Classic Album Corner - James Taylor - blog post image

Classic Album Corner - James Taylor



Classic Album: James Taylor Greatest Hits Vol.1

 Cover Artist: Mark O'Connor 

Venue: Ruby Tuesday at The Agrestic Grocer, Orange, 5th, 12th & 19th of June 

Some people might think how can a greatest hits album be a classic album? Not so with this one as it is one that is synonymous with getting so many people into James Taylor since it was first released in 1976.

Mark O’Connor from Blackheath is an exceptionally talented keyboard player, he has filled the seat at the piano for many artists over the years including Archie Roach, Olivia Newton John, Wendy Mathews, Ganaggajang and James Reyne.

Reframing the songs from the distinctive sound of James Taylor’s guitar to keyboards is something Mark does effortlessly. His confident vocal delivery avoids mere imitation with phrasing that’s more reminiscent of Elton John, which adds another dimension to the show.

The performance connects immediately with the audience, who warm to Mark’s invitation to take detours by requesting random JT tunes. He doesn’t guarantee he can play everything but for those songs where he does get traction, there is joy on everyone’s face in the room.

The detours he takes are delights such as Bar Tender Blues from JT and Blossom from the Sweet Baby James album that took the audience down a country road in their mind.The tunes from the Greatest Hits also worked their magic with the crowd singing along on numbers like How Sweet It Is, You Got a Friend & Fire & Rain.

Exhausting the Greatest Hits track listing on one night’s performance he finished the evening in style with a stunning version of Walking my Baby Back Home which James Taylor did as a cover on the Hourglass album.

Mark O’Connor charmed audiences who were packed in at The Agrestic Grocer in Orange over three nights. This was a show that made you go home and give some JT albums a spin. That is the sign of a great performance.

Patrick Coomey



Readers in the Hawkesbury region can catch Mark performing this show on Thursday 5th July @ the Church Bar Windsor.


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