Born Edward Taylor in Benoit, Mississippi, United States, as a boy Taylor taught himself to play the guitar. He spent his early years playing at venues around Leland, Mississippi, where he taught his friend Jimmy Reed to play guitar. With a guitar style deeply rooted in the Mississippi Delta tradition, in 1949 Taylor moved to Chicago, Illinois.
While Taylor never achieved the stardom of some of his compatriots in the Chicago blues scene, he nevertheless was an integral part of that era. He is especially noted as a main accompanist for Jimmy Reed, as well as working with John Lee Hooker, Big Walter Horton, Sam Lay and others. Taylor's own records "Big Town Playboy" and "Bad Boy" on Vee Jay Records became local hits in the 1950s.
Taylor's son Eddie Taylor Jr. is a blues guitarist in Chicago, his stepson Larry Taylor is a blues drummer and vocalist, and his daughter Demetria is a blues vocalist in Chicago. Taylor's wife Vera was the niece of bluesmen Eddie "Guitar" Burns and Jimmy Burns.
Taylor died on Christmas Day in 1985 in Chicago, at age 62, and was interred in an unmarked grave in the Restvale Cemetery in Alsip, Illinois. He was posthumously inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 1987.
- 1972 I Feel So Bad - The Blues of Eddie Taylor (Advent Records)
- 1974 The American Blues Legends '74 (Big Bear Records)
- 1975 Street Talkin' (Muse 5087, French) - compilation of Vee Jay material w/seven Elmore James tracks and seven of Taylor's
- 1975 Ready for Eddie (Big Bear Records)
- 1978 Bad Boy - A Long Way from Chicago with Louis Myers, Dave Myers and Odie Payne Jr. (Japanese recording - P-Vine Special) (PLP-3501)
- 1981 Big Town Playboy (Charly 1015, English) - contains all Vee Jay recordings under his name excepting "Good Hearted"
- Users.fortress.com - accessed May 2009
- Du Noyer, Paul (2003). The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Music (1st ed.). Fulham, London: Flame Tree Publishing. p. 181. ISBN 1-904041-96-5.
- Jimmy Reed interviewed on the Pop Chronicles (1969).
- Russell, Tony (1997). The Blues - From Robert Johnson to Robert Cray. Dubai: Carlton Books Limited. p. 174. ISBN 1-85868-255-X.
- Thedeadrockstarsclub.com - accessed November 2009