Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

After 12 Duran Duran Albums, Guitarist Strikes Up His Own Band INTERVIEW JOHN TAYLOR

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

After 12 Duran Duran Albums, Guitarist Strikes Up His Own Band INTERVIEW JOHN TAYLOR

Article excerpt

When Duran Duran releases its new album "Medazzaland" this summer, a familiar name may be missing from the jacket cover. Bass guitarist John Taylor, after playing 20 years with the major teen-pop band of the '80s, has decided to go solo.

His debut album, "Feelings Are Good and Other Lies" (B5 Records), released on the Internet in 1995, is just now available on CD. He worked on this album while he was still with Duran Duran but officially broke all ties a few months ago.

During a recent telephone interview from his recording studio in Santa Monica, Calif., Taylor said he released his album on the Internet first because he wanted "complete and absolute control." "I was doing a very personal record," he says, "so I put it out on the Internet because I thought that was a sure way of getting directly to my fan base." No longer just a sideman, Taylor now writes his own lyrics and fronts his own band. He took voice lessons to strengthen his voice but says his vocal chords need to get stronger before he takes his act on the road. "I feel that I was born to sing. I had to cut through a wall of low self-esteem because I was raised in a family that was the most unmusical family. My grandma had a piano, but it was never in tune. {Music} has never been pushed on me ... I had to make my own way there," he says. The words he sings and the music he plays are quite different from the upbeat dance music Duran Duran is known for. It's evident from the lyrics that Taylor has done some soul-searching - mainly as a result of recent marital troubles. (For instance, in the song "Losing You" he sings, "Lady - let me love you once again/ I've found life's been so much harder since you been gone"; and in "Look Homeward Angel" he sings, "Don't disappear on me and I won't leave on you." "My marriage is falling apart," Taylor says, "and I don't know how typical I am, but I had a lot of my identity invested in my wife. …

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