Billy Davis Jr. (1938- Today)
Billy Davis Jr. was born and raised in St. Louis. He started singing in gospel choirs as a child, and it was soon known to everyone that he was destined to continue his singing career as he grew older. Davis Jr. attended Washington Technical High School and was quickly drafted into the Army after graduation. While stationed in Germany, he formed a band, “The Kingsmen.” After leaving the military, Davis Jr. moved to Los Angeles in 1965 to seek recording opportunities. There, he started a singing group with his friends called “The Versatiles” - the group changed their name to “5th Dimension” in 1966. The band quickly became a popular American vocal group.
In 1975, Davis Jr. married his bandmate, Marilyn McCoo, and they left 5th Dimension together that year. In the next months, the couple released their first duo hits and became the first African American couple to host a network TV series, The Marilyn McCoo and Billy Davis Jr. Show in 1977. Together, they earned ‘Best R&B Performance by a Duo, Group, or Chorus.’ Davis Jr. has since earned a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and he and his band “5th Dimension” were inducted into Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2002. He received an honorary doctorate degree from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore in 2012. Davis Jr. lives up his legacy today as a multi-talented pop, R&B, and gospel singer.