Gilley’s Beer Cans, Bottles, Cases – Pictures

Gilley's Beer Bottle Case Side View

As Gilley’s Pasadena became more and more popular, marketing genius Sherwood Cryer (Mickey Gilley’s partner) realized that with all the beer they were selling they could make even more money if the beer they sold was their own. He was also smart enough to foresee  that once the film “Urban Cowboy” was released, business would skyrocket. Gilley’s Beer was born.

Cryer made a deal with Spoetzl Brewery, in Shiner, Texas, to brew and can it for him. His first deliveries in 1979 came during the filming of “Urban Cowboy” and Cryer used every excuse to get it into the hands of everyone in sight, especially John Travolta.

We aren’t beer can experts, so if anyone has information to correct or add to our descriptions, please leave a comment below. We’ve done our best to date and identify all of the cans we are aware of. We’ve also included some related products like Gilley’s beer can holders, banks and commemorative Coca Cola bottles.

This first version was a straight steel can, with an aluminum throw-away pull-tab top and a raised stamp saying “PLEASE DON’T LITTER” and “DISPOSE OF PROPERLY” on either side of the tab. It is also stamped “ALUMINUM” in the center of the pull ring. On the side there is the Gilley’s logo emblazoned in red across the top and Mickey Gilley’s face, in color, in the center of an outline of the State of Texas. This is the can that is featured on the famous Gilley’s poster and in the film “Urban Cowboy.” Pictured below is an example of this Gilley’s beer can from the GilleysMuseum.com collection.

Gilley's 1979 Steel Beer Can - Front and Top

And now here’s our newest proud addition, a very obvious ERROR printing of the above straight steel Gilley’s beer can. Somehow the red ink is shifted about a quarter of an inch to the left, creating a double image of Mickey in 2 different colors and the Gilley’s logo and ring of stars being off center. While we can’t say if this is a one-of-a-kind error or part of a bad print run, it is the only one of its kind that we’ve ever seen. Pictured below is this PRINT ERROR Gilley’s beer can from the GilleysMuseum.com collection.

Gilley's 1979 Straight Steel Beer Can - ERROR

Gilley's 1979 Straight Steel Beer Can - ERROR

Sometime later, the can changed very slightly. Instead of being straight up and down steel the sides were given a small indentation just below the aluminum top and above the bottom. Pictured below is an example of this Gilley’s beer can from the GilleysMuseum.com collection.

Gilley's Indented Steel Beer Can

Gilley's Indented Steel Beer Can

We don’t know when but at some point cans were produced specifically as coin banks, since they were never filled with beer, never opened or drained, and have a coin slot cut into the top. They used the same indented steel Gilley’s beer can as above, with the throw away pull-tab top, except for this can bank does not have “aluminum” stamped in the middle of the pull-tab. The only problem is, once you put money in you can’t get it back out without damaging the can. Interesting design, don’t you think? LOL Below is a picture of the can and top with coin slot.

Gilley's Beer Can Bank

Vintage Gilley's Pasadena, TX aluminum beer can bank.

The style we believe is the next version of the Gilley’s Pasadena, Texas Beer can is an all aluminum can with a molded bottom and throw away pull-tab top. They removed the outline of Texas and put a much larger black and white picture of Mickey Gilley in the center of the circle. They also added a small outline of Texas on the bottom between the two circles. To the best of our knowledge there are 3 versions of this can, with the only differences being on the top. This one has a round throw away pull-tab with no printing on the top at all. Pictured below is an example of this Gilley’s beer can from the GilleysMuseum.com collection.

Gilley's Aluminum Beer Can - No print top.

Gilley's Aluminum Beer Can - No print top.

The second version has “PLEASE DON’T LITTER” and “DISPOSE OF PROPERLY” in small stamped print around the perimeter of the top and an oval shaped throw away pull-tab. The rest of the can is identical to the can above. Pictured below is an example of this Gilley’s beer can from the GilleysMuseum.com collection.

Gilley's Beer Can aluminum small print top.

Gilley's All Aluminum Beer Can - Small Print Top.

We also have this hard to find 6-pack of un-opened Gilley’s beer cans in the version above.

Gilley's Aluminum Beer Can 6 Pack - Full.

Gilley's Aluminum Beer Can 6 Pack.

The third version has the same “PLEASE DON’T LITTER” and “DISPOSE OF PROPERLY” on the top but stamped in much larger print on either side of a round throw away pull-tab. The rest of the can is identical to the two cans above. Pictured below is an example of this Gilley’s beer can from the GilleysMuseum.com collection.

Gilley's Beer Can all aluminum with large print on top

Gilley's all aluminum beer can - Large Print Top.

This final can is a hybrid all aluminum can with a throw-back black and white version of the picture of Mickey Gilley inside the Texas state outline used on the original straight steel can first pictured above. The reason we think this can is the latest version is that the top has the only stay-tab opener and stamped print saying “LIFT UPRIGHT – PUSH BACK” with arrows. While it’s possible this was a transition can between the steel and aluminum cans, we can’t figure why they would switch from the stay-tab back to the old fashioned throw away style pull-tabs.

