Corey Taylor
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Corey Taylor
Corey Taylor
Corey Taylor 2011.jpg
Taylor performing in May 2011
Background information
Corey Todd Taylor
  1. 8, The Great Big Mouth, Neck, The Boogie Knight, Todd Tigger, The Sickness
Born December 8, 1973 (age 44)
Des Moines, Iowa, U.S.
  • Musician
  • singer
  • songwriter
  • actor
  • author
  • Vocals
  • guitar
  • bass
  • piano
  • keyboards
  • percussion

Corey Todd Taylor (born December 8, 1973) is an American musician, singer, songwriter, actor, and author, best known as the lead singer and lyricist of the American heavy metal band Slipknot and the American alternative metal band Stone Sour.[3]

Taylor formed Stone Sour in 1992, playing in the Des Moines area, and working on a demo. He joined Slipknot in 1997 to replace their original vocalist and has subsequently released five studio albums with them. After the first two Slipknot albums went Platinum, Taylor revived Stone Sour to record an album and tour in 2002. He has worked with several bands, including Junk Beer Kidnap Band, Korn, Disturbed, Apocalyptica, Anthrax, and Soulfly. Taylor was ranked at #86 in Hit Parader's Top 100 Metal Vocalists of All Time.[4] He was also named the seventh greatest heavy metal frontman by NME. Taylor was also found, by VVN Music, to possess the second-widest vocal range of any known singer in popular music with a range of five and a half octaves. He was beaten only by Mike Patton (six octaves).[5]

Early life

Corey Todd Taylor was born on December 8, 1973 in Des Moines, Iowa.[6][7][8] He was mostly raised by his single mother in Waterloo, Iowa, a place described by Taylor as a "hole in the ground with buildings around it".[8] He is of German and Native American descent on his father's side, and Dutch and Irish on his mother's side.[9] In 1979, Taylor and his mother saw the sci-fi series Buck Rogers in the 25th Century. Before the series, there was a trailer for the 1978 horror film Halloween. Taylor said this "developed some sense of Slipknot in [himself]".[8] While Halloween introduced Taylor to masks and horror themes, Taylor's grandmother introduced him to rock music, showing him a collection of Elvis Presley records from the 1950s to 1970s. He especially found songs like "Teddy Bear", "In the Ghetto", and "Suspicious Minds" to appeal to his interests the most, describing them as "good times".[8] Taylor also began listening to Black Sabbath at a young age, beginning with their early work.[8]

Taylor, along with his mother and sister, lived at one point in an "old dilapidated farmhouse" which on days in late autumn would "look like Black Sabbath album covers".[10][11] By age 15, he had developed a drug addiction and had overdosed on cocaine twice.[10][12] By this time, he was living in Waterloo, but later set out on his own and ended up at his grandmother's house in another part of Iowa. She took legal custody of him and helped him buy musical equipment.[11] When Taylor was 18, he left his grandmother's house and went to various places in Iowa, Des Moines being a place to which he frequently returned.[13]

In 2017, on an episode of Viceland's The Therapist, Taylor revealed that he was sexually assaulted at the age of 10 by a 16-year-old friend. Taylor stated that he never told anyone about the incident until he was "probably 18" because his abuser "threatened to hurt [him] and threatened to hurt [his] mom".[14] At age 18, when Taylor was living with his grandmother, he attempted suicide by way of overdose. His ex-girlfriend's mother drove him to the hospital in Des Moines and doctors were able to resuscitate him. He describes this as the lowest point in his life.[15] Taylor first met his father when he was 30 years old, and now has a relationship with him, although he said their paths do not cross that often.[16]

Music career


Taylor performing with Slipknot in 2011.

