Larry Stabbins was born in Bristol where he started playing saxophone at the age of eleven. He started a long association with pianist Keith Tippett when he was sixteen, at the same time serving his musical apprenticeship in countless soul bands, playing the music of Jnr Walker and King Curtis, James Brown and Sam and Dave. He later contributed to many of Tippett's projects such as Centipede, Ark, Tapestry and the Septet. In addition to occasional duo performances, in the mid-eighties they also worked as a trio for a time with percussionist Louis Moholo, while Tippett was himself involved in various Working Week and Weekend activities and Keith's wife Julie sang on the fourth Working Week album.
In London in the early 70’s after a short spell in the Brotherhood of Breath, he attended John Stevens’ Ealing workshops and played with the Spontaneous Music Orchestra, and occasionally with SME and the Dance Orchestra