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John Taylor....forgotten, under-appreciated bassist from the '80s?


JPJ

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By pure luck, I've managed to catch a lot of Duran Duran lately....on TV, the radio, etc. While the music and bass lines don't necessarily fit my personal style, Duran Duran has an amazing list of great songs, almost all of which are powerd by great bass lines from John Taylor. You never seem to hear much about him as an influence. Just wondering if there are any other John Taylor fans out there who feel like he's been largely overlooked as a great bassist?
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There are maybe 8-10 basslines in my experience that are smooth ballad lots-of-lows lots-of-movement that make me want to both play them and cry. One of them is Ordinary World.

 

I know "the hits" but not enough beyond that. I'll start listening. I thought there was a magazine article in the last few years....

 

Tom

www.stoneflyrocks.com

Acoustic Color

 

Be practical as well as generous in your ideals. Keep your eyes on the stars and keep your feet on the ground. - Theodore Roosevelt

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I mostly got drunk and eithered tried my "white boy can't dance" techniques or warbled along with Duran Duran. Ah, college days!

I think the one brain cell that survived is hinting that I may have tried to learn one of the bass lines, but it wasn't Geddy Lee, so I (a) didn't work hard on it, and (b) have forgotten it.

 

(Beware the presense of the esteemed moderator in your thread.) :D

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I was a big Duran Duran fan. Especially the bass lines. If you want to know where he was coming from, you have to listen to Chic's Bernard Edwards. Everybody Dance and Freak Out.

 

I think Edwards might have even produced them on a disk or two.

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Bernard Edwards produced The Power Station CD's.

Nile Rogers produced a few of the big DD records. John Taylor didn't play on almost all those tracks. Bernard Edwards laid down the Bass during John Taylors' "cocaine years". Hence.... many of those tracks have that real sticcato/funky Bernie Edwards bass feel.

 

John USED TO admit that he "had some help" on the DD records and that he had to dumb down some parts for the live show. (You can clearly see Bernard AND John laying down Bass tracks on the making-of-Power-Station dvds. They are both plugged in, sitting on two stools, and vibin' off each other)

 

Still, I just saw DD a few weeks ago at the ACC here in Toronto. Great show. Very polished...very well rehearsed. Until Andy Taylor tried to run across the stage and fell flat on his face. Classic.

"I don't play Bass..I play SONGS."
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I heard from my friend that during a recent Yes sow Jon anderson was , um....dancing....around like he always does and at one point he tripped on a monitor and fell down hard. the band just kept on playing and didn't pay much attention to him...ouch!
Hiram Bullock thinks I like the band volume too soft (but he plays guitar). Joe Sample thinks I like it way too loud (but he plays piano). -Marcus Miller
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John Taylor didn't play on almost all those tracks. Bernard Edwards laid down the Bass during John Taylors' "cocaine years". Hence.... many of those tracks have that real sticcato/funky Bernie Edwards bass feel.

HA! Well...I supposed that's one reason why he doesn't get much credit then! :D:rolleyes: I actually wondered if that was actually the case, but I don't know much about the "behind the scenes of "double Doo-ran" (as Martha Quin used to day). ;) Interesting, though. Something tells me that happened quite a bit around that time period...
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I really liked Rio when it first came out. I recently bought it again and heard it for the first time in 20 years. I realized that a lot of the bass lines influenced my playing. That was the era when I first switched from guitar to bass.

 

I got a listen to the new DD, Astronaut, which I got at the library. OK, cerebral prog it ain't but it has some catchy tunes nonetheless. It don't go much deeper than the historic DD stuff. Still, some tasty pop rock.

 

Guy

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I played Rio and Girls On Film in a High School talent show. We threw a band together in a week, learned the songs (passably) and the crowd liked us alright.

We came in second. :)

 

They're fun parts to play. I think I may still remember most of 'em...

 

Peace,

 

wraub

 

I'm a lot more like I am now than I was when I got here.

 

 

 

 

 

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I didn't particularly like listening to Duran Duran (just watched their girls... er, videos) but thought that John Taylor was probably the better musician out of the bunch. I never understood why Duran & U2 got the media push over a similar band that I thought was MUCH better- Marillion. Pete Trewavas was and is better thatn Taylor & Clayton combined (but that's just my opinion, not starting a "better than" rant). Guess he's just not as cute...

"Am I enough of a freak to be worth paying to see?"- Separated Out (Marillion)

NEW band Old band

 

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Mister Miyagi does "Hungry Like The Wolf". It's one of my favorite songs to play that we do. Great bassline. Was that during the "Bernard Edwards is helping out" time? Sure would make sense if it was, that bassline is big, fat, and in ye olde pocket like a mofo.
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Hey everyone!

