Art Taylor

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For other uses, see Art Taylor (writer).
Art Taylor
Art Taylor - photo.jpg
Background information
Birth name Arthur S. Taylor, Jr.
Born (1929-04-06)April 6, 1929
New York City
Died February 6, 1995(1995-02-06) (aged 65)
New York City
Genres Jazz
Occupation(s) Musician, composer
Instruments Drums

Arthur S. Taylor, Jr. (April 6, 1929 – February 6, 1995) was an American jazz drummer who "helped define the sound of modern jazz drumming".[1]


As a teenager, Taylor joined a local Harlem band that featured Sonny Rollins, Jackie McLean and Kenny Drew. After playing in the bands of Howard McGhee (1948), Coleman Hawkins (1950–51), Buddy DeFranco (1952), Bud Powell (1953), George Wallington and Art Farmer (1954), Powell and Wallington again (1954–55), Gigi Gryce and Donald Byrd (1956), he formed his own group, Taylor's Wailers.[2] Between 1957 and 1963 he toured with Donald Byrd, recorded with Miles Davis and John Coltrane, and performed with Thelonious Monk; he also was a member of the original Kenny Dorham Quartet of 1957.

In 1963 he moved to Europe, where he lived mainly in France and Belgium for 20 years, playing with local groups and jazz musicians such as Johnny Griffin, John Bodwin and with travelling American musicians such as Woody Shaw during the latter's tenure in Paris. He returned to the United States to help his mother, who was ill.[3] He continued freelancing after returning to the United States, and in 1993 organized a second band called Taylor's Wailers. He died in Beth Israel Hospital in Manhattan.[1]

He is the author of Notes and Tones, a book based on his interviews with other musicians.



  1. ^ a b Watrous, Peter (February 7, 1995) "Art Taylor, 65, Jazz Drummer Who Inspired Young Musicians" New York Times.
  2. ^ Feather, Leonard & Gitler, Ira (2007) The Biographical Encyclopedia of Jazz, p. 637. Oxford University Press.
  3. ^ "Eric in the Evening: Art Taylor Interview.” Jun 4, 1994, WGBH Media Library & Archives [1].
  4. ^ Allmusic review