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Byron Keith Taylor: Press

"CASTLE OF DREAMS" A NEW CD FROM HELL'S KITCHEN MUSICIAN BYRON TAYLOR You may know BYRON TAYLOR from his gigs at BELLEVUE BAR on 9th Ave(formerly HELL'S KITCHEN BAR). Even though this talented musician/composer was born in Brooklyn, he has made Hell's Kitchen his second home. "Since I played the Bellevue Bar quite a few times", Byron told the CHRONICLE, "my Hell's Kitchen fan base has been building up. I hope the release of my CD, CASTLE OF DREAMS, will help me win a wider following." Byron, who attended the Aaron Copland School of Music and studied with composer Thea Musgrave, describes his music as a mix of Stevie Wonder and James Taylor with a Classical edge to it. The music of CASTLE OF DREAMS reflect's Byron's personal interest in mythology, particularly the King Arthur stories. While not all of Byron's songs contain medieval archetypes, he hopes he has created a contemporary Pop CD that also acts as a medieval narrative about two people who go through what Joseph Campbell called "The Hero's Journey" where they find each other, fall in love, and are transformed at the end. Byron wrote all the songs for CASTLE OF DREAMS, played 95% of the instruments, sang lead and background vocals, all while arranging and producing the CD. "I was pretty busy", Byron says with understatement. "One of the things I enjoyed most about making CASTLE OF DREAMS was using topnotch professionals." Topnotch is right. On Byron's CD you'll hear violinist LORENZA PONCE who toured last year with Sheryl Crow, and drummer JONATHAN MOVER who has played with Joe Satriani and Aretha Franklin. DAVE FISHER, who Byron calls his technical right hand man, engineered Lou Reed's latest release "Ecstasy". Byron received an assist on vocals from noted Jazz artist MELISSA HAMILTON...

CLINTON CHRONICLE July 2000

Who's Next?: A Music Review e-zine Los Angeles, CA Reviewed by Erin Sullivan Byron Keith Taylor Dreamwalk Visit Byron's website Songwriters Hall of Fame, Byron Keith Taylor, is a versatile musician and songwriter who can play over a dozen instruments, sing, compose, arrange and produce. He describes his sound as James Taylor meets Stevie Wonder with an underlying classical edge. The classical edge is easily heard in his sophisticaled compositional style. If you have a moment, visit Byron's website and you can see one of his manuscripts where he composed the oboe part for 'With All My Heart.' In addition to his early training on a variety of instruments, Byron attended the Aaron Copland School of Music and studied with composer Thea Musgrave. In one of his website postings, Byron states"I would not have been able to orchestrate any of Dreamwalk without being educated by Thea Musgrave, a world-known composer of Opera, symphonic, and chamber works. She helped me unlock all the hidden secrets in my brain that would allow me to go beyond just putting all my ideas on a tape recorder. I am forever grateful to the one whom I call the Scottish Queen for all she has done for me."Byron Keith Taylor is also blessed with a gift called Perfect Pitch. For those of you who are not familiar with perfect pitch, it is the ability of a person to identify or sing a musical note without the benefit of a known reference. In other words, if you asked Byron to sing you a C he could sing you a C without a piano or guitar playing it for him. So where is all this leading? Well, if you combine advanced studies in composition from one of the world's best teachers with the gifts of perfect pitch and the ability to play numerous instruments - it isn't hard to see how a refined songwriter is born. When Byron set out to complete Dreamwalk he stated that he wanted to achieve a fully- realized pop album that contained some of his very best material. He wanted this album to be laden with smooth vocals, orchestral strings and woodwinds – all of which he would play. So, the question any reviewer has to ask is this: Did Byron succeed with his CD? Is this a fully-realized Pop album? Dreamwalk is described as a 10 original pop song album that is produced, arranged, orchestrated and performed by the artist. Wow. Kudos to Mr. Taylor for such an accomplishment. The first song I listened to was The Knight and the Queen. The production, as in all of Byron's songs, is excellent. This is a song I could easily hear in film. The lyrics are plush, painting a mystical story and Byron uses great imagery to paint a love story. Two other songs of notable mention are "I Love You" and "With All My Heart." The song "I Love You" is probably Byron's best. The lyrics are simple: "I love you, I love you, No other words can say how I feel, I love you, I love you." What makes this song work is that even though the lyrics are very simple “ the song is never trite and this is something that Byron pulls off very well. In today's rough-edged world, Byron is re-introducing the simple love song with a rich compositional style that makes them anything but simple. Is the world ready to hear simple love songs again? Love songs that are written from the heart and treated with respectful orchestration? And love songs that honor and respect a relationship? I hope so! You can easily hear Stevie Wonder's influence in this song. It has a great pop feel and the chorus is simple and strong. I can't help but imagine this song on every DJ's list being requesting at weddings or by lovers around the world. The same holds true for the beautiful song "With all my heart." This reviewer can see Byron Keith Taylor hitting it big in the song-writing, arranging and production industry. If he hasn't done so already, Byron needs to get his songs heard by numerous publishers. If I had one criticism, it would be that although his vocals are very good, at times his vocal tone sounds thin against the orchestration. The bottom line: It is clear that Byron Keith Taylor wrote, composed and produced this album with all his heart and if a pure and simple story of love is something that you would like to hear enveloped in smooth vocals and refined orchestration, then you will love this album. It is timeless and refreshing. It is simple, yet sophisticated. Byron Keith Taylor's songwriting is primed for the Adult Contemporary market and I believe there are a lot of adults and listeners of all generations who would welcome back the simple, yet refined art of the love song. Song Review: I Love You Rating “ 4 (Great work)