ZZ Top's Iconic Bassist Dusty Hill Dies at 72

The iconic rock band was set to play in South Carolina on Wednesday night but that show has been canceled

Dusty Hill
Gonzales Photo/Terje Dokken/PYMCA-Avalon/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Legendary Texas musician, singer, and songwriter Dusty Hill, of the world-famous trio ZZ Top, died at his home in Houston, Texas Wednesday, just days after leaving the road over a hip issue. Hill was 72.

Hill was the bassist and secondary singer for the self-proclaimed "little ol' band from Texas" for the last 50 years and was probably equally known for his blues licks as much as his chest-length beard.

The band's surviving members, Billy Gibbons and Frank Beard confirmed Hill's death in a statement shared on Facebook and said their longtime friend and bandmate had died in his sleep.

"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'. We will forever be connected to that "Blues Shuffle in C.

You will be missed greatly, amigo."
Frank & Billy

Hill was born Joe Michael Hill in Dallas in 1949, grew up in Lakewood and attended Woodrow Wilson High School before he moved to Houston and joined ZZ Top in 1970.

Since that time the band has churned out a number of hits through the decades, including Sharp Dressed Man, La Grange, Legs, Tush, Gimme All Your Lovin', among others. After inducting a number of other acts, the band was enshrined in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland in 2004.

The band was currently on tour and was to play in Simpsonville, South Carolina Wednesday night, though earlier this month the band said Hill was taking a short break and had returned to Houston to "address a hip issue."

A venue manager confirmed to NBC News on Wednesday afternoon that the show has been canceled.

In a statement on their website from July 23, the band said they expected Hill to return "pronto" but that he insisted "the show must go on" and during his absence, they would continue playing their schedule with the help of Elwood Francis, the band's guitar tech of two decades.

Hill's cause of death has not been confirmed and funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.

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