Michael J. Taylor, more commonly known simply as ‘Taylor’, has been teaching, performing, and recording West African percussion since 1994. The Director of the Chicago branch of the Tam Tam Mandingue Djembe Academy school of percussion, a Tam Tam Mandingue Djembe Academy Senior Certified Teacher of djembe, and the founder and driving force behind Holy Goat Percussion, he teaches, performs, imports, sells, and repairs West African djembes and dununs.
His specialties are the djembe and dunun, but he plays a wide assortment of other drums including bugaraboo, congas, frame drum, bongos, and doumbek. Check out ‘djembist’ on YouTube for video examples.
Taylor has traveled to Guinea, West Africa 6 times with Mamady Keita and M’Bemba Bangoura. He has also taught in the United States and China, and studied and/or performed in Africa, Japan, China and the United States with a number of djembe/dunun luminaries, among them: Grand Master Mamady Keita, Grand Manster Famoudou Konaté, Michael Markus, M’Bemba Bangoura, Yaya Kabo, Madou Dembele, Gbanworo Keita, Laurent Camara, Minto Camara, Arthur Hull, Yaya Diallo, and Jahamen Mobley.
He has recorded three CDs of original West African djembe-based music. A Touch of Chaos in the Rhythmic Soup has been in stores since 1996; Silence has been out since late 2001; and Silence in the Rhythmic Soup (rhythmic environments for yoga and meditation) was released Spring 2003. He created 2 ground-breaking instructional DVDs; one focused on traditional djembe technique entitled Remembering How to Drum and the other focused on the essential repetition that comes with mastery of the djembe entitled Akaran Iko Iko (2006), which are selling worldwide.
*Tam Tam Mandingue certifications are degrees in the djembe and dunun drums offered exclusively by Grand Master Drummer Mamady Keita, from Guinea, West Africa: http://www.ttmda.com/mamady-keita