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Joanne Shaw Taylor

Joanne Shaw Taylor embodies all the elements of modern blues, even if she sings with a distinctively British accent. Given her extraordinary dexterity as a guitarist and well-developed vocal chops, Taylor was already a sensation on the blues festival circuit in both the U.S. and Great Britain while only in her mid-twenties. She caught the blues bug as a young teenager growing up in the Birmingham area. She heard guitarists Stevie Ray Vaughan, Albert Collins, and Jimi Hendrix and knew then that was the kind of music she wanted to pursue, eventually full-time.

Producer Dave Stewart (of Eurythmics fame) said of Taylor, several years previously when he first heard her: "I have played with all sorts of blues musicians all over the world. I even made a film, Deep Blues, where I went to Mississippi and recorded with some legendary players such as R.L. Burnside and Jesse Mae Hemphill. Last year I heard something I thought I would never hear: a British white girl playing blues guitar so deep and passionately it made the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end!" (Taylor was just 16 years old at that time.) Stewart was so impressed with her playing and musicianship that he asked her to accompany his supergroup, D.U.P., in touring Europe in 2002. She was also offered a record deal but the company went bankrupt.

Seven years later, in May 2009 and with Taylor 23 years old, she released her stunning debut album, White Sugar, for Ruf Records, a German label with U.S. offices and a strong U.S. presence. She followed it up with extended U.S. touring, including shows with pianist and singer/songwriter Candye Kane. For her debut, Taylor went to the producer she most admired, Jim Gaines, who also produced good albums by her favorite blues players, including Jonny Lang, Luther Allison, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Carlos Santana. Accompanying her on White Sugar were veteran Memphis recording session players Steve Potts on drums and Dave Smith on bass.

Taylor returned to the studio a year later, once again with Jim Gaines, to record her sophomore release, 2010's Diamonds in the Dirt. In 2012, Taylor joined Annie Lennox on-stage to perform for Queen Elizabeth II's Diamond Jubilee in front of Buckingham Palace. She followed up the performance with the release of her third album, Almost Always Never. The live album, Songs from the Road, appeared in 2013, followed by The Dirty Truth the following year. Taylor returned in 2016 with her fifth album, Wild. ~ Richard Skelly
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Songs From The Road

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Track List: Almost Always Never

1. Soul Station

2. Beautifully Broken

3. You Should Stay, I Should Go

4. Piece Of The Sky

5. Army Of One

6. Jealousy

7. Almost Always Never

8. Tied & Bound

9. A Hand In Love

10. Standing To Fall

11. Maybe Tomorrow

12. Lose Myself To Loving You

x

Track List: Diamonds In The Dirt

1. Can't Keep Living Like This

2. Dead And Gone

3. Same As It Never Was

4. Jump That Train

5. Who Do You Love?

6. Diamonds In The Dirt

7. Let It Burn

8. World On Fire

9. Lord Have Mercy

10. The World And It's Way

x

Track List: The Dirty Truth

1. Mud Honey

2. The Dirty Truth

3. Wicked Soul

4. Fool In Love

5. Wrecking Ball

6. Tried Tested And True

7. Outlaw Angel

8. Shiver & Sigh

9. Struck Down

10. Feels Like Home

x

Track List: White Sugar

1. Going Home

2. Just Another Word

3. Bones

4. Who Do You Want Me To Be?

5. Time Has Come

6. White Sugar

7. Kiss The Ground Goodbye

8. Heavy Heart

9. Watch 'Em Burn

10. Blackest Day

Comments

Report as inappropriate
jchellemi
Saw JST in San Diego this week and she absolutely blew the crowd away. Blues, rock, funk and country she and her band were in total command. Best set I have seen this year. She is the real deal.
Report as inappropriate
sbateman7
I saw her in a very tiny club in Washington state---only 93 people allowed in--when she was touring after White Sugar came out. Can't wait until I get to see her again. Definitely one of the best.
Report as inappropriate
Playing fast and loud riffs does not constitute great musicianship
Report as inappropriate
atholman1
I quit smoking 15 years ago. I was having withdrawals when I heard her SONGS FROM THE ROAD she is the hottest female blues artist I've ever heard.
atholman 1
Report as inappropriate
She does not sing with 'a distinctivel y British accent' !!!! There are very few instances where she gives away her ethnicity. I'd wager that if you let 10 newbies listen to her, 8 would not know she's a Brit...
Report as inappropriate
first time i heard her made the hairs on my neck on end just awesome
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scottcampbel l 1 9 5 8
She's a devastating blues guitarist. Keep her the hell away from helicopters.
Report as inappropriate
SHE IS REALLY AWESOME!!!
Report as inappropriate
TRUE BLUE

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