ZZ Top Announces Raw Whisky Summer Tour and New Live Album

by Joe Rutland

ZZ Top is at it again with a new live album and a summer tour titled Raw Whisky. Yes, music fans, the Texas band is still putting out great stuff. Of course, Tres Hombres still consists of Billy Gibbons and Frank Beard. Sadly, longtime bassist Dusty Hill died last year. But they have a connection with the band now playing bass. And it’s someone that Hill himself gave the OK to do so. Let’s get more information about this new album and tour with an assist from Ultimate Classic Rock.

ZZ Top Hits Road With New Album Along For The Ride

So, ZZ Top will have this album titled Raw released on July 22 release. But they will be on the road this summer on the Raw Whisky North American tour. They recorded this 11-track Raw alongside their 2019 Netflix documentary, That Little Ol’ Band From Texas. You bet your sweet blues-rock heart that songs are on there like La Grange, Tush, and Gimme All Your Lovin’.

But there are a couple of early songs like Brown Sugar and Certified Blues from their first album. Gibbons, Beard, and Hill got together at the famed Gruene Hall in Central Texas to knock out the songs. Gruene Hall is the self-proclaimed “oldest continually run dance hall in Texas” and it’s quite a sight indeed.

Elwood Francis Taking Over At Bass For Late Dusty Hill

In the album liner notes, Gibbons and Beard say: “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. Just us and the music.” For all of you ZZ Top fans, Raw will be available on a 180-gram vinyl record, CD, and through digital platforms.

Yes, they have dedicated the record “in righteous memory of Dusty Hill,” who died on July 27, 2021, at 72 years old. “‘The Dust’ may have left the building, but he’s still very much with us,” Gibbons and Beard write.

You can catch ZZ Top with their new bassist, Elwood Francis. He has been the band’s longtime guitar tech and took over at bass for Hill after his death. That is according to what Hill wanted to be done.

Looking to see when the tour starts? Well, the Raw Whisky tour kicks off on May 6 in Niagara Falls, Ontario, and runs through Aug. 27 in Beaver Dam, Ky. Check out the full rundown of dates and more for the next couple of months at the band’s website. They will be rocking and rolling in their famed style and much-loved dark sunglasses. Enjoy the show.