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!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

American Idol Rewind Season 5! Another Chance to Watch Daughtry Voted Off Again! Wooo!

The new season of American Idol Rewind is fast approaching! It will start showing in syndication next Saturday, Sept. 26. Check your local listing for exact date and time in your area. This is a chance for America to see again why Season 5 winner Taylor Hicks bulldozed over the competition and show what a truly talented performer and singer he is.

At this time of retrospect, I must say that AI contestant, 4th place loser, the biggest smug slug I've ever seen, Daughtry, is the biggest tool in the music industry today. And being that, his second piece of crap album is flopping hard. A total waste of good plastic in my opinion. I guess sounding like and imitating Nickleback just goes so far until people start waking up and see the mediocre talent he truly is.

I can't wait until the week he gets thrown off the show so I can laugh hysterically and jump up and down all over again at his departure - paving the way for the rightful winner to get the crown. Taylor Hicks won that season and rightfully so. He's the best blues & soul singer ever to grace that show's stage.

This clip is the best AI moment EVAH!

American Idol Rewind is back, and this year the top rated syndicated series will rewind to what has been called one of the most extraordinary years in American Idol history – Season 5. Premiering Saturday, September 26th in syndicated markets nationwide, the new season of American Idol Rewind will give Idol fans the chance to relive the rise of a rock star, the beginning of the “Soul Patrol” and the birth of “McPheever” through exclusive 2009 Top 12 contestant interviews, season highlights, and never-before-seen footage from the world’s most popular television show.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Great Taylor Hicks!

From the Houston Chronicle, a wonderful interview and review of his Wherehouse Live show! This guy really "gets" him as the dynamic singer and performer he is! Enjoy!

I interviewed Taylor Hicks at the Hobby Center on Wednesday, the 9th of September, where he opened the night before in the National Tour of Grease, hosted by Theatre Under the Stars, which runs through Sunday, September 20th.

Hicks is accessible, down-to-earth, personable, and loves what he is doing.

I never had any musical theatre training. Every show that I do is a first-hand learning experience.

How long have you been touring the show?

Touring since December and I was on Broadway in the show the summer of 2008. I've really been able to expand that role. Some of the same thought processes that I have had creating music with somebody are very similar to the processes that I have had acting with somebody. It's so brand new and very exciting for me.

Isn't is tough going onstage for the one and only time during the middle of the second act?

It is, but my role as Teen Angel is so big and grandiose that it's tailor-made for me.

I like how you didn't copy Frankie Avalon's performance from the film and you made it very funny and campy.

The role is supposed to be over-the-top. Tongue and cheek. Snarky. His time is running short, hanging out in rock-n-roll heaven and he has graced Frenchy with his presence.They gave me as much leeway as I wanted, creatively. I was even able to create the design of my suit. As long as I get Frenchy to put down her hair-teasing comb and go back to high school, then I am successful!

Frenchy says during the first break in your song, "I voted for you!," and it gets a huge laugh from the audience.

There are millions and millions of people that want to tell me that personally and I think they live vicariously through that moment.

Has that line always been there?

Oh, no! We didn't do it that way on Broadway but it's been that way recently on the tour. I broke character and really laughed the first time she did it.

And then some gal was screaming at you from the audience later in the song and Frenchy says "Taylor, she loves you!"

You can get away with that in this show.

We talk about his leaving on Friday (September 11th) to do a concert at the Beau Rivage Casino in Biloxi, MS, which has been booked since before the tour and also about his upcoming acoustic performance on Monday, September 14th, at Warehouse Live in Houston.

I was disappointed that more kids in the audience of Grease were not screaming and dancing.

I think there is a theatre etiquette of some sort, although, during my Broadway run, the audience was much rowdier.

By the way, when you come out at the end of the show after the curtain call and do a single from your new CD, The Distance, it is awesome.

I released my record within the context of the tour and it has given me a wonderful opportunity to reach my fans when I sign CDs in the lobby after the show.

Do you want to do more Broadway?

I think with the right role. I was offered roles before Grease but I wanted to make sure that the role was right for me. I have to really have the passion for it.

