Dusty Hill, legendary bassist for ZZ Top for their entire 50 plus year career, died in his sleep Wednesday in Houston at age 72.Listen this morning as we pay tribute to Dusty and Texas’ favorite rock ‘n roll band.
Billy Gibbons and Frank Beard issued a statement after Dusty death saying, "We are saddened by the news today that our Compadre, Dusty Hill, has passed away in his sleep at home in Houston. 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'. We will forever be connected to that 'Blues Shuffle in C.' You will be missed greatly, amigo."
Hill left the band's tour last Friday to head home to Texas to deal with a hip issue. Elwood Francis, the band's longtime guitar tech filled in. That is believed to be the first ZZ Top show without one of the members.
The band's show Wednesday night in Simpsonville, South Carolina was canceled.
Talking about the band moving forward, Gibbons said that it was Dusty's wish (that they would move forward) and a spokesman for the band said, "That’s the hope... just when is the question." There is no word yet on a funeral and/or memorial service.
Here are a few facts about the late Dusty Hill:
- Dusty Hill was born May 19th, 1949 in Dallas.
- He and his late brother Rocky played in a series of Dallas bands with future ZZ Top drummer Frank Beard from 1966 to 1968.
- Hill and Beard moved to Houston in 1969 and teamed up with Billy Gibbons to start ZZ Top.
- The group released 15 studio albums over 50 years together, the biggest being 1983's Eliminator, which sold over 10-million copies.
- ZZ Top were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004.
- In 1984, Hill accidentally shot himself in the stomach.
- In 2000, Hill was diagnosed with Hepatitis C.
- In 2007, the band scrapped a European tour so Hill could have a benign growth in his inner ear treated.
- In 2014, he underwent kidney stone surgery and then injured his hip falling on the tour bus.
- In 2016, Hill fell backstage in Lubbock, Texas and dislocated his shoulder, forcing the show to be postponed.
- He leaves behind his wife Charlene, affectionately known as Chuck, who he married in 2002, and his daughter Charity from a previous marriage.
- His last show was July 18th in Louisville, Kentucky.
[Source: Classic Hits Today]