Butch Taylor

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Butch Taylor
Birth nameClarence Flanaghan Taylor
Also known as"Mr. Chops"
Born (1961-04-13) April 13, 1961 (age 57)
Shawsville, Virginia, United States
GenresRock, jazz
Occupation(s)Musician, composer, writer
InstrumentsKeyboards, guitars
Associated actsSecrets, Dave Matthews Band

Butch Taylor (born Clarence Francis Taylor on April 13, 1961 in Shawsville, Virginia) is a composer, writer, keyboardist and long time guest musician with Dave Matthews Band.

Although not a formal member of the band, he acted as a permanent member of the group from 1998 until 2008, making contributions on both studio and live albums. Before teaming up with the band, Taylor played in the band Secrets with Dave Matthews Band drummer, Carter Beauford as well as longtime Dave Matthews Band friend and guest guitarist, Tim Reynolds. Over the years he has also composed many scores for television and film.

Taylor attended James Madison University, Virginia where he played trumpet in the JMU Jazz Ensemble. It was there he met Dave Matthews Band saxophonist, LeRoi Moore. He studied for a bachelor's degree in English and a master's degree in music and also returned to the university some years later to teach.

He currently lives in Scottsville, VA. He is divorced and has three adult sons.

On May 27, 2008, Taylor decided to leave the band. The Dave Matthews Band official fan club, the Warehouse Fan Association released this message:

"Keyboardist Butch Taylor has decided to leave Dave Matthews Band. We are saddened by this sudden news but he has our full support. He’s given so much to us and our audience through the years and he will be missed."

Taylor rejoined the band on September 24, 2017 at the Concert for Charlottesville at Scott Stadium. This marked the first time Taylor guested with the band since April 1, 2008.

A Virginia native, Butch Taylor is best known for his work as a guest keyboardist/vocalist with Dave Matthews Band from 1997 to 2008, performing both on tour and studio albums. In the late 1980s, he performed with the jazz-fusion group “SECRETS” as well as with Miles Davis, Ramsey Lewis, Michael Brecker, Stanley Jordan, Yellowjackets, Bill Bruford, and Wayne Shorter. Throughout his career, he has been active and successful as a freelance performer, arranger, composer, vocalist, conductor, and producer. He received bachelor and master degrees in music from James Madison University and later served on their faculty. Butch Taylor is the pianist / keyboardist for the Free Bridge Quintet, the faculty jazz quintet at the University of Virginia. He also serves as a professor of jazz piano at UVA. Butch Taylor is currently the Chief Engineer/Producer/Composer at Ravensworth Studios in Scottsville, VA.

Current works[edit]

Taylor currently gigs with the Robert Jospe Trio around Virginia and can be seen weekly performing on Thursday nights at Millers on the Downtown Mall of Charlottesville (The place where the Dave Matthews Band began) with other virtuosos such as John D'earth, Charles Owens, and Devonne Harris. He also plays with the trio the last Saturday of the month at Fellini's, also on the downtown mall. He recently finished production on Will Thomas Reed's debut album entitled "To Whom It May Concern".

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