A life full of music. That's the story of Ricky Skaggs. By age twenty-one, he was already considered a "recognized master" of one of America's most demanding art forms, but his career took him in other directions, catapulting him to popularity and success in the mainstream of country music. His life's path has taken him to various musical genres, from where it all began in bluegrass music, to striking out on new musical journeys, while still leaving his musical roots intact.
Ricky struck his first chords on a mandolin over 50 years ago, and this 15-time Grammy Award winner continues to do his part to lead the recent roots revival in music. With 12 consecutive Grammy-nominated classics behind him, all from his own Skaggs Family Records label (Bluegrass Rules! in 1998, Ancient Tones, in 1999, History of the Future in 2001, Soldier of the Cross, Live at the Charleston Music Hall, and Big Mon: The Songs of Bill Monroe in 2003, Brand New Strings in 2005, Instrumentals in 2007, Salt of the Earthwith The Whites in 2008, Honoring the Fathers of Bluegrass: Tribute to 1946 and 1947, in 2009 and Ricky Skaggs Solo: Songs My Dad Loved along with Mosaic in 2010), the diverse and masterful tones made by the gifted Skaggs come from a life dedicated to playing music that is both fed by the soul and felt by the heart.
He counts the current configuration of Kentucky Thunder among the best group of musicians he has ever worked with. "This group of guys meets my approval every night," Ricky says. "Each and every one of the pickers in Kentucky Thunder totally amazes me in every showand that, to me, outweighs any award we could ever win." The all-star lineup of Kentucky Thunder includes Paul Brewster (tenor vocals, rhythm guitar), Jeff Picker (bass), Russ Carson (banjo), Jake Workman (lead guitar), Mike Barnett (fiddle) and Dennis Parker (baritone vocals, guitar).
With the release of Hearts Like Ours (2014), a dream came true for Ricky Skaggs and his wife, celebrated artist Sharon White of The Whites. Previously in 1987 the pair won a CMA Vocal Duo of the Year award for "Love Can't Ever Get Better Than This," but White was touring with her family band and Skaggs was on fire with his solo career, so releasing a full project wasn't possible at the time. This first-ever studio album is produced by Skaggs and White and features the couple dueting on handpicked country love songs.
Ricky Skaggs has often said that he is "just trying to make a living" playing the music he loves. But it's clear that his passion for it puts him in the position to bring his lively, distinctively American form of music out of isolation and into the ears and hearts of audiences across the country and around the world. Ricky Skaggs is always forging ahead with cross-cultural, genre-bending musical ideas and inspirations.
Tickets for this very special evening in the historic Cactus Theater:
First 3 rows (added row A1 , A, B): $75;
Remaining floor: $60 (Rows C-K);
Standard balcony: $45
Limited Balcony Box Seats: $75 (box seat also includes concessions)