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Music Storytellers - VOL 68 - JAMES TAYLOR (Edited 06/05/12 04:06PM by )
Music Storytellers - VOL 68 - JAMES TAYLOR <span style="font-size:12px;">(Edited 06/05/12 04:06PM by )</span> Photo 

James Taylor - 


James Taylor was the archetypal sensitive singer/songwriter of the Seventies. His songs, especially his early material, were tales of inner torment delivered in low-key tunes, with Taylor's understated tenor backed by intricate acoustic guitar parts that drew on folk and jazz. Taylor came across as relaxed, personable, and open; he was imitated by a horde of would-be confessionalists, although his best songs were as artful as they were emotional. They weren't folk songs; they were pop compositions with folk dynamics, and in them Taylor put across more bitterness and resignation than reassurance. As he continued to record, Taylor split his albums between cover singles that were hits ("Handy Man," "You've Got a Friend") and his own songs, maturing into a laid-back artist with a large and devoted following of baby boomers.

Born into a wealthy family, Taylor grew up in Boston. The family subsequently lived in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, where James' father became dean of the medical school of the University of North Carolina, and on Martha's Vineyard off the coast of Cape Cod. Everyone in the family was musical; James initially played the cello. His older brother Alex introduced him to folk and country music, and James soon took up the guitar. When he was 15, summering on Martha's Vineyard, he met another budding guitarist, Danny Kortchmar. Taylor attended high school at a private academy outside Boston. Lonely away from his family, he took off a term in his junior year to return to Chapel Hill, where he played local gigs with Alex's rock band. In 1965 he committed himself to a mental institution — McLean Psychiatric Hospital in Belmont, Massachusetts — to which his sister Kate and brother Livingston would later be admitted. There he began writing songs.

After 10 months, he discharged himself and went to New York, where Kortchmar was putting together the Flying Machine. The group played Greenwich Village coffee-houses and recorded two Taylor originals, "Night Owl" and "Brighten Your Night With My Day," before breaking up. Their demo tape was released as an album after Taylor became popular. One reason for the group's breakup was Taylor's addiction to heroin. In early 1968 he went to England, and in London he recorded a tape of his material and sent it to Peter Asher. As an A&R man for the Beatles' Apple Records, Asher encouraged Paul McCartney to sign him. In mid-1968 Taylor recorded his debut album in London; Asher produced and McCartney and George Harrison sat in on one cut. The LP attracted little attention, and Taylor, still hooked on heroin at the end of the year, returned to America and signed himself into another mental institution. During Taylor's five-month stay, with Apple in disarray, Asher — who became Taylor's producer and manager — negotiated a contract between Taylor and Warner Bros. Before Taylor was released, his solo stage debut at L.A.'s Troubadour had been arranged. From there he went to the Newport Folk Festival, where he met Joni Mitchell (she sang on Mud Slide Slim, and he played guitar on her autobiographical Blue).

Taylor and Asher rounded up Kortchmar, bassist Lee Sklar, drummer Russ Kunkel, and pianist Carole King to back him on his second album. Sweet Baby James attracted little attention initially, but "Fire and Rain" became a Number Three hit. Sweet Baby James reached the Top 10 in November 1970 and stayed on the LP chart into 1972. Taylor's Apple debut was rereleased, entering the charts in October with the single "Carolina in My Mind." Taylor appeared on a March 1971 cover of Time magazine, which hailed his ascent to stardom as a turn toward maturity and restraint in pop music, but at the same time publicized his drug abuses and other skeletons in his and his family's closet. The article also alluded to a possible dynasty of Taylor-made pop stars. Livingston Taylor had launched his singing and songwriting career before his older brother had become famous, but Alex and Kate, while unquestionably musical, found less success.

Within two months of its release, Mud Slide Slim was the nation's Number Two album. Taylor's version of Carole King's "You've Got a Friend" hit Number One in 1971, the same year that King's version came out on Tapestry. That year Taylor costarred with Dennis Wilson of the Beach Boys in the film Two-Lane Blacktop.

