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Exclusive: David Crosby and James Taylor talk Carole King

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Examiner.com is excited to share interviews with David Crosby and James Taylor from the red carpet of the 2014 MusiCares Gala presented by Degree Woman.

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Speak about honoring Carole King.

David Crosby: She’s one of the best writer’s in the world, and has a body of work going back for a very long time. She went through a very tough school as a youngster in this business. I sold songs in the Brill building I know what she did. She’s a really good person. But I think to celebrate a person’s lifetime of work is truly right and good.

Do you think about your legacy?

David Crosby: Not really. I was the first one that they did, the first Person of the Year, so they kind of celebrated me already.

What are you working on right now?

David Crosby: I have a new album that’s coming out in a couple of days called "Croz." Yes there is a single it’s called "What’s Broken," and it’s written by my son James Raymond who produced the record. It’s pretty terrific to be doing this kind of work at this stage of the game. I’m amazed at all the reviews everybody’s that heard it has been telling me it’s the best thing I’ve done.

What are they saying about "Croz"?

David Crosby: Good songs, really good songs.

Do you remember the Ed Sullivan show?

David Crosby: Yes, I did it.

Do you remember The Beatles when they did the show?

David Crosby: Yeah, sure. I knew what I wanted to do. When I saw "Hard Day's Night" even more.

Were the Beatles an inspiration?

David Crosby: Yea, absolutely they inspired every musician. Yeah all of them.

What should Carole King remember from tonight?

David Crosby: I’m not a person who could give her advice, she could give me advice. But if I were to give her advice, I would say please Carole keep writing. She's good! Really good.

Speak about honoring Carole King.

James Taylor: She’s very important to me and my debut as an artist, and I presume to say that I was also important to her development as an artist although she had been writing for decades before we met.

What did you sing with Carole when MusiCares honored you?

James Taylor: Well she and I sang "You Got a Friend" together.

Why is MusiCares so important to you?

James Taylor: MusicCares does a lot of important work. They’re really available to people. I know a number of musicians myself who have come to MusicCares in a time of need, and they’re there for us. It’s a great thing, this is the right direction.

We also spoke with 2014 Grammy winner Mindi Abair, who is an American smooth jazz saxophonist.

Tell us about your album.

Mindi Abair: I’m nominated for a project that I did with three of my close friends. Three of the best saxophone players on the planet. It’s a record called "Summer Horns," and it’s Dave Koz, Richard Elliott and Gerald Albright. We’re playing the pre-Grammy telecast then we find out if we win our Grammy. But I have to say just making a record with these guys what an incredible high to make a record with the three best saxophone players on the planet, and somehow they let me in and I’m so proud of the record. Very proud that I got nominated.

What inspired "Summer Horns"?

Mindi Abair: The record was inspired by great horn bands. There was kind of this golden era of horn bands in the sixties and seventies from Earth Wind and Fire to Chicago to Sly and the Family Stone all of these just great bands. So we figured we would just do our takes on all of these great bands and we did.

"Carole King has set the standard for singer/songwriters. All you have to do is listen to her record from 1972 "Tapestry," and know that she wrote the book literally on the singer-songwriter genre," a MusiCares representative told Examiner.com. He continued, "Many people came out to be supportive of Carole because of her stature in the music industry…Lady Gaga, Pink, James Taylor Jason Mraz, so many artists! It’s going to be a great night." So what's next for the organization? "MusiCares continues on its mission to be the safety net for the music community no matter what may happen to an individual musician or their family, we’re there to help."

Shout out to Degree Women for giving us access to the red carpet for this event. On the evening of the Grammy Awards, we also attended the "Official After-Party" as guests of Degree, where a very pregnant Ciara rocked the stage for hundreds of celebrities and recording academy members. Everyone danced to her biggest hits like “Goodies,” “1,2, Step,” “Overdose,” and “Oh.” We said hi to Macklemore collaborator Ray Dalton, who has had an incredible year performing their smash "Can't Hold Us" all around the world. We are excited for his upcoming EP.

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