As the son of James Taylor and Carly Simon, Ben Taylor was born into a musical world with much promise. His older sister, Sally Taylor, found her niche in the industry early on, but the younger Taylor never sought to follow the footsteps of his famous parents. His childhood might have been surrounded by recording sessions and tours across the world, but initially it wasn't in Taylor's mind to become a singer.
Taylor was raised in Manhattan and spent time in various private schools before leaving them behind in ninth grade. By then, he'd taught himself how to play guitar, but traveling the world and connecting with nature were Taylor's passion. Trips across Asia and Europe opened his eyes to Earth's greatest wonders, leading him to think he might like to be a gardener or a farmer. Still, he had his hand in a few musical makings. Before he turned 20, Taylor's cover of the Beatles' "I Will" landed on the soundtrack to a domestic comedy featuring Paul Reiser, Bye Bye, Love. He eventually recorded an album for Epic's label the Work Group, but it folded shortly after Taylor inked his contract. He was left feeling disenchanted, unsure of what he wanted to do with his life because he still wasn't convinced music was for him. Taylor would soon come to realize that music was the only career he'd understand.
A trip to the Caribbean gave him the push he'd been wanting for so long. Armed with an acoustic guitar and a headful of songs, Taylor shaped himself into the natural singer/songwriter his parents knew he'd become. While visiting Los Angeles in late 2001, he befriended drummer Larry Ciancia (Fiona Apple, Everlast) and a musical bond was formed. Fellow musicians Adam MacDougall, Rick Musallam, and Joe Dunne joined them weeks later and the Ben Taylor Band was born; Taylor had gone from a shy, reserved teenager to a brave, confident young man and artist. The Ben Taylor Band signed a deal with WEA's Iris Records after Green Dragon, Name a Fox was virtually unnoticed after its 2002 release on Epic. In February 2003, the Ben Taylor Band issued Famous Among the Barns and jumped on tour with folk darling Dar Williams. Taylor tapped actor/musician Kevin Bacon to produce his third outing, the sure-footed and engaging Another Run Around the Sun, followed by a string of EPs. In 2008, he released a new full-length, The Legend of Kung Folk, Pt. 1, followed by Listening in 2012. ~ MacKenzie Wilson