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    Ricky Skaggs

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    Most Popular Songs (more)

    6,358 4.8/5
    Black-Eyed Suzie lyrics
    Tennessee Blues lyrics
    3When I Touch Jesus lyrics
    4Let It Shine lyrics
    5Goin' To The Ceili (instru.) lyrics
    6Love's Gonna Get You Someday lyrics
    7Patiently Waiting lyrics
    8Crossing the Briney lyrics
    9A Simple Life lyrics
    10Cajun Moon lyrics
    Cajun Moon feat. Ricky Skaggs

    Most Popular Albums (more)

    Don't Cheat in Our Hometown [Epic] [1983]
    Big Mon: The Songs of Bill Monroe (w. Friends) [Skaggs Family] [2000]
    3Tribute to the Stanley Brothers (w. Keith Whitley) [Jalyn] [1971]
    4Family and Friends [Rounder] [1982]
    5Waitin' for the Sun to Shine [Epic] [1981]
    6Second Generation Bluegrass (w. Keith Whitley) [Rebel] [1972]
    7Sweet Temptation (w. Emmylou Harris) [Sugarhill] [1979]
    8Highways and Heartaches [Epic] [1982]
    9That's It [Rebel] [1976]
    Skaggs and Rice (w. Tony Rice) [Sugarhill] [1980]


    By the time he was in his midthirties, Kentuckian Ricky
    Skaggs had already produced a career's worth of music. At
    age seven he appeared on TV with Flatt & Scruggs; at 15 he
    was a member of legendary Ralph Stanley's bluegrass band
    (with fellow teenager Keith Whitley). None of his '80s peers,
    male or female, had better musical credentials than Skaggs.
    The term "multi-talented" lacks the power to characterize this
    extraordinary singer and instrumentalist. Not only can he
    sing and pick with the best in progressive country, his broad
    and deep experience in traditional music separates him from
    the crowd. In the estimation of many, he is without peer as a
    combination vocalist and instrumentalist (guitar, mandolin,
    fiddle, banjo). After playing with Ralph Stanley for three
    years, Skaggs moved on to progressive bluegrass bands the
    Country Gentlemen and J.D. Crowe & the New South. With
    his own band, Boone Creek, he mixed the old and the new,
    adding Django Reinhardt. Skaggs took Rodney Crowell's
    place in Emmylou Harris' Hot Band in 1977, and the band's
    excellent Roses in the Snow album showcased Skaggs'
    versatility. Two number one hits came out of his 1981 album
    Waitin' for the Sun to Shine, and the awards started arriving.
    Skaggs is largely responsible for a back-to-basics movement
    in country music. He showed many that a bluegrass tenor
    with impeccable taste and enormous talent could sell
    traditional country in the '80s, a time when pop music had
    invaded the land of rural rhythm.

    Skaggs began playing music at a very early age, being
    given a mandolin from his father at the age of five. Before his
    father had the time to teach Ricky how to play, the child had
    learned the instrument himself, and by the end of 1959, he
    had performed on-stage during a Bill Monroe concert,
    playing "Ruby Are You Mad at Your Man" to great acclaim.
    Two years later, when Skaggs was seven, he appeared on
    Flatt & Scruggs' television show, again to a positive
    response. Shortly afterward, he learned how to play both
    fiddle and guitar and began playing with his parents in a
    group called the Skaggs Family. In addition to traditional
    bluegrass, Skaggs began absorbing the honky tonk of
    George Jones and Ray Price and the British Invasion rock &
    roll of the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. In his adolescence,
    he briefly played in rock & roll bands, but he never truly
    abandoned traditional and roots music.