In Des Moines, Iowa, Joey Jordison, Shawn Crahan, and Mick Thomson approached him asking him to join Slipknot.[17] He agreed to go to one of their practices, and ended up singing in front of them. Of Slipknot's seven members, Corey was the sixth to join the band. Performing with Slipknot, he would also come to be known as "Number Eight", being that the band follows a numbering scheme for its members, ranging from 0-8. According to Shawn Crahan, Corey wanted number eight, because it symbolizes infinity.[18]

Feeling he could expand more inside Slipknot than in Stone Sour, Taylor temporarily quit Stone Sour, even though they were recording an album with Sean McMahon.[19] Taylor's first gig with Slipknot was on August 22, 1997, which according to band members did not go well. During his first gig, Taylor did not perform wearing a mask; however, for his second show nearly a month later, Corey wore a mask that resembles his debut album mask.[20] Taylor's current mask was described by MTV's Chris Harris as looking "as though it were made of dried, human flesh--like Leatherface, if only he used moisturizer."[21]

Taylor has recorded with Slipknot since the release of their second demo album, a self-titled demo used to promote the band to prospective labels and producers.[22] As permanent vocalist, he recorded with Slipknot at Indigo Ranch in Malibu, California and released Slipknot, the band's debut album that peaked number one on the Top Heatseekers chart,[23][24] went double platinum in the United States,[25] and was included in the 2006 book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.[26] Taylor was accused of copyright infringement, regarding the lyrics of the song "Purity", but no action was taken.[27] Taylor began recording for their second studio album, Iowa, in 2001 at Sound City and Sound Image in Van Nuys, Los Angeles.[28] It was released August 28, 2001 and peaked number one on the UK Albums Chart,[29] as well as number three on the Billboard 200.[30] While writing Vol. 3: (The Subliminal Verses), Taylor decided to write lyrics that would not warrant an explicit label.[31] It peaked number two on the Billboard 200.[32]All Hope Is Gone was the first Slipknot album to peak number one on the Billboard 200.[33]

Stone Sour

Stone Sour performing in 2010.

Taylor is a founding member of the American hard rock band Stone Sour. After he formed the band in 1992[34] with drummer Joel Ekman, Shawn Economaki joined filling in the bass position, leaving the electric guitar position to be filled by Josh Rand. Stone Sour recorded a demo album in 1993, and another in 1994. In 1997, Taylor was approached by the metal band, Slipknot, resulting in him abandoning Stone Sour while they were recording a demo album with Sean McMahon at SR studios.[17][19] Taylor did not return until five years later to record their debut album, Stone Sour in 2002. Both Taylor and guitarist Josh Rand contacted Jim Root, Slipknot's guitarist, and Shawn Economaki, Stone Sour's original bassist, to begin writing songs for their debut album.[35] Drummer Joel Ekman came back on board as well.[36][37] This "reformation" later resulted in Stone Sour recording at Catamount Studios in Cedar Falls, Iowa.[36][38]

Their self-titled debut album was released August 27, 2002, and it debuted at number 46 on the Billboard 200.[39] Their second album, Come What(ever) May debuted at number four on the Billboard 200.[39] It was released August 1, 2006, and charted on several different charts.[39][40][41]Live in Moscow is currently their only album specifically released only for music download.[42] During the recording of the album, drummer Joel Ekman left the band for personal reasons. As a result, drummer Roy Mayorga was recruited, taking his place.[43] The group released their third studio album, Audio Secrecy, on September 7, 2010.

Later, Corey Taylor announced the release of a concept double album with Stone Sour. The albums are titled "House of Gold And Bones". During the process of making the double album, bassist Shawn Economaki left the band. He was temporarily replaced for touring purposes by Johny Chow. The first part was released in October 2012 and the second part in April 2013. There are 23 songs in total, 11 on the first part and 12 on the second. In addition to these two albums is a four-part comic book series written by Taylor and published by Dark Horse Comics. They are set to go on sale in 2013. With these albums came a story that was written by Taylor that coincide with the album. Fans can also construct a miniature "house of gold and bones" from the packaging design of the physical versions of the two albums. Taylor has also said that he would like to finish off the project by making the story into a movie but nothing has come of this yet.[44][45][46]

