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Martin Taylor - Renowned Jazz Guitarist At The Mill Theatre

11th June 2007

Photograph of Martin Taylor - Renowned Jazz Guitarist At The Mill Theatre

On Thursday 21st June jazz guitar maestro Martin Taylor will play at the Mill Theatre in Thurso. On this occasion he will be joined, for part of his set, by singer Alison Burns.

Booking for this show has been brisk and more than half the available seats have already been taken so, if you're planning on going, book soon on 01847-896956 Tickets are priced at 10.00 and the show starts at 8.00pm.

"There is a touch of genius in Martin Taylor's playing." - CLASSICAL GUITAR MAGAZINE

The virtuoso guitarist Martin Taylor MBE first came to prominence in the late 1970's through his collaborations with the legendary violinist Stephane Grappelli, and now tours the world's concert halls with his dazzling live performances.

He began playing at the age of four when his father, bassist Buck Taylor, gave him a small acoustic guitar as a present. A totally self taught guitarist, he learned to play by listening to his father's records and trying to imitate what he heard. Seven years later he was playing in local bands and gained the respect and admiration of professional musicians who were amazed by the young boy they called "The Guitar Wizard".

Although inspired initially by the Gypsy guitarist Django Reinhardt, it was to be piano players, most notably Art Tatum and later Bill Evans, that caught his imagination and set him on the path of developing his own individual style of solo playing.

In 1978 he made his debut album TAYLOR MADE, and the following year received a call from Stephane Grappelli inviting him to play on a series of concerts in France. Shortly after those concerts he joined Stephane on a coast-to-coast tour of the U.S, including New York's Carnegie Hall and the Hollywood Bowl. It was the beginning of an eleven year collaboration which took in numerous world tours, and over 20 albums including recordings with Nelson Riddle, Michel Legrand, Yehudi Menuhin, Peggy Lee and several film soundtracks including the Louis Malle movie MILOU EN MAI and DIRTY ROTTEN SCOUNDRELS starring Steve Martin and Sir Michael Caine.

Alongside his work with Grappelli, he was also pursuing his own solo career and in 1987 had great success in America with his Los Angeles recorded album SARABANDA.

In 1993 he made his first solo album for Linn Records ARTISTRY, which was No.1 in the HMV charts for six weeks, establishing him as one of the most popular and biggest selling acoustic guitarists in the UK.

The following year he formed his group SPIRIT OF DJANGO. Their first recording included their version of Robert Palmer's JOHNNY AND MARY, which was used on the famous cult TV ads with "Nicole-Papa!" for the Renault Clio.

In 1999 he signed a recording contract with SONY MUSIC, making two critically acclaimed albums, KISS AND TELL and NITELIFE, which showed the many sides of Martin Taylor both as a guitarist and composer.

He has also collaborated with musicians form many different musical genre including, CHET ATKINS, GEORGE HARRISON, ERIC CLAPTON, CHRIS REA, BILL WYMAN, DIONNE WARWICK, LIZA MINNELLI, SACHA DISTEL AND BRYN TERFEL.

Martin is a popular artist in Japan and alongside classical saxophonist NOBOYA SUGAWA, recorded the music for NKT's most popular TV drama series SAKURA, which has a daily audience of 26 million.

In 1998 he founded the Kirkmichael International Guitar Festival in his home village in Scotland, which has now become one of the biggest and most prestigious guitar festivals in the world. He also founded Guitars For Schools, which promotes the teaching of guitars in primary schools. Through his work he has raised money to pay for guitars and tuition for hundreds of school children throughout South West Scotland.

Over the years he has received many awards and honours including The Freedom of the City of London, the Gold Badge of Merit from the British Academy of Composers and Songwriters, and was made an Honorary Doctor of the University of Paisley, Scotland.

In 2002, Martin was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) "For Services To Music", in The Queen's Jubilee Birthday Honours List, and received his award personally from Her Majesty The Queen at an investiture at Buckingham Palace.

His autobiography for Sanctuary Publishing "KISS AND TELL" is available worldwide.

See the Martin Taylor web site

 

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