Conversation with Steve Taylor
Filmmaker/writer/producer/recording artist Steve Taylor earned his “Renaissance Man” stripes (Prism Magazine) from a body of work that’s garnered him multiple Grammy, Billboard, Telly, Addy and Dove awards and nominations.
A Southern California native, Steve was raised in Denver, Colorado and studied music and film at Colorado University. As a film student Steve wrote and directed the comedy shorts Joe’s Distributing (1980) and Baby Talk (1982), then hit the road for a year as director and co-writer for the musical comedy troupe Jeremiah People.
Steve’s work as a music video director and filmmaker has earned him two Billboard Music Video Awards, as well as Dove, Telly, and Addy Awards. His many credits as a director include music videos for Sixpence None the Richer, Fleming & John, Rich Mullins, Guardian; a documentary on England’s Greenbelt Festival (1989); the long-form Newsboys comedy Down Under The Big Top (1996); and the highly-acclaimed Squint: Movies From The Soundtrack (shot in ten countries around the globe including Vietnam, Nepal, United Arab Emirates and Turkey). Steve’s work has received recurring airplay on major music networks, including VH1 and MTV, and his Sixpence video for “Kiss Me” (filmed in Paris) was featured by VH1 as a “Pop Up Video.”
Meanwhile, as a record producer Steve’s resume includes the Platinum-certified Sixpence None The Richer and three Gold-certified albums for the Newsboys: Going Public, Take Me To Your Leader and Adoration. All four albums earned Grammy nominations. (Steve also contributed to most of the Newboys tracks as a songwriter.) His production efforts have appeared in numerous television programs and motion pictures, including Pump Up The Volume (1991), She’s All That (1999), Snow Day (2000) and Here On Earth (2000). Steve’s greatest success as a producer came with 1999’s #1 international smash hit “Kiss Me,” performed by Sixpence None the Richer. He also produced the band’s follow-up hit, “There She Goes.” In 2002 he produced and co-wrote the Newsboys album Thrive, which yielded two number one singles. He also produced and co-wrote the end title track for the hit animated feature film Jonah - A VeggieTales Movie. In 2003 he produced and co-wrote the hit Newsboys album Adoration, which again yielded two number one singles, including ASCAP Song of the Year recipient “He Reigns.”
In late 1997 Steve launched Squint Entertainment, a record label and film production company. Squint’s worldwide success in the pop music arena was a first for a Nashville-based label, and Squint was subsequently nominated in 2000 by R&R Magazine for Independent Label Of The Year alongside industry stalwarts DreamWorks and Hollywood Records. In addition to Sixpence, Squint’s roster included Chevelle, Burlap To Cashmere, The Insyderz, Waterdeep and hip-hop collective L. A. Symphony. Steve led the company until 2001, when it was sold to AOL/Time Warner.
His latest feature as director/co-writer/producer, Blue Like Jazz, is based on Donald Miller’s New York Times bestselling memoir and stars Marshall Allman (True Blood), Claire Holt (The Vampire Diaries), and Tania Raymonde (Lost). It had its World Premiere in March, 2012 at the South By Southwest Film Festival and is being released theatrically nationwide via Roadside Attractions (Winter’s Bone, Margin Call, Friends With Kids).
Steve lives in Nashville with his wife, the artist D.L. Taylor, and their daughter.