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Taylor Hicks: The Year in Photographs:: 2012

© 2013 OnTapBlog All Rights Reserved

The year that began quietly in Nashville gained momentum in Los Angeles and then erupted on the Las Vegas world stage.  He sang for thousands at the convention center, for hundreds in the theaters and for guests in the juke joint at home.  His face was on television, on magazine covers, in the airport, on billboards, on smartphones, in twitpics and even……..even right here.

The Year in Photographs offers a wistful look back at a few of the events, large and small, some of the places, near and far, and many of the musicians that brought pleasure to fans of American Idol winner Taylor Hicks in 2012.

US-VOTE-2012-REPUBLICAN CONVENTION
Photo by Robyn Beck for AFP/Getty Images

They were swaying in their seats and then dancing on the floor of the Tampa Bay Convention Center when Taylor Hicks pulled out his harmonica for a blazing rendition of “Taking It to the Streets” at the Republican National Convention in August. It was a high profile performance by an entertainer whose vote count is legendary among candidates of every party.

BJU_6284
Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

They left their seats and danced by the stage when Taylor pulled out his harmonica at the Bijou Theatre in September. The young boys and girls boogied all concert long, encouraged by high fives from Hicks to his “Solid Gold dancers”.

BJU_6270
………………Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

FOX's American Idol Season 11 Top 7 With Save To 6 Live Elimination Show
Photo by FOX via Getty Images

The news came in April when Taylor stood from his seat in the American Idol audience to announce that he would headline a resident show at Bally’s Las Vegas during the summer of 2012. The first Idol to garner a Vegas residency, Taylor earned rave reviews for his energetic take on country soul and roadhouse blues. The residency has now been extended through November 2013 with general admission and VIP tickets available here.

Asked by reporter Shirley Halperin to comment on American Idol and the show’s judges, Taylor replied that he would likely have bonded with Steven Tyler had the Aerosmith frontman been seated on the Season 5 panel. Steven and Taylor got chummy for this photograph at the April American Idol results show.

end of year blogDSC_1431_025
Photo by Holley Dey for OnTapBlog

They met at a 2011 Red Cross benefit and discovered shared tastes in music. Jamie McLean subsequently joined the Taylor Hicks band for a show in New York City; Taylor began incorporating a Jamie McLean original, “Country Living”, into his live shows. When the Jamie McLean Band organized a January 2012 live CD/DVD recording of their music at Gibson Guitar in New York, Taylor Hicks was invited to join the session. The Idol contributed on two tracks – “Country Living” and “Midnight Rider”. The Live at Gibson CD is now available for preview and purchase here. The Live at Gibson DVD is in preparation and will be released in 2013.

Taylor
Photo by Mark Dershowitz for HeadyShots

Photographer Mark Dershowitz captured the above photo at the January recording session. A full gallery of photographs from the Gibson Guitar session is available on Mark’s site here.

If you look carefully, you’ll find a photograph of bass player Ben Mars’ amplifier in the gallery. Look closer still and you’ll see a sticker on that amp that says “WWHD” (What would Hess do?). Andy Hess is one of Ben’s heroes. Mark remembers that Ben was very excited to learn that Hess was in the audience that January night.

AJB_2434 - Version 2
Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

The friendship that began in Birmingham and was cemented in New York traveled west for the summer, as Jamie McLean and drummer Brian Griffin joined Taylor Hicks at Bally’s Las Vegas for the summer. Saxophonist Brian Gallagher, percussion player Joe Bergeron, bassist Mark Vanderpoel, and longtime keys player/musical director Brian Less completed the band.

The summer setlist included selections from Taylor’s 2009 album The Distance, classic rock and soul tunes, as well as selected songs from the Idol’s tenure on that television show. The consensus summer favorite was a unique, soulful rendition of “In the Ghetto” that left them wanting more.

LUznanskiJamieMcL2
Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

gips place 3
Photo by Cindi McGee for GipsPlace

During his stint on American Idol, down-home southern boy Taylor Hicks hankered after some hometown barbeque. Birmingham radio hosts Rick and Bubba made sure that a shipment was delivered to Idol headquarters. As of fall 2012, Taylor can make that shipment himself. Hicks is now a partner in Birmingham area restaurant Saw’s Juke Joint, a casual eatery that has won local acclaim for its tender and tasty barbeque.

On select nights, they play the blues at Saw’s Juke Joint, well, because that makes them happy. When he’s in town, you may find Taylor sitting in with the band. Above, he is photographed with musicians Earl Williams and Gip Gipson at Saw’s.

gips place 2
Photo by Cindi McGee for GipsPlace

Taylor Hicks had never met Gip Gipson before the December 2012 night that this photo was snapped; he’d heard plenty about him, though. Musician Earl Williams told Taylor that he got his start at Gip’s Place, a backyard set-up where a Saturday night blues party has been held since 1952. Earl asked Gip to come by Saw’s; music happened. Looks like Gip may be inviting Taylor to that next Saturday night event. Read more about Gip Gipson here.

