Roger Meddows Taylor (born 26 July 1949) is an English musician, singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist, best known as the drummer for the rock band Queen. As a drummer, Taylor was recognised early in his career for his unique sound. He was voted by radio listeners as the eighth-greatest drummer in classic rock music history in a poll conducted by Planet Rock in 2005.
As a songwriter, Taylor contributed songs to Queen's albums from the beginning, composing at least one track on every album, and often singing lead vocals on his own compositions. He wrote or co-wrote three UK number 1s ("These Are the Days of Our Lives", "Innuendo" and "Under Pressure") and contributed a further five major hits ("Radio Ga Ga", "A Kind of Magic", "Heaven for Everyone", "Breakthru", and "The Invisible Man"). He is also the main writer on the international top-ten hit "One Vision", although the track is credited to the whole band. He has collaborated with such artists as Eric Clapton, Roger Waters, Roger Daltrey, Robert Plant, Phil Collins, Genesis, Jimmy Nail, Elton John, Gary Numan, Shakin' Stevens, Foo Fighters, Al Stewart, Steve Vai, Yoshiki, Cyndi Almouzni, and Bon Jovi. As a producer, he has produced albums by Virginia Wolf, Jimmy Nail and Magnum.
In addition to his drum work, Taylor sometimes played keyboards, guitars and bass on his own songs. During the 1980s, in addition to his work with Queen, he formed a parallel band known as the Cross, in which he was the lead singer and rhythm guitarist. During the early 1980s, Taylor was also a panellist on the popular UK quiz show Pop Quiz, hosted by Mike Read.
In 2014, he appeared in The Life of Rock with Brian Pern as himself. Taylor is also well known for his falsetto vocal range.
Roger Taylor was born on 26 July 1949 in the West Norfolk & Lynn Hospital, Exton's Road King's Lynn, Norfolk. The new maternity ward was opened by Princess Elizabeth (the future queen, Elizabeth II), where she was introduced to 16 new mothers including Winifred Taylor, his mother. Taylor first lived at 87 High Street in King's Lynn, and later moved to Beulah Street in the town. Taylor's first school was Rosebury Avenue school. Taylor moved to Truro, Cornwall, south west England, with his mother Winifred, father Michael and younger sister Clare. When he was seven years old, he and some friends formed his first band, The Bubblingover Boys, in which he played the ukulele. He briefly attended Truro Cathedral School; at the age of 13, he joined Truro School as a day boy. At the age of 15, Taylor became a member of The Reaction, a semi-professional rock band formed mainly of boys from Truro School. Taylor had originally learned guitar, but became a drummer when he realised he had a more natural aptitude for it. Taylor taught himself to tune his drums, inspired by Keith Moon of The Who because of the "great drums sounds" on the early Who records. Another key influence on Taylor was drummer Mitch Mitchell of The Jimi Hendrix Experience, who Taylor stated was his early role model.
In 1967, Taylor went to London to study dentistry at the London Hospital Medical College, but he became bored with dentistry. He changed to biology and obtained a BSc at East London Polytechnic.
Main article: Smile (band)
Taylor met Brian May and Tim Staffell in 1968 after a friend saw an advert on a noticeboard at Imperial College for a drummer. Smile included May on lead guitar, Staffell on lead vocals and bass, and later Taylor on drums. The band lasted for two years before Staffell departed to join Humpy Bong, leaving the band with a catalogue of nine songs.
Smile reunited for several songs on 22 December 1992. Taylor's band the Cross were headliners and he brought May and Staffell on to play "Earth" and "If I Were a Carpenter".
Main article: Queen (band)
Taylor performing with Queen in 1979.
In 1969, Taylor was working with Freddie Mercury at the Kensington Market (they were sharing a flat at around the same time). Mercury, then known as Freddie Bulsara, was an avid fan of Smile. The band split up in 1970. In the same year, Taylor turned down the chance to become drummer for Genesis, which led to Phil Collins joining instead. Bulsara convinced the remaining two members of Smile to continue and he eventually joined the band, which he renamed Queen. In 1971, they found bass guitarist John Deacon and brought him into the band, before going on to release their self-titled debut album in 1973. Taylor is the third most credited songwriter for the band, usually contributing one or two tracks per album, and he is considered a prominent songwriter.
READ MORE: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roger_Taylor_(Queen_drummer)
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