Well I must admit that I only know Ordinary World - quite sad.

But I wasn't into to much music in the 80's - I was a child what can I say :D

But anyway what I wanted to add is that I'm definitely going to see their concert at this year's Roskilde Festival (june 30 to july 3)

Has anyone around here ever heard of it? I believe it's the largest festival in Scandinavia. I could bring an update/review after I return? :)

Once you're lost in twillights blue you don't find your way the way finds you

My Band: http://www.vanityfair.dk

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Originally posted by musicfiend:

I heard from my friend that during a recent Yes sow Jon anderson was , um....dancing....around like he always does and at one point he tripped on a monitor and fell down hard. the band just kept on playing and didn't pay much attention to him...ouch!

I saw Yes many years ago at an opera house in Washington DC. It was just after they did that album without Chris Squire. They called themselves Anderson, Bruford, Wakeman and Howe. Tony Levin played bass and it was a totally awesome concert! All four Yes members came out individually and did a short solo performance at the beginning of the concert. Between each performance the lights would go out for a few seconds, when they came back up the next performer would be in place. When it was Jon Anderson's turn to come out, the lights went off, there was the sound of a few foots steps then the distict sound of someone falling flat on their face on a hollow wood stage. The lights came up and there was Jon picking himself up off the floor. Maybe its a part of his contract where he is required to trip and fall at least once every gig. :)

 

Anyway, Duran Duran was my favorite band while I was in High school. After highschool I started getting more seriously into music and started listening to Progressive Rock and Classical. I have recently rediscovered DD and thought that those bass lines were really good... no matter who really played them.

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had to check the late Robert Palmer's website just to be sure (my brother told me this years back).

John and Andy Taylor, together with Chic drummer Tony Thompson and Palmer former "Power Station" in 1985. "Some Like It Hot" does have funky basslines.

I also remember loving the music video "Wild Boys" when i was a kid. also caught their MTV unplugged performance. he's a very stong player, one who always has your back.

"Ordinary World"'s no ordinary song either.

Insert clever, non-religious, unobtrusive sig here
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I don't know about their later albums, but I'm pretty sure it's him on the first two (DD and Rio). I was into them at the time those were current, and was just getting really serious about playing guitar.

 

I was supposed to teach my friend how to play bass, she was a huge John Taylor fan (yes, because he was hot) and I ended up just keeping her bass for months and playing it myself because she lost interest in it. Meanwhile, I learned all those lines. :P

 

10 years ago my friend passed away, and I went on a listening binge, pulling out all these old albums to remember her by. That's when I realized John Taylor was a pretty big influence on my playing. :cool:

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I liked all the Power Station stuff.

 

I was not into DD when they were big, I felt the same way about them that most us feel about the Backstreet Boys and Brittany Spears. My sister was an :eek:ABSOLUTE RAVING FANATIC :eek: for them so I heard a lot of their stuff. "Girls on Film" was the first song I heard that made me realize that there was in fact some talent in the band and I have come to appreciate them a bit more since then.

Nothing is as it seems but everything is exactly what it is - B. Banzai

 

Life is what happens while you are busy playing in bands.

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Originally posted by tucker71:

John USED TO admit that he "had some help" on the DD records and that he had to dumb down some parts for the live show. (You can clearly see Bernard AND John laying down Bass tracks on the making-of-Power-Station dvds. They are both plugged in, sitting on two stools, and vibin' off each other)

Another hero unmasked as a fraud!

And I LOVE that Power Station album! :cry:

(Now I have to get that DVD)

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I wasn't there when they recorded the bass tracks so, all I can do is go by stories I've heard about JT being too coked to sit still in the studio (which he admits) and comparing the tracks that DD made WITHOUT Nile Rogers at the helm. It makes sense to me that the songs produced by Nile have a very Bernard Edwards Bass sound. Bernie was Niles right hand man. Coincedentally, all those records were made during JT's addiction phase, so it all SEEMS to add up.

 

Having said that:

 

The Power Station kicks ass.

There has never been another album, before or since, that sounds like it. The production is very quirky and unique.

I have all the remixes, Bsides, and even their second record which has a few good cuts.

 

John Taylor is NOT on their 2nd record. He left the band before they recorded it. The Bass was performed by Bernie Edwards (who was also the producer).

 

If you can't find "Noteriety" anywhere....send me a PM and I'll hook you up. Tony Thomson and Bernard completely crush that track.

 

AIM screen name: puffysticker

"I don't play Bass..I play SONGS."
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I am crippled. Up to this thread, I thought Taylor had it. Is this truly a fact that someone else layed the tracks on the LP's? And if this is true, how did he do Live?

"Some people are like "slinkies". They're not really good for anything;

but they still bring a smile to your face when you push them down a

flight of stairs."

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