Billy Cox is this month’s conversation on Groove – The No Treble Podcast.
You can listen the new episode right here: Groove – The No Treble Podcast – Episode #52 – Billy Cox.
Who is Billy Cox?
As we hit the big 50th anniversary of Woodstock, it’s important that we all sit back and marinate on just how profound of a time that was for music, rock and roll, and the electric bass. Billy Cox was there, but his road to Woodstock (and into today) is one of a chance encounter, a great friendship, and legendary music. Billy met Jimi Hendrix while they were serving in the Army at Fort Campbell, Kentucky in 1961. Ducking into Service Club #1 to get out of a sudden rainstorm, he heard someone playing guitar inside. Impressed with what he heard, he introduced himself, told Jimi that he played bass, and they were jamming soon after. They formed a group now known to history as the King Kasuals. They played at Nashville clubs and traveled all over the southeast and as far north as Indianapolis playing what was called the “Chitlin’ Circuit”. Jimi eventually left Nashville and continued to struggle all over the country until he was discovered by Chas Chandler in New York. Chas took Jimi to England, (and the rest is history). But before Jimi left, he called Billy and asked him to join him. Billy had no resources or money to travel to New York, so he thanked Jimi and wished him well. Billy continued to play, backing some of the greats in R&B until The Jimi Hendrix Experience broke up in mid-1969. Jimi then called again. They recorded together and Billy went on to play at Woodstock and played a series of shows with Jimi and Buddy Miles as the Band of Gypsys. After Jimi’s death, Billy played for a time with the Charlie Daniels Band. Following that he continued to perform sessions and club dates. He later reunited with Experience drummer Mitch Mitchell, and guitarist Gary Serkin and did a series of shows under the name Gypsy Sun Experience. As of November 2008, Billy is the only surviving member of both The Jimi Hendrix Experience and the Band Of Gypsys. He recently was inducted into the Musicians Hall of Fame and continues to honor his friend, performing dates with the Experience Hendrix Tour (click the link for tour dates). Enjoy the conversation…
What is Groove – The No Treble Podcast?
This is an ambitious effort. This will be a fascinating conversation. Our goal at Groove is to build the largest oral history of bass players. Why Groove? Most of the content about the bass revolves around gear, playing techniques, and more technical chatter. For us, bassists are creative artists with stories to tell. They are a force to be reckon with. These are the stories and conversation that we will capture. To create this oral history of why these artists chose the bass, what their creative lives are like, and where inspiration can be found.