Gene Taylor Years active 1968-2021
Gene Taylor (July 2, 1952 - February 20, 2021) was an American pianist best known for his boogie woogie style. Over a career spanning more than 50 years he accompanied many great musicians, produced several solo albums and was briefly part of Canned Heat.
Background information From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Taylor began his musical training as a drummer at age eight but two years later he had picked up both the guitar and his initial piano skills from boogie-woogie pianist-neighbours.
By the age of 16 he was an orphan and was essentially forced to fund himself - his receding hairline disguising his remarkable youth.
He soon found himself working with some of the big names in the West Coast blues scene including Big Joe Turner and T-Bone Walker, aided by the fact that he "was cheap" and had a driver's license and was thus able to not only add piano parts but also make sure that the musicians reached their gigs.
Harman and Canned Heat
In the mid-seventies he joined the James Harman Band and had a stint as pianist for boogie group Canned Heat between November 1974 and May 1976. There are no known recordings of Taylor playing with Canned Heat during this period but ten songs were later recorded with part of the band, Taylor playing piano with Larry Taylor and Fito de la Parra.
According to Canned Heat historian, Walter de Paduwa, Taylor's abrupt departure from the band came in 1976 when an apparently banal spat over a pizza at a restaurant in the south of France turned into a full blown argument. Taylor returning to Long Beach, California, then, two years later relocating to Toronto.
1980s and 1990s
From 1981 to 1984 he first toured with The Blasters, with whom he formed one of his most lasting and important collaboration that would eventually yield three albums. In 1986 Taylor finally recorded his first solo album, Handmade.
In 1993, Taylor relocated from Canada to Austin, Texas. Here he began to play with The Fabulous Thunderbirds, a partnership which would last until 2006 and included two 'solo' albums with the band's leader Kim Wilson.
In 2002, he also found time to join the tours and recordings for the “Original Blasters Reunion”. He recorded an eponymous second solo album for Pacific Blues in 2003 partly accompanied by James Harman and Bill Bateman.
This album included a version of "Pinetop's Boogie Woogie".
He toured as the Gene Taylor Trio, with drummer Nico Vanhove, and the guitarist Bart De Mulder. He played at the Brussels Boogie-Woogie Festival of 2012, which took place at the Théâtre St Michel on November 24.
Shortly after his death, the Dr Boogie show on Belgium's Classic 21 radio commemorated Taylor with an hour of its programming and cited him as 'almost Belgian'.
On February 20, 2021, Taylor's housemate - the filmmaker Monty McMillan - found him dead in his bed in their home in Austin, Texas. The cause of death was unknown, but is believed to have been related to the house having been without heat in the dead of winter due to the statewide power outages caused by the 2021 Texas power crisis.
Wikipedia: This page was last edited on 21 December 2021, at 16:24 (UTC).