Andrew Arthur "Andy" Taylor (born 16 February 1961) is an English guitarist, singer, and songwriter. He was a member of Duran Duran and The Power Station. He has also performed as a solo artist, and served as a record producer for several other artists.
Born and raised in Cullercoats, Tyne and Wear, Taylor attended Marden High School. He began playing guitar at the age of eleven and was soon playing with local bands, even producing one at the age of sixteen. Taylor dropped out of school early to tour England and Europe with several different bands, playing men's clubs and air force bases.
Duran Duran and The Power Station:
Taylor joined Duran Duran in 1980 (easily the most experienced musician in the band), and enjoyed their crazy rise to fame over the next five years.
He grew dissatisfied with the band's keyboard-heavy synth pop, however, and longed to stretch out his rock muscles. During a hiatus in Duran Duran's schedule, he joined forces with bassist John Taylor, Chic drummer Tony Thompson, and singer Robert Palmer to create The Power Station. The band had three hit singles and played the Live Aid concert in 1985.
Taylor would later rejoin The Power Station band mates Palmer and Thompson for Palmer's first solo album since the band's formation. The resulting album, Riptide proved to be a massive success for Palmer with the single "Addicted To Love" featuring the guitar sound of Andy Taylor.
After The Power Station, Taylor allowed Duran Duran to believe he would be returning to record a new album, even as he was signing contracts for a solo career in Los Angeles. Another Capitol Records group, Missing Persons was disbanding at the same time, and Andy hired Terry Bozzio and Patrick O'Hearn to work with him.
This caused ex-Missing Persons guitarist Warren Cuccurullo to approach Duran Duran to fill Andy's position -- a vacancy no one in Duran Duran knew existed. Eventually Duran Duran sued Taylor to force him in to the studio to complete the album Notorious, but he ended up playing on only a few tracks before departing the band completely. He later countersued to claim some of the royalties from that album.
In July 1986, Arcadia (Simon Le Bon, Roger Taylor and Nick Rhodes of Duran Duran) released "The Flame", the final single from So Red The Rose. The accompanying music video featured a cameo by John Taylor coming out of a closet with a contract to sign. Fans have debated whether this was a thinly veiled dig at the situation with Andy at the time.
Solo and production
After six years with Duran Duran in the 1980s, Taylor collaborated with ex-Sex Pistols guitarist Steve Jones on his debut solo album Thunder.
In the mean time he recorded the hit single "Take It Easy" (US #24 Billboard - US #1 MTV), which was recorded as the theme song to the movie American Anthem. Ex-Missing Persons members Terry Bozzio and Patrick O'Hearn lent drums and bass, respectively, to the song and video. Two other songs by Taylor/Jones also appeared on the album: "Wings of Love" and the instrumental "Angel Eyes". Taylor also contributed to the Miami Vice 2 soundtrack with the song "When The Rain Comes Down" (US #43). This was followed by his first solo album, Thunder (1987). O'Hearn again played bass for him on the album and during the following tour. Also on the Thunder world tour were guitarist Paul Hanson (guitarist)] and drummer John Valen joined Andy and Patrick. Paul, John & Patrick also appear with Andy in the music video for the second single "Don't Let Me Die Young" from the Thunder album.
In 1986, Taylor worked with Belinda Carlisle on her single "Mad About You". This was followed by co/writing & co/producing Rod Stewart's Platinum album Out of Order along with Chic members Bernard Edwards and Tony Thompson, spawning the Billboard hits, "Lost In You, "Forever Young" & "My Heart Can't Tell Me No"
Taylor also contributed a cover of "Dead On The Money" to the Tequila Sunrise soundtrack in 1988. Taylor's former band Duran Duran would also allow one of their own songs, "Do You Believe In Shame?" to be included on the album. A second solo album, this one consisting of entirely cover versions, entitled Dangerous was released in 1990.
He then moved on to producing full time, working with several successful UK bands throughout the 1990s - Producing the highly successful debut album Backstreet Symphony by London Rockers Thunder and their follow up Laughing On Judgement Day. This was followed by The Almighty Soul Destruction, and then Mark Shaw's (of Then Jerico) Almost, basing himself all the while in his now refurbished Trident II Studios in London with then manager and Partner Rob Hallett until 1994, when he then returned to Los Angeles in order to write and produce tracks for a second album by The Power Station and the 1995 Rod Stewart album A Spanner in the Works.
His most recent venture is the album The Underdog Has Landed, recorded at his Ibiza studio in April 2008.
Andy participated in the 1997 reunion of The Power Station, and in 2001 reunited with the other original members of Duran Duran to record their first new music together since 1985. Their ensuing album, Astronaut, featured a blend of Taylor's heavy guitar with the synth hooks of the classic Duran Duran sound.
In 2006, Andy again parted ways with Duran Duran, leaving the band a second time. Rumours have circulated that the reason for Taylor's departure lie in the rest of the band's decision to use American record producer Timbaland and to allow Timbaland and Justin Timberlake to write a song for the band, but in his autobiography Andy stated that he fully intended to show up for the sessions with Timbaland but management failed to get him a work visa. Duran Duran simply cited an "unworkable gulf" as the reason.
