Ricky Skaggs

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About Ricky Skaggs

Ricky Skaggs’ command of traditional form and embrace of progressive sounds made him one of the most influential figures in bluegrass and country. Born in Kentucky in 1954, Skaggs quickly figured out how to play the mandolin—a gift from his father—and performed with bluegrass pioneer Bill Monroe at age six. In short order, Skaggs established himself as one of the most talented players around—he joined Ralph Stanley’s Clinch Mountain Boys in the early ‘70s; started bluegrass group Boone Creek a few years later; and influenced Emmylou Harris’ sound in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s, crafting the earthy arrangements for 1980’s Roses In the Snow. Skaggs drove a resurgence in traditionalism in the ‘80s with country chart-toppers like 1981’s “Crying My Heart Out Over You,” 1982’s “I Wouldn’t Change You If I Could,” and 1985’s “Country Boy.” In the 21st century, he’s immortalized old friends on bluegrass tribute records and delved further into gospel with 2010’s Mosaic.

Cordell, KY, United States
July 18, 1954

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