Before embarking upon a solo career, Paul honed his unique stylized skills as a sideman with Jeff Lorber, Keiko Matsui and The Rippingtons. Prior to those experiences, he augmented his career by studying at the University of Las Vegas and commuting to Los Angeles to enhance his demand as a professional. It was during a gig at the Catalina Jazz Festival while appearing with Jeff Lorber that Paul was discovered by Keiko and Kazu Matsui. The rest you might say is jazz history. With four CD's to his credit as a solo musician, Paul came to Houston for a two night performance, where some patrons of the club knew little of what to expect.
Admittedly, my experience with Paul Taylor had been limited to seeing him in concert with The Rippingtons and Keiko Matsui. In addition, I also have three of his recordings as a solo musician. Seeing him perform with his band was an eye-opening experience for me. Prior to that, my view of Paul has always been singular in approach as merely another in a long line of smooth jazz saxophonists. Seeing him at the IRIS Jazz Resort broadened my perspective of him considerably. In a live setting, Paul Taylor digs deep to not only expose his multi-faceted talents as a consummate musician, he also has a captivating persona on stage. For those unfamiliar with this unique individual, a major transformation of sorts took place on the night of October 24, 2002.
In Houston, Texas, the opportunity to hear smooth jazz artists such as Paul Taylor is extremely limited for a variety of reasons. The main one being limited availability of radio airplay. As such, when jazz aficionados get the opportunity to see the likes of Paul Taylor, they are taken completely by surprise. On the stage of the IRIS Jazz Resort, that is what happened overwhelmingly. Over two sets, Paul exposed the audience to such tracks as "Pleasure Seeker", "Exotica", "Hypnotic" and numerous other tracks he is most widely noted for. Through his entire performance, Paul Taylor exhibited seldom heard meshes of contemporary, pop and R&B influences with jazz. In doing so, patrons of the club gave him the ultimate stamp of approval, as well as numerous purchases of his CD's. In hindsight, Paul Taylor gave as much as he received, an enthusiastic performance, rewarded by newly found fans and acceptance as one of jazz's finest musicians.