Andy has since opened three MySpace pages to explain his point of view and showcase new music from his own recording studio in Ibiza.
With Duran Duran:
- Duran Duran (1981)
- Rio (1982)
- Seven and the Ragged Tiger (1983)
- Arena (1984)
- Notorious (1986)
- Astronaut (2004)
With The Power Station:
- The Power Station (1985)
- Living In Fear (1997)
- Thunder (1987)
- Dangerous (1990)
- The Spanish Sessions (1999)
- "Take It Easy"
- "When The Rain Comes Down"
- "I Might Lie"
- "Don't Let Me Die Young"
- "Life Goes On"
- "Dead On The Money" (Promo)
- "Stone Cold Sober"
- 1981 - Duran Duran, Duran Duran
- 1981 - Duran Duran, "My Own Way"
- 1982 - Duran Duran, Rio
- 1983 - Duran Duran, "Is There Something I Should Know?"
- 1983 - Duran Duran, Seven and the Ragged Tiger
- 1984 - Duran Duran, Arena
- 1984 - Duran Duran, "The Wild Boys"
- 1985 - Power Station, Power Station
- 1985 - Duran Duran, "A View to a Kill"
- 1985 - Duran Duran, Notorious
- 1985 - Power Station, "Someday, Somehow, Someone's Gotta Pay"
- 1985 - Michael Des Barres, Somebody Up There Likes Me (guitar)
- 1985 - John Adams, "Through the Eyes of Love" (co-writer, producer)
- 1986 - Robert Palmer, "Addicted To Love" (guitar)
- 1986 - Belinda Carlisle, "Mad About You" (guitar)
- 1986 - Soundtrack, American Anthem
- 1986 - Andy Taylor, "Take It Easy"
- 1986 - Soundtrack, Miami Vice 2
- 1986 - Andy Taylor, "When The Rain Comes Down"
- 1986 - Love & Money, All You Need Is (producer, singles "Candybar Express" and "Cheesburger")
- 1986 - Andy Taylor, Thunder (including singles "I Might Lie", "Don't Let Me Die Young" and "Life Goes On")
- 1986 - Triplets, Break The Silence (guitar)
- 1987 - The Alarm, "Rain In The Summertime" (mixed "The Bells of Rhymney")
- 1988 - Rod Stewart, Out of Order (writer, producer, guitar)
- 1988 - Rod Stewart, "The Wild Horse" (writer, producer, guitar)
- 1989 - C.C. Catch, Hear What I Say (co-producer)
- 1989 - Eric & The Good Good Feeling, Funky (producer)
- 1990 - Thunder, Backstreet Symphony (writer, producer)
- 1990 - Thunder, "Dirty Love" (producer)
- 199? - Andy Taylor, Nobodies Business (unreleased solo album)
- 1990 - Andy Taylor, Dangerous
- 1990 - Loud, D Generation (remixed "Explosive")
- 1990 - Skin & Bones, Not A Pretty Sight (producer)
- 1990 - The Grip, "American Dream" (producer)
- 199? - Tamara Champlin, (producer - album)
- 1990 - Gun, Gun - (producer, mixer, including singles "Shame on You" and "Long Road")
- 1991 - The Law, "For A Little Ride" (remix, additional guitar)
- 1991 - The Almighty, Soul Destruction (producer)
- 1991 - Mark Shaw, Almost (producer)
- 199? - Matthew Ashman, (producer, writer - album)
- 1992 - Thunder, Laughing On Judgement Day (producer, writer)
- 1995 - Rod Stewart, A Spanner in the Works (co-writer, co-producer, guitar)
- 1997 - Power Station, Living In Fear
- 1998 - Andy Taylor, "Dead On The Money"
- 1999 - Thunder, Giving The Game Away (acoustic guitar)
- 1999 - Andy Taylor & Luke Morely, The Spanish Sessions
- 2000 - Then Jerico, Orgasmaphobia (producer, writer, guitars)
- 2001 - Luke Morley, El Gringo Retro (co-writer, co-producer, guitar)
- 200? - Fevertree / Liam Keenan, Fevertree (producer)
- 2004 - Duran Duran, Astronaut
- 2006 - Duran Duran, Reportage (unreleased album)
- 2008 - Hungover Stuntmen, Blame The BBC (producer)
- 2008 - Andy Taylor, The Underdog Has Landed
- 2010 - Andy Taylor, Live In Tokyo 1987
- 2011 - Andy Taylor, Andy Played Guitar
- 2011 - Andy Taylor, Four Interviews & A Funeral
- 2012 - Cold Blank, The Agenda (guitar - "Onslaught")
- 2014 - The Ting Tings, Super Critical (producer)
- 201? - Andy Taylor, Motherlode
- 2008 - Wild Boy: My Life In Duran Duran