Ricky Skaggs - A biography
Fourteen-time GRAMMY« Award-winner Ricky Skaggs’ career is easily among the most significant in recent country music history. If Skaggs’ burgeoning trophy case full of awards wasn’t already enough evidence of that fact, consider that legendary guitarist Chet Atkins once credited Skaggs with “single-handedly saving country music.” Not one to rest on his laurels, Ricky Skaggs is now actively defining and re-shaping the direction of another indigenous American genre of music – bluegrass.
Born July 18, 1954 in Cordell, Kentucky, Skaggs showed signs of future stardom at an early age, playing mandolin on stage with bluegrass pioneer Bill Monroe at 5 and appearing on TV with Lester Flatt & Earl Scruggs at 7. He emerged as a professional bluegrass musician in 1971, when he and his friend Keith Whitley were invited to join the legendary Ralph Stanley’s band the Clinch Mountain Boys.
Skaggs then went on to record and perform with progressive bluegrass acts like the Country Gentlemen and J.D. Crowe & the New South, whose self-titled 1975 Rounder Records debut album was instantly recognized as a landmark bluegrass achievement. He then led Boone Creek, which also featured Dobro ace and fellow New South alumnus Jerry Douglas.
But Skaggs turned to the more mainstream country music genre in the late ‘70s when he joined Emmylou Harris’s Hot Band, replacing Rodney Crowell. He became a recording artist in his own right in 1981 when his Epic label debut album Waitin’ for the Sun to Shine topped the country charts and yielded a pair of #1 hits. Overall, his productive stay at Epic Records would result in a total of 12 #1 hits. Additionally, he garnered eight Country Music Association Awards--including the coveted Entertainer of the Year trophy in 1985.
Skaggs, of course, fit right in with young “new-traditionalist” ‘80s artists like Randy Travis, and helped rejuvenate the country music genre after the worn-out “Urban Cowboy” period. But, Skaggs put his own stamp on the country format by infusing his bluegrass and traditional country music roots into the contemporary Nashville sound.
Skaggs’ 1997 album Bluegrass Rules!, released on his newly-formed Skaggs Family Records label, marked a triumphant return to bluegrass—which he’s solidified ever since with a series of GRAMMY« Award winning albums, recorded with his amazing bluegrass band, Kentucky Thunder (winners of the IBMA ‘Instrumental Group of the Year’ 6 out of the last 7 years). Skaggs’ has also served as a home for similar bluegrass and roots music-oriented artists including Cherryholmes and The Whites.
Ricky Skaggs’ career, then, has virtually come around full circle from its traditional country music foundation to the commercial country mainstream and back again--thereby effectively foreshadowing the bluegrass music explosion fueled by the 2000 Coen Brothers film O Brother, Where Art Thou? and its celebrated soundtrack. Today, he continues to record and tour with Kentucky Thunder as a performing artist, while at the same time, developing new up-and-coming artists for Skaggs Family Records.
The future of bluegrass is alive and wellů
The Del McCoury Band - A biography
Del McCoury is a very grateful man, and nowhere is that gratitude more evident than in The Promised Land , the first gospel album in a career now spanning five decades. Just a cursory look at the titles--and the copyright dates´┐Żwill tell you much about the man: Cannaan´┐Żs Happy Land (1937), Led By the Master´┐Żs Hand (1936), It´┐Żs Really Surprising (What the Lord Can Do) (1948), and Ain´┐Żt Nothing Going to Come up Today That Me and the Lord Can´┐Żt Handle (2006´┐Żco-written by Del). Could his peace of mind or optimism, his abiding respect for God, or his reverence for tradition be more clear? His only regret´┐Żnot making this album before his mother passed away in 2002. ´┐ŻThe fans have been asking for it for several years, and so did my momma, but it just did not feel right before now. During the last couple of years I´┐Żve been able to slow down a bit and take stock of my life. When I look at how my family has been blessed, the real purpose of making a gospel recording is pretty clear´┐Ża chance for all of us to say thank you to the One who has given us this wonderful life. I think the cover lets everyone know who we made this album for.´┐Ż
While the accolades and awards are appreciated, Del McCoury will tell you´┐Żand mean it´┐Żthat he was happy when he was cutting timber alone in the woods during the week and playing music on the weekend. ´┐ŻI used to travel forty miles and make seven dollars to play a night of bluegrass,´┐Ż Del McCoury says. ´┐ŻI always loved playing, always loved the road.´┐Ż He earns a little more and travels a little further nowadays, but the essential truth remains: Del McCoury plays and sings because he loves making music for a living and appreciates the people who have made that possible.
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First show of 2017 is here!
Billy Currington will return to the Ballroom Saturday May 13th. We are excited to be off and away for 2017. We will be announcing five more shows at the end of next week. Stay tuned.
2017 Concert Series announcements coming soon.
2016 was another fantastic year down at the beach. We saw 65 shows roll through the Ballroom and had some amazing times. Look for announcements on 2017 shows coming soon. If you have not signed up for our email lists please do so here http://pages.tmclient.ticketmaster.com/Profile/?b=4038d901-4de0-44a1-8a82-b78c065e5f56&m=1307247