Since releasing their in late 2010, the Teagan Taylor Trio has been working on their new album “Wonderland,” which comes out today.
Over the last year, the father-daughter-son trio has also performed their eclectic jazz sound just about anywhere possible.
Teagan, who describes herself as a person “addicted to the creativeness and putting what you have in your head and heart on paper,” sang the national anthem at PETCO Park.
During a summer concert series they played in Terminal 2 near baggage claim at San Diego International Airport.
They regularly perform at the Little Italy Farmers Market and Coronado Ferry Landing.
Last month they were in New York at the Greentopia festival.
In IB they have become a fixture at community events, doing shows at events held by the library, fire department and chamber of commerce.
Through their website and social networks they have garnered fans and a following in Spain, Turkey, Poland and other parts of the world.
Imperial Beach Patch sat down with Teagan and Dylan to pick their brain ahead of their performance Saturday evening at the 10th Avenue Theatre and Arts Centre downtown.
Teagan's boyfriend Sean Salant, a guitar player for a band in Brooklyn, also joined us.
Patch: Where did the music come from on this album? Is it all original?
Teagan: Nine of them are our originals, one of them is by David Belnock, a singer-songwriter and musician in San Diego and he’s amazing. He’s great. And then we have two standards on there.
Patch: Who wrote the songs?
Teagan: Me and my dad wrote them. Usually I come up with the melody and the lyrics. I’ll just I wrote poetry or whatever and then add a melody to it and then I say hey dad you know and I sing it for him and I mean he has a fantastic ear and he could hear what I wanted him to do but usually what happens is I’ll have an idea but he takes it like 10 levels up. It’s great, and writing with Sean is different too because usually he'll come up with like a lick or a melody and then I’ll write to that. So I mean it’s really interesting the different types of writing styles I have with two different people. It’s so fast. We can write a song in 10-15 minutes.
Sean: What’s cool about Tim though, Tim says that he’s been working on things for 30 years and he brings it to Teagan and Teagan finishes that song that he’s been working on for so long. Every guitar player has their licks and their things in their bag that they’ve held on to for so long and they’ve never put it down. So Teagan’s like the finisher.
Patch: Do you walk by things and get motivation for songs?
Oh yeah definitely. I think a lot of it comes from personal experience of course or just thinking of people or thinking of scenarios that you've seen. I mean especially in college you see so many different things that can kind of spark an interesting thing and different relationships between other peoples like it doesn't technically have to be about you, you know a lot of the times I write songs about Sean and my relationship but definitely past experiences and sometimes I mean in the weirdest times songs will come out of nowhere. You'll just start doing lyrics and you know it's a really good melody when you remember it after a couple of days. Cause sometimes I've like thought of things when I'm in the shower or whatever and I'll forget them but I mean a lot of the songs that we've written, they just stuck and you know it's a good sign and you've got to finish it.
Patch: Are there any examples of that on this album?
Teagan: "To the Moon and Back" I wrote coming home from my friend's house and it was really late. It was like midnight or 1 o' clock. I was driving and I was just looking at the moon and I love the moon I love everything about the stars and stuff so "To the Moon and Back" I was looking at it and I just started singing this simple melody and then I just kind of put words to it and drove home. "Fight or Flight" I had that in my head for a really long time, the melody for that. And I just had the chorus written and then I wrote the rest of it with my dad. "The Fallout" I wrote in 10th grade and I didn't finish it until a year ago.
Patch: What other artists do you follow?
Teagan: For me Norah Jones, Madeleine Peyroux, Imelda May is one of my favorites. She and Him I recently started listening to them. They're really great. I love listening to every type of music really but our kind of sound, those are the people, especially Madeleine Peyroux. I think she really kind of rounds us off as kind of how we are. She involves the songwriting kind of indie jazz thing and she doesn't just do like straight ahead jazz you know. She does so many different types of music. Oh and Jamie Cullum of course. He does the same thing where like you know he has a dance track on there and like…. it's amazing. I was just talking to about this and she said that you know people don't want to hear eclecticism on an album like producers or whatever. Like the problem you're having. Like this is too complicated and it's too different. It needs to sound more of the same and I think that's so diminishing on your creative value and creativity.
Patch: Like you need to move closer to pop?
Teagan: Yeah I mean like do whatever you want. Our record that's what most people have said that it's so eclectic you know you don't know what's coming next and I think that's a good thing. and that just shows all the types of music that we're into and touched by really.
Patch: What about you?
Dylan: I play bass in the group but I wouldn't say like you know a lot of guitar players who say Jimi Hendrix. I mean I love Jimi Hendrix but I don't have any like bass players. I don't listen to bass players like a lot of bass dudes are like Jaco Pastorius, Victor Wooten and Stanley Clarke.
Yeah I don't listen to any of them. I mean I know their music but I'm not going to listen to them on my iPod. I usually just, what I do more is I listen to millions of types of music. Any genre, sub genre, sub genres of sub genres. I basically take compositional ideas or techniques from that style of music and just incorporate it in my playing. I like Stan Getz. I'm into a lot of deep house music, tech house music. Stuff like that. A lot of the older sounding deep house sounds. A lot of soul. A lot of sampled stuff. Like an acid jazz kind of thing. Stuff like that.
Patch: Is it ever difficult to work with family?
Teagan: No, it's easier.
Dylan: When we want to practice?
Teagan: Yeah working out a schedule but I think it's easier than like if you weren't… this guy wanted me to be in his band he lives in Poway. And I was like dude I can't drive an hour or 45 minutes up there. Plus as a family we can rehearse when we want, you know do it in our house or in the garage or wherever we have it set up. And you know if we have an argument it's very natural. It's not like oh we're going to break up! Like you're a jerk. You know what I mean? We're going to have to live together so you better get over it or move out I guess. I don't know. What do you think? I personally love playing with my family.
Dylan: I agree. It's easy. And you kind of have the same influences, kind of, and somewhat not the same influences.
Teagan: But I think that's what kind of makes it eclectic. I mean really playing with anybody whether they're just a good friend or
Dylan: Especially it's like, who do you want to hang out with? You can be in groups with people and you don't really like them buy they're good musicians. It's kind of fun but not really fun.
Teagan: Which is hard. You kind of connect with people cause that's when the real music happens is when you have that spark.
Patch: What do you think of the local music scene?
Dylan: It's cool cause a lot of the musicians know other musicians.
Teagan: I think it's growing and it's great. Even in San Diego like since we started school like everyone we know, we know everybody they know. It's surprising how small the San Diego music scene is so I mean when you look at Imperial Beach by itself I mean that's great to bring people together, especially like the blog you were talking about so everybody helps each other out like hey have you seen this, or that and just kind of become better musicians and businesspeople as well because the business aspects of it are probably the hardest part in promoting yourself and doing that sort of thing you know because people want to know your name, they want to know who you are so that's a pretty important part of the musician so
Patch: I've heard other bands complain that they wish there were more mid size venues in IB.
Teagan: Mickies was a great place especially cause it was local but all of our other gigs are an hour driving quite a bit aways. I wish you could just go and have fun and it's hard because some people in IB, a lot of them don't go out when were playing downtown or any places like that so that's kind of rough but we've expanded our audience to a really wide area of San Diego where if we're playing different places people are going to come. We've been working on that, but it's hard you know? People have other things to do.
To learn more about the band visit teagantaylor.com