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Dallas Taylor (drummer)

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Dallas Taylor
Born(1948-04-07)April 7, 1948
Denver, Colorado, U.S.
OriginSan Antonio, Texas, U.S.
DiedJanuary 18, 2015(2015-01-18) (aged 66)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
GenresRock and roll, country rock
Instrument(s)Drums, percussion
Years active1960s–2015
Dallas Taylor playing drums in the band Manassas, with Al Perkins, Stephen Stills, and Fuzzy Samuel

Dallas Woodrow Taylor Jr. (April 7, 1948 – January 18, 2015)[1] was an American session drummer who played drums on several rock albums in the 1960s and 1970s.

Life and career


Taylor was born in Denver but grew up in Phoenix and San Antonio, Texas, where he played with Shades McRay and the Invictas.[2] His seminal musical influence was jazz drummer Gene Krupa.[3] He dropped out of high school and moved to California. He achieved some success with psychedelic rock band Clear Light in the late 1960s,[4] but is best remembered as the drummer on Crosby, Stills and Nash's debut album,[5] and their follow-up with Neil Young, Déjà Vu (1970), and was given a front-sleeve credit along with Motown bassist Greg Reeves.[6]

As well as appearing on Stephen Stills's eponymous first solo album in 1970, his 1971 follow up Stephen Stills 2, and the supporting tour with the Memphis Horns, Taylor was the drummer for Stills's group Manassas[7] in 1972 and 1973. He also appeared on Stills's 1975 solo album Stills. In 1974 he played with Van Morrison at the 1974 Montreux Jazz Festival in a quartet along with keyboardist Pete Wingfield and bassist Jerome Rimson, a performance issued on the 2006 DVD, Live at Montreux 1980/1974. He briefly appeared again in the mid 1970s, drumming for Paul Butterfield's touring band.

He also appeared on Graham Nash's 1971 debut Songs For Beginners, and played percussion on the Byrds' 1973 reunion album Byrds, further connecting him to CSNY.

After overcoming drug addiction, Taylor became a drug counselor in California. He said, “I was one of the lucky ones. I managed to destroy my music, but none of my suicide attempts worked.” In 1994, he spoke to Kurt Cobain when Cobain briefly checked himself into the Exodus Recovery Center where Taylor was working.[8] Taylor published a memoir, Prisoner of Woodstock, in 1994. [9]

After he was diagnosed with liver disease in 1989, musicians held a 1990 benefit concert to pay for a transplant, including David Crosby, Stephen Stills, Graham Nash and Neil Young, as well as Don Henley and Eddie Van Halen.[10] His wife, Patti McGovern-Taylor, also donated a kidney for him in 2007.[11] Taylor died on January 18, 2015, of complications from viral pneumonia and kidney disease, aged 66.[12][13]




  1. ^ Weber, Bruce (January 24, 2015). "Dallas Taylor, Drummer for Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Dies at 66". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved November 11, 2021.
  2. ^ "Dallas Taylor 1948 - 2015". Legacy.com. Retrieved July 10, 2024.
  3. ^ "Dallas Taylor dies at 66; drummer for Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young". LA Times. Retrieved March 31, 2018.
  4. ^ Unterberger, Richie. "Biography: Clear Light". AllMusic. Retrieved May 3, 2010.
  5. ^ "Crosby, Stills and Nash debut album | Classic Rock Review". February 3, 2014.
  6. ^ "Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young – Déjà Vu (1970, PR – Presswell Press, Faux-Leather Gatefold, Vinyl)". Discogs. March 11, 1970.
  7. ^ Caldwell, Rob. "Biography: Manassas". Allmusic. Retrieved May 3, 2010.
  8. ^ James, Gary. "Gary James' Interview With CSN&Y Drummer Dallas Taylor". Classic bands.com. Retrieved July 10, 2024.
  9. ^ "Dallas Taylor Woodstock Prisoner". Woodstock Whisperer. April 7, 2016. Retrieved July 10, 2024.
  10. ^ "Dallas Taylor, rock drummer beat drugs and counseled others to follow lead". Al Jazeera America. January 19, 2015. Retrieved July 10, 2024.
  11. ^ "Dallas Taylor dies at 66; drummer for Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young". LA Times. Retrieved March 31, 2018.
  12. ^ Weber, Bruce (January 23, 2015). "Dallas Taylor, Drummer for Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young, Dies at 66." New York Times. Retrieved January 25, 2015.
  13. ^ "Dallas Taylor, Former Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young Drummer, Dies at 66". Variety.com. January 18, 2015. Retrieved January 19, 2015.