060318- Arts Center Tunes Up for Spring Concert Series Maryland Gazette
050901- Sound Foundation Presents Creative Alliance
050505- LIVE Section: Cheap Date The Baltimore Sun
050301- Angela Taylor wins Songwriting Contest Peabody News
050301b- Peabody celebrates Alan Kefauver & 20th Anniversary of Peabody’s Recording Program Peabody News
030926- Fundraiser Features Melodic Sounds of Angela Taylor Severna Park Voice
030820- Taylor Pulls the Strings Towson Times
030813- Taylor Made Baltimore Guide
030801- Dear Readers Music Monthly
030619- Sing a Song for Bowie Bowie Blade
030109- Be-Cool Picks Angela Taylor The Washington Post
021106- Food for Thought The Morning Call
021101- BeCool Ad Campaign EQ, Keyboard, other national mags
020814- Oh say! Can you see... The Baltimore Guide
020604- Interview with Billy Zero XM Satellite Radio (Audio)
020601- "Strong" Response to Debut CD Johns Hopkins Magazine
011206- Rams Head Tavern concert features Bowie girl's music Bowie Blade
010919- Best of Baltimore 2001 - Best Solo Music Artist City Paper
010901- Capitol Groove: Angela Taylor Unsung Hero
010801- CD Review: Angela Taylor * Songs for Strong Girls Music Monthly
010630- Angela Taylor to perform on "Food Nation with Bobby Flay" July 17th Food Network
010618- Angela Taylor Appearance on Love and Money (Quicktime Movie)
010201- Angela Taylor 432miles: Independent Music Magazine
000619- "Best of Baltimore" Angela Taylor to Join JHU Peabody Preparatory Faculty Peabody Conservatory
000101- Who is Angela Taylor? University Reporter
991005- In the Spotlight: Angela Taylor The Retriever Weekly
990930- Angela Taylor to sing at Walters Art Gallery Johns Hopkins Newsletter
990915- Best of Baltimore 1999 - Best Solo Music Artist City Paper
990902- Canton woman to sing at State Fair The Baltimore Guide
990902- Last weekend for the State Fair The Baltimore Sun
990722- Alumna comes back for jazz concert Greenbelt News Review
990604- She writes the songs, and sings them, too Prince George's Journal
In the Spotlight: Angela Taylor
By DIANA ZEIGER
Retriever Weekly Staff Writer
Is it possible for one person to be both an award-winning alternapop musician and an instructor at an honors university? Angela Taylor is proving that it is.
On Mondays, she teaches two three-hour sections of Electronic Music I (MUSC 427) in which students learn digital recording techniques, songwriting and a history of electronic music. In addition, Taylor is working on her first full-length album to be released on Skinny Girl Records, her own label.
It's not easy to balance two such seemingly disparate lifestyles. "My life is insane," Taylor laughs. However, because she enjoys both making music and teaching others to do so, she would find giving up either to be a hardship. Teaching is a passion for Taylor, who earned her Bachelors degree at the Peabody Conservatory with a double major in flute and recording engineering and a minor in voice, as well as a Masters Degree (also from the Peabody) in Computer Music.
She feels that the most rewarding aspect of being an educator is having the opportunity to pass her knowledge on to others, but she doesn't confine her instructional skills to music alone. Besides her classes at UMBC, Taylor also teaches figure skating, something she has done for 10 years.
Sitting in on a class one Monday evening, it's easy to see how much Taylor enjoys her work. Every student is encouraged to participate in the discussion, which centers on the concept of contrast in songwriting. Students read and discuss a handout, and Taylor leaps up periodically to play songs that illustrate key points. When the time comes for the students to play their own compositions, she offers words of praise for each piece, and only constructive criticism is given.
Taylor feels that such a positive approach can only serve to encourage students' interest. "Of the carrot and the stick, I prefer the carrot," she says.
Teaching is only one part of Angela Taylor's very full life. At the moment, she is in the process of completing her album, which she anticipates will be released by the end of the year, "come hell or high water," she adds determinedly.
The songs on this album are all composed, performed and recorded by Taylor, who sings and plays flute on the tracks. Some cuts from her current demo reel are available for download on her official website, www.angela-taylor.com, but alas, my computer was too cranky to download and play back properly.
However, by her own description, "The style of my album is acoustic alterna-pop, which is heavily influenced by my training at Peabody." She draws on her classical training in both her songwriting and her arrangements of songs, trying to use chords that are interesting and different, as well as string and drum arrangements that are not typical to most pop music.
Taylor also makes extensive use of the most modern recording technology available. She feels that it's very important for musicians today to be computer-savvy and that the wide availability of good but inexpensive recording equipment has opened up a lot of opportunities for aspiring musicians. At the same time, it has also raised the standard: "These days," she says, "it is unacceptable to put out a record with errors."
Angela Taylor's musical accomplishments clearly demonstrate her talent and ability. Recently, she was named "Best Solo Music Artist" in the Baltimore City Paper 1999 Readers Poll. Just as exciting is the fact that for the last two years she has been a finalist in the Lilith Fair competition for performers.
A friend told her about the web contest in 1998; she entered and made it to the finals in that year and again in 1999. Of the 250 artists who entered, Taylor was among 20 finalists who were chosen to compete at the 9:30 Club in Washington, DC. Even though she didn't win the big prize, Taylor nevertheless enjoyed both the contest experience and the Lilith Fair as well. She mentions that Sheryl Crow was her preferred act this year, while the fair's founder, Sarah McLachlan, was her favorite in 1998.
A topic about which Taylor has strong opinions is that of opportunities for women in music. She confesses to a certain disappointment that more women don't seem interested in the technological aspects of the music industry, and advises young women not to be intimidated by it all. "If you represent yourself as a strong and confident person, people will see you that way," she maintains.
And she follows her own advice. She is rightly very proud of Skinny Girl Records, a venture that will allow her to recognize her musical visions on her own terms. Angela Taylor has very clear ideas of where she wants to go, and the determination to realize those ideas.
So while the balancing-act between teaching and performing makes a lot of demands on her, she is nevertheless happy. "It's a lot of work; you've got to love it to do it," Taylor says, "but I'm doing exactly what I want to do."