I was born in Youngstown, Ohio and lived in nearby McDonald with parents Becky and Bob and siblings Kip, Kathy and Geoff. We lived in Marion,Ohio from 1957-1964 before heading back to McDonald. I graduated from McDonald High School in 1966. My folks still live in McDonald. Dad's a retired school band director, still active in various community bands, teaching a few private students and playing occasional weekend wedding gigs on piano.
Dad began taking me to gigs at age 13, when I was starting to play guitar. He had started me on violin and piano around age 8, and tuba in the 6th grade. I became his "utility player" throughout school, playing tuba, trombone, sax, string bass, etc. This experience served me well in later years.
My first band, the "L & M's" (Larry, Mark & Mouse) in 1960, played for dances after athletic games at Ridgedale High School. I also played weekend gigs with dad on guitar and bass. At this time I also began playing string bass in the school jazz band.
When we moved back to McDonald I formed the "Huns," another school rock/dance band. After graduation, I entered Youngstown State University as a music education student majoring on tuba. While attending YSU, I performed in various local Youngstown bands, including the "Squires," "Upper Realm," "Three Rivers Blues Band"(with Freeland), and "Roadshow" (with Marshall and Pizzulo). We broke up several Youngstown groups to form "Brainchild" in late 1969, in which I played guitar (as the bass slot was occupied by Bodine).
After "Brainchild" broke up, I did a brief stint in a Holiday Inn lounge band, and a jazz trio called "Mirage" (with Grazier). Then the "Jaggerz" called me, and I performed with them until Bodine lured me to L.A. in 1976 with the promise of plenty of work. I slept on his couch until I found my own apartment. And he was right - the work was great.
I soon began recording, playing live gigs, and writing charts; I even landed a songwriting deal with CBS April Blackwood as a staff writer. However, I eventually wanted to be nearer to my family, so I moved to Nashville in 1979. Thanks to my L.A. contacts and some Youngstown buddies already living in Nashville, I went right to work. Since then, I've been on many top ten/number-one records with numerous artists. For a complete discography of my work, go to allmusic.com and search LARRY PAXTON. I was also featured in the book, Studio Bass Masters published by Miller Freeman/Bass Player Magazine.
In 1985 and 1992 I toured with Alabama. I've also performed with Emmy Lou Harris, Suzy Boggus and many others. I've been bandleader on "The Charlie Daniels Volunteer Jam" band and the annual Harlan Howard birthday bash. And I've performed live on TNN's Music City Tonight and Prime Time Country T.V. shows as staff bassist for three years.
I met my wife, Kristin Wilkinson, in 1983 while working on projects with her. She is a top arranger and violist with many gold records to her credit. You can also find her on allmusic.com by searching KRISTIN WILKINSON. Lately, we have been working together as a writing/arranging team. In 2000 we worked with Marty Stuart on the score for the Billy Bob Thornton film, "All The Pretty Horses," which received a Golden Globe nomination. Together, we have also arranged many orchestra sessions in the Country, Rock, and Christian fields while still actively pursuing our individual recording careers (just recently, Kris worked with Bruce Springsteen and I worked with Kid Rock!).
Life is good! We live in Green Hills, a quiet neighborhood in Nashville, with our two children Andrew(9) and Becky(14), and our dog, Katie. The kids are both computer nuts who enjoy music but don't seem to want to pursue it (although they've sung on a few sessions).
My oldest daughter Leah, an accomplished bassist and composer, also lives in Nashville with her daughter (my grand-daughter!) Katelyn (2 1/2 yrs. old). My brother, Kip, lives here, too, with his family and we enjoy their company whenever possible.
My future plans are to continue to record and arrange, concentrating more on instrumental albums, film and T.V. In my spare time I build and fly radio-controlled airplanes, work in my wood shop and collect and operate antique toy trains.
This reunion is the perfect opportunity for me to lose weight, get in shape and play some rock & roll guitar with my old buddies. Come on out and see us, folks!!!