Stevie Ray’s bandmates remember ‘SNL’ gig

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AUSTIN (KXAN) — Sunday night, we saw the 40th anniversary of the iconic NBC program “Saturday Night Live.” A 3 1/2-hour, star-studded event brought back generations of performers and entertainment legends, and we remembered those who, for one reason or another, have not survived to this day. Exactly 29 years ago, on Feb. 15, 1987, Austin’s very own Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble appeared as the SNL musical guest.

Recently elected to the Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame, Stevie and the boys were hot up-and-comers back then, and SNL knew how to spot them. “I love that show, watch it all the time,” keyboardist Reese Wynans said grinning. “It was great to be on it. We had a great time. We did our song, played real loud, rocked the house, it was fantastic.”

That night was extra special. The beautiful Jerry Hall, a fellow Texan hosted, and she brought along her husband. A guy named Jagger…. Mick Jagger.

“She was the hostess and Mick came on,” Double Trouble drummer Chris Layton remembered. “He was actually going to do a number with us and decided not to for various reasons.”

So what happened next? “The whole night he hung out in our dressing room and he didn’t say much, but he hung out with us and watched our TV while we watched the rest of the show other than our own number,” Layton said.

The NBC technical crew told the band they were too loud and asked if they could tone down the volume. That just wasn’t going to happen. No hard feelings.

Stevie Ray Vaughan is no longer with us, killed in a 1990 helicopter crash after playing a gig with Eric Clapton in Wisconsin. But the other fellows remember those early halcyon days.

“I think it’s great the show has been on that long,” Layton said. “That anything survives in this day and time for any amount of time is great. We were happy to be a part of it…” He raises his voice, “It’s Saturday Night Live!”

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