Entertainment » Music

Taylor Dayne Keeps Working It

by BeBe Sweetbriar
Wednesday Apr 9, 2014

With hits "Tell It To My Heart," "Love Will Lead You Back," "I'll Always Love You," "Don't Rush Me," and "Prove Your Love" (amongst 14 other Top 20 Pop and Dance singles), Taylor Dayne is without a doubt one of the stand out artists of all time. Her unique and distinct voice has earned her numerous best-selling gold and platinum albums selling more than 75 million albums and singles worldwide.

It has been 6 years since Dayne released her last studio album "Satisfied" (2008), but being satisfied with being idle in her career is far from what Taylor Dayne is doing. Since the release of "Satisfied," Dayne has released three singles including the international dance hit "Floor On Fire" (2011).

Not interested in putting out a simple Greatest Hits album with just her classic songs in their original form, Dayne has been working on a project to reintroduce her hits in a reinvention of their original form along with some new material. "It’s time to reinvent those, to reinterpret them. You have to be a little intelligent about how you work with the classics," says Dayne of a Greatest Hits album.

Taylor Dayne has not limited her talents to just singing having been in 7 films including "Love Affair," "Stag" and "Fool’s Paradise," and 8 television projects including "Rude Awakening" and "Martial Law." Having moved into the production side of things in television, Dayne still wants to be on a regular television series, "I would love to be on a hit TV series because it would be just a joy to be working it."

Before coming to her beloved San Francisco to perform at Yoshi’s, I caught up with Taylor Dayne at her home and chatted about her long career, her shoot to stardom and working on the Michael Jackson BAD Tour, not buying into the hype to live a normal life, and how she keeps working it.

Maintaining her career

BeBe: As a singer who has fortunately been able to have longevity in the music business, you’ve been a part of my and so many others musical lives for a very long time. With all the success and highlights in your career, how have you somehow been able to maintain a rather normal life and lifestyle?

Taylor Dayne: I think it’s has been just a matter of choice. I think if you want to believe all the hype, than you can, and I also we are just living in a different world now. Madonna was at the helm of the media spin (on one’s career), and so was Michael Jackson. They thrived on it and made a big impact on their career. Sometimes I wish my career had more of a spin on it, maybe I’d have more leverage. There’s a lot of ways to look at it.

BeBe: It is refreshing to see someone such as you that has not allowed their personality to be bigger than their talent. I mean, I look at, say, the Britney Spears and Justin Bieber and see how their personalities have overshadowed their talents...

Taylor Dayne: Well, you can’t always put that on the artist because the artist is sometimes just going about their business and someone else is putting the spin on things in their career. To the Britney Spears and the Justin Biebers (of the world), I would just say if you don’t get back to the music, it’s going to be vital.

Greatest hits album

BeBe: Some people may think that you have been away from music for a long time, but you always seem to have something going between albums. It has been 6 years since your last collection of music ’Satisfied.’ You seem to always put something out there to give us a little taste.

Taylor Dayne: Absolutely. I’ve put out three singles since then. But maybe if they would sign me up with Live Nation we wouldn’t be having these conversations. (we both laugh)

BeBe: You have been working on a Greatest Hits album for quite awhile, haven’t you?

Taylor Dayne: I already have the Greatest Hits. It’s time to reinvent those, to reinterpret them. You have to be a little intelligent about how you work with the classics. I want them put them out in a way that I’m happy with, with some new material.

BeBe: You have been to San Francisco to perform a few times in recent years. There must be something particular about San Francisco and the crowds that keeps you coming back.

Taylor Dayne: I love San Francisco hands down! It’s a west coast city that is one of my favorites. I’m a New York girl who loves California. The Bay Area and Northern California are high on my list.

Working with Michael Jackson

BeBe: One thing in your career that may be way back in people’s cerebral cavity is that you opened for Michael Jackson on his BAD Tour’s European dates. That was at the start of it all for you. How was that experience for you being so young and in the big throw of things with your debut album?

