Billy Gibbons Reveals Why ZZ Top Will Not End After Dusty Hill’s Death
ZZ Top will not come to an end after bass player and singer Dusty Hill's death. In a statement after news of Hill's death broke on Wednesday (July 28), his bandmate, singer-guitarist Billy Gibbons, reveals that Hill insisted the band continue on without him.
"As Dusty said upon his departure, 'Let the show go on!' And ... with respect, we'll do well to get beyond this and honor his wishes," Gibbons told SiriusXM radio host Eddie Trunk, who tweeted that message out on Wednesday. Ultimate Classic Rock reports that ZZ Top publicist Bob Merlis confirmed the legitimacy of the quote.
Hill was ZZ Top's bass player and second singer throughout the trio's 50-year career, which saw the band achieve fame and longstanding influence through a string of classic albums in the '70s that included Tres Hombres and Fandango! They reached their commercial peak in the '80s with Eliminator and Afterburner, and the trio have continued to tour into their later years.
According to a statement from Gibbons and ZZ Top drummer Frank Beard on Wednesday, Hill died in his sleep at his home in Texas. He was 72 years old.
Hill's cause of death has not been released, but he had recently missed a show at Village Commons in New Lenox, Ill., after seeking treatment for a "hip issue." Longtime ZZ Top guitar tech Elwood Francis stepped in for Hill at that show, and Gibbons tells Trunk that he will become Hill's permanent replacement moving forward.
"Dusty emphatically grabbed my arm and said, 'Give Elwood the bottom end, and take it to the Top,'" Gibbons texted to Trunk. "He meant it, amigo. He really did."
ZZ Top canceled the show they were slated to play on Wednesday night in Simpsonville, S.C. The next date listed on their official tour schedule is set for Friday (July 30) at Tuscaloosa Amphitheatver in Tuscaloosa, Ala.