William Royce Scaggs (known professionally as Boz Scaggs; born June 8, 1944) is an American singer, songwriter, and guitarist.He gained fame in the 1960s as a guitarist and one-time lead singer with the Steve Miller Band, and in the 1970s with several solo Top 20 hit singles in the United States, including the hits “Lowdown” and “Lido Shuffle” from the critically acclaimed album Silk Degrees (1976), which peaked at #2 on the Billboard 200. Scaggs continues to write, record music, and tour.
Scaggs was born in Canton, Ohio, the son of a traveling salesman. The family moved to McAlester, Oklahoma, then to Plano, Texas (at that time a farm town), just north of Dallas. He attended a Dallas private school, St. Mark’s School of Texas, where schoolmate Mal Buckner gave him the nickname “Bosley”, later shortened to “Boz”.
After learning guitar at the age of 12, he met Steve Miller at St. Mark’s School. In 1959, he became the vocalist for Miller’s band, the Marksmen. The pair later attended the University of Wisconsin–Madison together, playing in blues bands like the Ardells and the Fabulous Knight Trains.
Leaving school, Scaggs briefly joined the burgeoning rhythm and blues scene in London, then traveled on to Sweden as a solo performer, and in 1965 recorded his solo debut album, Boz, which failed commercially. Scaggs also had a brief stint with the band the Other Side with Mac MacLeod and fellow American Jack Downing.