Coyote saw Jimi Hendrix perform with The Soft Machine, and Vanilla Fudge. That was when he knew it was time to give up surfing and devote himself to playing guitar.
Coyote also saw Jeff Beck, the Mahavishnu Orchestra, John Hammond, Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin, Ten Years After, King Crimson, Jethro Tull and Van Halen performing in their early years, their prime. They are role models and expectations he sought in his own guitar style. Thus, The Hippy Coyote is a unique blues, classic rock, lead and slide guitarist disciple of Johnny WInter and Rory Gallagher.
Coyote performed his first paid rock gig in 1967 for a birthday party and performed at his Harvey Lewis Jr. High School dances and events. The Vox organ on LEVEL 1= Peace Of Mind and LEVEL 2 = Christ Killer albums by American Zen is Mark Williams' keyboard from Coyote's 1968 band.
Exiled from the USA in 1970 for disagreements with the Nixon administration's "War on Drugs," our happy hippie The Hippy Coyote took up residence in St. John's, Newfoundland where he performed with the Dogmeat blues rock band and Lukey's Boat classical rock band.
In 1972 Coyote was evicted from British Columbia by the unfriendly RCMP Royal Canadian Mounted Police and hitchhiked with Kiefer Sutherland and others down the American Coast to return to San Diego.
In 1972 Coyote became a rock concert bouncer, thanks to his friend Tiny of the L.A. Rams. This gave Coyote dozens of concerts to watch for free and hang out backstage with the stars.
In 1974 Richard Connor became a recording engineer for Bonita Recording Studio where he worked as a session musician, and recorded his first album, Bonita. This is where he first met Richard Augustine, a session drummer, who would later join The Rich in 1980, in Santa Monica, California.
When Richard's band, The Rich, won the 1978 KPRI San Diego Battle of the Bands contest, they were living in Venice Beach, California. Coyote returned to record the winning band show at Dr. Sound in San Diego for broadcast on KPRI radio. A couple of those songs have recently been mastered and released by Shaolin Records.
In 1979 The Rich won the Los Angeles Battle of the bands and received airplay for their song, "Backseat Love," on KLOS radio. "Hearing our song on the car stereo was awesome!" pants Coyote.
Richard fronted some of the early versions of The Rich on Rickenbacker bass and lead vocals until Jason Scheff took over on bass 1982.
Coyote went back to bass and lead vocals for the Coyote In A Graveyard rock opera that he wrote and performed from 1984 to 1986.
When Dann Link rejoined The Rich in 1989, Coyote had been performing on Lead Vocals and Lead Guitar for several years with his roadie Sam Persons playing bass, so Dann took up the bass. This power rock band became known as "Coyote Graveyard."
When Coyote moved to Utah in 1991 he switched to lead vocals, flute, and acoustic guitar. After a couple years of frustration with local Mormon talent and the Mormon elders threatening his musicians with Hell... Coyote became a solo artist on acoustic guitar with a couple solo songs he performed on flute, "Bouree," and "Great Salt Lake."
When Coyote returned to California in 2000 he was bitten by a black widow spider and couldn't walk far for a couple years. In 2003 he began performing local clubs and producing the Coyote Radio music shows as a solo singer-songwriter on acoustic guitar and vocals.
In 2008 Coyote recorded the American Zen album, LEVEL 3 = I Want You To Love Me, his first album as a drummer, and began his musical direction back to 1960's hard rock of Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix, and Black Sabbath.
In 2010 Richard Del Connor produced and released on his custom independent record label, Shaolin Records, LEVEL 4 = Kung Fu Cowboy Part 1: King Solomon's Temple by American Zen. This album is a soundtrack of musical songs that tell a Masonic Jewish story. On this Kung Fu Cowboy album Coyote emerges from the folk rock reputation of American Zen into a psychedelic blues / hard rock / classic rock band. "Kill The Spider" and "Spirit Gun" are indicative of the new rock'n'roll style of America's first Buddhist rock band.
In 2012 Richard Del Connor began releasing rehearsal and live concert recordings of The Rich bands from the 1970s and 1980s. These albums also inspire and hint at the new direction of American Zen who is now being billed as THC The Hippy Coyote. By being The Hippy Coyote, Coyote has more musical possibilities and less pressure to play all the American Zen hit songs.
"Some of these songs from the 1970s and 1980s were not recorded in professional recording studios," explains Coyote. "So I am excited to go back and perform some of this real ballsy music. I'm also anxious to catapult off this edgy adolescent rock into my new hard rock guitar style. Get ready for some loud music!"