J.T. Fields

James "J.T." Taylor

James "JT" Taylor (born August 16, 1953 in Laurens, South Carolina) is an American R&B singer, most known as the lead singer of the funk/R&B band Kool & The Gang.


Before his rise to fame, Taylor was a schoolteacher and amateur night club singer. When he was 13 years old, he and his friends started their own band. He joined Kool & The Gang in 1978 and became the band's lead singer in 1979.

Together, they released the album Ladies' Night. Taylor's creamy voice helped the singles "Too Hot" and "Ladies' Night" reach gold and platinum status. The group's change to a pop sound was raised by producer Eumir Deodato, who, starting with Ladies' Night, produced the group's next four platinum and gold albums, between 1979 and 1982. With the help of Deodato, the group's next album, Celebrate!, became one of the biggest hits of their career. In 1988 he separated amicably from Kool & The Gang.

As a solo artist, Taylor released four solo albums to date. Signing with MCA Records, he started his solo career and released his debut album Master of the Game in 1989. Taylor had a hit with his first solo single: a duet with soul siren Regina Belle entitled "All I Want Is Forever". Two singles from that album, "Sister Rosa" and "8 Days a Week" got substantial airplay. He completed his second solo album, Feel the Need, in 1991, and two songs from that album, "Long Hot Summer Night" and his duet with Stephanie Mills, "Heart to Heart", were minor hits. After that he also released Baby I'm Back.

During the mid-1990s, Taylor made both his Hollywood and Broadway acting debuts in The Mambo Kings and Raisin, respectively. Taylor returned to Kool & The Gang in 1995. However, Taylor is not to be found on Kool and the Gang's latest release, Still Kool (2007).

Taylor released his fourth solo album, A Brand New Me, in 2000.

Taylor at some point suffered a stroke and has said he can no longer sing. He currently lives with his wife and son in New Jersey.

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