Then, almost as suddenly as he had emerged into public attention, he retreated from it. Except for a few benefit concerts for George McGovern's 1972 presidential campaign, Taylor did not perform for another three years. He married Carly Simon in November 1972. Taylor continued to make and sell albums, but he didn't score a Top 10 single between "You've Got a Friend" and 1975. ("Mockingbird," a duet, was released by Simon in 1974.) One Man Dog (Number Four, 1973) contained "Don't Let Me Be Lonely Tonight" (Number 14, 1973); Walking Man (Number 13, 1974) boasted no hit singles.

A month-long tour in 1974 signaled Taylor's reemergence. He returned to the charts with Gorilla (Number Six, 1975). Taylor's cover of "How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved by You)" hit Number Five in 1975. JT, including a Top 5 cover of the Jimmy Jones–Otis Blackwell "Handy Man," was Taylor's first release on Columbia. Greatest Hits (Number 23, 1976), for which he rerecorded "Carolina in My Mind" and "Something in the Way She Moves," fulfilled his obligations to Warners. It would go on to sell over 11 million copies. He signed Columbia's lucrative contract before Hits was released. The double-platinum JT (Number Four, 1977) also marked Asher's return as producer.

Taylor's albums since JT have not quite repeated its success — Flag and Dad Loves His Work both hit Number 10 — but they have sold consistently. In 1978 he joined Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel on a Top 20 cover of Sam Cooke's "Wonderful World," released by Garfunkel. In 1979 he wrote a couple of songs for a Broadway musical, WorkingFlag yielded a Top Thirty hit with Taylor's typically understated cover of the Brill Building classic "Up on the Roof." Taylor continued to support a variety of causes with benefit concerts. He campaigned for Jimmy Carter in 1976 and for John Anderson in 1980; in 1979 he participated in the MUSE antinuclear rally concerts at Madison Square Garden and appeared in the concert film No Nukes.

Taylor's 1981 album, Dad Loves His Work yielded a hit single duet with J.D. Souther, "Her Town Too" (Number 11), released amid rumors that his marriage to Simon was ending. In 1982 Simon sued Taylor for divorce. From 1982 through 1985 Taylor toured the globe, with a band featuring Little Feat's Bill Payne on piano. That's Why I'm Here (Number 34, 1985), with guests including Joni Mitchell, Don Henley, and Graham Nash, yielded only a minor hit single in a cover of Buddy Holly's "Everyday" (Number 61, 1985). In December 1985 Taylor wed for the second time, to Kathryn Walker. He continued touring extensively between albums that remained popular — 1991's New Moon Shine (Number 37), for instance, sold over a million copies.

The mid-Nineties were a time of personal trial for Taylor, who lost his brother Alex to alcoholism in 1994 and divorced Walker in 1996. His first studio album in six years, Hourglass (Number Nine, 1997) was yet another platinum success and went on to win the Grammy for Best Pop Album, showing that the singer/songwriter remained impervious to the vagaries of musical trends. Taylor, who has been clean and sober since 1984, married Carolyn Smedvig in 2001. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2000.

In 2008, Taylor released Covers, an album of classics by the likes of Leonard Cohen, Buddy Holly and Eddie Cochran. In the summer of 2010 he launched a co-headlining tour arena with old friend Carole King.

One of the most successful touring solo acts of the past forty years, Taylor summed up his philosophy nicely on his 1985 song "That's Why I'm Here". "Fortune and fame's such a curious game/Perfect strangers can call you by name/Pay money to hear 'Fire and Rain' again and again and again…I break into a grin from year to year /And suddenly it's perfectly clear/That's why I'm here."


Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/artists/james-taylor/biography#ixzz1wx2IpkP6

| Closed on 07/05/12 at 05:00PM
FanIQ Pts? No | Locker Room, Music | Numeric Input Opinion Poll
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108.7781. Music Storytellers - VOL 68 - JAMES TAYLOR

 &nbp;
TOP COMMENT * * * * * * * * * * * *
#31 | 805 days ago

ms_hippie_queen wrote:
i'm just here to see beans' answer
Ha. smiley

You got it. 

