In Memoriam: Dusty Hill
We’re sad to report that another icon of the electric bass has left us. ZZ Top bassist Dusty Hill passed away in his sleep, the band stated on their website. He was 72 years old.
“We are saddened by the news today that our Compadre, Dusty Hill, has passed away in his sleep at home in Houston, TX,” they wrote. “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.”
The news came just days after Hill left the Texas trio’s tour due to issues with his hip.
Hill was born in Dallas, Texas, and played in local bands called the Warlocks and the Cellar Dwellers with drummer Frank Beard before they both moved to Houston in 1968. It was there they connected with guitarist/vocalist Billy Gibbons, who had just formed ZZ Top.
“That Little Ol’ Band From Texas” would become one of the most popular bands of all time. Their fusion of the blues and hard rock (along with signature beards and fuzzy guitars) became instantly recognizable. Albums like Tres Hombres, Eliminator, and Afterburner became staples in the collections of most music lovers.
Throughout all of their success, Hill provided pounding bass lines on tracks like “Sharp Dressed Man”, “Tush”, and “La Grange”. The bassist was no stranger to health issues. He was diagnosed with Hepatitis C in 2000, which took him out of commission for two years. Various ailments also forced rescheduled dates through the years.
Hill was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004.
Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Dusty Hill.