Blue skies ahead for Matt
PERTH bluesman Matt Taylor is in harmony with the universe.
“I love it and I think it loves me,” he said.
Last June, however, that rapport was put to the ultimate test when the upbeat muso learnt he was suffering from a rare form of cancer.
Affecting just four people in a million, Waldenstrom’s disease sucked the energy, but not the spirit, out of Taylor.
“They were testing me for Ross River virus and everything else as they just couldn’t figure out what was wrong with me,” he said. “I could get out of bed but I wasn’t able to walk far.
“If I was feeling good, I could walk 100m up the road and back and then I would have to lie down for an hour or so.
“Then I got really bad and luckily they took me into Royal Perth Hospital and one of the cancer docs was on that night and worked out what I had in about an hour.”
The former frontman of Chain, renowned for hit song I Remember When I Was Young, underwent six months of chemotherapy, followed by six months of improvement.
“With modern medicine and very positive thinking, I’m really good now,” he shared.
The most challenging part of the ordeal for Taylor was quitting music for several months.
“I play every day so that was very hard and I write songs all the time, so I was in a black hole for about five months,” he said.
“But as soon as I got the littlest bit of energy back, I pulled out the guitar and played for 10 minutes a day.”
One of the gigs that took a backseat last year was the Perth Blues Club’s Rhythm and Blues Variety Revue. This year, however, the concert will not go on without its hero.
The revue also features New Zealand guitarist Gray Bartlett and Little Birdy’s Katy Steele, who will perform live with father Rick Steele for the first time.