James Taylor has been a part of my life since 1970, maybe even the late 60s. I have 15 or so vinyl and every CD I could find of him. Owned a few 8-tracks in '70s. I have played his songs since around '73. I still have and use the music/chord book from then. I have three volumes of chord books of 15 or so albums. His music has got me through so much, listening to it and playing it. He went through a lot of ****, maybe that is why I dig him. Had an ex tell me once as she walked through a room I was playing in and tell me I sounded more like James Taylor than James Taylor does. I wish, still I took that as a compliment. Seen him in person 4 times and would love to see a few more of his concerts. 

There is nothing better than sitting around picking and singing his tunes while enjoying a cold beverage and a good cigar. 

Nothing.     yes
  
57 Comments | Sorted by Most Recent First | Red = You Disagreed
Vote for your favorite comments. Fans decide the Top Comment (3+ votes) and also hide poor quality comments (4+ votes).
#1 | 805 days ago

i'm just here to see beans' answer
#2 | 805 days ago
unopescatore (+)

Boston Sucks!!! laugh
#3 | 805 days ago
Nick__ (+)

unopescatore wrote:
Boston Sucks!!! laugh
You're an angry little man, aren't you, Joe???

What's the matter?? Someone sh** in your Captain Crunch?   wink
77  
#4 | 805 days ago
unopescatore (+)

Nick__ wrote:
You're an angry little man, aren't you, Joe???

What's the matter?? Someone sh** in your Captain Crunch?   wink
what's this "little" sh-t Nick.  u're 2" taller then me & it aint where it counts bro. blush  I don't like James Taylor & Boston Sucks & I prefer Frosted Flakes bromeo. wink
#5 | 805 days ago

Both of you are short. 
#6 | 805 days ago
Nick__ (+)

unopescatore wrote:
what's this "little" sh-t Nick.  u're 2" taller then me & it aint where it counts bro. blush  I don't like James Taylor & Boston Sucks & I prefer Frosted Flakes bromeo. wink
Well, it sounded funnier to say "little man" and you are shorter than me (ha).

It's ok if you don't like some of the artists that I post, but, is it REALLY necessary to cloud my polls with hate?  (jk)  lol

You like Frosted Flakes or ARE you a Frosted Flake?
77  
#7 | 805 days ago
Nick__ (+)

(Edited by Nick__)
jswol54 wrote:
Both of you are short. 
SHUT IT, YA LUSH!

   
77  
#8 | 805 days ago

Not that anyone cares, but for a time I didn't like him, and it was only because I confused him with Jackson Browne.....he's a cool laid back kinda fella, and I like those kinds of guys. Sorry James...my bad.
367  
#9 | 805 days ago

unopescatore wrote:
what's this "little" sh-t Nick.  u're 2" taller then me & it aint where it counts bro. blush  I don't like James Taylor & Boston Sucks & I prefer Frosted Flakes bromeo. wink
I find it interesting that you know Nick is 2 inches taller than you.
367  
#10 | 805 days ago
unopescatore (+)

Nick__ wrote:
Well, it sounded funnier to say "little man" and you are shorter than me (ha).

It's ok if you don't like some of the artists that I post, but, is it REALLY necessary to cloud my polls with hate?  (jk)  lol

You like Frosted Flakes or ARE you a Frosted Flake?
I'm just gonna hose up your post even more if I answer these questions. sucks don't equal hate in my book. They're allowing transgenders in the Miss America pagent...u should rep Illinois. :) We should take this in Filter Feed bro. :)
#11 | 805 days ago
Nick__ (+)

JenX63 wrote:
Not that anyone cares, but for a time I didn't like him, and it was only because I confused him with Jackson Browne.....he's a cool laid back kinda fella, and I like those kinds of guys. Sorry James...my bad.
I care!  I like reading what people have to say about the artists I post......well, as long as they aren't HATE posts!
77  
#12 | 805 days ago
unopescatore (+)

