Terry Earl Taylor
Thoughts from Opus Raven...
Terry Earl Tayor played a huge part in the initial formation and direction of Automatic Annie Electric Blues Band musically and graphically.
With his vast knowledge of great blues music, he helped to set a path for shape
and arrangement of the sound. He opened up my ears and blues perspective sharing many new the musical influences with me including Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Ruth Brown, Taj Mahal, Slim Harpo and The Kweskin Jug Band.
Terry held strong opinions, was never short of a viewpoint and contributed much
to the origins of the band and musical pathways that we still trip.
In the early days, we did a lot of thinking and planning together.
(Also a bit of plotting, fat chewing and ranting.)
I very much admired Terry's ability to succinctly encapsulate a situation or thought into a well-pointed statement.
Terry (Along with Julia and Pete) founded Automatic Annie following an end to playing with Bucket of Blues, when a change was inevitable in December 2016
Terry was great fun to play with, had a wicked sense of humour and a supply of eccentric anecdotes from his rich musical career. Terry has been "in the music biz"
for a long time. It was quite a surprise to me when it transpired that Terry had brought a custom hand-built banjo from my dad in the 1980's from Thames Valley Guitars in Belmont Street Uxbridge, West London. I must have been about nine or ten and busy drawing cats on scraps of paper on the floor of the shop while Terry was parting with his hard earned cash.
Terry chewed up the essential qualities of blues harmonica playing and seasoning his licks with passion and his deep understanding of The Blues.
As I have returned to harmonica playing (from a very long break) it is Terry's influence and licks that I reach for. His sound was so instrumental and influential to me, that he is my north star reference for phrases and techniques.
Terry whipped up passions and moods, many of them very powerful, and a few of them downright dirty. He delivered Annies early hoodoo-spookiness and had tremendous stage presence. Terry was a wonderful stage companion and I enjoyed playing with him very much.
There are so many projects and bands in Terry's journey, for example, playing in Chicago with Buddy Guy or harping on a Robbie Williams album.
He has been heard on BBC Radio 2's Paul Jones Blues Show and been featured on Radio 3's Nightwaves. He also produces The Rocky Top Radio Show.
A mix of live music, records, and guests playing Swamp Americana, Rockabilly Blues, Country gumbo and Oldtime stuff.
Terry is also a splendid banjo player and songwriter.
He has a CD available on Dark Holler Records.
Terry Earl Taylor gigged with Automatic Annie from February 2017 to June 2017 ... but his influence stretches much further than that!
I very much miss Terry Business, Terry Temperamental, Prof T.P.A Taylor,
Terry Banjer picker, Art-O-Matic Terry, Dr Terence Taylor, Terry Photogenique,
and of course Terry Tin Sandwich.