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Taylor Hicks on Tour: My May Tour with Taylor Hicks

Photos and blog graciously contributed by Louise Uznanski who traveled to see Taylor Hicks and his band perform five times in nine days in May.

Please click on images to enlarge.

The fog has certainly lifted, somewhat, from so much traveling, but the feeling that I am still going to get in the car or a plane or a shuttle to get to a venue where Taylor Hicks will appear is still pulling at my brain. Herding so many photos has been the most burdensome task.  Note to self:  Take fewer photos. I wouldn’t even try to do that, so here is the fruit of an overly enthusiastic shuttle finger and one fine and talented man and his band as they tore through the Northeast creating joy, mayhem and more than a few GPS systems to go haywire.

Pitman, New Jersey is a small town near the home of Rowan University in neighboring Glassboro.  Glassboro was host to the Hollybush summit between President Johnson and Russia’s Kosygin in 1967.  The Broadway Theater is historic in its own right, and the lighting and sound were epic!

It was truly an amazing night of musical changes.  Forty minutes into the show, Taylor took a short break and came back to the stage, sat on a stool and did twenty minutes of acoustic music.  After the shock of that sank in, we were treated to more of the rocking, rollicking Taylor and his awesome band.  We brought two ‘newbies’ to the show and a lot of my work colleagues indulged me by buying tickets to the show.  To a person, they loved Taylor, the show and everything about the experience.  For lighting, surprises and overall effect, the Broadway Theater show was one of my favorite of the five shows in May.

With one day of rest between shows, we found ourselves in the car for the six hour drive to Greensburg, PA, near Pittsburgh.  The town is charming, the theater was large and the setting was ideal for a great show.  The stage was big and Taylor took full advantage of the expanse as he danced, jammed and generally wore us all out with his energy.

It was at the end of the show during the encore that Taylor so took the audience by surprise it still makes me shake my head every time I think about it.  Just when you thought he could not thrill you more, Taylor pulls up a stool and sings Alabama Frame of Mind, solo, acoustic with Jeff Lopez laying on the sax to really slay the audience.  It was as heartwarming and beautiful a performance as I have ever seen from Taylor.  Just wow. He smiled the entire time.

No rest for the weary! On to New York City and the City Winery where Taylor and the band performed and also raisedmoney through wine sales and contributions for the Tornado Recovery.

What an interesting place this was in the middle of Manhattan to hear live music.  The band was more than up for the occasion, pulling out all the stops and bringing guitarist Jamie McLean on stage to jam on Seven Mile Breakdown.  The best part of the night for me was being able to get up from my seat, walk around and shoot photos and dance!

Several bad meals and three hotel rooms later we found ourselves in the lovely Hudson Valley and the town of Saratoga Springs, New York. After a lengthy nap and a short ride up the interstate to Glens Falls and the Charles Wood Theater, we arrived at show #4.

A unique movie theater setting at the Wood Theater, there is not a bad seat in the house.  After settling in and noticing how the instruments were arranged on the stage, we remembered that Taylor did say the Glens Falls show would be an acoustic show.  He delivered on that promise. His rendition of Soul Thing was the best I have ever heard.  Rough God Goes Riding was like being at a seance.  Taylor scatted and closed his eyes and made you feel like you were with Van Morrison when he wrote the song.

Musical talent has a way of surfacing no matter what the circumstances. Tired, road weary and drained from traveling, the Taylor Hicks band showed a sold out Wood Theater where their true genius is:  it’s made up of individual nuances and notes and playing off of one another until the sound is so sweet and laidback you would think you were in your Lazy Boy with a Blue Moon in your hand. It is shows like this one in Glens Falls that make the band so appealing. It is the tour that is always changing.

Back in the car, and in my case two train rides to Philadelphia from New York City, and then a car ride from the station and a few days of gathering thoughts, then we were off for the show in Shirley, Massachusetts at the Bull Run Restaurant.

Sitting right at the mic at a table with long-time fans was the highlight of being there.  Taylor was loose and talkative and in excellent voice.  The restaurant owner was beyond happy to have Taylor there and all of his fans.  The show was so unique because of our proximity to the stage.  Taylor signed CDs and merchandise after the show while waiting for G.I. Seth to arrive to see the show.  When he did not make it in time to hear ‘19‘ Taylor told Seth’s mother that they would sing it on the tour bus. Wow.  The video is so heartwarming.  We were all so proud to be fans when the latest episode of Riding Shotgun with Taylor Hicks was published on Memorial Day!

And so ends MY May tour with Taylor Hicks.  It was a lovely ride.  Lots of great memories.  So many memories to be made again as Taylor flew to the West coast and made joyous noise in Coos Bay and Michigan. Looking forward to more surprises, good music and fun on the Taylor Hicks Tour!

