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Byron Keith Taylor: News and Forum

Having a Blast! - August 10, 2019

Hello! So far the solo performances have been working well for me and I really enjoy playing in front of live audiences! In addition to that, I've been writing new music for the new CD I plan to release next year called "The Potter's Wheel." But for now, I am still promoting "The Byron Taylor Songbook" which is close to my heart because it sums up the music I've been writing all of my life up to this point> If you haven't already picked up a copy, please feel free to do so by going to the main page of this site and click on the BUY CD icon where it will take you to a few simple steps in getting the album. Take care and I'll write again soon!BKT :)

A New Chapter Begins... - July 27, 2019

Hi! Today I'm starting new rehearsals for upcoming shows! There is a lot more to do in 2019 so keep coming back for more news and content! BKT :)

Behind the Songs Pt.7 - July 20, 2019

Hello and welcome back  to the seventh part of my series, "Behind the Songs" which is based on the release of my CD, "The Byron Taylor Songbook." This week I will discuss another song from the album, "The Hero's Journey." I decided to put a brief instrumental on my project because t expresses my interest exploring other musical territory besides a Pop song. I studied under a wonderful composer and former teacher, Thea Musgrave, who taught me how to write for orchestra. The song's title was inspired by the writings of the famous mythologist and teacher, Joseph Campbell. His theory about how heroes throughout the centuries follows a certain pattern that he called the MONOMYTH. It even inspired George Lucas when he was creating Star Wars. The orchestration for this song was simple: violins, violas, cellos, basses, French  and English horn. It's under a minute long but I envisioned a brief musical interlude about a classic hero deciding to answer the call to adventure. BKT:)

Behind the Songs Pt.6 - July 5, 2019

Hello! I hope that my fellow Americans had a wonderful Fourth of July vacation and I always hope for peace, love, good health, and happiness all around the world! It's time for another installment of Behind The Songs. This time, I'll talk about not one but two of the songs from my CD, "The Byron Taylor Songbook." First, "The Raven Trail" is based on a concept I had many years ago about about an African-American raised by Indians  after the Civil War. It was influenced by a book I read by William Loren Katz called "Black Indians" which is about an underwritten chapter in American history concerning the relationship between African Americans and Native Americans. They had a closer relationship than what has been hinted at in cinema and literature. They were allies before, during, and after the Civil War and contributed to the vast panorama of American culture. I created a character called Kaw la Na which is Raven in the Cherokee language (I even snuck that name in the song. I loved the idea of putting a Cherokee word in a Pop song!). Later, after I wrote the song which takes place "across North Carolina plains" where they "Hug the earth " and "Kisses the rains." I got so carried away with my own self-made mythology about this fictional character that I even wrote a novel called "The Raven Trail." One day in the near future, I hope to publish it.

The other song I want to talk about is called "Tales from Worldhaven." It is based on the first novel I wrote called "Tarknelion's Quest," which is about a young man who finds a special sword but also finds himself embroiled in a war that has been going on for decades between two wizards that I call Lorecrafters. Worldhaven is a Steampunk realm I created where computers and magic co-exist, where horse carriages are computerized, where great goverrnments rise and crumble. The lyrics in the song basically tell the story about the novel, so listen closely the next time you hear it :). I am striving for it to be published as well as my songs. My primary influences for Worldhaven are the Eternal Champion book series from one of my favorite writers, Michael Moorcock, Robert E. Howard's "Conan" stories, Dr. Strange from Marvel Comics, and the Steampunk movement.

I looked at my discography again today and it reminded me about my life so far. Between the release of "Dreamwalk," and "The Raven Trail," as John Lennon mentioned in his great song, "Beautiful Boy," "Life is what happens while you're busy making other plans." Life did happen which is why there is such a huge gap between albums. I went to Ireland to study Comparative Literature at Dublin City University for a while, wrote two novels, finished most of what will be a third novel,composed many more songs, performed in different parts of the world, AND wound up getting three Master's degrees in the process. Needless to say, I was busy!:) 

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this latest segment of talks; please come again because I have so much more to share with you! BKT

Behind the Songs Pt.5 - June 15, 2019

Hello again! I'm really enjoying the process of talking about my songs in this format. Not only does it remind me of the inspiration behind them, but I hope it elucidates things about them for those who are curious about my writing process. This week, I'll discuss what went behind another song , "Nothing Lasts Forever." This song was a lot of fun to record because I was trying to show how much the Beatles have inspired me as a musician and artist.  When I sat down to score it, I knew that I wanted horns, specifically trumpets. I remember seeing a wonderful trumpet player in the subway whom I knew I wanted to invite to the studio because I enjoyed his playing so much. His name is Eganam and I ran into him again while he was playing at a street food fair. Then, I saw him playing a Bach trumpet which, as the name suggests, originated during Bach's time, and it was the solo instrument in the Beatles classic, "Penny Lane." When I started writing songs, I was listening heavily to the Beatles and was (and still is) a student of how they masterfully constructed songs. It was the perfect opportunity to add this element to this song I have been dying to record since I wrote it. I didn't go out to necessarily try to imitate the Beatles, but let's just say that I wanted to evoke a Beatles-like quality to the overall arrangement, It's a coming-of-age song about someone who has reached maturity and has to leave the comforts of home behind in order to grow as a person in the outside world. Take care and remember that the song can be listened to in the MUSIC section of my site. Take care! BKT

