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Larry Willoughby

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Larry Willoughby
Born(1950-02-24)February 24, 1950
Sherman, Texas, U.S.
DiedJanuary 14, 2021(2021-01-14) (aged 70)
Sherman, Texas, U.S.
Instrument(s)Vocals, guitar
Years active1983–2021
LabelsAtlantic America

Larry Willoughby (February 24, 1950[1] – January 14, 2021)[2] was an American country music singer-songwriter and the vice president of A&R at Capitol Records.[3]



Willoughby's debut album, Building Bridges, was released in 1984 by Atlantic America. Three singles were released from the album, including the title track, which was Willoughby's only single to reach the Top 60 of the Billboard Hot Country Singles chart.[4] It was covered in 2006 by Brooks & Dunn, whose version peaked at No. 4.[5] Another single from the album, "Heart on the Line (Operator, Operator)," was covered by Eddy Raven as "Operator, Operator" and reached the country Top 10 in 1985. Willoughby's songs have also been recorded by The Oak Ridge Boys, Waylon Jennings, and his cousin Rodney Crowell, who produced Willoughby's album.[3][6]

Willoughby had Alzheimer's disease.[7] He died in Sherman, Texas, at the age of 70, after contracting COVID-19 during the COVID-19 pandemic in Texas.[8]




Year Album US Country Label
1984 Building Bridges 47 Atlantic America


Year Single US Country Album
1983 "Heart on the Line (Operator, Operator)" 65 Building Bridges
1984 "Building Bridges" 55
"Angel Eyes" 82


  • Texas Rhythm, Texas Rhyme: A Pictorial History of Texas Music
  • Texas, Our Texas


  1. ^ A&R Executive Larry Willoughby Dies. Music Row. Retrieved February 15, 2021.
  2. ^ "Larry Willoughby, A&R Executive Who Signed Luke Bryan, Dies of COVID-19". Taste of Country. January 15, 2021. Retrieved January 15, 2021.
  3. ^ a b "Rodney Crowell: Ditchin' the "Country" Connotation". Vintageguitar.com. Archived from the original on April 30, 2020. Retrieved July 13, 2009.
  4. ^ "Crow, Gill to Harmonize With Brooks & Dunn". Cmt.com. Archived from the original on March 12, 2016. Retrieved April 12, 2020.
  5. ^ "Brooks & Dunn Are "Building Bridges" with Sheryl Crow & Vince Gill for Next CD". Archived from the original on September 23, 2015. Retrieved July 13, 2009.
  6. ^ Songs Composed By Larry Willoughby, AllMusic
  7. ^ LB Cantrell: A&R Executive Larry Willoughby Dies, musicrow.com, January 15, 2021
  8. ^ Larry Willoughby, A&R Executive Who Signed Luke Bryan, Dies of COVID-19