20 Comments Post a comment
  1. tishtx #

    Thanks for taking us along for your May tour with Taylor 🙂

    June 2, 2011
  2. juliegr #

    Thanks Louise. Since I can’t travel in person to these venues and experience the fun, music, and camaraderie of a live show, it’s a treat to read and look at your products.

    Great job as usual.

    June 2, 2011
  3. TAMMY #

    I was at both Johnathan’s in Maine and Bull Run in Massachusetts, and let me tell you, both shows were phenomenal! The band put on fabulous performances and Taylor was great as always! I met new people and words cannot express how blessed I am to have shared such wonderful experiences with the most amazing group! Thank you for the recap and many many thanks to Taylor, Jeff, Sam, Brandon, Brian, Leif, and Dave for bringing great music to us and creating many friendships! Bless you all!

    June 2, 2011
  4. Dee #

    me… jealous much? do you think he might ever ever ever make it to vegas????

    June 2, 2011
  5. Beautiful photos of a great guy!!!Junebug

    June 2, 2011
  6. carole #

    thanks so much. Are my eyes turning green? It was like I was almost there.
    Great pictures.

    June 2, 2011
  7. jerseyirish #

    Louise, Thanks for always sharing the shows you go to with us, the pics are just breathtaking!!


    June 2, 2011
  8. wings #

    Thanks so much for sharing all of this. Made my heart sing!

    June 2, 2011
  9. Louise #

    Thank you all so much. My pleasure. I’ll miss Taylor this summer but I know he’s off making new music and I’ll see him in August and I’ll be ready!
    Thanks again.

    June 2, 2011
  10. Thanks, Louise, for sharing your May tour with us. You’re really our field correspondent. It’s almost as though we’ve sent you out into the Battlefield and you’re attached to the Taylor Hicks regiment. I think you should be riding on and reporting from the tour bus. That way you’d truly be “embedded”.

    June 2, 2011
    • Louise #

      Gee, I never thought of that but if duty calls, haha. No, I’m enjoying taking photos and going to see the whole band. I get to roam around a bit and that is so much fun.
      Thanks again!

      June 3, 2011
  11. Skeeter #

    FANTASTIC recap of Taylor Hicks in May..and AMAZING photo’s ALWAYS…. Thanks Louise!! I am a Taylor Hicks fan for LIFE..and can’t wait for the next tour!

    Been “off and on the internet” for the last several months, but THIS is a MUST SEE!!

    *should be MORE Jeff Lopez photos!* 😉 😉 😉

    June 2, 2011
  12. Judith Morton #

    Louise, Wonderful article as usual. I love your way with words and your pictures are beyond beautiful. Keep taking lots!! Love your sharing with us. Taylor is an amazing entertainer…always something new. Hope to meet up with you again soon.

    June 2, 2011
  13. It was such a pleasure to meet you, Louise, I have so enjoyed the fruits of your “labor”. Your photos of Taylor and the band capture so much of the energy and heart they put into each performance. And they are all so personable and friendly to every audience. I never expected to become so attached to any group of musicians and make so many new friends among their fans. The whole experience has been a highlight of my “seniorhood”. Looking forward to the next time…Dianna

    June 3, 2011
    • Louise #

      I agree. I love each and every band member. They could not be nicer to their fans. Good to see you again and hoping for more Taylor adventure we can all attend in the future.

      June 3, 2011
  14. jonibug #

    Another stellar presentation, Louise! What else can I say?? Every comment above expresses my feelings as well! See ya sometime in the future! 😉

    June 3, 2011
  15. Louise #

    Thanks again, everyone. I appreciate your comments and I enjoy sharing.
    Judy: You/Dave are getting good with that new camera (saw your shots on the Boogie). Keep shooting, too!

    June 3, 2011
  16. I’ve never commented here before, but I subscribe by email. So, I decided to come out of hiding mode to say “HI” and how much I’m enjoying the blog posts. I’ve seen him twice in Grease, but have yet to see him during an ‘official’ concert. So these are great… I also had to post because those pictures are gorgeous (of course, so is he!) 🙂

    June 3, 2011
    • Tiffany, thank you so much for reading and commenting! I hope you’ll be able to catch Taylor in concert soon. There will hopefully be a new album and tour in 2012, and we’re already looking forward to both. Appreciate your company here on the blog!

      June 3, 2011
  17. Linda T #

    Wonderful commentary and pictures, Louise…a whole ‘nother stack of “right-click-save”-ers!! So glad I got to share some of this experience with you..Taylor concerts are such joyous, fun events.

    June 3, 2011

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