JenX63 wrote:
I find it interesting that you know Nick is 2 inches taller than you.
laugh I had to look it up Jen....I was wondering why he was chirping me up like that.
#13 | 805 days ago
Nick__ (+)

(Edited by Nick__)
unopescatore wrote:
I'm just gonna hose up your post even more if I answer these questions. sucks don't equal hate in my book. They're allowing transgenders in the Miss America pagent...u should rep Illinois. :) We should take this in Filter Feed bro. :)
James Taylor DOES NOT suck!  That's not even an opinion. Most artists that suck, don't end up in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (except GUNS N ROSES - now they sucked!)!

As for the Miss America contest, don't be jealous that I am beautiful enough to actually be the Illinois rep!  cool



77  
#14 | 805 days ago
unopescatore (+)

Nick__ wrote:
I care!  I like reading what people have to say about the artists I post......well, as long as they aren't HATE posts!
come on Nick...pull it together....he sucks....I don't hate on the guy though. laugh
#15 | 805 days ago
Nick__ (+)

JenX63 wrote:
I find it interesting that you know Nick is 2 inches taller than you.
That's probably not the only thing that I have, at least, 2 inches more than him, too!
77  
#16 | 805 days ago

Nick__ wrote:
SHUT IT, YA LUSH!

   
I really don't know where you get this crazy idea that I'm a lush.  I like to drink, but in no way am I a lush.   

But by all means, if it helps you sleep at night, keep saying it, champ! 

In other news, James Taylor is more overrated than Nickelback. 
#17 | 805 days ago

jswol54 wrote:
I really don't know where you get this crazy idea that I'm a lush.  I like to drink, but in no way am I a lush.   

But by all means, if it helps you sleep at night, keep saying it, champ! 

In other news, James Taylor is more overrated than Nickelback. 
367  
#18 | 805 days ago
Nick__ (+)

(Edited by Nick__)
jswol54 wrote:
I really don't know where you get this crazy idea that I'm a lush.  I like to drink, but in no way am I a lush.   

But by all means, if it helps you sleep at night, keep saying it, champ! 

In other news, James Taylor is more overrated than Nickelback. 
First of all,  that last sentence in which you THINK JT is more overrated that NB, makes me realize that you don't (edited) KNOW sh** about music!

Then again, you are only 31, and JT is more appreciated by us older folks!  cool

Secondly, 


    
77  
#19 | 805 days ago

Nick__ wrote:
First of all,  that last sentence in which you THINK JT is more overrated that NB, makes me realize that you don't (edited) KNOW sh** about music!

Then again, you are only 31, and JT is more appreciated by us older folks!  cool

Secondly, 


    
Why would I sh*t over music? 
#20 | 805 days ago
unopescatore (+)

jswol54 wrote:
Both of you are short. 
I'm not checking u're height chief. laugh  It's getting creepy in here.
#21 | 805 days ago
unopescatore (+)

Nickleback sucks too.
#22 | 805 days ago

unopescatore wrote:
I'm not checking u're height chief. laugh  It's getting creepy in here.
I just assume everyone on here is shorter than me.  And yes, Nickelback sucks. 

Most overrated bands/musicians in history:

1. The Beatles
2. Rolling Stones
3. James Taylor
4. Nickelback
5. Any death/heavy metal band
#23 | 805 days ago

I :heart: Nickelback.

James Taylor...notsomuch.


: D
#24 | 805 days ago
Nick__ (+)

jswol54 wrote:
Why would I sh*t over music? 
Because it's good for your colon??

Man, my typing SUCKS!
77  
#25 | 805 days ago
Nick__ (+)

jswol54 wrote:
I just assume everyone on here is shorter than me.  And yes, Nickelback sucks. 

Most overrated bands/musicians in history:

1. The Beatles
2. Rolling Stones
3. James Taylor
4. Nickelback
5. Any death/heavy metal band
Except for Sid. He's like 6'7?
77  
#26 | 805 days ago
unopescatore (+)

jswol54 wrote:
I just assume everyone on here is shorter than me.  And yes, Nickelback sucks. 

