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Hampton Terrace Innkeeper Blog: Deals and Things to Do in Lenox and the Berkshires

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Why Does James Taylor Live in the Berkshires?

  
  
  

 

James-Taylor

James Taylor lives in Lenox.   We see him in the coffee shop, grocery store line.... of course, every summer at Tanglewood for multiple shows.

Many of our guests know this and ask.... why here?   Notwithstanding the fact that among his most famous lines...

  Now the first of December was covered with snow
  And so was the turnpike from Stockbridge to Boston
  Though the Berkshires seemed dream-like on account of that frosting
  With ten miles behind me and ten thousand more to go

So why does he live here, in a town of less than 5,000?   I ran across an interview with him in Berkshire Living Magazine.   Rather than paraphrase...here is the link.

James-TaylorTaylor's wife, Kim, was marketing director for the Boston Symphony, and much of her job centered around promoting Tanglewood, down the street.  She is from Albany, an hour away, and went to college in North Hampton, an hour the other direction...so landing in the Berkshires was natural for her.

And for James as well, having spent part of his 20s in Stockbridge.   He met Kim at Tanglewood in 1993 at a John Williams conducted Pops concert.  They married in 2001.

James-TaylorBut the deciding factor was when they had twin boys in 2002.   They started looking for a place to raise their sons...and after careful consideration, and a couple of false starts in other places, they landed in Lenox.

Tanglewood itself is the major beneficiary of this decision.   James performs multiple shows every summer, with the majority of the cash flow remaining at the venue as a contribution.   This has amounted to millions of dollars.

But going beyond Tanglewood....little known is the fact that Taylor jumped into action within days of the Haiti earthquake to do what he could to help.

He arranged a private show at the Mahaiwe Theater in Great Barrington (680 seats), and said he would match all ticket James-Taylorproceeds with a personal donation.   WAMC Northeast Public Radio broadcast the show live to solicit call-in donations.   When the show sold out quickly, Taylor added a second show the next night.  Total donations collected:  $600,000.   From the concept of the idea...to the end of the second show...less than a week.

Welcome to the Berkshires...where there the quality of life never ceases to amaze.   Come visit!

Photos by Stan Grossfield/Courtesy of the Boston Globe


Comments

So glad to see James so happy, lovely wife and twin boys, always loved his music and met him in Macon, Ga years ago during the Capricorn days. :)
Posted @ Thursday, April 14, 2011 2:09 PM by Jean Thomas
The music of JT has been apart of my life for more than 40 yrs. At 17, I listened to his first album with my boyfriend who was my husband for 22 yrs. Jim (his name too) sang along and we became lifelong fans. Our 1st concert was @ Blossom Music Center (Ohio) where he sang "Blossom"~the crowd loved it! Then as each of our 3 sons were born we played JT music in the hospital and his albums were always on our stereo at home. The boys saw him sing, "Up On the Roof" on Sesame Street and came running to tell me. They are now parents and play JT for their kids. Sadly, cancer took Jim's life in 1995. I listened to James' songs to feel near to my Jim, singing along from above. Then, unexpectedly, a guy came into my life that made me feel loved again. We had so much in common. We both loved James Taylor music!! We've since gone to many JT concerts in Ohio, the highlight being able to hand him a rose and tell him of the many years I had been a fan! We saw him here in Columbus w/Carole King and last year on his birth day w/Ben in Cincinnati. (It was also our 12th wedding anniversary!!) It is a dream of ours to make a trip to the Berkshires/Tanglewood to a concert and also to stay at the Outermost Inn. May God bless James and his family as we all continue the secret of life; enjoying the passage of time!!
Posted @ Wednesday, January 04, 2012 7:51 PM by Susan Colley~Smith
I have been a JT fan since I was 16. I am now 58 and he is still my favorite singer/ entertainer. I have played guitar sine I was six and my family heard me play and sing his song before they ever heard him. They all love his music and watch him every chance they can. His music has always inspired me and will as long as I live!
Posted @ Sunday, April 15, 2012 10:20 PM by James Bearden
I have loved James Taylor's music since the first time I heard him sing. I have many of his albums and 2 video concerts he did as well as the one he made with Carol King. James' music is rooted in his love of people and of nature. His mellow songs make me feel relaxed and peaceful. I hope someday to visit the Berkshires with my husband and our "zoo." We have 2 cats and 2 dogs who love to come with us on our excursions in our RV.
Posted @ Sunday, July 22, 2012 9:58 PM by Paula Mimnaugh
I pretty sure he actually lives in the town of Washington, although you access his house via Lenox, his land must back up to October mt State forest. I don't know him but someone close to me has met his wife on different occasions and she is very nice.
Posted @ Saturday, December 01, 2012 8:00 AM by Shawn
aaaaaah! Beautiful choice. My home also. So much inspiration from those beautiful hills. I spent 50 years there. Dear to my heart.
Posted @ Sunday, January 27, 2013 2:57 PM by Dawn McElroy
i grew up in a very small town,very close to lenox.i worked at tanglewood,been in stockbridge,and gt.barrington thousands of times. i love the woods,and to know that a great musician,such as mr.taylor is amazing.theres nothing like the BERKSHIRES.i now live in s. florida,but come back every year to recharge my batteries. the house,my parents had built 38 yrs ago,on goose pond.i fell in love there.
Posted @ Tuesday, July 09, 2013 8:56 AM by louis rosenberg
I have been a JT fan and avid listener(viewer) for more years than I care to recall. A truly professional performer with an unparelled relaxed style and an accomplished song writer. To have been at the top of his profession for so many years is something to which others can only aspire. 
Dave Lloyd Shropshire, England
Posted @ Saturday, January 18, 2014 3:36 PM by Dave Lloyd
the info is very interesting. terimaiash always good luck brother
Posted @ Monday, May 26, 2014 11:32 PM by Obat Maag
Now an aging 61 year old I have followed James career ever since he played a set on BBC TV in the seventies. 
Dad said we don't want to watch that rubbish, I did ( even though I didn't know anything about him at the time, you know the rebel in me), got my own way and here we are 40+ years on and I'm still buying tickets to his latest tour. I will be in the audience at the Plymouth and Bournemouth shows as long as the creek don't rise and the good lords willing. 
My 23 year old daughter is as smitten with his music as I am (we sit around the piano and sing JT songs ..... 'You can close your eyes' is a favourite), she will be next to me at both concerts. 
Thank you for the years of pleasure and the influence that the music has had on my life, especially in the dark days. 
I wish you and your family all the best in the future. 
Posted @ Monday, July 07, 2014 5:23 PM by Martyn Holmes, Swindon, England
Just saw JT at Saratoga on a beautiful summer evening out doors! 
Sounds just like he did way back when and the show itself was awsome sounding! Wife sister and daughter joined me.
Posted @ Friday, July 25, 2014 10:40 AM by Paul M
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