What do like the most about the tour?

I love the travel. I've been on the road for four years now solid. I am so lucky and so blessed to be able to travel the country and see and meet so many people. Doing this tour has made me realize how much this country has to offer.

How much longer is the tour?

I am committed to the Grease tour until June of 2010. I love it. I am a bit of a workaholic. I think you have to be in this business.

I'm looking forward to seeing you in concert on Monday.

I've been so full-band and hugely produced, it is great to do an acoustic stripped-down concert. I come from a very real place in music. I grew up in road houses. That's where I cut my teeth in a very real and raw way.

Warehouse Live's Studio space provided the perfect venue for the awesome music of Taylor Hicks. Have you ever wanted Taylor Hicks to perform in your living room? That's what last night's concert was like. If you missed last night, you missed one of the best concerts of the year. Hicks has been doing his music for years and years, road house after road house. By the time he got to American Idol three years ago, Hicks was already well-known in the South and had two CDs behind him. Hicks figured out a long time ago that there is no such thing as overnight success. He has built his house one song at a time, one fan at a time, one road house at a time. He's very happy to be back to playing to the smaller and more intimate crowds of his early days.

And all of us at Warehouse Live last night were the beneficiaries of his brilliant musicianship, which burns into a blinding light of soul and substance because he has surrounded himself with other brilliant musicians.

John Kulinich is on rhythm and lead guitar and cooks better than Julia Child with rifts that make you scream.

Jason Parker fingers a funky booming bass that goes right through your soul all the way to Minute Maid Park.

Brian Less jams on the meanest Yamaha electric keyboard you've ever heard.
Brian has been with Taylor for eight years and also sings backup harmony.
He's basically the music director of the four and arranges Taylor's kick-ass playlist.

Going way back to some of his first two CDs, Hicks and his band mix it all up, throwing in Billy Preston's "Will It Go Round In Circles," Van Morrison's "St. Dominic's Preview," The Beatles' "Don't Let Me Down," Bill Withers' "Use Me Up" and covers of his own great tunes that bring the house down and leave us begging for more.

Hicks' soulful voice and rockin' rhythm Taylor guitar say it like a huge bearhug that keeps on hugging until he takes us to the next level with that badass trademark Hicks harmonica.

Hicks is back to doing what he loves. And it shows and we feel it. It's not about Taylor Hicks at all. It's all about the music.

He'll be in Grease at the Hobby Center through Sunday, September 20th, and you can meet him and greet him and take pics with him and get him to sign his new CD, The Distance, after the show. Don't miss the music and the man that makes the music, The Great Taylor Hicks.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Mary Travers, The Voice of A Generation, Dies

We lost a voice of a generation on Wednesday. Mary Travers, of the immensely popular folk trio of the 1960's, passed away from complications of leukemia. She was 72. During their career, Peter, Paul and Mary earned five Grammy Awards for their three-part harmony on enduring songs like "Leaving on a Jet Plane," "Puff ," "Blowin' in the Wind" and "If I Had a Hammer." They sang beautiful, yet socially relevant songs throughout their five decade career that promoted peace and justice. Their music is as relevant today as it was the first time they sang together 40 years ago. I ask you, where is this sort of music today when we need it the most - when our country is torn apart and more divisive than maybe ever before? Rest in peace, Mary - your voice lives on.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Taylor Hicks Live Video Chat! Watch It Here....

Taylor was so cute today with his virgin video webcast at his new interactive website, taylorhicks.com! If you haven't signed up over there as a member yet, you should do it soon to catch the next one and read all the latest stuff going on with him. The chat lasted only about 20 minutes, but he was able to answer a couple of interesting questions. He said he and his people were looking forward to and preparing for his next 'project' after his run in Grease, which ends in June 2010. Hopefully that means a movie or TV project. We'll just have to wait and see!

He said he's going to try and do these events one a week, but I think it'll be more like once a month if we're lucky! I thoroughly enjoyed it! Here it is if you missed it! Enjoy....

