Taylor Goldsmith

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Taylor Goldsmith
Taylor Goldsmith at the Newport Folk Festival in 2014
Taylor Goldsmith at the Newport Folk Festival in 2014
Background information
Birth nameTaylor Dawes Goldsmith
Born (1985-08-16) August 16, 1985 (age 36)
Los Angeles County, California, U.S.
GenresFolk rock
Occupation(s)Singer-songwriter, guitarist, record producer
  • Guitar
  • vocals
  • bass
  • keyboards
Years active2002–present
LabelsHUB Records
Associated actsMandy Moore,

Taylor Dawes Goldsmith[1] (born August 16, 1985) is an American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and record producer. He serves as the lead singer, guitarist, and chief songwriter of American folk rock band Dawes.

Early life[edit]

Goldsmith has a younger brother, Griffin. They were raised in southern California.[2] He attended Malibu High School,[2] where he was a classmate of Blake Mills.[3] His father, Lenny Goldsmith, was a musician who toured as the lead singer of Tower of Power in the 1980s.[4] He is Jewish.[5][6]


Simon Dawes (2002–2007)[edit]

In 2002, Goldsmith formed a post-punk band called Simon Dawes with high school classmate and guitarist Blake Mills.[7] Over the years, Goldsmith and Mills were joined by a shifting cast of bassists (Damon Webb, Grant Powell, and Wylie Gelber) and drummers (Alex Orbison, Dylan Grombocher, and Griffin Goldsmith).[7] The band drew its name from the middle names of Goldsmith and Mills.[1] Released in 2006, the band's debut album Carnivore received mixed reviews. Simon Dawes broke up in 2007 when Mills left the band.[8]

Dawes (2009–present)[edit]

After the departure of Blake Mills from Simon Dawes, Goldsmith formed a new band called Dawes with his former bandmate Wylie Gelber (bass), his younger brother Griffin Goldsmith (drums)—both of Simon Dawes' last lineup—and new addition Tay Strathairn (keyboards). The band's first album, North Hills marked a sharp departure from the punk-inspired tunes of their youth and embraced a subtler folk rock that has been called the Laurel Canyon sound, reminiscent of Crosby, Stills, and Nash and Jackson Browne.[9][10] Over the years, the band's lineup has shifted a bit, with keyboardist Straithairn leaving and being replaced by Alex Casnoff and later Lee Pardini. Guitarists Duane Betts and Trevor Menear in turn also joined the band for some of its tours.[11] For all seven of the band's studio albums, Taylor Goldsmith has served as the band's front man, lead singer, chief songwriter, and lead guitarist.

Middle Brother (2010–2011)[edit]

In 2010, Goldsmith joined Matt Vasquez of Delta Spirit and John McCauley of Deer Tick to form the band Middle Brother.[12] The band released its first and only album, Middle Brother, in March 2011 to positive reviews.[13][14]

The New Basement Tapes (2014)[edit]

In 2014, Goldsmith was asked by producer T Bone Burnett to join a project called The New Basement Tapes that wrote and recorded songs based on recently uncovered lyrics written by Bob Dylan in 1967.[15] Goldsmith joined Marcus Mumford of Mumford and Sons, Jim James of My Morning Jacket, Rhiannon Giddens of Carolina Chocolate Drops, and Elvis Costello during the recording sessions, which resulted in an album, Lost on the River: The New Basement Tapes, and a Showtime documentary, Lost Songs: The Basement Tapes Continued.[16] Goldsmith received co-writing credit for the songs "Kansas City," "Liberty Street," "When I Get My Hands on You," "Florida Key," "Card Shark," and "Diamond Ring." He was also credited for playing bass, guitar, mellotron, organ, and piano, as well as for singing.[17]

Session work, songwriting, and producing[edit]

Apart from his primary projects, Goldsmith has also done work as a session musician. He has performed on albums by Jackson Browne,[18] John Fogerty,[19] Dave Rawlings,[20] Mandy Moore, and Sara Watkins,[21] among others.

