Born to Play Guitar
With shows that sell out all over the world, Melvin Taylor is one of the greatest guitarists in the history of rock, blues, and jazz. He is often referred to as a guitar players guitarist.
This self taught master was influenced by many of history's true guitar pioneers including - Albert King, Jimmy Reed, Wes Montgomery, and Jimi Hendrix. He has appeared on the same ticket with Stevie Ray Vaughan, Carlos Santana, George Benson, Buddy Guy, and BB King.
Melvin Taylor was born in 1959 in Jackson, Mississippi. His musical roots however have always been in Chicago, where he moved with his family when he was 3 years old. The proverbial musical prodigy, started playing guitar at age 6. Melvin was influenced and inspired by some of the world’s greatest blues players, many of whom lived in or near his Chicago neighborhood.
By the age of twelve, he was working in clubs. He taught himself slide playing, finger-picking, and flat-picking styles from listening to his favorite artists. By the time he was a teenager, Melvin’s incredible ability and unique style was already grabbing attention on Maxwell Street. In 1980, he joined veterans Pinetop Perkins, and Willie “Big Eyes” Smith of the Muddy Waters Band to form the Legendary Blues Band and tour Europe. Melvin made an immediate impact on the European circuit, and while in France, he cut his first two albums - Blues on the Run(1982), and Plays the Blues for You (1984).
Following his return to the US, Melvin recorded four additional CD’s for Evidence Music - Bang That Bell (1999), Dirty Pool (2002), Melvin Taylor and the Slack Band (2003), and Rendezvous With the Blues (2004).
Melvin is currently working on his new album coming out in 2023!
"One of the most exhilarating blues guitarists to emerge in the past decade is more a blues innovator than a purist, mixing jazz chords and rock influences into his tapestry of electric blues."
-Rolling Stone Magazine
"A volcanic guitarist the sort of virtuosity that drags an audience into a world of risks and chances and excitement."
-The New York Times
"This isn't just a 2-CD set of some unbelievable guitar work from a long-esteemed player of truly formidable skill but rather a treasury that proves beyond doubt that Melvin Taylor needs to be placed within the museum of the guitar greats: Wes Montgomery, George Benson, Chet Atkins, Frank Zappa, Earl Klugh, Jim Hall, Leo Kottke, Robert Fripp, Grant Green, Pat Metheny, all of 'em, regardless of style and genre."
-Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange about "Beyond the Burning Guitar"
"Taylor is blessed with the ability for fast and efficient runs, clean and with minimal distortion. He has full command over his instrument. What sets Taylor apart, is the way he hears sound. He has a keen lyrical sense and natural feel for melody."
-CriticalJazz.com about "Beyond the Burning Guitar"
"Taylor's arsenal consists of blinding speed, a feverish wah-wah pedal, a range of tones that leaps from groans to squeals, and notes bent so dramatically that his guitar sounds like it's retching. Taylor succeeds because he's a virtuoso who pushes the limits of his own skills."
-Living Blues Magazine
"Taylor throws off incredibly intricate runs and wrings impossible textures and tones out his of hollow-body with a casualness that belies his virtuosity."
-Knight Ridder Papers
"Taylor's weapons are his dizzying speed, his sweeping runs, his wild man abandon and his trusty wa-wa pedal."
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I had a wonderful time touring with the great John Mayall!
Check out John's new GRAMMY nominated album, The Sun Is Shining Down!
Featuring some great guest artists, including me on two tracks!
Melvin Taylor performs with friends LIVE at Reggies in Chicago for Blues Heaven Cares Fundraiser for the homeless.