ZZ Top | Members, Albums, Songs, & Facts
ZZ Top is an American rock band that is known for its blues-driven guitar playing, irreverent music videos and embrace of Texas roots. The members include Billy Gibbons, singer-guitarist (b. December 16, 1949, in Houston), Texas, U.S.A.), and Dusty Hill, bass player (originally Joe Michael Hill, b. May 19, 1949, Dallas, Texas–d. July 27, 2021, in Houston), and drummer Frank Beard. (b. June 11, 1950, Frankston Texas).
Early years (1969-1972)
The original line-up consisted of Gibbons (bassist/organist Lanier Greig) and Dan Mitchell (drummer).
Gibbons was the one who came up with the name of the band. The band had a small apartment that was covered in concert posters. Gibbons noticed many performers’ names using initials. Gibbons noticed B.B. King and Z. Z. Hill considered combining the two names into “ZZ King”, but he felt it was too similar. He realized that “king” is the highest, which led him to “ZZ Top”.
Bill Ham was ZZ Top’s manager. He was a native of Waxahachie in Texas and had been friends with Gibbons a while earlier. In 1969, they released “Salt Lick”, their first single. The B side contained “Miller’s Farm”. Both songs credit Gibbons as the author. The recording of “Salt Lick” saw Greig replaced by Billy Etheridge (a bandmate of Stevie Ray Vaughan) and Mitchell replaced by Frank Beard from American Blues. ZZ Top was offered a record deal by London Records. The American affiliate of British Decca Records, ZZ Top declined. Etheridge decided to leave the band, and Dusty Hill (Frank Beard’s American Blues friend) became his replacement. ZZ Top signed in 1970 with London, after Hill moved to Houston from Dallas. On February 10, 1970, they performed their first concert together in Beaumont Texas.
Gibbons assumed the lead role in the band. With Ham and Robin Hood Brians’ assistance, ZZ Top’s First Album (1971), was released. It showcased the band’s humour and included “barrelhouse” rhythms with distorted guitars, double-entendres, innuendo, and double entendres. ZZ Top’s blues influence was evident in the music and lyrics. After their debut album, the group released Rio Grande Mud (1972), and their first charting. song, ” Francine”.
Signed sound for the first decade (1973-1982).
by ZZ Top was released in 1973. This album reached the No. 8 position on the Billboard 200 albums list by early 1974. Hill and Beard’s propulsive support, as well as Gibbons “growing” tone on their guitars, was the key to the album’s sound. Dan Erlewine said that the album was ZZ Top’s first Top Ten recording, and made them stars. The album also featured “La Grange”, a boogie-driven song about the Chicken Ranch, which is a notorious brothel located in La Grange, Texas. It was also the inspiration for the musical The Best Little Whorehouse. The band then toured the US, performing sold-out concerts. ZZ Top recorded the live tracks for one side of their 1975 album, title=”Fandango! “>Fandango!” during this tour. Fandango! was also a top-ten record. The single ” Tush” reached number 20 in the Top 100.
Tejas, which was released in 1976 by ZZ Top, was their final album under their contract. While it wasn’t as popular or well-received as their previous efforts the album reached number 17 in the 100.
ZZ Top continued the Worldwide Texas Tour for Tejas until 1977.
In 1976, ZZ Top, after seven years of touring and several successful albums, went on hiatus.
- Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum (2004)
- Notable Works:
ZZ Top was founded in Houston by Gibbons, a former member of the blues-rock Moving Sidewalks. Hill and Beard had previously performed in the band American Blues.
The band took its inspiration from John Lee Hooker as well as Muddy waters to build a following. ZZ Top’s first album (1970), and Rio Grande Mud (2001).
The single “La Grange” from Tres Hombres became a radio smash in 1973.
ZZ Top albums were a huge success in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Eliminator (1983), was their breakthrough album.
They incorporated electronic synthesizers with disco-influenced beats into their blues sound. The band created a cartoonish image through music videos. Hill and Gibbons had scraggly hair and flamboyant dresses, which were punctuated in humorous hand gestures.
Eliminator sold more than 10,000,000 copies, buoyed by songs like “Gimme All Your Lovin’,” “Sharp Dressed Man,” and “Legs”.
Afterburner (1985), yielded additional hits such as “Rough Boy” (and “Sleeping Bag”).
Two years later, “Tush” from the album Fandango reached the top 20 on the Billboard singles charts.
The group’s 1976 Worldwide Texas Tour, during which they performed on a Texas-shaped stage with props including cacti and snakes, was one of the most successful concert tours in the 1970s.
ZZ Top cut back on the electronic with Recycler (1990).
Although the 1980s were a time of great commercial success, ZZ Top’s subsequent albums La Futura (2011) and Antenna (1994), respectively, still attracted a significant audience. XXX (99), which marked thirty years of playing together was a reminder that the group’s long-term success.
The trio performed at the inauguration ceremony of the United States Pres.
George W. Bush was released in 2001, as well as the DVD life from Texas and: Greatest Hits of Around the World in 2008.
ZZ Top was elected to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
ZZ Top is not only a band that records and performs concerts but also has been involved in film and television. ZZ Top has been involved in film and television productions as well as recording and performing concerts.
It was announced in November 2020 that the documentary The Little Ol’ Band of Texas had been nominated to the Grammy Award For Best Music Film. The award ceremony is scheduled for March 2021.
Achievements and awards
ZZ Top’s music videos won numerous VMA awards in the 1980s.
ZZ Top also has several chart and album sales achievements, including six number-one singles on the Mainstream Rock Chart. ZZ Top is an RIAA member and has received four gold, three platinum, two multiple-platinum album certifications and one diamond album.