Other work

Taylor has appeared as a guest musician on albums by Soulfly, Apocalyptica, Damageplan and Steel Panther. At one point, he was heavily involved in the recording of thrash metal band Anthrax's album, Worship Music, but the sessions remain unreleased.[47] He also contributed to the Roadrunner United all-star album in 2005, providing vocals for the song "Rich Man".[48] Taylor has also made a brief appearance in Steel Panther's singles "Death to All but Metal", "Eyes of a Panther", and "Asian Hooker".[49] In 2006, Taylor founded the record company Great Big Mouth Records.[50] Taylor has produced two albums: Face Cage's self-titled album and Walls of Jericho's Redemption.[51][52] Taylor provided guest narration on the track "Repentance" for Dream Theater's 2007 album Systematic Chaos. In an interview with Billboard magazine, Taylor confirmed that on January 13, 2009, he was planning on making a solo album, as well as returning to his side project Stone Sour after Slipknot's All Hope Is Gone World Tour.[53] Taylor has stated that he was writing songs that "don't fit either of his main bands."[53] He describes them as a cross between Foo Fighters, Johnny Cash, and Social Distortion, saying that there's "a country background that comes built-in with living in Iowa".[53]

On March 30, 2009, it was confirmed that Taylor and the Junk Beer Kidnap Band would be performing at Rockfest in 2009.[54] The group performed on April 24, 2009 at People's Court in Des Moines, Iowa, marking Taylor's first official solo show.[55] Taylor performs with his band the Dum Fux, who make covers for 1970s punk rock and 1980s hair metal.[56] Taylor also performs with Audacious P, a band that is primarily a Tenacious D cover band.[57]Rapper Tech N9ne confirmed that Taylor was to perform on his album K.O.D., but was removed because Taylor did not submit his vocals in time.[58][59] Taylor recently admitted that he tried out for the vacant singer spot in the band Velvet Revolver, but said that it just did not work out.[60] However, according to a recent Billboard article, it seems likely that he may in fact become the vocalist for Velvet Revolver, though no official confirmation has been made.[61]Duff McKagan added that they can neither "confirm or deny" Taylor's membership in the band but believes that Taylor is the "real deal".[62]Slash has since ruled Corey out as the possible new vocalist explaining that "[it] just wasn't right" although he does love him.[63] He however, has recorded 10 new songs with the band, drummer Matt Sorum stated it's unlikely it will ever be released.[64] Taylor explained to Mark Hoppus on Hoppus on Music that McKagan and he were writing new music for a possible new supergroup.[65]

In July 2011 Taylor collaborated with Aaron Lewis while promoting Lewis' solo album, Town Line for a one night only acoustic duet show covering songs such as, Pearl Jam's "Black", Pink Floyd's Comfortably Numb, and Alice in Chains' Down in a Hole, videos from this show with Taylor and Lewis can be found on YouTube. Taylor also shared the stage with Aaron Lewis on August 16, 2009 during the Ride For Dime memorial concert. They performed Pantera covers with a variety of other musicians.

As a solo artist he recorded a song, "X-M@$", for The Teenage Cancer Trust. The single was made available to digital retailers on December 12, 2010.[66] It debuted at number thirty-seven in the UK.[67] Taylor clarified on YouTube that the song was just a joke about people who don't enjoy Christmas. He personally loves Christmas especially due to the fact he gets to see his extended family but finds the frustration of people who don't like it to be hilarious.

In 2011, Taylor collaborated with Blink-182 drummer Travis Barker on Barker's solo album Give the Drummer Some on the song "On My Own".

Between 2013 and 2016, Taylor appeared with Kings of Chaos.

In 2016 Taylor started to host "A Series of Bleeps", a rock-centric radio show on Beats 1.[68]

Corey was a guest vocalist on Korn's album The Serenity of Suffering on the track "A Different World".[69]

In 2017, he and Griffin appeared as guest stars on an episode of The Nostalgia Critic, as both have stated they are fans of the show.

Acting career

On December 4, 2013, Taylor joined the cast of Fear Clinic. He played Bauer, one of the employees of the clinic who struggles to keep things under control when all hell breaks loose. He appeared in the 2013 horror film Bullied. In October 2015, Taylor provided the roars for the character of The Fisher King in the Doctor Who episode "Before the Flood".