LUznanskiTH2012YIP
Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

The year began in Nashville where Taylor took up residency to work on a new country soul album, due for release in 2013. Working with a number of talented writers including Jason Deere, Victoria Shaw, Gary Burr and more, he began to put together a list of candidate songs for the new album. Two of those are regularly incorporated into his live performance sets. “Teach Me to Dance”, co-written by Victoria Shaw, and “Country Living”, written by Jamie McLean are already fan favorites. Taylor’s performance of “Teach Me to Dance” was featured in a May interview on CMT Insider, as well as on local Nashville program, Words and Music.

19th Annual Race To Erase MS - Inside
Photo by Mark Davis for Getty Images

Taylor Hicks is photographed here with American Idol winner David Cook and Cook’s band at the Race to Erase MS event in May. Taylor was involved with a number of charitable organizations during 2012, including Special Olympics, Toys for Tots, Wounded Warrior Project, and Make a Wish for Gabriella. Taylor’s fans followed his lead, working together to earn contributions to the Make a Wish Foundation and the Wounded Warrior Project.

Taylor Hicks was a builder in 2012. He laid the groundwork to extend his residency in The Indigo at Bally’s Vegas, the first residency secured by an American Idol. He made preparations for a new country soul album, to be released in 2013. He was intimately involved with and a contributor to social and charitable events in Las Vegas and beyond. 2013 will be a remarkable year when the result of that hard work is realized.

BONUS: The following live performance photographs of singer-songwriter Taylor Hicks were captured in Las Vegas and at other concert venues during 2012 by photographer Louise Uznanski.

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapblog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapblog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapblog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapblog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

Photo by Louise Uznanski for OnTapBlog

 

66 Comments Post a comment
  1. Gina #

    Omg I reeeeaallllllly need him on a colander again this year lol good job lou as usual

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thanks, Gina. You will see for yourself what Taylor is like in Vegas when you go. Hoping for a great 2013 for you. Happy New Year!

      January 1, 2013
  2. bluesmusic60 #

    Unbelievable, just unbelievable. Great summation of Taylor’s eventful year, including some things I had actually forgotten about. And the pictures just go beyond words and capture Taylor’s great passion for performing in a way that no others could. Thanks so much for sharing your talents with us. Now I think I’m going to go back and look at that last picture for a good, long time.

    January 1, 2013
    • Linda T #

      Woops, I accidentally used my twitter handle here…but you know who I am!

      January 1, 2013
      • ontapblog #

        It’s okay. We appreciate all of your comments, names, handles and just generally everything!

        January 1, 2013
  3. Nice way to start the New Year! Thanks.

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thank you, Julie. Happy New Year, indeed! Looking forward to seeing ‘more’ of Taylor in 2013.

      January 1, 2013
  4. ParleyBlue/Henry #

    Great account of last year and the pictures are just outstanding. Blew me away!

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thanks so much. Happy New Year! 2013 has lots in store for us all. Can’t wait.

      January 1, 2013
  5. Thanks for sharing your amazing photos & insights — not just of Taylor, but also of other talented musicians. This musical journey is a spiritual one of joy & love & all the things that make the world go around. 🙂

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Cheryl, Thank you for commenting. Taylor’s year gave us so much pleasure and the icing on the cake this year was highlighting talented musicians who inspire us with their joy and hope. Happy New Year.

      January 1, 2013
  6. TMW - Bella313 #

    Just what I needed today!!!! Amazing, amazing photographs. Thank you!!

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Happy New Year, TMW and thanks! Here’s hoping there is a continuation next year to top this year!

      January 1, 2013
  7. MN Sue #

    What a labor of love! Great for bookmarking. Louise, your photos are stunning, some even breathtaking.

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Happy New Year, Sue! Our pleasure to bring the best of Taylor to the fans who love and support him. Looking forward to even more, even better, Taylor Hicks!

      January 1, 2013
  8. Beautiful

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thanks, Reba! Happy New Year to you and yours.

      January 1, 2013
  9. TF72 #

    The feeling captured in these excellent photos depicts just why we want to enjoy Taylor’s performances over and over again.

    January 1, 2013
  10. Thanks!! Nice pics!!! June bug

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thank you, June and Happy New Year to you! Glad you enjoy the photos. Hopefully we will all be able to have more to remember about Taylor Hicks in 2013.

      January 1, 2013
  11. i love your layout Taylor it looks like you have a good year.bye the way today is my birthday love you.

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Well, happy birthday to you, Angela! Thanks for commenting and we hope you have a wonderful new year!