Taylor Dayne: That was the beginning of my career. You can basically compare it to throwing up in your mouth before going out on stage! I mean that was the beginning, and I was selling millions of records at the time. Paparazzi didn’t exist in the United States, but it did over there (Europe). Michael was a phenomenon. It was an awesome time. It was going from obscurity to this massive stardom with everybody calling your name. We didn’t have cell phones. We didn’t have Internet. And, I worked twice as hard because I had to be in two countries a day. But, that was okay.

BeBe: You came into the business after completing your higher education. You studied music composition in college...

Taylor Dayne: I went to community college for two years studying basic composition and music theory. But I pretty much stopped there.

Acting classes

BeBe: I guess what I am saying is that you invested yourself in studying your craft in your preparation for your career. Even with your acting, when Warren Beatty cast you in ’Love Affair’ (1994 remake) with Annette Bening, I understand that you immediately took up acting classes to better prepare yourself for that undertaking.

Taylor Dayne: Well, yeah. Warren saw me on the "Tonight Show with Jay Leno." He saw something in me and called almost immediately in for an audition. Since he hired me based on natural talent, you say, ’I don’t want to look like a fool’ and you work on acting. You have to. You have to take it seriously.

BeBe: When I talk to and look at the new generation of talent out there, I don’t, on a generalized level, get the same commitment to continual learning when it comes to their craft and profession. We have a lot of mega-stars made over night, and honing their craft doesn’t seem as important. I wonder if we are going to see, from this point forward, pop stars with the longevity in their careers like we have seen you have.

Taylor Dayne: Really? You bring up an important topic because there wasn’t this medium of talent shows making stars back then. You have to look at the signs of the times. You have to look at the social medium and television. You can’t get better marketing tools than that. But there are some pop artists out there that I don’t see going away. Katy Perry and Beyonce, these girls have been doing this for 10 or 12 years, and I don’t see them going away. They are not all just taking it for granted.

A TV series?

BeBe: Is there anything you are working on in the television world now or the big screen?

Taylor Dayne: I’m going into production right now. What I’ve been going into now is the production end where I am creating content. So, I’m involved in creating new content with one of my partners. I was in a drama I shot a year and a half ago called ’Telling of the Shoes’ (Brook) which just came out (Feb 1) on On Demand, and I did a couple scenes in ’I Am Bad’ (Beth) which is on NetFlix now.

BeBe: You really translate well on television and film, as much as you do singing.

Taylor Dayne: Oh, wow! That’s a compliment. I give it all, but it’s like anything else, it’s got to be worked. I would love to be on a hit TV series because it would be just a joy to be working it. You have the chance to keep getting better and better and better. It’s great training.

Taylor Dayne will be performing her hits and more at Yoshi’s in San Francisco on Friday, April 11. www.yoshis.com

Other upcoming tour dates:

April 19 Quiet Cannon Event Center Montebello,CA
April 26 House of Blues Los Angeles,CA
May 1-4 Kentucky Derby Louisville, KY
June 8 Central Alabama Pride Birmingham, AB
June 14 Long Island Pride Huntington, NY
June 20 OKC Pride Oklahoma City,OK
June 28 Augusta Pride Augusta, GA

For updated information on Taylor Dayne visit her website at www.taylordayne.com

Based out of San Francisco, BEBE SWEETBRIAR is the Omni Present Drag Chanteuse. As an entertainer and hostess, BeBe can be scene every week hosting and performing at countless events and parties in the San Francisco. One of the few drag personalities to sing live while performing, BeBe has literally graced every notable stage in San Francisco, bridging many gay sub-community gaps. She has also been the opening act for Destiny’s Child Kelly Rowland, "Ugly Betty’s" Alec Mapa and Dance Diva Kristine W. Adding recording artist to her list of performance accomplishments in 2008 with the release of her first single "Save Me", Ms. Sweetbriar will soon release her fifth dance single in 2012 called "Show It Off"..
As an actress, BeBe was introduced to film with a lead role in the independent film "Under One Sun" with her character dealing with religious, racial and gender issues. Additionally, she appeared in the campy musical "Devious, Inc" (Australian Film Festival, San Francisco Short Film Fest) also adding additional vocals to the musical soundtrack. Both of these performances led to her selection for a lead role in Aisha Media’s next short film series, "Con-tin.u.um" to be released in 2012.


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