Smokestack Lightnin' Home Page -- The Blues Profile Page


Larry Garner was born in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1952 and was raised around Baton Rouge.

He has been influenced by many of the Baton Rouge blues scene: Lonesome Sundown, Silas Hogan, Henry Gray, and Guitar Kelly. He writes his own material and this reflects his upbringing and surroundings.

Larry had his first guitar at eleven years old and he tells a great story in his live act about being taught a blues lick, which he practiced and practiced and was then "encouraged" by his proud parents to play at the church.

You need to see his arm movements, as he tells the story, to fully understand the level of skill he had reached........

He then moved through various musical styles before, rather inevitably, settling on The Blues. Larry served in Korea, still playing The Blues and then returned to Baton Rouge to get married. A family followed and he got a good job with Dow Chemical while playing Blues gigs in the evenings.

As Larry continued to play further afield from Baton Rouge he started to reach a wider audience and in 1988 he won the BB King "Lucille" Award for "Doghouse Blues".

The big break came in 1992 at the Burnley Blues Festival in England, where he was a big hit and this led to the London based JSP records signing Larry in 1993 (To general disapproval from his parents!) and "Double Dues" and "Too Blues" rapidly followed. Allegedly "Too Blues" was so called because a record company had turned him down in the past because his music was - "Too Blues"!

The Gitanes Jazz label in France (Owned by Verve) heard the JSP recordings and when Larry made another storming live appearance, this time in the "New Morning" club in Paris, they decided to sign him.

Subsequently "You Need To Live A Little" came out in 1995 to be followed by "Baton Rouge" in 1996

Larry left Verve in 1997 and subsequently he recorded " Standing Room Only " with the German Ruf label (Luther Allison recorded on the same label).

These days Larry seems to be touring all the time and if you get the chance, go to see him, because the man is definitely worth seeing live!