Listen to James Taylor's new memoir free.

This listen is free for everyone—no strings attached. Enjoy!

Sign in to listen

Break Shot: My First 21 Years

James Taylor
Written by: James Taylor
Narrated by: James Taylor
Length: 1 hr and 33 mins
5 out of 5 stars (322 ratings)
In Cart

Take a tour of James Taylor’s early life.

0:00

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    274
  • 4 Stars
    40
  • 3 Stars
    6
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    1

Performance

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    251
  • 4 Stars
    39
  • 3 Stars
    7
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    1

Story

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    247
  • 4 Stars
    41
  • 3 Stars
    5
  • 2 Stars
    1
  • 1 Stars
    1

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

easy listening

Although I have always been a fan of Jame's, I knew little if his history. His is an incredible story. Thoroughly enjoyed his delivery, clear, concise and the plain truth about his life. I admire him even more now that I have learned about his struggles and accomplishments. Thank you, James, for sharing this audio with your friends.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing.

I’ve always been a James Taylor fan but I didn’t know much about his life. The story is fascinating and he’s a wonderful story teller. His smooth, silky voice adds to the experience. Sections of his songs are interspersed throughout the story, giving the listener the inspiration behind the lyrics.
All musicians’ autobiographies should be audio books. Ninety minutes is too short. I was sad to see it end.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Great way to spend social isolation

A wonderful book by one of my favourite artists, narrated by him with performances inserted in relevant areas. Covers both his early life struggles and triumphs with insight and honesty. What more could you expect from James Taylor?

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Well done James!

James presents his intriguing story providing unknown information regarding his musical and personal experiences and development in his typically relaxed, living room style approach. I enjoyed listening to his sharing. Thank you James!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Touching and insightful stories

I've listened to JT most of my adult life. This backgrounder is just as compelling as his music. It feels so authentic. Sad and touching in so many ways and explains alot of the material in his songs. Beautifully done from start to finish.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Insightful.

I've always liked Mr. Taylor's music. Now I know where some of those songs came from. very interesting listen. I recommend it if you're a music fan, or if you're not. It is a story of perseverance and overcoming obstacles, some put there by himself. Thank you James.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • DYL
  • 2020-03-27

I'm not sure why, but his story surprised me.

I have always loved James Taylor's music. He truly is a story teller both in music and his writing . An honest telling of his life experiences with a notable consideratation of others. A shocking yet admirable story.
I hope to see more in the future.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

My musical soul soother for so many years.

Thank you, what a gift. Your music has been and will be embedded in my soul. Bless you James for sharing your story.
Judy

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Impressive!

This was my first audible book and I really enjoyed it. Very interesting. Thank you.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Enjoyed this immensely

Loved listening to his heartbreaking journey and so happy that he survived. Thank you for all your music all these years.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • David
  • 2020-02-01

Disappointed

A person from the north spewing their hatred for the south. I didn’t expect this from him, and at the end I deleted all his music from my library. It doesn’t make sense to hate the south and pray for “one tribe, one family” within the same book. Shame on you James. I thought you were a better man than this.

82 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Marm
  • 2020-01-31

Love His Music, Love His Story

I was just going to listen while on the treadmill this morning, but I could not stop. I put plans aside and finished this too short production. Listening to his voice, his story and his music was a fantastic experience for me. It touched so many feelings and thoughts.
Dear Audible,
Please convince James to continue his story in more productions like this.

66 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • LuluBelle
  • 2020-01-31

Thank you, Mr Taylor & Audible!

For someone who grew up in the 70s, James Taylor’s music was everything & heard everywhere. His album “Sweet Baby James” was in everyone’s collection & yet spoke with delicate intimacy to everyone I knew. The song,”Fire & Rain” made Mr Taylor our friend because when you listened, you knew you were not alone in your confusion & heartaches. All these years later, I still remember many of the lines in his songs & what they meant to me when I was young and felt quite alone. His songs deeply resonated despite the fact our lives could not have been more different. Yet his music connected us.

But to the subject at hand—this Audible original. Wow! His open and honest account of his early life makes me admire him even more for sharing it with us. So, to hear him sit down & share his recollections of his early life is a lovely gift! Hearing his music & warm voice felt like he was sitting in my living room sharing something he just had to tell someone—but not for glory. It felt like he wanted his fans to know some of the truths he’s figured out about life & family and the road he’s traveled. I just finished listening & didn’t want it to end. Thank you to all who made this recording possible! Love to you, Mr Taylor! You helped get me through some rough years and it was so nice to listen to you again!

45 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • kaljh
  • 2020-02-02

So so depressing to listen to

I grew up with your music. You are a very talented musician and I loved your music. But please don’t ever read any other story. Your talent does not lie in narration. The monotone reading was painful to listen to. As for the story itself, I’m sure it would have been so much more interesting if there was some life put into it. There were some high points that would have come out so exciting if there was some energy in your voice. It just sounded like you didn’t really want to do this.

44 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Mr Dangerous
  • 2020-01-31

Format drove me nuts...

The material felt thin and i was quickly bored. But the real annoyance was every 5 minutes they'd jam way too much music in. It's if they knew they didn't have much so they felt like "hey lets put in James' great music and that will carry us through this."

I quit and couldn't finish.

39 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Lynn
  • 2020-02-02

Inspiring Autobiography

I am a psychiatrist who has worked with many seriously ill hospitalized patients. This is an inspiring story of a legend who recovered from severe depression and substance abuse and had a future of remarkable good. It is a remarkable story of recovery and an inspiration to all who have gone through episodes of mental illness.

37 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • George D Penick Jr
  • 2020-01-31

Thank you, James, for sharing yourself with us

He tells his story as honestly and as artfully as he writes his music. Both his pains and his joys are palpable.

32 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • kevin miller
  • 2020-01-31

Took me back and brought me forwad

As always, James Taylor weaves a story that captivates and heals. You find your own questions in his stories and maybe and answer or two.

His struggles and beautiful life tales harmonize with our own. James Taylor is both artist and art.

30 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Count B
  • 2020-01-31

JT, So Much Deeper Than I Ever Knew

Man this is deep at times. I never knew how tough his child life was, most of them going into mental institutions. No wonder his songs mean so much to me, as someone who suffers bad mental health. He is a part of so many of our lives. Love You JT.

27 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • CeceM
  • 2020-01-31

From James Taylor’s talent goes beyond singing!

From beginning to end, James paints a picture of his early days with his incredible storytelling where he shares his talent as both writer and songwriter. An inspiring story from an inspiring man!

26 people found this helpful