To music lovers worldwide, the names Jimmy Buffett and "Fingers" Taylor go hand in hand. Jimmy and Fingers met in 1970 when Taylor, a student at The University of Southern Mississippi, first jammed with him. At that time Buffett was performing as a solo artist. Fingers joined Larry Raspberry and The Highsteppers in 1971 but continued to work with Jimmy during the recording of Buffett's first three albums. In 1974, Jimmy called him and said he was ready to form the first actual "Coral Reefer Band" road unit. He performed onstage with Buffett until the summer 2000 tour.
Taylor, is considered by many musicians to be one of the best harp players around. "I wanted an instrument I could scream on, and I loved the blues harmonica players like Little Walter and Sonny Boy Williamson," said Taylor.
Among his early influences were Wilson Pickett, Otis Redding, Sam & Dave, Eric Clapton, Muddy Waters, but he especially loved to emulate the sounds of Little Walter Jacobs.
Why Fingers? "I'm afraid that I'm responsible for the nickname," Taylor says. "I had a band called the Buttermilk Blues in high school...and I decided to give everybody in the band a bluesy nickname. Being the keyboard player, I picked 'Fingers.' It wasn't until I switched to the harp that I realized I had the wrong name. But by then it was too late."
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