Most overrated bands/musicians in history:

1. The Beatles
2. Rolling Stones
3. James Taylor
4. Nickelback
5. Any death/heavy metal band
take out the Beatles & Stones & put in Chicago and Styxs and I'll agree completely. wink


just busting u're chops man. laugh
#27 | 805 days ago

Nick__ wrote:
Except for Sid. He's like 6'7?
Well I didn't know that.  Much like my little bro growing to be taller than me, now I'm mad. 

Sid, I'm gonna need you to go ahead and give Alain a few inches.  He REALLY wants to ride a roller coaster before his time on earth is over.

kthnxbai
#28 | 805 days ago

(Edited by kobe_lova)
jswol54 wrote:
Well I didn't know that.  Much like my little bro growing to be taller than me, now I'm mad. 

Sid, I'm gonna need you to go ahead and give Alain a few inches.  He REALLY wants to ride a roller coaster before his time on earth is over.

kthnxbai
You're stooopid. lol


p.s. my sibs are 18, 14, and 14... all taller than me.
#29 | 805 days ago

I'm 5'8!  indecision
#30 | 805 days ago

kobe_lova wrote:
You're stooopid. lol


p.s. my sibs are 18, 14, and 14... all taller than me.
#31 | 805 days ago

ms_hippie_queen wrote:
i'm just here to see beans' answer
Ha. smiley

You got it. 

James Taylor has been a part of my life since 1970, maybe even the late 60s. I have 15 or so vinyl and every CD I could find of him. Owned a few 8-tracks in '70s. I have played his songs since around '73. I still have and use the music/chord book from then. I have three volumes of chord books of 15 or so albums. His music has got me through so much, listening to it and playing it. He went through a lot of ****, maybe that is why I dig him. Had an ex tell me once as she walked through a room I was playing in and tell me I sounded more like James Taylor than James Taylor does. I wish, still I took that as a compliment. Seen him in person 4 times and would love to see a few more of his concerts. 

There is nothing better than sitting around picking and singing his tunes while enjoying a cold beverage and a good cigar. 

Nothing.     yes
#32 | 805 days ago

unopescatore wrote:
Boston Sucks!!! laugh
dude, how can you say Boston sucks. do you have any idea how tough it is to make every  song sound the same? 
i say they swallow.
69  
#33 | 805 days ago
unopescatore (+)

kmj22 wrote:
I'm 5'8!  indecision
yea but you're smoken hot. laugh
#34 | 805 days ago

(Edited by kobe_lova)
WISAC1 wrote:
dude, how can you say Boston sucks. do you have any idea how tough it is to make every  song sound the same? 
i say they swallow.
heh.



(and um, there's nothing wrong with that :| )
#35 | 805 days ago

Beaneaters wrote:
Ha. smiley

You got it. 

James Taylor has been a part of my life since 1970, maybe even the late 60s. I have 15 or so vinyl and every CD I could find of him. Owned a few 8-tracks in '70s. I have played his songs since around '73. I still have and use the music/chord book from then. I have three volumes of chord books of 15 or so albums. His music has got me through so much, listening to it and playing it. He went through a lot of ****, maybe that is why I dig him. Had an ex tell me once as she walked through a room I was playing in and tell me I sounded more like James Taylor than James Taylor does. I wish, still I took that as a compliment. Seen him in person 4 times and would love to see a few more of his concerts. 

There is nothing better than sitting around picking and singing his tunes while enjoying a cold beverage and a good cigar. 

Nothing.     yes
I was kidding about JT being overrated, Beans.  Just wanted you to know that. 

yea but you're smoken hot.

