Ricky Skaggs can trace his involvement in country music right back to the age of six when he performed on stage with Bill Munroe, the founding father of bluegrass music. At the age of seven Skaggs appeared with Lester Flatt and Earl Scruggs on the Martha White country music variety show and since those early beginnings he has carved himself a niche in country music history and gone on to become a towering influence in modern country music. His success prompted guitar legend and famed country music producer Chet Atkins to claim "Ricky Skaggs single-handedly saved country music". Skaggs launched his solo career in 1980 and since then has chalked up no less than twelve number one hits, 15 Grammy Awards and numerous country music accolades along the way. The musical vehicle he has used to build his phenomenal success has been his band Kentucky Thunder, an ensemble featuring a gifted selection of seasoned bluegrass performers. Skaggs is an accomplished guitarist, fiddle player and banjo picker but the mandolin is undoubtedly his trademark instrument. He remains a key industry figure in the world of country music and continues to perform live and record albums.