We have several of these cans, one is empty but unopened. The pop-top is completely intact and there are no holes that we can find. Whether the beer evaporated or the can was sealed while empty I have no idea. Whatever the reason, we love this can. I don’t think they used this design for long as we don’t see a lot of them around. Pictured below is an example of this Gilley’s beer can from the GilleysMuseum.com collection.

Gilley's Aluminum Beer Can with Stay-Tab top.

Gilley's Aluminum Beer Can with Stay-Tab top.

Sometime in the 1980’s they started selling Gilley’s Beer in bottles. While we don’t know what year exactly, we would guess very early 80’s since the labels have the same graphics as the original straight steel Gilley’s beer cans. If you have more specific dating on these bottles, please let us know. Pictured below is an example of this Gilley’s beer bottle from the GilleysMuseum.com collection

Gilley's Beer Bottle - FULL

Gilley's Pasadena, TX Beer Bottle - FULL

Finally, we have an original vintage Gilley’s Beer heavy cardboard case, designed to hold 24 bottles of Gilley’s Beer. It has a cool split-top design that allows you to open one half at a time. Inside are several un-opened Gilley’s Beer bottles and several more empty Gilley’s Beer bottles. Pictured below, it’s a part of the GilleysMuseum.com collection.

Gilley's Beer Bottle Case Side View

Gilley's Beer Bottle Case Side View

Gilley's Beer Bottle Case - Open

Gilley's Cardboard Beer Bottle Case - OPEN

For those of you who like to keep your beer cans cold longer, Gilley’s offered three different styles of can holders over the years. One model, made of styrofoam, also has a sheet of plastic foam inside. It stands 4 1/4 inches tall and has the same print on both sides. Our guess is that this was the first model, probably early 1980’s.

Gilley's styrofoam beer can holder.

Vintage Gilley's Pasadena, TX beer can holder.

The second (our best guess) vintage Gilley’s beer can holder is made of thin plastic with a sheet of plastic foam inside. It also stands 4 1/4 inches tall and is pictured below to show both sides. This model is listed in the Gilley’s catalog from ca. 1983/4 (it is undated) as a “huggie” type holder and sold for $3.00 each.

Gilley's plastic beer can holder.

Vintage Gilley's plastic beer can holder.

The third style of Gilley’s Pasadena, TX beer can holder is made of plastic, stands 4 1/4 inches tall, and has a hollow area designed to hold ice. Before inserting a can, you turn the can holder over and remove the black plastic cover. Fill the hollow area with ice, put the cover back on, turn it over, and insert the can. The ice keeps your drink cold while the handle minimizes the heat transferred to the drink from your hand. Both sides have the same print. See the picture below.

Gilley's beer can holder with handle.

Plastic vintage Gilley's beer can holder with handle.

Here is the very collectible 1983 NSDA Houston Coca-Cola Gilley’s in Pasadena, Texas coke commemorative bottle. These are almost always found un-opened. Pictured below showing both sides, it’s a part of the GilleysMuseum.com collection.

Gilley's 1983 NSDA Houston Coke Commemorative Botte

Gilley's 1983 NSDA Houston Coke Commemorative Botte

Then we have the similar 1983 Introducing Diet Coke Gilley’s commemorative 1984 Brian’s Bash Coca-Cola Gilley’s in Pasadena, Texas bottle. Again, these are almost always found un-opened. Pictured below showing both sides, it’s a part of the GilleysMuseum.com collection.

Gilley's Diet Coke Bottle - FULL

1983 Commemorative Gilley's Brian's Bash 1984 Diet Coke Bottle - Full

So there you have it. Our collection of Gilley’s Pasadena, Texas beer cans, beer bottles, and Coke bottles.  If you have, or know of, a can or bottle NOT shown above PLEASE let us know.

Drink safely,

Bubba

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Comments
8 Responses to “Gilley’s Beer Cans, Bottles, Cases – Pictures”
  1. Harold Gary 7220 dunaway chapel rd lascassas tn 37085 says:

    I want to buy a bottle or can full of gilley beer

    • mikey says:

      how much contact me asap i have a bottle

      • Harold Gary 7220 dunaway chapel rd lascassas tn 37085 says:

        mikey, I have been collecting beer for quite a while. I had a full can on a plaque above the bar that I stole from Gilleys in Pasadena. My son and his buddy were playing cards one night and popped the top. I haven’t been able to replace it yet. I will offer 30.00 bucks. You tell me how much you will take. I will pay shipping.

  2. Dru says:

    What year did the 3rd version of the black and white face can come out? And does it hold any value? It’s unopened.

    • Hi Dru,

      To the best of my knowledge, there are 4 black and white versions of Mickey Gilley on the Gilley’s Beer cans, 1 with a small face and 3 with a large face. Some collectors like full cans while some prefer empties. The market is too thin to give a price, especially without knowing the condition.

      Hope that helps.

      Bubba

  3. Joseph Wisnoski says:

    Where can I buy an unopened can of Gilley’s beer, and a unopened coke bottle

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