The Pittsburgh Rock scene took off in the early 1960s. The music world quickly took a turn around in 1964 when the invasion of British bands such as The Beatles began introducing Pittsburgh to what we know today as psychedelic rock. This inspired young Pittsburghers to learn guitar and become rock stars.

The Beatles in 1963

The Beatles in 1963

Billy Cox playing guitar on stage at Woodstock 1969

Billy Cox playing guitar on stage at Woodstock, 1969

Billy Cox of Wheeling, WV found himself inspired by jazz when he and his family moved to Pittsburgh’s Hill District when he was a teen. This was an era where rock and R&B were on the rise in Pittsburgh influencing Cox and many others to become musicians. However, after graduating high school, Cox enlisted in the army where he later met guitarist Jimi Hendrix. They went on to form the band The King Kasuals, but later Cox turned down an offer to join Hendrix along with Little Richard on a tour. Cox went on to Nashville from 1962-1968 as a bass player for a house band on the show “Night Train.”

Cox and Hendrix rekindled down the road and formed a band called The Band of Gypsys. They went on to perform at Woodstock, one of the largest music festivals in history. Cox and Hendrix go down in history as some of the most talented and renowned guitarists of their time.