Corey Taylor's life story is one of perseverance and determination. Growing up in Iowa, he faced poverty and substance abuse, but he found solace and purpose in music, and leveraged that to become one of the most successful musicians of his generation.
In 1992, he co-founded Stone Sour, where he first started feeling a sense of brotherhood and artistic purpose, as he recently revealed in an interview with Feedback Def (transcribed by Ultimate Guitar).
"I was homeless, but the guys in the band actually chipped in and got me a hotel room, for us to hang out in. That was my first experience of being in a brotherhood, first sense of a community, and a first sense of, 'Okay, I can bring something these guys have never had before', which is a clarity of musical voice, and something to take this even further than we want it to go."
Taylor also noted how Stone Sour was the place where he first got comfortable with his guitar-playing skills. He says that he was often better than the lead guitarist in the band, which led him to take on the role himself. This was a bold and risky move, but it paid off in the end.
"I guess that was the first year where I really felt confidence in my skills as a guitar player. When Stone Sour first started, not only was I playing guitar constantly, but I was also the lead guitarist. So I was not only the main writer, I was always the lead guitar player. That's kind of been the throughline for my whole career; I would always fill in the weaknesses for whatever band I was in at the time. Like, when I first started, I was almost always better than the drummer I was in a band width. So, whenever we would do demos, I would play all the drums. But then, I had to make a choice. I wanted to sing, I don't want to do both. I don't want to be Phil Collins, I want to just sing."
"With Sour, I was, nine times out of ten, always better than the guitar player we had in the band, as a lead player. So I said, 'Fuck it, I'll just handle it. I'm writing all the music anyway, I might as well be the guy who's leading the charge.' And then, we'll just get a good rhythm guitar player kind of go with it. I'd say that was the genesis of my really diving headfirst down, just jumping off the cliff and praying to God the parachute goes off."