    During a talent concert in his midteens, he met Keith
    Whitley, a fellow fiddler. The two adolescents became friends
    and began playing together, with Whitley's brother Dwight on
    banjo, at various radio shows. By 1970, they earned a spot
    opening for Ralph Stanley. Following their performance,
    Stanley invited the duo to join his supporting band, the
    Clinch Mountain Boys, and they accepted. Over the next two
    years, they played many concerts with the bluegrass legend
    and appeared on his record Cry From the Cross. Skaggs also
    appeared on Whitley's solo album Second Generation
    Bluegrass in 1972.

    Though he had made his way into the bluegrass circuit and
    was actively recording, Skaggs had grown tired of the hard
    work and low pay in the Clinch Mountain Boys and left the
    group at the end of 1972. For a short while, he abandoned
    music and worked in a boiler room for the Virginia Electric
    Power Company in Washington, D.C., but he returned to
    performing when the Country Gentlemen invited him to join
    in 1973. Skaggs spent the next two years with the group,
    primarily playing fiddle, before joining the progressive
    bluegrass band J.D. Crowe & the New South in 1974. The
    following year, he recorded another duet album with Whitley,
    That's It, and then formed his own newgrass band, Boone
    Creek, in 1976. In addition to bluegrass, the outfit played
    honky tonk and Western swing. Boone Creek earned the
    attention of Emmylou Harris, who invited Skaggs to join her
    supporting band. After declining her several times, he finally
    became a member of her Hot Band once Rodney Crowell left
    in 1977.

    Between 1977 and 1980, Skaggs helped push Harris toward
    traditional country and bluegrass, often to great acclaim.
    Skaggs also pursued a number of other musical venues while
    he was with Harris, recording a final album with Boone Creek
    (1978's One Way Track), two duet albums with Tony Rice
    (1978's Take Me Home Tonight in a Song, 1980's Skaggs &
    Rice), and finally, his first solo album, Sweet Temptation,
    which was released on Sugar Hill. Sweet Temptation was a
    major bluegrass hit, earning the attention of the major label
    Epic Records. The label offered him a contract in 1981,
    releasing Waitin' for the Sun to Shine later that year. The
    album was a big hit, earning acclaim not only in country
    circles, but also in rock & roll publications. By the end of the
    year, Skaggs had become a star and, in the process, brought
    rootsy traditional country back into the consciousness of the
    country audience.

    During 1982 and early 1983, he had five straight number
    one singles — "Crying My Heart Out Over You," "I Don't
    Care," "Heartbroke," "I Wouldn't Change You If I
    Could," "Highway 40 Blues" — as well as earning numerous
    awards. Later in 1982, he was made the youngest member
    of the Grand Ole Opry. For the next four years, he was a
    major artistic and commercial force within country music,
    raking up a string of Top Ten hits and Grammy Award
    -winning albums. His success helped spark the entire new
    traditionalist movement, opening the doors for performers
    like George Strait and Randy Travis. Toward the end of the
    decade, Skaggs wasn't charting as frequently as he had in
    the past, but he had established himself as an icon. Each of
    his records sold well, and he collaborated with a number of
    musicians, including Rodney Crowell, the Bellamy Brothers,
    Johnny Cash, Jesse Winchester, and Dolly Parton.

    During the early '90s, Skaggs and his traditional music
    were hit hard by the slick sounds of contemporary country,
    and consequently, his records ceased to sell as consistently
    as they had ten years earlier. Columbia Records dropped the
    musician from their label in 1992 due to poor sales.
    However, Skaggs continued to perform concerts and festivals
    frequently, as well as host his own syndicated radio program,
    The Simple Life, which hit the airwaves in 1994. The following
    year, Skaggs returned to recording with Solid Ground, his
    first album for Atlantic Records. Life Is a Journey followed in
    1997, and two years later he released Soldier of the Cross.
    Big Mon: The Songs of Bill Monroe followed in 2000 and was
    re-released in 2002 on the Lyric Street label as Ricky Skaggs
    and Friends Sing the Songs of Bill Monroe. In 2003, Skaggs
    released Live at the Charleston Music Hall on his own Skaggs
    Family label.

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