The saying "when one door closes, another opens" could be applied to the late 60's, early 70's lineup of the hard rocking American group Cactus. The door closing was Jeff Beck being in a car accident. That thwarted the earlier formation of what would become Beck, Bogert and Appice. With Beck sidelined for more than a year, former Vanilla Fudge members Tim Bogert (bass) and Vinnie Appice (drumes) recruited guitarist Jim McCarty (Mitch Ryder's Detroit Wheels, Buddy Miles Express) and singer Rusty Day (Amboy Dukes) to form Cactus late in 1969. The group's thunderous live presence soon had critics blessing and cursing it as being the 'American Led Zeppelin'.
Amazingly, the first live performance the original lineup did was on a bill that included the Jimi Hendrix Experience, the Grateful Dead and the Steve Miller Band at Temple University in Philadelphia on May 16, 1970. Doubly amazing is that the Cactus set was recorded and is now out on an album titled The Birth Of Cactus - 1970. The blistering and roaring set delivered by the band is very impressive.
The original lineup only lasted a couple of years and three albums. McCarty parted ways with the group at the end on 1971 and Day got bounced soon after. The group came to an end when Bogert and Appice joined Beck in Beck, Bogert and Appice, a group that only lasted a couple of years and albums. Subsequent versions of Cactus would be formed by Duane Hutchings in 1973 and Rusty Day in 1976. McCarty joined the most recent reincarnation of the group in 2011 and Appice was involved in reviving some previously unreleased material from the band as recently as 2016.