Sam Taylor Taylor Made Music
Submitted by Don Graham
Photo Credits: Pat Blythe, A Girl With A Camera "The Picture Taker"
Sam Taylor is an old soul, Sam Taylor is 24 going on 42, a natural born entertainer, born to sing and play, he is the future of the blues in the 21st century. There you go! That’s all the clichés rolled into one. The problem is if there is one thing Sam Taylor isn’t, its cliché. He is a “oner, sets his own pace, plays by his own rules and makes his own kind of music.”
The road that led to where he is now is surprisingly long considering his young age, 24, but he did start out at the tender age of seven years old. He toured Canada singing the songs of none other than Old Blue Eyes himself, Frank Sinatra before graduating at nine years old to performing with Orchestra London. In 2003 and 2004 the Saint Thomas, Ontario native entered the Western Fair Rise 2 Fame in London, Ontario, placing second in the first year and first overall the second. Both years he beat out a kid from Stratford, Ontario, a kid named Justin Beiber.
Then one year under the Christmas tree was a present that would change his life, an electric guitar. “I had an electric guitar before I had an acoustic guitar and I picked it up pretty quickly. But the school I was in was kinda poor and nobody was that interested in music. My parents moved me to another school, a half hour away which they had to drive me to, and everything changed. I met kids who played instruments and everything started to fall into place.” Like they say, the kids today that think Idol and The Voice and other reality talent shows think that’s the way you start a music career have it all wrong. Sam Taylor did it old school. Throw a band together with some buddies and just play, even if you play badly to start with , it will eventually grow and you’ll start to know how to play with other people and start to sound pretty good. Like every band Sam was playing covers but soon began writing his own songs and at age sixteen, his dad took him on a road trip to Nashville, Tennessee. “We went to B.B. King’s on 2nd Ave, just off Broadway in Nashville. We went back a few times to try and play there. Finally I was told I could have fifteen minutes which turned into a couple of hours. Then I was offered weekly gig but when I explained I was only sixteen he said I should open for B.B. at least. That was going along fine until a change in the laws resulted in me not being able to play there at all. Anywhere that allowed smoking couldn’t have anyone under 21, even with adult accompaniment.”
Sam returned to Canada and attended the famous Jack Richardson school in London, Fanshawe College. He enrolled in the school and continued to play in clubs around the area. A recording of an original tune of his. “Loaded Gun”, found its way into the right hands and was featured in the award winning CBC T.V. show, DeGrassi.
Sam made the move to Toronto for the same reason that most musicians I know and have talked to make such a move, “I met a girl from there.” And the journey picked up speed. He formed a band called them, East End Love Band with drummer Jace Traz and bass player David MacMichael and the powerful trio work all over town, with plans to include summer touring and kicking it up a notch. During this time Sam met Toronto icon Robbie Lane who recognized his talented and began make people aware of this youngsters abilities by having him guest with the legendary Robbie Lane and The Disciples at various venues. While Sam was making ends meet working at The Hard Rock Rock Café, he met Toronto singer/songwriter/ producer Pat Kelly. Kelly also saw what Robbie Lane saw “ Sam Taylor is what the “new” blues sounds like. The sky’s the limit.” And took him under his wing and began forging a plan for the young artist. Another pivotal event took place for Sam when Robbie invited him to play at Ronnie Hawkins 80th birthday celebration that had a guest list that read like a who’s who list. “I arrived with a really inexpensive acoustic guitar with plans of doing a song and meeting people. When I looked around and saw Keith Hampshire, Bobby Curtola and David Wilcox I was excited. . Then Gordon Lightfoot came in with his wife. His wife approached me and said ‘Gordon has decided he’d like to do a song can he borrow your guitar.” Of course I said yes and Gordon played his tune on my old beater and I haven’t changed the strings yet, and doubt I will.”
Sam has a new EP that has just hit radio with the lead single “Don’t Go Givin’ Me Love” getting well deserved attention and praise and he has just been included in a huge concert benefitting Crowbar’s Kelly Jay at the Hard Rock Café in downtown Toronto on April 17th, 2016.
Big things are coming for Sam Taylor so keep your eyes and ears open for some Taylor made music.