Which one?  Don't like 18 people use her profile? 
#36 | 805 days ago

kmj22 wrote:
I'm 5'8!  indecision
And I'm Rick James, bit*h! 
#37 | 805 days ago

jswol54 wrote:
And I'm Rick James, bit*h! 
I'm in no way disrespectful to you, so stop disrespecting me. You don't know me, and I don't know you. Stop replying to my posts
#38 | 805 days ago

kmj22 wrote:
I'm in no way disrespectful to you, so stop disrespecting me. You don't know me, and I don't know you. Stop replying to my posts
Or what....you gonna PQ me?  Hahahaha.  You sure showed me! 
#39 | 805 days ago

This is amusing.  Carry on, please.  
#40 | 805 days ago

janet011685 wrote:
This is amusing.  Carry on, please.  
(hehehe)
#41 | 805 days ago

OOC!! I love it!
#42 | 805 days ago

kmj22 wrote:
I'm in no way disrespectful to you, so stop disrespecting me. You don't know me, and I don't know you. Stop replying to my posts
some people kmj22
#43 | 804 days ago

jswol54 wrote:
I was kidding about JT being overrated, Beans.  Just wanted you to know that. 

yea but you're smoken hot.

Which one?  Don't like 18 people use her profile? 
My best guess, only two. Mother who also uses daughter's pics.
#44 | 804 days ago

Isn't this really just about Beans?
2  
#45 | 804 days ago

curt200586518 wrote:
some people kmj22
What do you mean by some people? 
#46 | 804 days ago
unopescatore (+)

jswol54 wrote:
What do you mean by some people? 
why ya all salty with kmj22???....u 2 must have a history.

kinda like me and Janet....although I respect her cause she's from jersey & a smart arse. laugh


Nick....see what ya did creating this crappy arse James (I suck) Taylor thread....come on bro!!!!! laugh
#47 | 804 days ago

unopescatore wrote:
why ya all salty with kmj22???....u 2 must have a history.

kinda like me and Janet....although I respect her cause she's from jersey & a smart arse. laugh


Nick....see what ya did creating this crappy arse James (I suck) Taylor thread....come on bro!!!!! laugh
No history.  She clearly can't take a joke.  Nothing more, nothing less. 

Must be a St. Louis thang yo.....
#48 | 804 days ago

(Edited by kobe_lova)
jswol54 wrote:
No history.  She clearly can't take a joke.  Nothing more, nothing less. 

Must be a St. Louis thang yo.....
Is that wear where shirtless, livid dude was from?
#49 | 804 days ago

kobe_lova wrote:
Is that wear where shirtless, livid dude was from?
Yep!
#50 | 804 days ago

jswol54 wrote:
Yep!
It's all making sense...
#51 | 804 days ago

kobe_lova wrote:
It's all making sense...
You're kinda slow sometimes....
367  
#52 | 804 days ago

JenX63 wrote:
You're kinda slow sometimes....
Ma'am, I think the word you are looking for is SPECIAL, tyvm.
#53 | 804 days ago

kobe_lova wrote:
Ma'am, I think the word you are looking for is SPECIAL, tyvm.
367  
#54 | 802 days ago

JenX63 wrote:
Not that anyone cares, but for a time I didn't like him, and it was only because I confused him with Jackson Browne.....he's a cool laid back kinda fella, and I like those kinds of guys. Sorry James...my bad.
So does that mean you don't like Jackson Browne but you like James Taylor? Or is it that you were confusing the two JB and JT.?
#55 | 802 days ago

evilquacks101 wrote:
So does that mean you don't like Jackson Browne but you like James Taylor? Or is it that you were confusing the two JB and JT.?
I don't like Jackson Browne.....I do like James Taylor.
367  
#56 | 795 days ago

I like James Taylor....a little late to the party, I see by reading the other posts...but I like You've Got a Friend and Fire and Rain...if Fire and Rain comes on the radio, I turn that sucker up...
69  
#57 | 793 days ago

James Taylor 1970-1974...great.

James Taylor post 1974...morose. That is the best word I can use to describe his evolution. I think losing Carly Simon really affected his outlook on life, and his musical style. I can't even listen to his version of Buddy Holly's "Every Day".
8  

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