Goldsmith has also written and co-written songs for other bands, including songs on his wife Mandy Moore's seventh album Silver Landings, Conor Oberst's Salutations, Brandon Flowers' The Desired Effect, and Robert Ellis' The Lights from the Chemical Plant.[22][23]

In 2013, Goldsmith produced his first record, Dad Country by Jonny Fritz.[24]

Personal life[edit]

In 2015, Goldsmith began dating singer-songwriter and actress Mandy Moore. They became engaged in late 2017 and were married in Los Angeles on November 18, 2018.[10][25] In February 2021, Moore gave birth to their first child, a boy.[26]


  1. ^ a b Singh, Sonya (October 16, 2014). "Catching up with L.A. Band Dawes". Los Angeles Magazine.
  2. ^ a b Fordham, Claire. "Band of Brothers". The Malibu Times.
  3. ^ Kemp, Mark (October 13, 2016). "On Latest Album, LA Folk-rock Band Dawes Finds Inspiration in Technology". Acoustic Guitar.
  4. ^ Spidel, Joshua (May 28, 2014). "The Beat Goes On For Lenny Goldsmith". The Malibu Times.
  5. ^ Singer, Jenny (October 27, 2017). "'We Fell In Love Before We'd Even Really Held Hands': Mandy Moore Met Her Jewish Fiancé On Instagram." The Forward. Retrieved June 12, 2021.
  6. ^ Tolsky, Molly (November 3, 2017). "Mandy Moore Bagged Herself a Nice Jewish Fiancé on Instagram." Alma. Retrieved June 16, 2021.
  7. ^ a b Ray, Leora (September 4, 2002). "Rockin' out in Malibu". The Malibu Times.
  8. ^ Gallagher, Natalie (July 16, 2012). "Blake Mills on his Dawes past, Fiona Apple's depth, and luck". City Pages.
  9. ^ "Dawes: Elegant Indie-Folk, Drenched In Harmony". NPR. January 27, 2010.
  10. ^ a b Farber, Jim (June 20, 2018). "Dawes Has Been Tied to the Past. The Band's New Album Unlocks Its Future". The New York Times.
  11. ^ Willman, Chris (November 14, 2016). "Dawes Announces 2017 Gigs: 'We've always been addicted to touring'". Billboard.
  12. ^ Jackson, Nate (December 17, 2010). "Members of Deer Tick, Delta Spirit and Dawes join forces as Middle Brother". Los Angeles Times.
  13. ^ Stiernberg, Bonnie (February 28, 2011). "Middle Brother: Middle Brother". Paste.
  14. ^ Stone, Jon (March 6, 2011). "Middle Brother: Middle Brother". American Songwriter.
  15. ^ Fusilli, Jim (August 19, 2014). "Artists Dust Off Old Dylan Lyrics for 'Lost on the River: The New Basement Tapes'". The Wall Street Journal.
  16. ^ Gundersen, Edna (March 25, 2014). "'Lost' Dylan lyrics birth new all-star 'Basement Tapes'". USA Today.
  17. ^ "Lost on the River - The New Basement Tapes - Credits - AllMusic". AllMusic.
  18. ^ "Jackson Browne, an old pro with a fresh perspective". Los Angeles Times. September 19, 2014.
  19. ^ "John Fogerty, 'Wrote a Song for Everyone'". Rolling Stone. May 12, 2013.
  20. ^ "David Rawlings Preps New Album, 'Poor David's Almanack'". Rolling Stone. June 26, 2017.
  21. ^ "First Listen: Sara Watkins, 'Sun Midnight Sun'". NPR. April 29, 2012.
  22. ^ The Desired Effect (liner notes). Brandon Flowers. Island Records. 2015. B0022990-02.CS1 maint: others in cite AV media (notes) (link)
  23. ^ "Robert Ellis 'The Lights from the Chemical Plant' (album stream)". February 11, 2014.
  24. ^ Leahey, Andrew (April 9, 2013). "Full Album Stream: Jonny Fritz, 'Dad Country'". American Songwriter.
  25. ^ Vulpo, Mike (November 18, 2018). "Inside Mandy Moore's Private Wedding to Musician Taylor Goldsmith". E! News.
  26. ^ Garvey, Marianne Garvey (February 23, 2021). "Mandy Moore welcomes baby boy". CNN. United States: WarnerMedia. Retrieved February 23, 2021.