Artist News

ZZ Top bassist Dusty Hill dies

By | Published on Thursday 29 July 2021

ZZ Top

ZZ Top bassist Dusty Hill has died, it was announced by his bandmates last night. He was 72.

In a statement, guitarist Billy Gibbons and drummer Frank Beard said: “We are saddened by the news today that our compadre, Dusty Hill, has passed away in his sleep at home in Houston, TX”.

“We, along with legions of ZZ Top fans around the world, will miss your steadfast presence, your good nature, and enduring commitment to providing that monumental bottom to the Top”, they went on. “We will forever be connected to that blues shuffle in C. You will be missed greatly, amigo”.

Hill co-founded ZZ Top with Gibbons and Beard in 1969, releasing their debut album the following year. Following initial success, the band took a hiatus in the late 70s, but returned to enjoy some of their biggest successes in the 1980s, particularly with their 1983 album ‘Eliminator’.

Amid tour dates that were set to run to the end of the year, on Friday the band announced that Hill would temporarily bow out of upcoming shows to make “a short detour back to Texas to address a hip issue”. He was replaced by “trusted guitar tech” Elwood Francis.

Although no cause of death has yet been announced, Gibbons did reveal in an interview with SiriusXM last night that Hill’s dying wish was for the band to continue.

“Dusty emphatically grabbed my arm and said, ‘Give Elwood the bottom end, and take it to the top'”, he said. “He meant it, amigo. He really did”.

A show last night in South Carolina was cancelled. It remains to be seen how soon they will get back on the road, with Elwood Francis now a permanent member of the band.