Larry Paxton

Grand Ole Opry Staff Guitarist

«…My V52 is an amazing guitar. I always check new instruments by playing them unplugged. If they are properly set up and have fresh strings they should sing and sustain on their own. That’s exactly what the V52 did. After that little test I plugged it in to check out the electronics. Perfect!

I own several vintage guitars and the V52 has the feel, playability and sound that usually comes after years of playing. And…….you don’t have to take out a second mortgage to buy one!! …»

Larry was born in Youngstown, Ohio and graduated from McDonald High School in 1966. His folks still live in McDonald. Larry’s father is a retired school band director, still active in various community bands, teaching a few private students and playing occasional weekend wedding gigs on piano.

Larry’s first band, the «L & M’s» (Larry, Mark & Mouse) in 1960, playing at dances after athletic games at Ridgedale High School. He also played weekend gigs with dad on guitar and bass. At this time Larry also began playing string bass in the school jazz band.

When Larry moved back to McDonald and formed the «Huns,» another school rock/dance band. After graduation, Larry entered Youngstown State University as a music education student majoring on tuba. While attending YSU, he performed in various local Youngstown bands, including the «Squires,» «Upper Realm,» «Three Rivers Blues Band»(with Freeland), and «Roadshow» (with Marshall and Pizzulo). Braking up several Youngstown groups to form «Brainchild» in late 1969, in which Larry played guitar (as the bass slot was occupied by Bodine).

After «Brainchild» broke up, Larry did a brief stint in a Holiday Inn lounge band, and a jazz trio called «Mirage» (with Grazier). Then the «Jaggerz» called him, and he performed with them until Bodine lured me to L.A. in 1976 with the promise of plenty of work. Larry slept on his couch until he found his own apartment. And he was right — the work was great.

Larry soon began recording, playing live gigs, and writing charts; he even landed a song writing deal with CBS April Blackwood as a staff writer.

However, he eventually wanted to be nearer to his family, so he moved to Nashville in 1979. Thanks to his L.A. contacts and some Youngstown buddies already living in Nashville, Larry went right to work. Since then, he has been on many top ten/number-one records with numerous artists. For a complete discography of my work, go to and search LARRY PAXTON. He was also featured in the book, Studio Bass Masters published by Miller Freeman/Bass Player Magazine.

In 1985 and 1992 Larry toured with Alabama. He also performed with Emmy Lou Harris, Suzy Boggus and many others. Larry has been bandleader on «The Charlie Daniels Volunteer Jam» band and the annual Harlan Howard birthday bash. Also performing live on TNN’s Music City Tonight and Prime Time Country T.V. shows as staff bassist for three years.

Larry met his 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 by searching KRISTIN WILKINSON. Lately, they have been working together as a writing/arranging team. In 2000 they worked with Marty Stuart on the score for the Billy Bob Thornton film, «All The Pretty Horses,» which received a Golden Globe nomination.

Together, they have also arranged many orchestra sessions in the Country, Rock, and Christian fields while still actively pursuing their individual recording careers (just recently, Kris worked with Bruce Springsteen and Larry worked with Kid Rock!).

Vintage ICON V52MRBS