“I’m James Taylor, and I’m a professional autobiographer.” So begins the tender audio memoir Break Shot: My First 21 Years. Through decades of songs by the celebrated folk legend who brought us “Fire and Rain” and “Carolina in My Mind”, James Taylor has doled out details of his life in the poetry of his work. Taylor says his early life is “the source of many of my songs”, and Break Shot is a tour of his first 21 years in rich, new detail. Combining storytelling, music and performance, this one-of-a-kind listening experience also features a crop of musical gems, including an unreleased recording of the beloved hymn “Jerusalem” and selections from his newest release, American Standard, as well as new original scoring by Taylor specially recorded for Break Shot and more.
Recorded in his home studio, TheBarn in western Massachusetts, Break Shot tells the deeply personal story of Taylor’s youth, which is entwined with the story of his family. What started as an idyllic tight unit soon became a family sent to different emotional corners – like a break shot in the game of pool, he says, “when you slam the cue ball into the 15 other balls and they all go flying off”.
By the time Taylor released his breakout second album in 1970, Sweet Baby James, he had seen the disintegration of his parents’ marriage and his family crumble in the aftermath. He had committed himself twice to a psychiatric hospital, battled depression and a heroin addiction, suffered a relapse, and traveled far away from the “wood smoke and moonshine” of the North Carolina landscapes in which he came of age. Despite it all, he was also on the cusp of superstardom and on his way to bringing light and joy to millions. He was 21.
In this Audible Original, Taylor lays bare the emotional turmoil he and his family fought through when he was first finding his musical path. At last, he creates an audio memoir illuminating the tenuous first act of a life he’s spent decades learning to fully live. Journey with James Taylor to a time before he became a Grammy Award-winning Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Songwriters Hall of Fame inductee and a recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors and both the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the National Medal of Arts, as well as one of the best-selling musicians of all time.
Special Note: This title is free to members and free with trial through April 2, 2020.