      January 1, 2013
      • same too you Taylor i will keep in touch god bless

        January 1, 2013
  12. Linda T #

    Oooh ack, so sorry to screw up the comments thread here but when I used the wrong name my previous comment disappeared. Let me restate it as best I can. Fantastic post that gives a great overview of Taylor’s busy year. I had even forgotten about some of these events! The pictures are stunning as always and are the best I’ve ever seen at revealing Taylor’s passion and energy. Thanks again for sharing your gift. Now on to looking at that last photo for a good…long…time…

    PS — you can delete the post labeled “bluesmusic60” if you like, and sorry about the duplication. Will be more careful next time.

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      THanks, Linda. We’d know you no matter what. So happy to be able to capture a little of what Taylor represents in both photos and words. On to 2013. Happy New Year!!

      January 1, 2013
  13. Awesome recap and breathtaking pictures! Thanks. : ) Can’t wait to see what happens next.

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thanks, Peg. We are anxious to see what lies ahead in addition to the residency in Vegas. New CD? We hope, we hope.

      January 1, 2013
  14. Great stuff! Thank you so much!

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thanks and Happy New Year of Taylor!

      January 1, 2013
  15. Jenni Jac #

    Thanks for the recap and great pix! Vegas was the big story of the year, but this reminded us of all the other things Taylor did in 2012.

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Happy New Year, Jenni. Thanks for the comments. Vegas did take the spotlight in 2012 but we feel in 2013 there will be more to share from all over.

      January 1, 2013
  16. Judy Morton #

    What a nice way to begin 2013!! The article and the photos are top notch…loved everything. Really like the “Elvis” look in pic #7. You do fantastic work, Louise. Are you going to Vegas in 2013? Hope to meet up with you.

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Happy New Year, Judy and thanks! Hoping for a great year in 2013 in Vegas and beyond!

      January 1, 2013
  17. azure #

    Thanks, Louise, to you and Holley for all of your beautiful work throughout the year. Taylor is blessed to have such wonderful scribes as the two of you. Happy New Year!

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thank you so much. Glad we have a year’s worth of inspiration from Taylor! Happy New Year to you, too!

      January 1, 2013
  18. jonibug #

    Well, well, well! This was a delightful New Year’s Day treat! Such fantastic photos from you two gals and others. It was quite a year, for sure, and I hope this one will be as good or BETTER…..the BETTER being a new CD and maybe some shows around the country when he’s on break from Vegas! I’ll settle for a new CD though! 😉 Thanks for this “On Tap”….love it!

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thanks, jonibug, and a happy, prosperous new year to you! That CD and a few shows here and there would make 2013 BETTER, if that was possible!

      January 1, 2013
  19. tishtx #

    Awesome blog as always!! I’m really, really loving the picture of Taylor and Gip…..2 soul/bluesmen 🙂

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thank you, Tish! And Happy New Year. The photos of Taylor with his mentors is really exciting to see. Thanks again.

      January 1, 2013
  20. Laura #

    Was at The Bijou and saw those little Solid Gold Dancers. So cute. Great show!

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      The Solid Gold Dancers added a new dimension to the show. Taylor might have taken some tips from them for his Vegas show!

      January 1, 2013
  21. caroljean #

    Great photos of a great guy. Thanks y’all appreciate all you do !

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      We agree; Taylor is a great guy and very photogenic! Thanks for reading and have a Happy New Year. Hope it’s filled with lots of Taylor moments.

      January 1, 2013
  22. Gr8fulheart #

    As Always: Loving all the pics; along with the write up. A nice way to wind-down the day! Looking forward to more greatness in ‘2013’ ♥

    January 1, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thanks G8H. We love that line ‘looking forward to more greatness in 2013. Taylor has many opportunities to make this a great year. A CD. 1 year in Vegas and other charitable duties. It’s going to be a great new year.

      January 1, 2013
  23. Maryqtpi #

    Awesome pics! Totally agree, calendar worthy! Thanks for sharing, great captures!

    January 2, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thanks, Mary. We’re glad you’re enjoying the moments from 2012. Happy New Year!

      January 2, 2013
  24. Tammy K #

    Absolutely wonderful recap! Pictures are fantastic (as always)!!!!! Thank you!!!!

    January 2, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thank you Tammy and Happy New Year. 2012 was a great year for memories and we’re sure with Taylor in Vegas for all of 2013, his year and ours is going to be awesome!

