Oxford was raised in Wichita, Kansas, where his father played old-time fiddle. He began playing professionally in Utah in 1960, mostly playing in the Kansas area in the early 1960s, then relocated to Nashville in 1964. In 1965 he met Harlan Howard, who got him signed to RCA Victor and helped him find material to record. He then released seven singles and one LP, Woman Let Me Sing You a Song; none of them charted, and he was soon dropped from RCA.
His career saw a resurgence in Britain, where he was first rediscovered in the middle of the 1970s. A best-of was issued there in 1974, and RCA signed him again to tour there. His hit singles "Shadows of My Mind", "Redneck (The Redneck National Anthem)", and "A Good Old Fashioned Saturday Night Honky Tonk Barroom Brawl" (U.S. Country No. 55, 1977) reinvigorated his career in America; in Britain, he was well known for "I've Got to Get Peter Off Your Mind" and "Field of Flowers". After a break of several years, he began a career as a gospel singer in 1981.