Taylor writes his own history via his uniquely haunting song craft and musicianship, enhanced by the work of Irish blues-rock guitarist Gary Moore, pedal steel guitarist Chuck Campbell, cornetist Ron Miles and the lovely Cassie Taylor, the singer/songwriter’s 22-year-old daughter.
The music – a sparse and hypnotic style that has come to be known as “trance blues” – comes out of Taylor’s lifelong career crafting songs that are wide open to interpretation, both thematically and structurally. “I give people a starting point, and then they can take it where they want to take it,” he explains.
Clovis People, Vol. 3, is inspired by a recent scientific discovery very close to Taylor’s home in Boulder, Colorado. Barely 100 yards from the edge of his property, archeologists dug up a cache of tools and other implements belonging to a civilization known as the Clovis people, who walked the earth briefly about 13,000 years ago and then mysteriously disappeared. “I went back to my musical past with these songs,” says Taylor. That’s why I called it Volume 3. There really is no Volume 1 or 2. My music only goes back about ten years, but there’s something about reaching back to an earlier time and revisiting the stories of the past from a new perspective that I find compelling.”
Helping to shape that new perspective is a crew of players who lend a variety of shades and voices to the mix. Among them is guitarist Gary Moore, a guest musician on two of Taylor’s previous recordings (Definition of a Circle in 2007 and Pentatonic Wars and Love Songs in 2009). Also on hand for nine of the 12 tracks is pedal steel guitarist Chuck Campbell, a member of the Campbell Brothers, the African-American gospel group that has developed a sound commonly known as “sacred steel.”
Taylor and his band will play at the Telluride Conference Center Friday, Sept. 17, at 10 p.m., and at the Telluride Blues and Brews Festival Sunday, September 19, at 11 a.m. The Conference Center is located at 580 Mountain Village Boulevard, and the Festival is located at Town Park in Telluride. For tickets and more information, call the Conference Center at 970/369-5120 and Blues and Brews at 970/728-8037 (Blues Brews Festival).