Club-Owner, Manager; What Can't Gary Taylor Do?
Man Behind Gary Taylor Management
has been in the music and entertainment business for over
40 years now. He has done everything from being in a band
to running and owning clubs to managing bands.
are in the New York City area in on April 26-27
(2000) be sure to check out the Gary Taylor Management showcase
at Arlene Grocery. The show is free.
got a hold of Gary Taylor on the phone, the first thing he
told me was he was fasting. This wouldn't be surprising if
Mr. Taylor were nutritionist or on a religious mission. However,
this is obviously not the case, or I wouldn't have mentioned
it. Gary Taylor runs Gary Taylor Management, a band management
company based in Vancouver.
out Gary fasts every week for 36 hours, starting on Sunday
night. His reasoning is solid enough. "I'm 58. I'm a pretty
solid health fanatic. I always look after myself because I've
been in the nightclub and entertainment business all my life
and I've seen so many people age quickly and go down and die;
screw themselves up."
always been a manager. However, as he mentioned, he has been
in the entertainment industry for his entire life. And for
this story, as in most others, it is best to start at the
beginning and end with the end, mentioning the important,
exciting details and leaving the rest behind. Luckily,
Gary has had a life full of important, exciting details.
from Vancouver, Gary went to school through grade 13 with
plans of being a lawyer. As per usual, life is not so easy
to plan. A few years earlier at a friend's band practice,
Gary had caught the music bug and bought himself some drums.
By the time he was done with grade 13, he had already decided
he was going to be a musician, and a musician he became.
The Classics, played a mixture of R&B and Rock. The band landed
a job playing for a Canadian national television show called
"The Let's Go Show" after auditioning with a few hundred other
bands. "We got the show, so we became television stars at
a very young age."
a few years, the band broke up, as do most bands. A few of
the members went on to form other bands, but Taylor decided
he would build his own nightclub, King of Clubs, in Vancouver.
With the help of three new partners, the club brought in bands
to cater to an older crowd. Acts such as Johnny Winter, Edgar
Winter, and the Coasters all played there. His partners sold
their share after a few years, and Gary decided to leave the
club after the new owners changed the name and the club itself.
moved on once again. Over
the years he ran clubs including Gary Taylor's Rock Room,
Gary Taylor's Show Lounge, and a piano lounge.
Taylor's career brought him to Madison, WI. In this college-town
in middle-America he bought a club called R&R Station, which
he reworked and opened as The Paramount. The club became one
of the premier Madison clubs in the mid-to-late 90's, featuring
artists including Cheap Trick, Hole, Branford Marsalis, The
Fugees, Bush, and Henry Rollins.
a great club, a great sound system. All of the acts wanted
to play there. We went there with a purpose of building the
club. Great location, great town, at least we thought it was.
… We started having all our troubles when we started bringing
hip-hop bands in there."
trouble for the new club began, things started to snowball.
The police forced him to increase security and cut capacity.
"They really, really put the screws to us. Rather than help
us they just totally drove us out. … I went through hell and
high water there man."
the club closed down. During these last few years in Madison,
Taylor had become a sort of a legend with the city and the
students living there. He ran the Mifflin Street Festival
(one of the biggest block parties in Madison) one year, the
year before it met its end. "They gave me the keys to the
city. I was the only guy to get a beer garden for something
like 15 years." Just after this festival was around the time
the club was having problems. He left Madison within a year
of closing the club.
Taylor had become disheartened with the club industry. He
had received a few job offers booking various clubs, including
The Rave in Milwaukee. Taylor's answer was simple, "I wasn't
about to get back in the nightclub business and go through
all the bullshit."
went on to start his own management company, Gary Taylor Management,
which he still runs to this day. He currently has a roster
of eight acts and is working with a couple of producers. One
of his bands, Torben Floor (review),
has been working with Taylor for over three years. His company
has gotten to the stage now where Taylor doesn't need to look
for acts, instead acts are coming to him.
last two years Taylor started shaping the company into what
it is today. On April 19, Taylor will be leaving for a Gary
Taylor Management Showcase at Arlene Grocery in New York.
Two of his bands, Torben Floor (Chicago) and Muzzy Luctin
(Madison) will be showcased along with other associated New
York bands. It is an open show with free admission. Muzzy
Luctin will be playing at 7:00 p.m. on the 26th and Torben
Floor takes the stage at 9:00 p.m. on the 27th.
does Taylor keep doing this? What is his goal in all of his
work? What does he really want?
it up nicely, "Develop bands, get them signed, and just keep