit, black tie,
I don't need a reason why
They come runnin' just as fast as they can
'Cause every girl crazy 'bout a sharp dressed man

Gold watch, diamond ring,
I ain't missin' not a single thing
Cufflinks, stick pin,
When I step out I'm gonna do you in
They come runnin' just as fast as they can
'Cause every girl crazy 'bout a sharp dressed man

Top coat, top hat,
And I don't worry 'cause my wallet's fat
Black shades, white gloves,
Lookin' sharp lookin' for love
They come runnin' just as fast as they can
'Cause every girl crazy 'bout a sharp dressed man

Credit: Screen capture via

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

20-Carat Diamond Ring Flies Off Paris Hilton's Finger at Dance Club; Fiancé Finds It in Ice Bucket

Socialite Paris Hilton lost her 20-carat diamond engagement ring while dancing at a trendy Miami club Friday night. Hilton had been seen reveling with her hands in the air when the $2 million ring "flew off" her finger.

A mad scramble ensued, with security guards and patrons crawling under VIP tables in search of the sparkler Hilton had received from fiancé Chris Zylka in early January. At the time, she called it her “dream ring” and the “most beautiful thing I have ever seen.”

Finding Hilton’s one-of-a-kind sparkler — a pear-shaped center stone surrounded by a halo of smaller round diamonds — was particularly challenging because the venue was crowded and dark. The former RC Cola Plant in the Wynwood Arts District has been transformed into a 50,000-square-foot club that can accommodate 7,000 guests.

Zylka miraculously spotted the ring inside an ice bucket two tables away from where Hilton was dancing.

Clubgoers told Page Six that Hilton was completely “panicked” during the search and “cried with relief” when the ring was recovered.

Hilton's 18 million Twitter followers got a first-hand account of the drama in a Monday tweet: "The ring was just so heavy and big that while I was dancing it literally flew off my finger into an ice bucket a couple of tables over. Thank God by some miracle my fiancé found it before someone else did and most likely would not have returned it. I am so lucky!"

Zylka had proposed to Hilton in scenic Aspen, Colo., during the New Year's holiday weekend. Celebrity jeweler Michael Greene told People magazine that the actor had remembered that Hilton mentioned on a number of occasions how much she loved her mother’s pear-shaped diamond.

“And when Chris came to me that was his request,” Greene noted. “The pear shape really jumped out for him and ultimately for her."

Just after the proposal, Hilton posted to Twitter a series of romantic shots, along with this caption: “I said Yas! So happy & excited to be engaged to the love of my life. My best friend & soulmate. Perfect for me in every way. So dedicated, loyal, loving & kindhearted. I feel like the luckiest girl in the world! You are my dream come true! Thank you for showing me that fairytales do exist.”

In addition to possessing all those attributes, Zylka apparently has excellent eyesight and is very talented when it comes to figuring out the trajectory of an airborne diamond engagement ring. How many people would have thought to look in an ice bucket "a couple of tables over" or even be able to discern a diamond-and-platinum ring among the ice cubes in a dark club?

And here's a quick tip for Ms. Hilton: It's time to get your ring resized.

Credit: Image via Instagram/ParisHilton.

Monday, March 26, 2018

After Being Secreted Away for 300 Years, Historic 'Farnese Blue' Diamond Emerges at Sotheby's

The 6.16-carat blue diamond originally presented in 1715 as a wedding gift to Elisabeth Farnese, Queen of Spain, has emerged on the market for the first time and will be offered for sale at Sotheby’s Geneva on May 15. It is expected to fetch between $3.7 million and $5.3 million.

Sotheby's noted that the blue diamond was gifted to Farnese by the governor of the Philippine Islands on the occasion of her wedding to King Philip V of Spain, the grandson of Louis XIV, King of France. Blue diamonds were viewed as the ultimate royal gift in the 17th and 18th centuries because the color blue was identified as "the color of the kings."

Even though it had remained in the same family for more than 300 years, "The Farnese Blue" was never seen in public. In fact, except for close relatives and the family jewelers, no one knew of its existence.

Secreted away in a "royal casket," the pear-shaped, fancy dark grey-blue diamond traveled across Europe, as Elisabeth and Philip’s descendants married into Europe’s most important dynasties. The "casket" likely refers to a rectangular jewelry box that is shaped like a casket, not a coffin.

The gift from the governor of the Philippine Islands was given to the Queen at the urging of the Spanish government. Governors of Spain's colonies from Mexico to the East Indies were encouraged to send wedding presents to Madrid.

In August of 1715, a fleet of 12 Spanish ships carrying a fortune in gold bullion and enormous emeralds set sail from Cuba, but were devastated by a hurricane in the gulf of Florida. Only one ship survived the voyage back to Spain, and that was the ship carrying the blue diamond.

"It is difficult to put into words the excitement of holding between thumb and forefinger a gem discovered centuries ago, knowing it originated in the legendary Golconda diamond mines of India," noted David Bennett, Chairman of Sotheby’s International Jewelry Division and Co-Chairman of Sotheby’s Switzerland. "This stone has witnessed 300 years of European history, and in color is reminiscent of historic Golconda blue gems, such as the Hope Diamond.”

"The Farnese Blue" will embark on an international tour before returning to Geneva for the May 15 Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels sale. The diamond will make appearances in Hong Kong (March 29 - April 2), London (April 7-10), New York (April 13-17), Singapore (April 27-28), Taipei (May 1-2) and Geneva (May 12-14).

Credits: Diamond images courtesy of Sotheby's. Elisabeth Farnese image by Louis-Michel van Loo [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.