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Charlie Sizemore

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Bluegrass singer, songwriter, and guitarist Charlie Sizemore was raised in the Magoffin County region of eastern Kentucky in a family where both his father and grandfather were banjo players, and he understandably grew up fascinated by mountain music and bluegrass. Sizemore's first instrument was the fiddle, which he began playing at the age of six, and by his teens he was good enough on guitar to play with local favorite Lum Patton and to tour with the Goins Brothers Band. He was 16 when he replaced Keith Whitley as the lead singer in Ralph Stanley's Clinch Mountain Boys, a testament to his considerable ability as a vocalist. Sizemore sang with Stanley for nearly a decade and appeared on over a dozen of Stanley's albums in the late '70s and early '80s before leaving to form his own Charlie Sizemore Band and to attend college. The band recorded seven albums (most of them for Rebel Records) and toured regularly over the next 12 years, during which time Sizemore also managed to graduate from the University of Kentucky with a degree in political science. Relocating to Nashville, Sizemore worked as a songwriter for Paul Craft Music (Ralph Stanley, Jimmy Martin, Doyle Lawson, the Dry Branch Fire Squad, and Del Reeves are among the artists who have recorded Sizemore songs over the years) and interned at a Nashville law firm while attending law school. After graduating he went into private practice as an attorney and continued to work, record, and tour with the Charlie Sizemore Band (current members include Matt DeSpain on Dobro, Danny Barnes on mandolin, Wayne Fields on banjo, and John Pennell on bass). He signed with Rounder Records in 2007 and his debut album for the imprint, Good News, was released later that same year. ~ Steve Leggett

Top Songs


Magoffin County, KY

Years Active:

'90s, '00s