Young Bluegrass star moving toward worship music
By John Herndon, Kentucky Sings.com
(NOTE: I first met Mikaya Taylor three years ago, not long after one of her appearances on Woodsongs Old-Time Radio Hour. At the time, she was a fifth-grader. Now, she is an eighth-grader at Anderson County Middle School and still turning heads with her powerful voice. I wrote this story, which appeared in the Aug. 1 edition of The Anderson News.)
Mikaya Taylor’s singing is still turning heads. The rising eighth-grader at Anderson County Middle School, who was first featured in The Anderson News almost three years ago, has cut a CD, and continues to sing around Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio when she can.
It’s a good gig for one of Kentucky’s newest Commonwealth Ambassadors. Mikaya received the honor at the Military Freedom Fest, held in Nicholasville in June.
Rarely one to be at a loss for words, Mikaya breaks into a grin to describe her emotion when Douglas Day, a member of Kentucky Secretary of State Allison Lundergan Grimes’ staff, called her forward to receive her latest award. “I was surprised!” Mikaya says.
According to Grimes’ office website, the award is “is presented to any person who demonstrates exceptional character and citizenship through their contributions to the community, Kentucky or nation. The award was created to recognize citizens for their involvement in their government and communities.”
Named as one of the nation’s rising stars on the Bluegrass scene, Mikaya has made several appearances on the Woodsongs Old-Time Radio Hour. She has also been asked to sing at several drug abuse recovery events organized by Andrew Hager .
However, she is expanding her repertoire, adding country along with Christian and praise music to her set lists. She’s also led worship at River of Life Church of God in Lexington.
“For about three months, she kept telling me that God was dealing with her,” says Mikaya’s mother, Traci Taylor.
Mikaya explains, “I was in church camp in Manchester and we were having a revival. A pastor told me he was praying for me.” He went on to tell Mikaya he believed God wanted her in Christian music more than any other genre.
While country music is hot nationwide, Christian music’s audience is generally not deemed as large. But Mikaya says she would rather sing about faith. “I mean, it’s just better,” she says. “Who wants to sing about drinking?”
A fan of Hillsong, Mikaya says she mixes contemporary, bluegrass and country in her gospel singing.
And now, as a Commonwealth Ambassador, she might have a key to open more doors to share her message.