US rising star Taylor McIntosh on his passion for songwriting and the importance of trial and error!

We sat down with singer/songwriter Taylor McIntosh. The extremely talented rising star has already seen his work produced by Grammy nominated Producer Tommy Marolda that were derived from his own life experiences. Not someone to stick to one lane, Taylor has seen himself diversify into acting and dancing to accompany his singing and songwriting talents. “I’ve always enjoyed acting and dancing, but I wouldn’t say it became a real passion until I got older”. His journey starting when he was really young, he explains. Seeking to recreate scenes from movies & legendary productions including non other than Phantom of the Opera. Taylor recalls how he used to always make his little sister do the scenes with him. Naturally, taking the directing role as an older brother, and guiding his sister on how to act, and what emotion to portray! 

Trial and Error

Taylor explains how living in the U.S, especially Las Vegas has been phenomenal. For most of his education he went to public school, switching to online school at the age of 15 in his pursuit as an aspiring actor and musician. When it comes to pursuing a career in the arts, he feels his education did not play as large a factor compared to the physical training involved in evolving his craft. “Acting lessons certainly helped a lot, especially in the beginning. But with songwriting, I think that the experiences with trial and error are the best teachers”. Taking piano lessons at an early age, which helped with getting a basic understanding of how the piano works. Later, turning his attention to guitar, which Taylor self taught himself through watching YouTube videos and practicing everyday.

On top of all this, the aspiring singer/songwriter/actor is involved with a breakdancing crew“Break Ninjaz”. Most recently, competing on the TV show, World Of Dance. Going onto highlight how they had to practice and train for months for the show. “It was really rough and stressful, but in the end it was worth it. Getting to go film a  show with a bunch of my friends made it a blast, and I ended up getting a little comedic moment that made it on T.V.”

Taylor feels the biggest challenge is just trying to get people to hear your music. For Taylor, you can spend months on one song, to only get a certain amount of listens when it finally releases. Herein lies the challenge! The invariable question which haunts all singer’s and songwriters starting out – How do I figure out how to get people to hear what I’m releasing? Doing this along with just trying to write a hit song, which is challenging enough.

Photos: Araya Doheny Photography/Hair: Allison Noelle

He opens up about how he gets nervous all the time with basically everything he does. A lot of people let their nerves stop them from pursuing something they’re passionate about, he explains. However, for Taylor, f you really love something you shouldn’t let nerves be the factor that stops you from pursuing it. “I think for me, one day I just kind of decided that if I want to do this then I can’t let anything stop me. From then on, the nerves haven’t affected me as much”.

Getting into Character

Taylor explains that being really prepared for the role definitely helps. Going onto point out that some of the best ways to get into character are by making sure you know all your lines and you know the characters life story, along with feeling confident to perform. Whilst doing scenes beforehand helps engage your emotions! Taylor explains that the biggest challenge as an actor is dealing with rejection because it is countless. 

“You will probably hear 99% “no’s” before you get a “yes” for an audition. You have to develop thick skin and not take anything personal, and realize that this journey is a marathon not a sprint. Keep practicing and working hard and eventually your time will come”.

This being said, Taylor counts his blessings he has been lucky enough to say that he has never really experienced any real depression in perseverance of his dream. For the talented actor/artist/dancer being grateful and putting things into perspective has been a great way of keeping his emotions on the positive side. “I always think about how lucky and blessed I am to have the life that I have and how I get to do the things I love, while others might be less fortunate”. This has kept him grounded to what really matters. 

He opens up about how he has lost drive before with dancing and acting, noting what helped him was just finding the love for it again. In Taylor’s opinion, when you’ve lost drive it simply means you’ve lost the love. Referencing that he has never lost the drive with songwriting and music as that is what he truly loves to do.

In the artist/dancer/actor’s honest opinion, if you really love it, you should go for it. Highlighting how most people are not going to believe in you, or they are going to spend time thinking you are not being realistic. So you need to have trust and belief within yourself. Referencing a quote by Will Smith (aka Fresh Prince); “Being realistic is the most common path to mediocrity.” You only have one life, make it    something you’d want to remember!!” – #watchthisspace

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