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Grammy winning Nashville Producer Larry Butler is Dead

A man with over a 100 gold and Platinum albums has died...Larry Butler Nashville Producer/songwriter and veteran musician. He was 69. Friend BJ Thomas among those speaking out...

My dear friend and music great Larry Butler died in his sleep last night. He was known for all the Kenny Rogers...
1/20/12 1:27 PM
25 million sold on The Gambler. A true legend. A sad day for all who loved him, as he was a wonderful guy.
1/20/12 12:40 PM
He was known for all the Kenny Rogers hits. He also co wrote Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song(Hey Won't You Play).
1/20/12 12:38 PM

Larry Butler is the first and only Nashville Producer to win the coveted Grammy Award for Producer of the year.

In addition to this most prestigious award Larry has added to his credits a Grammy for Song of the Year, CMA for Album of the Year, CMA for Song of the Year, Billboard Magazine Producer of the Year, ASCAP Producer of the Year, Record World Producer of the Year, BMI award winning songwriter, over 100 Gold and Platinum record awards, 12 years of consecutive weekly charting, writing awards, publisher awards, musician awards, Cashbox Magazine Instrumentalist of the Year, Inductee to the Country Music Hall of Fame Walkway of Stars.

Larry also holds an Honorary Doctorate of Performing Arts from the University of West Florida and the Leaders and Legends Award from Pensacola Junior College.

Larry Butler is the first and only Nashville Producer to win the coveted Grammy Award for Producer of the year. He won this prestigious award in competition with elite Producers like Quincy Jones and others from all genre's of music.

Larry began his career at the age of six with the Harry James Orchestra; at age ten he sang with Red Foley and before he was old enough to drive he had hosted his own radio show and co-hosted a live TV show in his market. He eventually joined a Florida band, Jerry Woodward and the Esquires. While on a trip to Nashville he met a noted publisher/producer, Buddy Killen of Tree International. In 1963 with Killen's encouragement, Larry moved to Nashville with only a few dollars in his pocket. He didn't waste any time before you could hear his unique style of piano on such hits as "Hello Darlin" by Conway Twitty and "Honey" by Bobby Goldsboro. Soon thereafter Larry was in high demand as a Nashville session player, backing up the likes of Johnny Cash, Roger Miller, George Jones, Tammy Wynette, Loretta Lynn, Dolly Parton, Bobby Goldsboro, Jerry Lee Lewis, Charlie Rich, Lynn Anderson and the list goes on....

Moving to Memphis in the late 1960's Larry hooked-up with Chips Moman. As the Gentry's they hit the pop charts with "Keep On Dancin'" and "Every Day I Have To Cry Some". During that same busy period of time Larry co-wrote the Poppies hit single "Lullaby Of Love", he was signed as a solo artist and served as Bobby Goldsboro's pianist and music director.

Larry returned to Nashville to join Capitol Records as an in-house producer. The very first single he produced, "Seven Lonely Days", became a Billboard Top-20 Country single for Jean Shepard in 1969. Moving on to CBS Records at the urging of legendary producer Billy Sherril, Larry worked closely with Johnny Cash producing some "the man in black's" biggest hits. So successful was the partnership that Larry became Cash's producer, pianist, musical director and studio manager.

1973 rolled around and Larry Butler made one of his most significant career moves by joining United Artists Records as head of the label's Nashville division. His leadership and vision brought in such acts as Kenny Rogers, Crystal Gayle, Dottie West and the Kendalls establishing the label as one of the most successful and respected in Nashville.

Eventually Larry left UA and started his own independent company, Larry Butler Productions. His actsincluded

Charlie Rich ("You're Gonna Love yourself In The Morning")
Mac Davis ("It's Hard To Be Humble")
Debbie Boone (Are You On The Road To Loving Me Again")
Billie Jo Spears ("Blanket On The Ground")
Don McLean ("Crying")
John Denver ("Some Days Are Diamonds").
Unquestionably, Larry's biggest success was producing Kenny Rogers. It was Larry who converted Kenny to Country Music and their magical studio collaboration yielded many of Kenny's greatest hits including,

She Believes In Me
The Gambler
Love Or Something Like It
You Decorated My Life
Coward Of The County.

Larry was also behind teaming Kenny and Dottie West to record the duets "Everytime Two Fools Collide" and "'Til I Make It On My Own". Larry also worked with Kenny and Kim Carnes on their smash hit "Don't Fall In Love With A Dreamer".

1980 brought Larry to the spotlight again with his Grammy for Producer of the Year and solidified his reputation as a hit maker, but, Larry was still an underated song writer. Larry teamed again with Chips Moman and penned the number 1 hit "(Hey Won't You Play) Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song". Topping the charts for both Pop and Country, the song became one of B.J. Thomas' greatest career hits. It was a BMI 3 million performance song and earned Larry Butler his second Grammy for Song of the Year. Tammy Wynette cut Larry's "Only The Strong Will Survive" while Billie Joe Spears cut " Standing Tall" which was also released by Lorrie Morgan in 1996. Larry writing credits include songs for Tree, United Artists music, April Blackwood, Great Cumberland, EMI and most recently in own Larry Butler Music.

1984 was the year Larry formed his music company, "Larry Butler Music Group, Inc. He signed writers Mickey Newbury, Dean Dillon and Julie Didier and CBS Songs administered his catalog. Larry's new group quickly produced a string of hits for George Strait including "The Chair", "Ocean Front Property" and "It Aint Cool". LBMG produced songs for Kieth Whitley, Eddie Raven, Kenny Rogers, Vern Gosdin, and Larry wrote "Wonder What You'll Do When I'm Gone" for Waylon Jennings, putting the company on the map. During a period of two short years LBMG had produced eight Top Ten cuts and and numerous Top Forty chart records.

Larry now resides in his home State of Florida and continues to produce new talent.


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