Mick Taylor

There's no denying the great string of classic albums the Rolling Stones issued during the late ‘60s and early ‘70s -- 1969's Let It Bleed, 1970's Get Yer Ya Ya's Out, 1971's Sticky Fingers, and 1972's Exile on Main St. But while Jagger and Richards received the lion's share of credit for these aforementioned albums, it was the guitar work, and uncredited songwriting contributions, of Mick Taylor that helped make these albums so special. Born Michael Kevin Taylor on January 17, 1949, in Welwyn Garden City, Hertfordshire, England (but raised in the London suburb of Hatfield), Taylor first picked up the guitar at the age of nine -- inspired by his guitar-playing uncle. The early to mid-‘60s saw Taylor play with such obscure local acts as the Juniors and the Gods, during which time he thoroughly studied such blues guitarists as Freddie King and Albert King. Legend has it that Taylor was in the audience of a John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers show in his hometown during June of 1966, a concert which then-Bluesbreakers guitarist Eric Clapton failed to show up at. Taylor offered to sub for the missing guitarist, and left quite an impression on Mayall. But before the two could talk about possibly continuing to work together, the shy Taylor had already left the club (without leaving behind any contact info) -- leading to the band hiring Peter Green instead. But when Green left a year later, Mayall was able to finally track down Taylor via a music paper ad, and was immediately offered the gig. Taylor subsequently appeared on such late-‘60s Mayall albums as Diary of a Band, Crusade, Bare Wires, and Blues from Laurel Canyon.