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Jon Prell Answers the Question – Whatever Happened to Larry Boone?

A few days back, a guy called me and asked about a song he hadn’t heard in years, which is something I get quite frequently. He said the song had to with giving candy to a stranger. I immediately remembered the song as Larry Boone’s Don’t Give Candy to a Stranger, which was Boone’s highest charting record back in 1988. Larry Boone arrived in Nashville in the early 80s primarily as a songwriter, but his rich baritone voice was something that needed to be heard. Like so many writers, Boone would often sing the demo for a song he was pitching other artists, which got the attention of Mercury Records in 1986.

Boone had one of those great deep country voices and in my opinion, could write with the best of ’em. Boone had 14 chart records between 1986 and 1993 with ‘Candy’ being is highest charting record, peaking at number 10. Boone had two other top 20 hits including Wine Me Up which was a huge record for Faron Young back in 1969.

My favorite Larry Boone song hit the charts in March of 1990, a song called Everybody Wants to be Hank Williams, which peaked at number 75 and quickly disappeared. The song is very powerful in terms of what makes an artist great and what it takes to get to the top. It also personifies the notion about being careful what you wish for, because you just might get it. Success can be hard and not all it’s cracked up to be.

Below are videos for the above mentioned songs. Boone continued as a songwriter and has written hits for Marie Osmond, Don Williams, Tracy Lawrence, Kathy Mattea, Lonestar and many others and writes still today. I am proud to say I knew Larry Boone back when and still consider him one of the great natural country voices. Enjoy the music.


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