Los Angeles, Jul 28 (EFE).- Dusty Hill, the bass player in ZZ Top for more than 50 years, died Wednesday, his bandmates said. He was 72.
“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,'” Billy Gibbons and Frank Beard said in a statement. “You will be missed greatly, amigo.”
The statement did not mention a cause of death.
A few weeks ago, ZZ Top took the stage without Hill for the first time in 51 years and the band said at the time that he was dealing with a “hip issue.”
“Per Dusty’s request the show must go on!,” Gibbons and Beard said ahead of a concert that featured Elwood Francis, the band’s guitar technician, on bass.
Joseph “Dusty” Hill played the cello while a high school student in his native Dallas before taking up the electric bass as part of a band with his brother Rocky, a guitarist, and drummer Beard.
Dusty and Rocky diverged over the direction of their music and the bassist and Beard relocated to Houston, where in early 1970 they joined with guitarist and lead singer Gibbons to form ZZ Top.
The band put out a succession of mostly successful albums before achieving superstar status in 1983 with “Eliminator,” a disc that included a trio of hit singles – “Gimme All Your Lovin,'” “Sharp Dressed Man” and “Legs.”
The album cover and the accompanying videos for the singles introduced the public to the long, flowing beards that Gibbons and Hill had cultivated during an extended gap between concert tours.
ZZ Top’s significance in popular culture was reflected in the decision of filmmaker Robert Zemeckis to cast Gibbons, Hill and Beard as themselves in “Back to the Future III” (1990).
In 2004, the band were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. EFE