James Taylor is like a warm blanket and a cold night, or conversely, the cold side of the pillow on a warm night. It's hard to quantify Taylor's tones
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to someone who isn't a believer, but we do know that you would be hard-pressed to find an artist more deserving of the classic easy-listening definition. Take his 1970 album Sweet Baby James for another spin, and you will find him not that far from today's modern singer-songwriters like Iron & Wine's Sam Beam, William Fitzsimmons, or My Morning Jacket's Jim James in his quieter moments. Sure, when the '80s hit, Taylor got mega-saccharine, and yeah, he began to look like your college biology professor, but that voice remained, even when the yuppies took to using his jams to soundtrack yacht trips and brunches on the deck. If you have a hard time getting your older kids to go with you to this show, just remind them that Taylor was the chill bald dude singing to Homer Simpson when he was an astronaut in space.