Chip Taylor explains how he discovered country music while growing up in Yonkers, New York, and performs familiar favorites (including “Angel of the Morning” and “Wild Thing”) as well as material from his new album, “Whiskey Salesman,” during this July 17, 2019, Songwriter Session at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum.
At the start of the program, Taylor mentions the accomplishments of his older brothers, actor Jon Voight and geologist Barry Voight. He then reminisces about listening to a country music station based in West Virginia on the family’s Motorola radio, dreaming that he could be involved with country music somehow. He cites Chet Atkins as an early champion of his songwriting.
He performs three songs from “Whiskey Salesman,” followed by “I Can Make It With You” (recorded by Jackie DeShannon), “I’ll Carry for You,” “Try (Just a Little Bit Harder)” (recorded by Janis Joplin), “Angel of the Morning” (recorded by Evie Sands, Merrilee Rush, Juice Newton, and many others), and “Wild Thing” (recorded by the Troggs).
Asked about which song he thought would be a bigger hit than it was, Taylor settles on “Son of a Rotten Gambler,” and speaks about the versions recorded by Anne Murray and Emmylou Harris, both produced by Brian Ahern.
Near the end of the program, Taylor observes, “If you left here seeing me today and you learned one thing—at least this is what I believe in—you should do everything in your own spirit. Don’t do it in somebody else’s spirit. If you write something or you do something else, whatever it is . . . do it you own way.”
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