"Castle of Dreams"; the Lost Album - June 11, 2019

Hey gang!  For those of you who have seen my discography and are long-time fans of mine (thank you again!), you're probably wondering why you can't find a copy of my very first CD, "Castle of Dreams" anywhere. It's because I was never truly happy with the mix and mastering, so I decided to pull it from circulation until I fix it. But I promise to re-release it one day re-mixed, re-mastered, and sounding better than ever! :) BKT 

Behind the Songs Pt.4 - June 5, 2019

Hello and welcome to the fourth part of my series, Behind the Songs, which includes brief discussions about some of the material from my CD, "The Byron Taylor Songbook." Today. I'd like to discuss the song "With All Of My Heart." I took me only fifteen minutes to write the song (I kid you not!). The words and music both came to me at the same time in a rush and I couldn't stop writing and re-writing till I finished the song. Also, the events in the song actually happened to me. A long time ago, I met a British girl who was on holiday at a bar after I came from recording, and it was like love at first sight. We hit it off that night and we kept in touch after she went back to England. We wound up having a long distance relationship and I even went to visit here a few times. But alas, like most long distance situations, it didn't work out. This song is really about trying to maintain a long distance relationship which is not always easy (I'm sure that those who have had one know exactly what I'm talking about!). Well, that's the story behind the song. Come back for more! BKT :)

Back in the USA - May 25, 2019

Hey folks, I'm back! London was a blast! I had so much fun playing in wonderful places like OLD STREET RECORDS pub where musicians are truly treasured. The next time I'm in the UK, I'll play there again in a heartbeat! Now that I'm back in New York, I have a lot of work cut out for me like organizing shows and writing more music. Keep coming back for more news!:)BKT

London! - May 18, 2019

Hey gang! I'm here in London with my brother and having a blast! The interview with MuzicNotez online magazine is here! Click below on the link and check it out! BKT :)

http://www.muzicnotez.com/magazine/interviews/artist-interviews/2019-interviews/byron-taylor/

 

Upcoming magazine interview - April 24, 2019

Hey gang! I have an upcoming interview with a music e-magazine and once I do it, I'll give you the link here! In two days, I'm celebrating my Bday! Also, tomorrow, I'm performing briefly at a Bed Stuy place called Tilly's. I'm looking forward to it because I live close by! (convenience is a blessing!). For my next post, I'll continue the Behind the Songs series! BKT :)

Behind the Songs Pt.3 - April 16, 2019

Hello again! This week, I'd like to talk a little about the song, "She Doesn't Know It." I wanted to start the album with this song because I thought that it would be a nice start to the project since it's one of my earlier songs.Of course, the James Taylor influence is unmistakable, but I didn't really set out to imitate him who is one of the greatest Singer-Songwriters. I recorded with my Taylor acoustic guitar for the first time and will be my standard guitar for recording and performing from now on! The sound is unbelievable! I tried to write a song based on the male perspective regarding relationships. Men do feel and long for love even when we don't realize it. For the men who are reading this, haven't you ever thought of someone so much romantically but were afraid of exposing your true feelings? I hope I succeeded in capturing what I have certainly felt from time to time and I also hope that the song is relatable :). BKT

Behind the Songs Pt. 2 - April 11, 2019

Hello again! It's time for a brief look at another one of the songs that is on my latest CD, "The Byron Taylor Songbook, which is called "The Knight and the Queen." I wrote it a week before "With all of My Heart" and it was inspired by my love of medieval literature and myths. I wanted a love story between a knight and a queen to have a happy ending for a change instead of a Tristan and Isolde kind of fate. I wrote the score for strings,  French horns, and English Horn as a sort of Bach minuet since the song has a 3/4 time signature. I had so much fun writing the score with a glass of Chardonnay by my side (a habit I admittedly enjoy when writing scores, I may add, but only ONE glass of course!). I played every other instrument and sang the lead vocal in one take after having a hamburger(something I would not recommend but, hey, it  made me feel more comfortable!). So the next time you hear the song, think of it as a mini-tale of medieval love but also as a metaphor for a man who would do anything to protect his woman because he loved her and her strength added to his own.:)BKT

