Closely identified with bandleader Jimmie Lunceford, Wilcox arranged for the band at its ‘30s peak, and later led the group after Lunceford's death. Wilcox met Lunceford in the mid ‘20s while attending Fisk University. He played in Lunceford's campus band and worked with bands in New Jersey around 1927. Wilcox rejoined Lunceford in 1929 and stayed with him until the bandleader's death of a heart attack in 1947. Wilcox co-led the band for a time (with tenor saxophonist Joe Thomas), then assumed sole leadership from January 1949; he kept the band going into the early ‘50s. He then worked as a soloist round New York, including a stint of nearly ten years at Café Riviera in New York. With Teddy McRae, Wilcox founded an R&B label, Raecox, in the ‘50s. He also worked as a record company executive with the Riviera and Derby labels. Just prior to his death in 1968, Wilcox worked in Canada with "Big Chief" Russell Moore.