Bobby Dixon

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Steel guitarist Bobby Dixon was one of Texas' great, but unheralded, instrumentalists of the 1950s. Launching his career as a member of Jerry Byler's band, while still in high school, in 1951, he toured…
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Steel guitarist Bobby Dixon was one of Texas' great, but unheralded, instrumentalists of the 1950s. Launching his career as a member of Jerry Byler's band, while still in high school, in 1951, he toured the United States with Troy Jordan And The Cross B Boys two years later.

Odessa, Texas was the scene of much of Dixon's early work. After briefly playing with guitarist/vocalist Bobby Hudnell at the Sportsman's Club in Odessa, he joined with vocalist/guitarist Billy Thompson in the resident band at the Melody Club in 1954.

Dixon rarely stayed with the same musicians for long. Leaving the Melody Club to play western swing music with Hoyle Nix in Big Springs, he was soon accompanying Cotton Collins, writer of classic country tune, "West Phalia Waltz", in Austin.

Dixon also spent an extended period of time playing in San Angelo. In addition to working with Blackie Crawford's band, he helped to forma band featuring ex-Bob Wills pianist Marshall Turney, fiddlers Tommy Carnfield and Billy Cooper bassist Shan Kennedy and drummer Jimmy Dennis.

Returning to Odessa, Dixon bought the Dunnigan School of Music, where he had taken lessons as a youngster. Teaching aspiring steel guitarists by day, he continued to play with the house band at Melody Club at night.