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Original Member of The Temptations Compliments Taylor Hicks

Taylor Hicks recently got one of the highest compliments from Otis Williams, the last surviving member of the original legendary soul group of the 60s - The Temptations. In an article posted on turkgeek.com, he says in part:

Q – You say, “Great singing will always prevail.” That’s what they push on American Idol. Do you watch that TV show?

A – Oh yeah, I watch it.

Q – What do you think of it?

A – Some of it is funny. Every now and then, you run across somebody who can sing, but a lot of those people up there are kind of funny. I really like Taylor Hicks.

Q – He’s good because he’s different.

A – Yes, he is. I like his deliverance and he can sing.

It's a great shout-out to Taylor from Mr. Williams - a guy who is a founding member of greatest soul group in history, The Temptations. A huge pat on the back from one of Taylor's musical heros, no doubt.

Never mind the fly-by-nights who pose as 'experts' in today's market. The opinion of someone like Otis Williams goes a long way and says a lot about Taylor's musical credibility and the depth of his talent as a soul singer and performer.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Spotted: Taylor Hicks, in search of Mason-Dixon line for sweet tea

From the Birmingham News:

Former American Idol Taylor Hicks, now touring the country as Teen Angel in "Grease," spent Monday, a travel day between Orlando and Fort Worth, in his hometown.

"I'm trying to find the Mason-Dixon Line for sweet tea," he said, sipping the sweet stuff at the Diplomat Deli on U.S. 31 in Vestavia Hills. "Some states have it, and some don't. I'm trying to find out where that line is."

While in Birmingham, Hicks taped segments for Alabama Public Television and BET's "N Contrast With Chuck Faush." While filming the BET piece, he also met with Birmingham City School students who are finalists in a talent contest produced by Faush.

Hicks also did some publicity for the upcoming Birmingham stop of "Grease" -- Sept. 22-27 at the BJCC Concert Hall. Tickets are on sale now through Ticketmaster, and Hicks said it's the best of both worlds for him, since he gets to perform his single, "Seven Mile Breakdown," as part of the show.

"It's kind of a concert and a Broadway show all in one," he said.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

'Grease’ is frothy, fun homage to the ’50s

From the Star-Telegram in Fort Worth, TX! Enjoy!

Hopelessly devoted fans of Grease won’t mind that headliner Taylor Hicks spends roughly four minutes onstage. Or that he doesn’t appear until almost two hours into the musical, in the middle of Act 2.

But Soul Patrol devotees might feel cheated. Hicks, who’s billed as the big star of the national tour of Grease presented by Casa MaƱana that started Tuesday at Bass Hall, plays Teen Angel, who sings one song in the show — Beauty School Dropout.

But oh, what a cameo appearance it is: Decked out, Elvis-like, in a sequined suit, he descends from above a burger joint in an ice cream cone, then sings, hip-shakes and even blows his signature harmonica before heading back into "that malt shop in the sky." In a hilarious homage to, well, himself, Frenchy (a baby-voiced Kate Morgan Chadwick) declares to the 2006 American Idol champ dreamily, "I voted for you."

There’s a lot to like about this production of the beloved musical about high school friendships, jilted sweethearts, and all things cool in 1959. With its colorful set, frilly petticoats, upbeat choreography and live music by the "Grease Band," the show is one frothy, fizzy soda pop of energy.

Generally, the women in the cast outshine the men. Allie Schulz is stellar as the brassy Rizzo. And Erin Henry as the perky Patty Simcox will remind you how much you loved or loathed student council members.

But the leads, Eric Schneider as Danny Zuko and Emily Padgett as Sandy Dumbrowski, seem peculiar casting choices. Schneider just doesn’t give off that legendary Travolta-cool vibe; he seems sort of geeky. And Padgett’s exceptionally well-trained voice brought too much vibrato to some of her songs, including a Summer Nights that fell flat on the audience. Still, the two have sweet chemistry together, and Padgett sizzles as the "sexy Sandy" at the end.

Be sure to arrive early — you don’t want to miss Vince Fontaine’s (Dominic Fortuna) "warm-up act" that’ll have you singing and dancing along to some classic tunes.