British Blues Rocker Joanne Shaw Taylor in Concert at Byham Theater (Wed., 5/1/24)

Joanne Shaw Taylor. (Photo: Stacie Huckeba)

Joanne Shaw Taylor. (Photo: Stacie Huckeba)

Much like two young English musicians a generation and a half before her, Joanne Shaw Taylor found inspiration in American blues music. The music of Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, and others inspired Mick Jagger and Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones. Taylor’s blues music interest was piqued by Stevie Ray Vaughn. Having picked up the guitar at a young age, Taylor perfected her craft and started playing gigs around England. A friend of the Eurythmics’ Dave Stewart heard her play and told him about her. Stewart then began mentoring Taylor. Other musical admirers include Jimmy Cliff, Stevie Wonder, and Annie Lennox.

Taylor’s career has been very successful including a series of no. 1 selling Billboard blues albums. Her 12th album, Heavy Soul, produced by Kevin Shirley (Black Crowes, Journey, Aerosmith) is set for release on June 7 through Joe Bonamassa’s Journeyman Records. Taylor spoke about her new album Heavy Soul. “It’s out in June and I recorded it at the famous RCA studios in Nashville. So yeah, it was a really fun album to do. I worked with Kevin Shirley again who produces a lot with Joe Bonamassa [Bonamassa owns Journeyman Records which Taylor is on] and I did a previous album with him and always wanted to work with him again. It just hadn’t worked out with Covid and all kinds of other stuff. So it was really a fun album to make.” She even has her own PBS special. See our full story and interview with Taylor who will be performing at the Byham Theater. 8 p.m. 101 6th St., Cultural District. (R.H.)

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Rick Handler

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