Monday, August 8, 2016

Carin' About B.E. Taylor

We interrupt our Second Week Special Week because B.E. Taylor passed away on Sunday, August 8, 2016. The 65-year old leader of the B.E. Taylor Group died from an inoperable brain tumor. Born in Aliquippa, PA as William Edward Taylor, the moniker B.E. came from his mother's nickname for the singer, Billy Eddie.

The B.E. Taylor Group was a Pittsburgh regional act that had minimal national success in the 1980s. Although not a national household name, he was well known in Western Pennsylvania, the Upper Ohio Valley, and North East Ohio. In their attempt at national stardom, The B.E. Taylor Group was signed to two major labels: MCA and Epic. Their most popular recording “Vitamin L” peaked at #66 on the Hot 100 and received considerable play on MTV in 1983 and 1984. Their first national release on MCA in 1982, “Never Hold Back,” charted at #54 on Billboard’s Mainstream Rock chart.

For today’s tribute, I’ve selected their third best known recording, “Karen.” Following their stint with MCA, they recorded “Karen” on the small and independent Breaker Records in 1984. When picked up by Epic Records, the band recorded the tune in 1986. “Karen” peaked at #94 on the Hot 100.

Over the years, he had worked for Nickelodeon and Nick at Night and had recorded commercials for Old Navy. In recent years, B.E. became known for his numerous charity concerts and annual Christmas shows. Rest in Peace B.E.

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