In the late 1980s Taylor Dayne blew up the pop charts with a string of earworms like “Tell it to My Heart” and “Love Will Lead You Back” that kept her in constant rotation on both radio and MTV.
Though her days at the top may be in the rearview mirror, Dayne has remained artistically active, spreading her career into the worlds of acting, public speaking and, most recently, writing, as she has just authored a memoir.
“Thirty years in this business is insane, but I’m still passionate and loving it and out there touring. My fans still want to see me, they come out to the show and I’m always amazed by the love they show me. Touring is such a testament to being connected to your audience, it’s incredible,” Dayne says.
When “Tell it to My Heart” sent Dayne into world-wide fame at just 22 years-old, the public labeled her an instant success. ”When fame hits and you’re young like that, everybody looks at it as overnight stardom. But the truth is, I had been working hard for 17 years before that,” she says.
Music has been a huge part of her life since she was a child. “My parents were incredibly supportive. They were avid theater-goers, and the arts and music and theater were very important to them. So, I got that education as a child,” Dayne explains.
But like any household, it wasn’t always all singing and dancing. “Some days we had to tip toe around if my dad was in one of his moods. We had to watch out, he had a terrible temper,” Dayne says. Both of Dayne’s parents were first-generation descendants of Holocaust survivors. “My father was very tortured,” she remembers.
Singing became her escape. “My voice was literally and figuratively my tool for everything. I saw it as a way out, a way in. It was my sword and I maximized on it,” Dayne says. At 17, Dayne was performing in clubs throughout New York, at 22 her first hit single came out and soon after she was performing with Prince and touring with Michael Jackson.
Dayne soon after expanded her career to songwriting and acting. She wrote many of her own hits as well as Tina Turner’s, “Whatever You Want.” Dayne acted in film, theater and TV roles, performing in Elton John’s production of “Aida”, the FX drama “Rescue Me”, HBO’s “STAG” and Showtime’s “Rude Awakening,” among others.
Dayne never married, but in 2002, she became the mother of twins through surrogacy. “They’re 17. My daughter is quite the actress, she’s formidable. My son has got a hell of a voice, but that’s not his passion. He’s all about business, finance and real estate,” Dayne says.
Dayne details all of these events in her memoir, “Tell it to My Heart: How I Lost My S#t, Conquered My Fear, and Found My Voice.”
“My 2016 Ted Talk was really the impetus for writing my memoir,” Dayne says.
In it, Dayne passionately explained how she feels was born to sing and that everyone is born with their own unique gift and has the power to cultivate it. “Music became the loving arms I so desperately needed,” Dayne explained in her Ted Talk, “Those of us that have spent time with our gifts have planted our seeds.” Seeds that everyone has the potential to plant and see grow and blossom. Through this talk, Dayne’s career was opened to more speaking engagements and the publication or her book.
Of course she hasn’t forgotten about music.
“I’m heading to the studio this afternoon and then I’ll be back to it for the New Year,” Dayne says. And she looks forward to coming back to Atlantic City for New Year’s Eve. “I spent a lot of time in Atlantic City. I used to perform at the Sands, it was like a second home to me. And Resorts, on New Year’s Eve? I mean come on, that’s amazing.”