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American Blues were an American 1960s Texas-based garage rock band, who played a psychedelic style of blues rock music influenced by the 13th Floor Elevators. They are most notable for including two future members of the band ZZ Top in their ranks, Dusty Hill and Frank Beard.
Around 1968 the band (the two Hill brothers and Beard) decided to leave the Dallas–Fort Worth area, relocating to Houston. At this time, however, guitarist Rocky Hill wanted to focus on "straight blues", while his brother Dusty wanted the band to rock more. Rocky left the band, and the remaining two members joined the recently formed ZZ Top.
Rocky Hill continued to tour around Texas, and elsewhere, becoming one of a number of guitarists well-known within the state for their blues guitar prowess, such as Rocky Athis and Charlie Sexton. In this role, his playing in Austin was said[by whom?] to have been an influence on guitarist Stevie Ray Vaughan's formative years, as well. He sometimes referred to himself as "The Anti-Clapton", and one writer with the Houston Press called Rocky "perhaps the wildest and scariest – both onstage and off – of all the Texas white-boy blues guitarists.
Formed in Dallas, Texas, USA, in 1968, the American Blues evolved out of local club attraction the Warlocks when Rocky Hill (guitar), Dusty Hill (b. Joe Hill, 19 May 1949, Dallas, Texas, USA; bass), Doug Davis (organ) and Frank Beard (b. 11 June 1949, Frankston, Texas, USA; drums) took their new name upon adopting a more ‘progressive’ sound.
The American Blues Is Here, released on the local Karma Records label, featured their reworking of Tim Hardin’s ‘If I Were A Carpenter’ and generated sufficient interest to secure a major contract with Uni Records. The American Blues Do Their Thing offered a form of hard rock psychedelia, as evinced by such titles as ‘Chocolate Ego’ and ‘Nightmare Of A Wise Man’, but the album failed to spark national interest. The group disintegrated soon afterwards, with first Beard, then Dusty Hill, joining ZZ Top.
John Rockford "Rocky" Hill (December 1, 1946 – April 10, 2009) was a blues guitarist, singer, and bassist from Dallas, Texas, United States. Hill was the older brother of ZZ Top bassist, Dusty Hill.
Joseph Michael "Dusty" Hill (born May 19, 1949) is the bassist, keyboardist, and co-vocalist with the American rock group ZZ Top. Hill was born in Dallas, Texas, and grew up in the Lakewood neighborhood of East Dallas. He attended Woodrow Wilson High School (Dallas) where he played the cello.
Along with his brother Rocky Hill and future fellow ZZ Top member Frank Beard, Dusty Hill played in local Dallas bands the Warlocks, the Cellar Dwellers, and American Blues. From 1966 to 1968, American Blues played the Dallas-Fort Worth-Houston circuit. In 1969, Hill was a member of a fake version of the British band The Zombies with Beard.
In 1968, the band decided to leave the Dallas–Fort Worth area and relocate to Houston. At this time, however, guitarist Rocky Hill wanted to focus on "straight blues", while Dusty wanted the band to rock more. Rocky left the band and Dusty and Beard moved to Houston, joining guitarist/vocalist Billy Gibbons of Houston psychedelic-rockers Moving Sidewalks in the recently formed ZZ Top just after they released their first single in 1969.
♦ Rocky Hill - guitar
♦ Dusty Hill - bass
♦ Richard Harris - drums
♦ Doug Davis - piano on "Mellow"
♦ Frank Beard - drums
01. You Were So Close To Me 03:24
02. Wonder Man 02:26
03. Just Plain Jane 02:34
04. Shady 02:05
05. Comin' Back Home 05:35
06. Captain Fire 03:18
07. Chocolate Ego 03:04
08. Nightmare Of A Wise Man 03:24
09. Dreams 02:52
10. Softly To The Sun 02:33