Woman's Gotta Have It
Filmed at The Workplay Theater in Birmingham, AL 9-26-09 with Ona Watson.
Song available on Taylor's new album, The Distance.
On sale now! Pick your copy today!

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Taylor Hicks 'Grease'-ing his Way Into Acting

And the great publicity keeps on a-coming, folks! This time from the Journal News from Cincinnati, OH, the next tour stop for *Grease*! Enjoy!

Flashy role 'Taylorized' made for American Idol champ

CINCINNATI — Although he's never done any acting, "American Idol" Season 5 winner Taylor Hicks thought that a Broadway show like "Grease" would be an effective lubricant for his career.

And even though his character, Teen Angel, has only one number in the show, Hicks was still able to make an auspicious acting debut suspended in an ice cream cone 45 feet over a Broadway stage.

On Jan. 20, he reprises that feat when the national tour of "Grease," in which the American Idol plays the part of Teen Angel, the spirit that tries to convince Frenchy to finish high school.

"It was an intense way to start an acting career," Hicks said. "But she stays in school every show, so I must be doing OK."

He said he wanted to make the transition to acting slowly by taking a smallish, but flashy and important, part.

"I'd been offered bigger roles," he said, "but for me, my career is a marathon, not a sprint, and I wanted to do something that I could build on. This particular role seemed a good way to do that."

In addition to the grand entrance, Hicks said that he has been allowed to "Taylorize" the role — both costume-wise and musically, including the insertion of a harmonica solo into "Beauty School Drop-Out."

The tour also features Allie Schultz, a singer and actress who also first came to the national spotlight via a television talent contest, "Grease: You're the One That I Want," the series that prompted this production, which opened on Broadway on Aug. 19, 2007.

Though Schulz did not win the competition, she understudied the roles of Sandy, Cha-Cha and Patty on Broadway before joining the national tour in the role of Rizzo.

The tour also features Eric Schneider as "Danny" and Emily Padgett as "Sandy." Schneider made his Broadway debut in "Jersey Boys" and has also appeared in "Altar Boyz" both off-Broadway and national tour. Padgett also comes from the Broadway cast of "Grease," where she understudied Sandy. Her other credits include the national tours of "Cats" and "Thoroughly Modern Millie."

how to go

WHAT: "Grease" by Jim Jacobs and Warren Case

WHERE: Procter & Gamble Hall, Aronoff Center for the Arts,

650 Walnut, Cincinnati

WHEN: Jan. 20-Feb 7

COST: $20-$71

MORE INFO: (513) 241-7469; www.broadwayacrossamerica.com

and more from the Dayton Daily News:

When the main job becomes a sideline
Hicks performs songs from his new album
By Richard O Jones

Staff Writer

Friday, January 16, 2009

CINCINNATI — Though he may be coming from a Broadway show to a national tour, Taylor Hicks still has been hard at work focusing on the music that brought him to the national spotlight in the first place.

"I've got a new album coming out in March called 'The Distance,' " he said.

"I've spent a lot of time focusing on my songwriting and there are some really good story songs on the record."

The record is being produced by Simon Climie, who recently has worked with Eric Clapton and Michael McDonald, and the musicians include players from Clapton's band.

Climie "fits the vein I come in as an artist."

In the meantime, however, he'll be mounting the cone nightly and working on his acting chops, fitting in performances with his band when he can.


taylorfan06 said...

Taylor gets my vote for "Most All-Around" in 2009!
It's definitely HIS year!!!

Crazymomelon said...

Thanks for bringing the good news. Love to read these stories while listening to "Somehow"

Stephanie said...

I think it's great that he is exploring and developing all of his creative talents. I read a certain blog that has been bashing him for his decisions and all I have to say to those pretentious faux music snobs is that they were watching American Idol like all of us uncool people too. Griz, I always enjoy how you give 'em hell speaking the truth. KUTGW! :D

Taylor is more than just a musician. He has to be to make a decent living in todays music business. If any of those pretentious blow hards would read other music industry sites, blogs and other artists fansites they would see that what Taylor is doing is DIVERSIFYING his income stream. All financially successful artists do what Taylor is doing.

He spent 10+ years in the bars and evidently he doesn't want to spend the rest of his career being bar band Taylor. It's his life and his decision. He is responsible for more than his livelihood. Every person in the tour band and road crew depend on him for their pay. His name is on the line when he has to pay the bills for a tour. Do any of those whining faux music snobs ever consider the business side of things? /rant off.

Anonymous said...

So many positive happenings coming Taylor's way in 2009. He's definitely not going away any time soon. I can't wait until the CD and videos drops (hopefully next week).

I too have been reading that certain "other blog" and agree with everything you have stated Stephanie. And Griz I admire how you (and a couple of others) cut through the crap over there and state the REAL facts about Taylor's career choices.


Stephanie said...

The thing is Taylor has said from the beginning that he wants a career like Jimmy Buffett. Jimmy Buffett has been able to use all of his talents to do what he wants to do, how he wants to do it and turn a big profit in the process. That is what Taylor seems to be doing.

I just don't get the bitching about him doing Broadway for goodness sakes. Broadway isn't something to be ashamed of at all. Heck in the "real world" of entertainment, making it on Broadway is a huge badge of honor.

If the right part in a movie came along and he felt it was something he wanted to do then what is the big deal?

soulthing said...

Stephanie - that is such a downer and depressing website (you know the one I'm talking about). Wow! Imagine sitting around all day angsting about an imagined problem! LOL... man it gives me a headache! ;)

Trixi said...

Not sure what blog you guys are talking about... but they must be crazy. If they think Taylor is doing well by doing broadway.. then what should he be doing?

It has kept his name out there in between cd's and tours.

Oh well I guess some people always see the glass half empty instead of half full!!