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Taylor Hicks on Tour: Taylor + McKinney PAC: Perfect Together

Part 2: Taylor Hicks continued his Texas journey performing at the McKinney Performing Arts Center on 9/17/11.

All photos and concert recap by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog.

Perfection comes along rarely but in the cool (for Texas) Texas night, Taylor Hicks and the Little Memphis Blues Orchestra hit just about the most perfect chord during their time at the McKinney, Texas Performing Arts Center.
From beginning to end, the organization by David Taylor and his staff at the McKinney lent an air of sophistication and fine art that made the night for everyone present a night to remember.

Not being able to remember a set list to save my life, this set list stood out. Taylor was talkative, funny, comedic, and heartwarming. Talking of how each song came in to his life and how each song built his itinerary of songwriting, the crowd learned a lot about the American Idol hero they had not known before.

He jammed, he strummed, he sang his heart out. Feeling allright wasn’t in the set list but that is exactly how Taylor seemed to feel at the McKinney.

Taylor made our hearts warm as he continually thanked the staff at McKinney in between stories of how each song came about. He said he loved the theater. I haven’t heard Taylor say that since the Broadway Theater in Pitman in May. Standing on a stage that twice a year turns into a courtroom, Taylor was at once intimidated and happy that the old courthouse was preserved for such a unique show.

When Taylor played the harp, he applied such a light touch to it you could hear a pin drop. Seated right in front of the mic in the first row, I got a good view of a lot of what makes a Taylor Hicks show memorable. Sweat, spit, intense hand motions on the harp, a guitar that needs polishing and a profile that rivals Elvis Presley.

Certain memories etch your brain like an etcho-sketch. Taylor riffing with Jeff Lopez remains one of the most memorable single moments of any show since Taylor began touring in 2007. The two faced off, Taylor on harp and Jeff on sax, in what will go down as one of the most charismatic, funny and artistic performances the two performers have given to their fans. Jeff is stubborn. He won’t let Taylor outdo him on the harp. Taylor is tenacious. He wants to create a sound Jeff can’t duplicate but he always seems to. No stalemate. No tie. It was a win-win for Taylor, Jeff and the McKinney audience.

One of the noteworthy aspects of the preceding photo is that Taylor wore a watch. Sorry, but Randy gave him that watch. It’s gorgeous and he put it to good use timing Jeff on one of his circular breathing, long-winded notes. It was another moment created out of a good sense of humor and a respect of the other artist on stage.

And when it came time for Maybe You Should, Taylor explained with a touch of agitation in his voice, that he wished one of those country stars would get around to recording this song some day. When someone in the audience yelled out ‘you should record it’, Taylor said, ‘I already did.’ Poignant moments like this just made you cry and laugh with Taylor for what could have been.

The end of the night came too soon. The openers who won the McKinney Mash had dazzled the audience. The band was in fine tune. Taylor was playing lead guitar like he had never done anything but play lead guitar. He was magical on the sunburst and the black Taylor guitars. They left the stage and went to backstage until Clay brought out the stool and the black guitar. Taylor appears in a ‘direct marketing’ T-shirt and strums the opening notes to The Fall. Beautifully sung while accompanying himself on the guitar, Taylor ended the show making everyone feel in McKinney, Texas like he was sitting on a stool in their Texas living rooms. The town is idylic; the venue has perfect sound and lighting; the talent there is plentiful. All the makings for a perfect night. Everything went right. Taylor beamed from the first ‘hello’ to the last CD was signed. Maybe perfect could happen again on another night. If it happens, hope that you are there. The fact that it did happen makes all who were there glad they made the trip.

40 Comments Post a comment
  1. Tish #

    You captured the night, it was definitely a night to remember.

    September 23, 2011
    • Louise #

      Thanks, Tish. Two great nights in Texas and this one was the icing on the cake. Good to see you and Dean. Hope to see Taylor and you again soon.

      September 23, 2011
  2. Tammy k #

    very very nice! thank you for the recap and the photos!

    September 23, 2011
    • Louise #

      Thank you Tammy. I appreciate your comments on both of the blogs!

      September 23, 2011
  3. Mac #

    Perfect, perfect, perfect! You made me feel like I was there!

    September 23, 2011
    • Louise #

      Thank you. The night could not have gone better. Hope he continues to tour when the new CD comes out!

      September 23, 2011
  4. juliegr #

    Kudos, Louise!

    September 23, 2011
    • Louise #

      Thanks, Julie. Taylor topped even himself!

      September 23, 2011
  5. MN Sue #

    Classic, thought provoking, GORGEOUS!
    Thank you so much, Louise

    September 23, 2011
    • Louise #

      Thank you, Sue. The camera captures what it’s given and that night we certainly got a lot! I’m so glad I got to go!

      September 23, 2011
  6. Margaret #

    Wonderful recap and some of your most beautiful, perfect photos ever! Thank you!!