Style and influence

The first two Slipknot albums with Taylor's vocals, Slipknot and Iowa, both contain gratuitous explicit content. Many critics claimed Taylor relied on the profanity, which is why Slipknot's third album, Vol. 3: (The Subliminal Verses) is profanity-free, (with the exceptions of the word bitch on the song "Duality" and bastard on the spoken intro of "Pulse of the Maggots"), and did not warrant the explicit label.[31] Compared with the previous vocalist for Slipknot, Anders Colsefni, Taylor has a vocal style that was characterized by ex-drummer Joey Jordison as "really good melodic singing".[70] Taylor's vocal style, which contains at times melodic singing, growling, screaming, shouting, and rapping, led him to place at number 86 on the Hit Parader's Top 100 Metal Vocalists of All Time and is often compared to other vocalists such as Ivan L. Moody, John Bush, Phil Anselmo and Jamey Jasta.[71]

Taylor's two major projects have contrasting temperaments.[36] Slipknot is considered to be heavy metal, nu metal and alternative metal, and expresses moods such as depression, hostility, anger, misanthropy, and rebellion.[72] Stone Sour is classified as alternative metal, expressing moods of bleakness and somberness as well as anger and rebellion.[73] Taylor cites Mötley Crüe, AC/DC, The Who, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, The Doors, Pink Floyd, Faith No More, Van Halen, Aerosmith, Rush, Motörhead, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Metallica, Alice in Chains, Bon Jovi, Guns N' Roses, Nine Inch Nails, Dokken, Misfits, Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, Queen, Anthrax, Black Flag, Slayer, Def Leppard, The Stooges, Sex Pistols, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Neil Young, Cheap Trick, Pearl Jam, The Damned, The Cramps, Soundgarden, Mr. Bungle, Fear Factory, Megadeth, Nirvana, Journey, Bob Dylan, Machine Head, Kiss, ZZ Top, White Zombie, Pantera, Korn, Green Day and Marilyn Manson as influences.[74]

Personal life

On September 17, 2002, Taylor's then-fiancée, Scarlett, gave birth to their son Griffin Parker.[75] Taylor also has a daughter named Angeline from an earlier relationship.[75] Taylor and Scarlett married on March 11, 2004, and divorced in 2007.[76] On November 13, 2009, Taylor married Stephanie Luby at the Palms Hotel in Las Vegas.[76] On December 28, 2017, Taylor announced on his Twitter that he had been separated for 10 months and had begun dating again.[77]

Taylor has had alcohol abuse problems, which Scarlett helped him through as well as keeping him from committing suicide.[78] In 2006, Taylor told MTV that he had attempted to jump off a balcony of the eighth floor of The Hyatt on Sunset Boulevard in 2003, but "somehow [Scarlett] stopped me". This was later recanted by Taylor in an interview with Kerrang! radio and stated that it was, in fact, his friend Thom Hazaert who stopped him from jumping.[79] Scarlett then told him that either he would have to get sober or she would annul their marriage.[78] Before Stone Sour started recording Come What(ever) May in January 2006, Taylor was sober.[78][80]

On August 3, 2009, he co-hosted the 2009 Kerrang! Awards alongside Scott Ian of Anthrax.[81][82] The following year, they both once again co-hosted The Kerrang Awards, where Corey collected the K! Services to Metal award on behalf of Paul Gray, who died after an accidental overdose of morphine and fentanyl.[83][84]

In early September 2010, Taylor announced that his book, Seven Deadly Sins: Settling The Argument Between Born Bad And Damaged Good, would be released on July 12, 2011 through Da Capo Press.[85]

