Sideshow Ramblers are the real deal |

Sideshow Ramblers are the real deal

When guitarist and singer Josh Taylor ventured from his home state of Georgia to play music with a college buddy during a Park City ski season five years ago, little did he know that he wouldn’t be going back home.

"I’m still here," Taylor said with a laugh during an interview with The Park Record.

There are two reasons he’s still in Park City. The first is his job — he’s the head chef at LDS Hospital.

The other is his second job as the guitarist and singer for Park City’s own Sideshow Ramblers.

Throughout the past three years, the Sideshow Ramblers have performed in various venues throughout Summit and Salt Lake counties.

The trio guitarist and vocalist Josh Taylor, bassist Dave Knose and drummer Matt Gordon — has played their blues-based jam rock at Downstairs, Cisero’s, the Sidecar, Park City Mountain Resort and all the Mountain Town Music stages from Peoa, Main Street, Newpark and Coalville.

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It has also played at the State Room in Salt Lake City.

This Saturday, the band will perform at the Notch Pub in Samak at 9 p.m.

The Sideshow Ramblers originated when Taylor and Gordon played in another project.

The two decided to do their own thing on the side, hence the new band’s name, and recruited Knose.

"We immediately began playing any places that would take us," he said. "And it’s been that way ever since."

Taylor’s exposure to music began with his mother’s cassette collection of the late blues guitarist Gary Moore.

"From there, I got into Stevie Ray Vaughan, Jimi Hendrix and Jeff Healy," he said. "My first goal was to emulate those guys. I tried to do exactly what they were doing."

the time Taylor reached his teens, he had already developed an ear for playing.

"I played in and out of a lot of bands and tried to play with as many different people as I could," he said. "I wanted to learn as much as I could from their styles and influences by watching them play."

Even before he was joining bands, Taylor was an accomplished lyricist.

"I was influenced a lot by Bob Dylan and The Band, especially singer Levon Helm," he said. "I know Levon didn’t write The Band’s songs, but he was a great vocalist."

Within the past three years, Taylor has seen a paradigm shift in the Park City music scene.

"Right now it’s a little challenging, because it has become somewhat stagnant for live performances," he said. "It seems a majority of the clubs up and down Main Street are leaning towards DJs.

"That’s all fine, but I would like to see a little more live music on Main Street, because it is gratifying to have your friends come out and not only enjoy the music, but see people play real instruments," Taylor said.

Nearly a year and a half ago, the Sideshow Ramblers recorded a five-song, self-titled, extended-play CD, which the band sells at its shows and online at .

"Since I’ve been writing songs since I was 14, we had enough songs to throw together for the EP," Taylor said. "Right now, we’re woodshedding and writing more original stuff, because we would like to get back into the studio sometime soon, hopefully spring or summer, to record a full-length CD."

The band is getting to the point where it has plenty of songs, but the band members also want to branch out and play more original, local venues, he said.

In the meantime, Taylor is happy to be in a band with two of his best friends.

"We’re all buddies and hang around each other outside of music, and unlike some other bands, working around each member’s schedule isn’t an issue," he said. "We do a good job of staying on top of things, and all of us have our own personal calendars synced into the band’s calendar and email, so we know when we’re available to play or rehearse.

"It also helps we’re a trio, so we don’t have too many people to coordinate our times with."

The Sideshow Ramblers will play at the Notch Pub in Samak tonight, Saturday, Jan. 26, at 9 p.m.

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