As an artist, Matthew Evan Taylor, is intrigued by four aspects of music; the growth of complex music from a simple idea, the social nature of the art form (especially, as it manifests in improvisation and the audience’s reaction), the evocation of color and atmosphere through sound, and the relationship of dance and music. He believes that today’s culture encourages a new kinetic, vibrant type of art, with unhinged rhythms and unbridled expression. It is Matthew’s goal to reflect this world and what is awe-inspiring about it through his music. Ultimately, he wishes to connect with the audience and expose the beauty that is all around.
Matthew was born in Boston, Massachusetts (3 December, 1980) and raised in Birmingham, Alabama, where he was exposed early to the music of Cannonball Adderly, Miles Davis, John Coltrane and Ornette Coleman. He began playing saxophone at the age of 9, and quickly began learning the music of his heroes by ear. In college, he was introduced to the music of Igor Stravinsky and Arnold Schoenberg, which opened his ears to the world of modern classical music. After a five year stint touring as a founding member of Sony Music recording artist Moses Mayfield, Matthew moved to Miami in 2009 to focus on composition.
Since his relocation, Matthew has been an active artist, both performer and composer, in the Miami area and beyond. His music has been premiered in Miami, New York City, San Francisco and Cortona, Italy and performed by the Imani Winds, The Cleveland Orchestra, the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, pianist Marilyn Crispell, and clarinetist Gregory Oakes.
Matthew has garnered praise in publications such as the Miami Herald and the Huffington Post. He has been recognized as a promising emerging composer by the American Composer’s Orchestra, the Imani Winds, and Festival Miami. Matthew has also been awarded grants and commissions such as Miami Light Project’s Here & Now commission and Tigertail Production’s Artists Access Grant, given in conjunction with the Miami-Dade Department of Cultural Affairs.
Matthew has been involved in fruitful collaborations with dancer/choreographers Priscilla Marrero, Katherine Kramer, and Joanne Barrett, musicians Elliott Sharp and Tatsuya Nakatani, and artists Pablo Cano and Ferrán Martin. He also was a founding member of Fridamusiq, an ensemble of four composers interested in free improvisation. Matthew is also a co-founder of the Vanguard Miami Festival of New Music.
Matthew is a candidate for the Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the University of Miami, Frost School of Music, where he is also an instructor in music theory and aural skills. His teachers include Dr. Dorothy Hindman, Dr. Dennis Kam, Dr. Charles Mason, Dr. Lansing McLoskey, Dr. Gabriela Lena Frank, Stevan Tickmayer, and Dr. John Stewart. He has studied saxophone with Dale Underwood, Sallie Vines White, Jack Sharp, and Dr. Russell Thomas.
Matthew is a BMI composer and a member of the Society of Composers, Inc., College Music Society, and American Composers Forum.