Sally Taylor


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What do Van Morrison, Bob Marley, Donny Hathaway, Marvin Gaye, and John Lennon have in common? All of them are/were baby boomer icons whose children (some of them, anyway) followed in their footsteps and pursued careers in music. Two names to add to that list are Carly Simon and James Taylor, whose daughter Sally Taylor showed some promise as a singer/songwriter in the late '90s and early '00s. Recorded in 2001 and released on her own Blue Elbow label in 2002, Shotgun is Sally Taylor's third album -- and it is a release that doesn't sound anything at all like the soft rock/adult contemporary that her parents were known for in the '70s. Some die-hard fans of '70s soft rock might be hoping that Taylor is a carbon copy of her mother, but that's hardly the case. Truth be told, Taylor's adult alternative and folk-rock songs have more in common with Sarah McLachlan, Paula Cole, Shawn Colvin, and Fiona Apple -- no one will mistake Shotgun for Hotcakes or Playing Possum (two of Simon's hit '70s albums). For the most part, Taylor favors a subtle, understated, unassuming approach, which is why Shotgun is an ironic title for this acoustic-oriented CD. Shotgun is the sort of title one would expect from an album of hell-raisin', whiskey-soaked Southern rock, but Taylor isn't trying to be Molly Hatchet or Black Oak Arkansas -- subtlety and restraint prevail on reflective offerings like "Amazing" and "Girl in the Picture." But subtle doesn't mean dull or uninteresting, and those who listen to this CD carefully will realize that Taylor's songs (which range from melancholy to clever and witty) have a lot of meat on their bones. Far from a Carly Simon/James Taylor tribute album, Shotgun demonstrates that Sally Taylor is a substantial singer/songwriter in her own right.

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