Koko Taylor Vinyl Records Lps For Sale

Check out these new and used Koko Taylor vinyl records LPs for sale. Koko Taylor was born the daughter of a sharecropper in Tennessee in 1928. She relocated to Chicago in 1952 and began singing in blues clubs in 1958. She ended up recording a single of Wang Dang Doodle, which was originally recorded by Howlin’ Wolf. There is a live version of this song from the 1967 American Folk Blues Festival which included Little Walter on harmonica. Koko became more well-known after touring the United States in the late 1960s, eventually signing with Alligator Records in 1975 after being on the Chess label for a long time. She ended up recording nine albums for Alligator, and eight of those LPs were nominated for Grammy awards. She kept touring a lot, and even performed over 70 concerts a year in her later years. Taylor passed away in 2009 at the age of 80 at her home in Chicago. We recommend starting your Koko Taylor vinyl collection with the essential Southside Baby or Queen of the Blues. Our inventory is constantly changing, so check back often, or browse our list of vinyl from blues musicians.

Koko Taylor Chess Records Lp Vinyl

Early Life in Memphis (1928-1952)

Born on September 28, 1928, as Cora Walton in Shelby County, Tennessee, Koko Taylor would rise to prominence as the “Queen of the Blues.” Growing up in poverty, she found solace in music, especially the blues that permeated the atmosphere of her Memphis neighborhood. Her early exposure to artists like Bessie Smith and Memphis Minnie fueled a passion for the blues that would shape her destiny.

In her teenage years, Koko migrated to Chicago, drawn by the promise of a vibrant blues scene. Little did she know that this move would be the catalyst for a groundbreaking career that would see her become a trailblazer for female blues artists.

Emergence in Chicago and Chess Records (1950s-1960s)

In the mid-1950s, Koko Taylor’s powerful voice and commanding stage presence caught the attention of legendary record producer Willie Dixon. Recognizing her talent, Dixon facilitated Koko’s introduction to Chess Records, the iconic Chicago-based label that played a pivotal role in shaping the blues genre.

Her recording debut, “I Got What It Takes” (1965), marked the beginning of her association with Chess Records. Koko’s raw, unapologetic delivery and the robust backing of blues legends like Muddy Waters and Willie Dixon set her apart. She rapidly gained recognition as a force to be reckoned with in the male-dominated world of blues.

“Wang Dang Doodle” and International Stardom (1966-1970s)

Koko Taylor’s breakthrough came with the release of “Wang Dang Doodle” in 1966. The song, written by Willie Dixon, became a massive hit and remains one of her signature tunes. Its success catapulted Koko into the spotlight, and she earned her first Grammy nomination, establishing her as a leading figure in the blues scene.

Throughout the 1970s, Koko Taylor’s career continued to flourish. She toured extensively, electrifying audiences with her commanding stage presence and a voice that effortlessly spanned the emotional spectrum of the blues. Her albums, including “Koko Taylor” (1969) and “South Side Lady” (1973), solidified her reputation as the “Queen of the Blues.”

Queen of the Blues and Grammy Success (1980s)

The 1980s brought well-deserved recognition for Koko Taylor’s contributions to the blues genre. In 1984, she received a Grammy Award for Best Traditional Blues Album for “Queen of the Blues.” This milestone marked not only a personal triumph for Koko but also a historic moment as she became the first woman to be awarded a Grammy in the blues category.

Undeterred by the challenges faced by women in the music industry, Koko Taylor continued to break barriers. Her albums during this period, such as “From the Heart of a Woman” (1981) and “Queen of the Blues” (1985), showcased her ability to evolve with the times while staying true to the roots of the blues.

Legacy and Recognition (1990s-2000s)

As Koko Taylor entered the 1990s, she solidified her status as a living legend. Her relentless touring schedule, which included appearances at renowned blues festivals, kept her connected with fans worldwide. In 1993, she was awarded the National Heritage Fellowship by the National Endowment for the Arts, recognizing her significant contributions to the cultural heritage of the United States.

Despite facing health challenges in the late 1990s, Koko Taylor’s commitment to the blues remained unwavering. Her resilience was evident in the album “Royal Blue” (2000), which earned her a Grammy nomination. Her distinctive voice, often described as a “force of nature,” continued to resonate with audiences, reaffirming her enduring influence on the blues.

Final Years and Enduring Impact

Koko Taylor’s final years were marked by a legacy that extended beyond her own performances. She actively mentored young blues musicians, ensuring the survival and growth of the genre. In 2009, Koko Taylor passed away at the age of 80, leaving behind a remarkable legacy as a trailblazer for female artists in the blues.

Her impact on the blues scene, particularly as a woman in a male-dominated industry, is immeasurable. Koko Taylor’s powerful voice, authentic storytelling, and unwavering spirit continue to inspire generations of blues musicians. Her influence can be heard in the work of contemporary artists who have embraced and expanded upon the traditions she helped shape.

Koko Taylor’s journey from a humble beginning in Memphis to international stardom stands as a testament to the enduring power of the blues and the indomitable spirit of the “Queen of the Blues.” Her legacy lives on, not only in the recordings that captured her dynamic performances but also in the hearts of those who continue to be moved by the force and authenticity of her music.

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