Discography as featured artist

Year Artist Album Track(s) Position Ref
1998 Sister Soleil Soularium "Liar" Backing vocals [86]
1998 Smakdab Smakdab "Shadowed" Vocals [88]
2000 Soulfly Primitive "Jumpdafuckup" Vocals [89]
2000 Snot Strait Up "Requiem" Vocals [92]
2001 Biohazard Uncivilization "Domination" Backing vocals
2001 Slitheryn Snake
"Lost", "Get Up", "Come + Go", The Same Vocals, backing vocals, producer [94]
2002 Rollins Band Rise Above "Rise Above", "Room 13", "TV Party", "Six Pack", "Annihilate This Week" Vocals, backing vocals [96]
2004 Damageplan New Found Power "Fuck You" Vocals [98]
2005 Roadrunner United The All-Star Sessions "The Rich Man" Vocals [100]
2006 Korn Family Values Tour 2006 "Freak on a Leash (Live)" Backing vocals [103]
2006 FaceCage III -- Producer [105]
2007 Dream Theater Systematic Chaos "Repentance" Spoken word contribution [107]
2007 Apocalyptica Worlds Collide "I'm Not Jesus" Vocals [109]
2008 Walls of Jericho Redemption "Ember Drive", "My Last Stand", "Addicted" Backing vocals, producer [111]
2009 Steel Panther Feel the Steel "Death to All But Metal", "Asian Hooker", "Eyes of a Panther" Vocals, backing vocals [113]
2010 Johnny Aloha Lavapalooza (Tiki Music Versions of Rock And Rap Hits!) Almost Paradise Vocals [116]
2010 Corey Taylor X-M@$ X-M@$ Vocals, guitars, bass, drums, producer [116]
2011 Travis Barker Give the Drummer Some "On My Own" Vocals, guitars, producer
2013 Corey Taylor, Dave Grohl, Rick Nielsen, Scott Reeder Sound City: Real to Reel "From Can to Can't" Vocals
2014 Corey Taylor, Jason Christopher, Christian Martucci, Roy Mayorga, Satchel This Is Your Life - A Tribute to Ronnie James Dio "Rainbow in the Dark" Vocals
2015 Tech N9ne Special Effects "Wither" Vocals
2015 Teenage Time Killers Greatest Hits Vol. 1 "Egobomb" Vocals
2016 Zakk Wylde Book of Shadows II "Sleeping Dogs" Vocals
2016 Korn The Serenity of Suffering "A Different World" Vocals [69]
"--" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.


Year Film Character Director
1999 Welcome to Our Neighborhood
2001 We Sold Our Souls for Rock 'n Roll Himself Penelope Spheeris[118]
2002 Rollerball[119][120] John McTiernan
2006 Voliminal: Inside the Nine[121][122] Shawn Crahan
2008 Nine: The Making Of All Hope Is Gone
Get Thrashed Rick Ernst
2009 Of the (sic): Your Nightmares, Our Dreams[123][124] Shawn Crahan
2010 Audible Visions of (sic)nesses
2011 Goat
2013 Sound City Dave Grohl
2015 Fear Clinic Bauer Robert Green Hall
2015 Doctor Who - Before the Flood[125] Fisher King (roar only) Daniel O'Hara
2016 QI - Nosey Noisy Himself Ian Lorimer
2016 Officer Downe Headcase Harry Shawn Crahan
2017 Day of the Gusano Himself Shawn Crahan


Unknown "The Tiger" : "I have been writing since I was nine years old, my first published piece being 'The Tiger', which was featured on the front page of the Jackson Journal (to be fair, the Jackson Journal was the leaflet handed out at my old elementary school, and it was only two pages"). source : Seven Deadly Sins (book), page 70.
2001-2016 Monthly column for the British publication called "Rock Sound". source : Seven Deadly Sins (book), page 69.
2010 Seven Deadly Sins: Settling the Argument Between Born Bad and Damaged Good
2013 A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To Heaven (Or How I Made Peace With The Paranormal And Stigmatized Zealots & Cynics In The Process)
2015 You're Making Me Hate You: A Cantankerous Look at the Common Misconception That Humans Have Any Common Sense Left
2017 America 51: A Probe into the Realities That Are Hiding Inside "The Greatest Country in the World"


Instrument Years used Ref
Audio-Technica AEW-T6100 Wireless Handheld Microphone 2000-
Shure Wireless system 2004-2005
Ibanez Voice Chorus 1999-2000
Gibson Guitars 2009


Chodz Guitar|2015
Ibanez Custom Artcore Talman Semi-Hollow Body 2003-2005


Revolver Golden Gods Awards

Year Nominee/work Award Result
2010 Corey Taylor Best Vocalist Nominated
2013 Corey Taylor Best Vocalist Won

Loudwire Music Awards

Year Nominee/work Award Result
2015 Corey Taylor Rock Titan Won


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External links

External video
Corey Taylor - Resource: Fact or Fiction? (Part 1), Loudwire, 11:04, July 22, 2015

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