Calvin Taylor says people treasure traditional hymns because they have a history with them. When Taylor performs one on the piano or organ, it often sounds a little different.
"I take a traditional hymn and dress it up," the musician said. "I make it new."
Taylor will be playing traditional hymns as well as some of his own compositions during a concert of sacred music Saturday at the Columbus First Seventh-day Adventist Church, 7880 Schomburg Road.
The free performance is at 4:30 p.m. A freewill offering will be received.
Taylor, 65, of Bowling Green, Ky., is an artist who has performed in Europe, China and North and South America.
A celebrated author of musical books and hymns, Taylor has recorded albums for Master Disc Records including "A Garden of Praise" and "Resurrection Road."
The "Inner City Sunrise" movement of his "Sunrise Symphony" was recorded by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.
His recordings and books may be purchased on his website, calvintaylormusic.org.
Taylor's stop in Columbus is part of a tour that includes more than 30 shows in Georgia and Florida.
The show Taylor will perform locally is done in a sermon-in-songs worship format.
It is called "Holy Scripture - Alive With Sounds of Music."
During the show, Taylor reads a passage of scripture then plays a piece of music that relates to it.
He said it is a format to which people respond favorably.
"Music is just a wonderful way to deliver a message," Taylor said.
The focus of the program is the life of Christ and his ministry on Earth.
"It is about salvation, forgiveness and discipleship," Taylor said.
While he does perform secular music and has recorded an album of patriotic songs, Taylor prefers playing spiritual music.
"It has an impact," he said. "I have seen people really moved by the music. They have tears in their eyes. That makes me feel good."
While he enjoys performing, it is the creating of music he really loves.
"Writing music is the best," he said.
Taylor is a native of Los Angeles. He has been playing the piano since he was 5 years old and at 14 was serving as an organist in several southern California churches.
Taylor has degrees in music from the Oberlin College Conservatory of Music, the University of Michigan and the University of Kentucky.
"Playing the piano has always been easy for me, and I have always loved playing," he said.
Taylor said that while touring can be stressful, the positive response of the people makes it all worthwhile.