Walk Off The Earth’s Mike ‘Beard Guy’ Taylor Passes Away Unexpectedly
Walk Off The Earth has unexpectedly and sadly lost Mike ‘Beard Guy’ Taylor.
Mike “Beard Guy” Taylor, former member of Walk off the Earth (WOTE), has passed away.
According to the group, the multi-instrumentalist passed away in his sleep from natural causes.
“It is with profound sadness that we announce the passing of our beloved brother and band member, Mike ‘Beard Guy’ Taylor. Mike had a love for life that was unmatched and a willingness to give that went beyond ordinary means. He passed peacefully from natural causes last night in his sleep. Our deepest sympathies are with his two children, whom he adored more than anything else in the world. We ask for privacy for his family in this trying time.”
His death was sudden and unexpected. On Christmas Eve, Taylor had posted a cover of ‘O Holy Night’ on Facebook. The group would’ve performed at a New Year’s Eve concert special in Niagara Falls.
With WOTE, Taylor had played a variety of instruments. These included piano, keyboards, melodica, trumpet, didgeridoo, accordion, and the kazoo. He had also played the organ, vocals, xylophone, glockenspiel, euphonium, and slide whistle.
The band had described him as someone who “had a love for life that was unmatched and a willingness to give that went beyond ordinary means.”
Taylor also had “unexpected quirky behavior,” which the band featured on their pop-song covers.
On YouTube, WOTE’s channel has over 3.3 million subscribers. One of the most famous videos, a cover of ‘Somebody That I Used To Know,’ has over 185 million views. Most of the band’s videos have well over 17 million views.
The group first formed in Ontario in 2006. Taylor joined WOTE several years later.
Speaking about the group’s name on Facebook, members shared,
“More than anything else, it’s a state of mind. When you’re deeply entranced by a collection of musical compositions and your day-to-day stresses become a lot less bothersome, you’ve walked off the earth.”
The group eventually signed with Columbia Records, releasing two albums, 2013’s R.E.V.O. and 2015’s Sing It All Away.
Featured image by Mike ‘Beard Guy’ Taylor (Facebook screengrab).