GENE TAYLOR


Gene Taylor is an extraordinary blues piano-player and singer, born  in Los Angeles, California, in 1952.  At the age of eight, he came  under the influence of a family of blues and boogie-woogie players  who moved in next door to his house.  After starting out with the  drums, he switched to the piano and the guitar at age ten.  He  learned very quickly playing by ear and, at age 11, he began  performing in a 'family band' with his best friend Jim Payne and  Jim's parents. They worked occasional neighborhood functions,  giving Gene his first experience as a 'paid musician'---playing and  singing country music.

Having lost both his parents and brother by the age of 15, Gene was  firmly committed to the life of a musician.  After obtaining his  driver's license at age 16---and looking much older, thanks to an  already-receding hairline---he started finding local work with such  L.A.-based blues legends as Big Joe Turner, T-Bone Walker, Lowell  Fulson, and Pee-Wee Crayton.  In his own words, "Well, I was  playing good boogie-woogie and pretty fair blues at this point, and  going to blues jams with my fake ID (identification).  The word got  out that I wanted to work!  Since I was young and would work cheap,  I was hired by these guys sometimes as a 'fill-in' on local gigs  for the older piano players who weren't available or wanted too  much money!" ( laughter)  "But I was a quick learner and I had a  car---all the better to drive the older guys around!" (more  laughter)  This experience was invaluable to Gene's musical 
foundation.  And during this period, he met both James Harman and  Phil and Dave Alvin---who later formed The Blasters.


After working for James Harman during most of 1974, Gene was asked  to join Canned Heat.  He was a member of this legendary band from  November, 1974 until May, 1976---giving him his first international  exposure.


After leaving Canned Heat, Gene worked as a solo performer around  Long Beach, California.  He had a 2-year 'house-gig' at a notorious  Long Beach bar called the Falcon's Nest, owned by a now-deceased  gangster.  At this lively spot, Gene's audience occasionally  included various Los Angeles-area celebrities---most notably, actor  Robert Blake and poet Charles Bukowski.

In 1978, Gene immigrated to Toronto, Canada, to play music with his  friend Morgan Davis, a well-known Canadian bluesman.  He was based  in Canada from 1978-1993---though he continued to perform with  other artists world-wide.  During his years in Canada, Gene found  time to play and record with the Downchild Blues Band, Chris and  Ken Whitely, and the one-and-only Ronnie Hawkins (founder of The  Band).  During this period he also was a member of The Amos  Garrett, Doug Sahm, Gene Taylor Band---releasing a Juno Award- winning album, "The Return Of The Formerly Brothers" (1987) and  another recording, "Live In Japan" (I990).

While working with his good friend James Harman again, in 1981,  Gene was asked to join the Blasters---a band comprised of 4 friends  from his teenage years (Phil and Dave Alvin, John Bazz, and Bill  Bateman).  He played with The Blasters for 4 1/2 years, recording 4  critically-acclaimed albums for Warner Brothers records and appearing on every important music television show of the period.   In 1984 The Blasters were also featured in Walter Hill's major  motion-picture, "Streets Of Fire", for Universal Films.  Gene also  released his first solo record, 'Handmade', in 1986.  If this  wasn't enough, he also toured with the late Rick Nelson, between  Blasters engagements.

After leaving the Blasters at the end of 1985, and recording  'Handmade', Gene worked around Canada as a solo artist and with the  Downchild Blues Band---a band that, years before, had inspired  their fellow-Canadian Dan Akroyd to create the "Blues Brothers".   In 1992 Gene played on the live Red Devils recording, "King  King" (produced by Rick Rubin for Def American records)---since  this band was founded by his old friend Bill Bateman, the drummer  with the original Blasters.  He also did 2 more Blasters tours in  1991 and 1992.

In 1993, Gene relocated to Austin, Texas, and joined The Fabulous  Thunderbirds, remaining with this internationally-acclaimed band  until September of 2006.  During his almost-14 years with the T- Birds, he toured the world constantly and recorded two studio  albums and one live album with the band---plus, a live DVD!  He  also played on 2 of T-Bird leader Kim Wilson's solo CD's.  In 2003,  Gene released a self-titled CD on the Pacific Blues label and  participated in all the tours and recordings of the Blasters  'reunion'  from 2002-2003.  He has also appeared on a recording  (2006) with his dear friend, legendary L.A. bluesman, Carlos  Guitarlos---and of course, Gene continues to record and perform  with his friend of over 35 years, 'Icepick James' Harman (13  records and counting!).

BOEKINGEN: GENUINE MUSIC AGENCY
Postbus 1577, 4700 BN Roosendaal, Holland
Tel. 0165 - 553115     E-mail: info@genuinemusic.nl

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