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A Kansas City musician returns with a new album and a venture with Playboy

Cassie Taylor's EP “Desire” is set to be released in the fall
Zach Bauman
Courtesy of Cassie Taylor
Cassie Taylor's EP “Desire” is set to be released in the fall.

Cassie Taylor is set to debut her new record, "Desire," this fall. The release comes after taking a break from music and finding her true identity in different professions such as songwriting, photography and now modeling for Playboy.

Sensual, slow and cinematic is how Kansas City-based musician Cassie Taylor described her new album, "Desire."

Taylor got an early start to her music career. Her father is blues artist Otis Taylor. When she was 16, his bass player backed out of their national tour.

"My dad was like, 'You're gonna learn how to play bass, and you're gonna come on the road with me,'" she said. "I learned how to play bass in two and a half weeks and then I went on a national tour with my dad."

While Taylor is grateful for the time she spent traveling the world and crossing paths with music legends like Gary Moore, John Oates and Joe Cocker, she also faced challenges as a young female musician.

"A lot of autonomy is taken away from you as a female artist, whether it's from record labels or venue owners, and you become a very sexualized thing," Taylor said. "I had a six-foot-tall Black man bodyguard — which was my father — my whole life, but still there was a lot of interest from men that were much older."

After a 12-year run with her dad and then starting her own group, Girls with Guitars, Taylor became suicidal after completing a 43-day tour across Europe and realized she needed to take a step back from music. During that time, Taylor became gave birth to her child, who is now 8.

After a long break, Taylor decided she should return to music after a friend reached out to her about one of her old songs, "Spare Some Love," which was being used by dancers.

"I Googled myself and that brought me to Spotify and I realized that the song was about to hit a million streams," Taylor said.

Now, music isn't the only thing keeping her busy. The day after a fashion show in Kansas City, Taylor met the drag queen Trixie Mattel and took pictures wearing a Playboy jacket. This caught the attention of a scout for Playboy models.

Taylor said a modeling career with Playboy aligns with the timing for her new album, "Desire," because of its sexy, soulful sound.

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