    September 23, 2011
    • Louise #

      Thank you so much Margaret. The show was inspiring.

      September 23, 2011
  7. Medolark #

    It sounds like Taylor & The Band out performed themselves but I’ve noticed that they just keep getting better & better. Your recaps & pics are also. Thanks so much for sharing with those of us who would loved to have been there too. Ü

    September 23, 2011
    • Louise #

      Thank you! My pleasure. I so agree about the band and Taylor bringing their A game every time and turning it into their A+ game for us.

      September 23, 2011
  8. Blues Rider #

    What a wonderful recap of what is described as an awesome show. Kudos to describing the night with this wonderful photo essay. I am choosing both this post and the recent Keb’ Mo’ post as the epitome of blogging; the writing and the photos. Your camera work is exceptional! Keep up the great work! Wonderful job OnTap.

    September 23, 2011
    • Louise #

      Thank you. So nice of you to read and comment. It was a magical evening for everyone!

      September 23, 2011
  9. Judy #

    Louise, I applaud you for your commentary and your fantastic photos!! Even in the 3rd row we could see the sweat and spit flying!!
    Agree, Agree, Agree….with every word you wrote. The show was over the top. Loved Taylor bantering with the audience. He certainly was in a fun mood! Thank you so much for the capture of a most magical night.

    September 23, 2011
    • Louise #

      Yhanks, Judy. Agree with all you’ve said about the show, too. Hope to see you again soon!

      September 23, 2011
  10. Linda T #

    Fabulous. Just fabulous. In every way. Thank you!

    September 23, 2011
    • Louise #

      Thanks so much Linda. It was just as you described: fabulous.

      September 23, 2011
  11. Robin #

    Thanks so much for this recap, Louise. I felt like I was sitting in the second row again seeing the concert. You have so eloquently described the concert as we fans all saw it. Fabulous concert! Fabulous Article!!! Thanks again Louise.

    September 23, 2011
    • Louise #

      Hi Robin. It was good to see you again at McKinney. What a great night we had! Hope to see you again soon.

      September 23, 2011
  12. Dee #

    great job – great photos!

    September 23, 2011
    • Louise #

      Thank you for reading and commenting, Dee.

      September 23, 2011
  13. jonibug #

    Louise, your photos are always great but these were stunningly special…much as the show obviously was. I do hope history repeats itself when I’m right in front of the mic! 😉

    September 23, 2011
    • ontapblog #

      Thanks, Joanie. It will happen……..sooner rather than later! Have a great time at your next show!

      September 23, 2011
  14. Louise, as always your pictures are breath taking. And your recap was beautifully written. This night was beyond special, magical and I did not want it to end, nor fade from my memory. With your help it is just as clear and true as it was that night.

    September 23, 2011
    • Louise #

      Thanks, Legacy. I’m so glad we got to see this together. It was a treat for sure.

      September 23, 2011
  15. Debbie Troxell #

    Louise, this is yet another beautiful & magical post. It sounds like it was a fabulous night.

    Beautiful pictures, as always!

    Thanks for always making us feel like we were there with you! Wish we were.

    September 23, 2011
  16. Pattie #

    Thanks Louise…beautiful captures – always so perfect – makes me feel like I was there too…

    September 23, 2011
  17. RagsQueen #

    There was just something inexplicably magical about that McKinney show! Glad we were there to see it!

    September 25, 2011
    • Louise #

      I have to agree! Great all around show!

      September 26, 2011
  18. Thanks for this wonderful review of Taylor’s concert. Love the photos too, as always.

    September 25, 2011
    • Louise #

      Thanks Barb. Glad you enjoyed the blog and photos. It was a great night and I missed seeing you. Until the next adventure!

      September 26, 2011
  19. Thank you, Louise, for your time and talent. What joy you bring to the experience!

    September 27, 2011
    • Louise #

      Thanks, Margaret. My pleasure!

      September 29, 2011
  20. Jonnelle #

    Best Taylor show ever. He has progressed so much. He could play lead anywhere. Total graciousness all the way to the last item he signed after the show. I am sure he made some new fans that night. Very,very special night for us all. Fabulous pictures as usual. I hope he comes back to Texas again very soon.

    September 28, 2011
    • Louise #

      I totally agree about Taylor being able to do anything. It was a great setting, show and experience. Thanks for reading and commenting!

      September 29, 2011
  21. Joyce #

    Thank you so much, Louise. You totally captured the feel of the evening — I wavered back and forth about going and didn’t decide to go until the last moment — I’m soooooo glad I did.

    October 1, 2011
  22. Louise #

    Just two short weeks ago we were there. How time flies. This show was so memorable. I think Taylor was happy and made those there happy, too. Can’t ask for more than what we saw at the McKinney. Hope this starts a string of shows there. I love that town, too.

    October 1, 2011

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