Behind the Songs Pt.1 - April 6, 2019

Hello! I hope you're enjoying the weekend. This is the first of a series of posts called "Behind the Songs" that will include a brief discussion of my songwriting process behind the music on my CD, "The Byron Taylor Songbook." The first song I'll discuss is "Livin' Without Your Love." This is the oldest song on the album because I wrote it when I was 14. Back then, I had a band and after rehearsal on the way home, I heard this bass line that jumped in my head and would not leave! I turned to my brother and said, "We have to get home right away! I have this song in my head!" So once we got home, I sang the bass line in my tape recorder and about 30 minutes later, I wrote the whole song! When my brother suggested that I re-record it for this latest project (and I'm so glad he did!), I went to the recording studio and recorded all the basic tracks myself and kept that lead vocal I did in one take (it wasn't my initial intention but I liked the vocal so much, I decided to keep it). Later, I scored the trumpet parts that were eventually played by the terrific Eganam Segbefia. David Dallon, my longtime friend, played and improvised those magnificent sax solos. Daryl Serrano, another longtime friend played the live drums. And last but not least, my brother, Lonnie sang the second lead vocal and background vocals with me. So there you have it! I hope you enjoyed reading!:) BKT

The Potter's Wheel - March 30, 2019

Hello! I hope you all are well. If you haven't already, pick up a copy of my CD, "The Byron Taylor Songbook." In my next post, I will start delving into the origins and influences of some of the songs. I will continue to perform solo for a little bit before I break out with a small band of friends who will play and sing with me. I'm really looking forward to it! I've mentioned many times before that I always plan an album ahead, so the new record way down the road will be called "The Potter's Wheel." I've written quite a few new songs for it that will take me in very interesting directions! Incidentally,  I just did an interview for Music Notez magazine, an e-zine that asked me some great questions. I'll post the link in the next blog! Keep coming back! BKT :)

Latest Update - March 23, 2019

Hello! I was just notified that I won the runner-up spot in the Unsigned Only Internet Radio competition which has led to MORE airplay for my music! That is quite an honor for me! My London trip is actually scheduled for mid-May and of course, I will be performing as well as getting some rest in-between. I have always loved the city and I'm really looking forward to going back there and my brother will be with me!:) I'm very excited about that because he has never been there before! Also, I have written more music for a future project that is already in the works! But now, my major concentration is on my latest CD, "The Byron Taylor Songbook." My next blog here will begin an in-depth look into some of the songs. The first one will be about "Livin' without your Love," which is a song I wrote when I was just 14 years old. I normally play just about all of the instruments usually in my recordings, but this one has a special line-up I'll tell you about in the next blog, so keep coming back because I have a lot to share with you!:) BKT

London, Here I Come! - March 12, 2019

Hi gang! I plan to do a performance in London. Looking forward to it! Will tell you more !:) BKT

Oscar Night - February 24, 2019

All I have to say is that I PRAY that "Black Panther" wins SOMETHING tonight!:)BKT

Soundcloud ROCKS! - February 23, 2019

Hello! I just found out that my station on SoundCloud is one of the suggested stations! That is extremely flattering! Here's the link:

https://soundcloud.com/stations/track/byron-taylor-16/01-she-doesnt-know-it

Come back for more info! :) BKT

I Will Walk With You - January 26, 2019

Hello! I decided to upload another one of my songs from "The Byron Taylor Songbook." It's called "I Will Walk With You." Today, I was thinking about the time when I wrote this song. I was so smitten with a particular woman that the song basically  (pardon the cliche) wrote itself. Have you ever been so in love that you could hardly see straight? Of course you have! Well, at the time, I was thinking of strong imagery that would show my devotion to her and what turned out to be an unrequited love  turned out to be one of my most requested songs in concert but, hey: I look back on that time and smile because at least I got a song out of it!  In fact, it was played at a few weddings of which I am VERY proud. Click on the link in the MUSIC section and don't forget to pick up a copy of the CD which is available here as well as in CDBaby! :) BKT

Soundcloud - January 13, 2019

Hi! You can check me out on Soundcloud as well. Just copy and paste the link:

https://soundcloud.com/byron-taylor-16

 

 

Planning Stages - January 13, 2019

Hello! I hope you enjoyed the holidays! Now that they're over, I'm getting back to work, so continue to follow the latest developments here in my website news! :)BKT

Happy New Year! - January 1, 2019

Hello. I wish everyone a healthy and Happy New Year! I'm looking forward to sharing my latest news with you in 2019! There are a lot of events in the works and I will definitely keep you posted! :) BKT

Livin' Without Your Love - December 28, 2018

Hi! I've made a new song available for you to hear in its entirety from my new CD, "The Byron Taylor Songbook." I wrote it when I was 14 years old and remains one of my all-time favorites! Enjoy!:) BKT

Happy Holidays! - December 26, 2018

Hello! I hope everyone had a great Christmas yesterday with family and friends! I enjoyed playing my new keyboard and coming up with new musical ideas! I think it's a good head start for the new year! :)There is more news to come so keep coming back! BKT :)

The Bitter End in NYC - December 14, 2018

Hi! I'm playing again at the Bitter End tomorrow during the open mic sessions starting at 1:15. If you want to come down, check me out, and say hello, please do! I'm pretty sure that I'll want to have a few full-fledged gigs there; it's such a cool place! Hopefully, I'll see you there either tomorrow or at future performances!BKT

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