ZZ Top announced back in March that they were heading out for a North American tour this year. The Raw Whisky Tour kicked off in May in Canada and, with the announcement of added tour dates, will see it’s final show here in Vegas. The band also announced the release of the first album since the death of bassist Dusty Hill.
The new album is called RAW: That Little Ol’ Band From Texas Original Soundtrack and had a July 22 release date. The album was recorded for the band’s 2019 Netflix documentary, That Little Ol’ Band From Texas, according to nme.com. That film starred ZZ Top‘s original line-up: Billy Gibbons, Dusty Hill and Frank Beard.
That Little Ol’ Band From Texas shows the original trio perform an intimate set at Gruene Hall in New Braunfels, Texas, without an audience. In the album’s linear notes, Beard and Gibbons comment on the record. “It was, in a very real way, a return to our roots. Just us and the music, no audience of thousands, no concession stands, no parking lot social hour, no phalanx of tour busses” (nme.com).
“It was as bare bones as when we first started touring in a behemoth Chrysler station wagon, driving vast stretches between those early far-flung shows under blackened Texas skies and first hearing our records on the radio. We were bonded as brothers”, the two remaining original band members reminisced.
The RAW: That Little Ol’ Band From Texas Original Soundtrack track list includes some popular hits, like La Grange and Gimme All Your Lovin’ as well as some deep cuts, like Brown Sugar. Beard and Gibbons agree that Hill is still very much present with them even though he’s passed away. Hill died in his sleep at home last year.
ZZ Top is bringing The Raw Whisky Tour to the Venetian for five dates in December. Bassist Elwood Francis will be joining the band for this run. Here’s the setlist they’ve been doing so far on this tour.
–Wendy Rush, 96.3KKLZ Las Vegas