Hello Mr. Taylor! Welcome to the rockvideos.at Interview, great to have you with us, let’s get straight to it.
What is your favorite guitar model and why?
Favorite guitar model? I think it has to be Fender Stratocaster because…and actually Fender Telecaster because I grew up loving Status Quo. Francis Rossi and Rick Parfitt had those so I always wanted one and now I’ve got one of course. (smiles)
Could you tell us about your latest guitar models?
Yeah, I’ve just became Taylor endorsing. Acoustic guitar producer, which is great. One of the best guitars, acoustic guitars, around. Because I’m doing alot of solo shows. So it’s great to have a really good acoustic guitar and its got a lovely big sound when you plug it into the PA. It’s brilliant!
I see you’ve got one with you, could you show us?
Yeah this is one of them yes. This is the GS Mini (shows guitar) which is lovely for sliding stuff. Yeah it’s very good. A baby guitar! (smiles)
Could you describe your first instrument?
My first instrument? (ponders) That was an acoustic guitar when I was about four years old and I remember my parents buying me a little Beatles suit, cause I wanted to be a Beatle then and they bought me a small acoustic guitar. But after a couple of months I was using it as a boat. I always sat on it and pretended it was a boat and then it just fell apart after a while.
Do you still remember the first tune you learned to play?
Yeah! I remember going to guitar lessons and the guitar teacher taught me a song by 10cc called the Wallstreet Shuffle.
Can you still play it?
Yeah it’s easy! (picks up guitar and plays the tune)
I thought I was made up, I’ve really thought that was it. That I’m a Rockgod now if you know what I mean. When I played that. (smiles)
You just mentioned your first teacher, what was he like?
I can’t remember….first guitar teacher? I remember him tall and his name was Pat but that’s all I can remember about him.
Were there other notable teachers in your life?
There was one at school, in secondary school. His name was Mr. Witten and he always encouraged me to play guitar. He would come and pick my amp up from my house, he had a little sports car. I always remember that he had the roof off and he put my big amp in the back and then we drove it back up to school, you know, and I did school concerts. If it wasn’t for him I don’t think I would’ve become a musician really. Not only because of him but he did help me along the way. That was the first time I ever played infront of anybody, you know, at school, you know, in a band. So yeah, Mr. Witten…(nostalgic)
What advice would you give to beginners that are starting out as musicians?
(sighs) Well I mean…you know…you have to have dedication if you really really wanna become a musician and you have to have a certain amount of talent I suppose as well, you know, and you have to keep practicing. When I first started I practiced for like three/four hours a day and yeah, you have to be dedicated. Very dedicated.
Would you say your family is musically inclined?
Yeah! My little boy Johnny is very musically inclined. He has released his own video! It’s called „Best Dad in the World“ and I’ve recorded the song for him. He gets up and sings with me sometimes , he likes getting up and singing his song. If it’s a big crowd he will do it. If it’s like a small place he’s not really interested. It has to be a big crowd! (smiles) My daughter Molly she’s not really musically minded, so yeah, it’s just Johnny really. My parents always used to argue where I got my talent from, you know. „No it was me!“ … „No No it was me!“, that was quite funny. (smiles)
How do you balance your music with your other obligations, like family life and your partner?
Well I mean..my partner she has always known that ever since we’ve been together I’ve been a musician and we have that kinda lifestyle, you know, she knows that I’ve got to go away and do stuff. She also likes the hotel life so she gets to come away with me Johnny and enjoy it sometimes too, so yeah, it’s been fine. We’ve got a very balanced kind of relationship and it’s great, you know.
Your single „Everybody knows your name“, do you feel like that when you come to Vienna nowadays that this is starting to apply here too?
Not Yet…Not yet! (laughs) Well I’d love if everybody knew my name but no, unfortunately no, not many people know my name…at the moment. (smiles)
Could you play the single for us?
Yeah, Yeah! Okay!
I’ll do a song called „Rewriting History“.
(picks up the guitar and plays)
There ya go…fucked up there…(laughs)
How do you deal with mistakes during concerts?
Not very well! (laughs) I don’t like making mistakes. It’s just one of those things, you know, you work so hard to get to a place and then when you get there you sometimes fuck it up! It really annoys me! I’m a bit of a perfectionist when I play live and I want everything just to be right, you know.
How did you meet the FreeMenSingers?
Ah, it was through MMC Management, Carolyn Künz. I met Carolyn just on Facebook and she came to one of my shows when I was supporting Midge Ure in Munich late last year and we started talking and she said „would you mind if I get you something going in Austria?“ and I said „No, that’s fine!“ and she came up „How about working with this band (FMS)?“ and she showed me them on Facebook and Youtube and stuff and I thought „Yeah! That could be quite cool…“ and then I came over to meet them and we did a few shows together and this is my third visit now, you know, it’s good and they’re nice guys. Good musicians.
What is your favorite thing about Vienna?
Well to be honest I haven’t seen much of Vienna, I’ve seen the Pentahotel quite a lot (laughs). I don’t normally go out that much, you know. I like this place you know, it feels comfortable. Sometimes I’ll take a little walk out but not that far…
Could you name some of your favorite bands or songs?
Oh god…favorite bands? Well…Status Quo, I love Status Quo. Marc Bolan, T-Rex…(ponders)…alot of the 70s stuff really, was great. And favorite songs…gosh I don’t know…there is so many of them! I can’t think of one at the moment…(laughs)…I love the song „Without You“, Nilssons Version. And one of my favorite songs is by Tears for Fears, a song called „Woman in Chains“, which is a fantastic song…and I happen to play on it too! (laughs) But yeah, it’s a brilliant song. What else…I used to love Deep Purple, Ritchie Blackmore is a great guitar player who was quite a big influence on me.
Can you play „Smoke on the Water“?
No, I can’t (sarcastically)…yeah.
(smiles picks up the guitar and plays the „Smoke on the Water“ riff, then laughs)
That’s the only bit I know…(laughs)
This leads us to our final question that we have all been dying to ask…who does your Haircut?
Who does my Haircut!? Well, it’s a girl I’ve known back in the U.K. for…god…years and years..and I’ve always known her as „Baby Joe“ and she works at this Hairdressers called „Artisan“ on George Street in Bath. So if you’re ever there go and say hi to her. Name’s Joe Perry. But I’ve always known her as, since she was like 17,18, and i’ve always called her „Baby Joe“. She’s about in her 30s now but she is always known to me as „Baby Joe“.
Is there anything you’d like to add?
The only thing I’d like to add is that I wanna keep working and promoting my album „No Self Control“ and „Chasing Butterflies“ and hopefully we’ll release another one next year, you know. Yeah, just keep doing it!
Thank You for taking time for us today Neil.
Brilliant! Yeah, thank you!
Interview conducted by Nikki
Film Footage by Peter
Neil’s Profile on Rockvideos.at
Neil Taylor’s Official Website
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