Martin Taylor: Embodying the Spirit of Django
MT: Yes, there's a forum where all the students can hang out and learn from each other, discuss lessons and ideas, that sort of thing. It's kind of like what goes on with social networking sites like Facebook and MySpace. It makes for a great community environment. The other cool thing is that I've recently been in talks with the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, and they are interested in perhaps looking into a similar setup to help teach the students at their academy and beyond.
It's such a great way to reach a large number of people, without any regards to time zones or location. As long as someone has access to the internet they can access the site 24 hours a day from anywhere in the world. It's truly an amazing thing, and I'm really glad to be a part of it.
AAJ: Speaking of the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, in 2010 you were awarded an honorary Doctorate degree from the Academy. What does that mean to you, as a person and as a player, to be honored by one of the top music schools in the U.K.
MT: It means a lot to me because the Academy is a very important place in Scottish musicprobably the most important institution here. For the people at the Academy to think that I've done well enough with my career to bestow this award on me is very humbling, and I really appreciate it. It's also the first time that they've given this honor to a guitarist, which is great for the instrument as well.
To me, it's more about honoring the music, about recognizing jazz guitar, which is an important thing for the instrument and the genre. We, as players all know how important this instrument and music is to us, but sometimes it can go unnoticed by the larger community, so I think this is a great thing for the guitar and for jazz music as well.
Martin Taylor's Spirit of Django, Last Train to Hautville (The Guitar Label, 2010)
Alison Burns, Kissing Bug (The Guitar Label, 2008)
Martin Taylor, Double Standards (P3 Music, 2008)
Martin Taylor, Fraternity (The Guitar Label, 2007)
Martin Taylor, The Best of Martin Taylor (The Guitar Label, 2006)
Steve Howe/Martin Taylor, Masterpiece Guitars (P3 Music, 2003)
Martin Taylor, Solo (The Guitar Lablel, 2002)
Martin Taylor, Nitelife (Columbia, 2001)
Martin Taylor, In Concert (Fantasy, 2000)
Martin Taylor, Kiss and Tell (Columbia, 1999)
Martin Taylor's Spirit of Django, Gypsy (Linn Records, 1997)
All Photos: Courtesy of Martin Taylor