      January 2, 2013
  25. Vicky @vjordan123 #

    Couldn’t keep my eyes open last night about a paragraph in so lets see what I remember. lol … Oh I just LOVE these pictures! They are so beautiful! Thank you so much. And Yes they are right. They capture his passion. All that passion I’m sure that’s kinda hard to do, lol, but you do GREAT! A wonderful new year’s day treat as we do not get to see much of Taylor on the web these days. 😦 But it’s ok cause he’s wonderful and represents everything good on this earth, imo. lol #candonowrong 🙂 I am deep down truely and honestly ECSTATIC for him and his Vegas gig & #2013. I think it’s so cool, as I am a big Elvis fan too. He keeps talkin bout Elvis, I’d love to hear him do more of his songs. 🙂 I am hopefull to see him at a casino near here in 2013, but won’t expect it. I’ve looked at his Bally’s schedule, and the only open times are in July,(the middle of summer) and around his birthday so i just don’t know. lol CD CD CD Yeah Baby! Now that’s one I’m really hoping to expect! haha C.A.N.N.O.T. ,,, let me say that again, CANNOT wait for it!!! 🙂 Last year at this time he said it was commin out…soooo you know we’re right at about, actually just past droooooolin over that one. 🙂 🙂 :)p Just want to comment on his passion one more time…As much passion he has for music and performing, I have for him getting to preform it forever and ever. ❤ OK last but certainly not least … If you are a friend or even an acquaintance of our Mr. Taylor Hicks would you PRETTY PLEASE ask him if he still has plans for Evansville, IN, and maybe a few little deets? You remember right, when he talked about it twice in a live web chat? Never hurts to ask right? Thanks again for these pictures and everything you do. Mcmuch love from Indiana. Vicky

    January 2, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Happy New Year, Vicky. And, thank you for your reply about Taylor’s passion for music. We agree. He is very focused on his performances and hopefully that shows in the photos. We wish he could make it to all of the casinos in the US, sort of a traveling Vegas show but we’ll have to wait and see about that. Only Bally’s and Taylor know what will happen and where. Thanks again!

      January 2, 2013
      • Vicky @vjordan123 #

        Thanks, and you are so welcome! Lookin at these pictures again lol 🙂 The last two … Wow… and the last one looks like it could be from What’s Right Is Right. 🙂 my fave …

        January 4, 2013
  26. timewarpnut #

    I thoroughly enjoyed your article and breathtaking photos of Taylor! Thank you for keeping the faith and spreading the good word about this man and his awesome talent! 🙂

    January 2, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thanks for reading, timewarpnut! It’s a pleasure to support real talent and good people. Looking forward to plenty of good news and good photo ops in 2013! Thanks again.

      January 2, 2013
  27. Connie Simpson #

    Thanks Louise for a beautiful summation of Taylor’s work of 2012 and for the wonderful pictures. We are so fortunate to be the recipients of the talents you and Holly are willing to share with us all year long. Can’t wait to see what 2013 brings in our journey with Mr. Hicks. I hope the best for you and your family in the coming year.

    January 2, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thank you so much, Connie. It was a great year of firsts for Taylor. 2013 looks to be even better and we hope to be along for the ride. Happy New Year to you and yours, Connie. Thanks again! See you on the road!

      January 2, 2013
  28. Pattiebelle #

    These are just beautiful, as usual…such a gorgeous subject and you do him justice!!!

    January 2, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thanks, Pattie! And Happy New Year. Taylor is the most photogenic subject and is difficult to catch sometimes in a quiet moment. We’re so glad you are enjoying the recap. Hoping in 2013 there will be lots of memories for us all.

      January 3, 2013
  29. Thank you so much for these beautiful pics….You not only capture the amazing looks of the man but all of the emotion he feels…The look in his eyes….Here’s to an exciting Taylor filled 2013!! Happy New Year!

    January 2, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Happy New Year, Marcie. Taylor is very focused and emotional during many of his songs. The crazier moments are harder to capture mainly because we’re just watching him let loose. Hoping you get to see him in Vegas or another casino in 2013. You’ll just love it!

      January 3, 2013
  30. Debbie Troxell #

    Louise, as usual, an amazing job of capturing a great year of Taylor. Your pictures are beautiful.

    Your Husband is also great, and so is Holley.

    Thank you for all the beautiful pictures and a recap of 2012. I’m sure it will be a great year for Taylor. I’m so ready to see Taylor again! It’s been a long time. Congratulations, Taylor. All the best in 2013!

    Happy New Year! Thank you for all you do for the fans!

    January 2, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thank you Debbie. Happy New Year to you and your family of fans. Our pleasure to be able to see Taylor together this year. The coming year brings a lot of entertainment from Taylor so I hope we can get to see him again and/or hear that great new music CD.

      January 3, 2013
  31. Pat Pietrowski #

    What a great pictoral recap of Taylor’s 2012 journey…thanks for all that you do for Taylor and for his fans

    January 2, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      Thanks, Pat. 2012 was a journey; so many firsts for Taylor and for us. We’re glad you came along for the ride with us and we hope to be able to continue the journey wherever it takes us in 2013. Happy New Year!

      January 3, 2013
  32. 🙂 Really enjoyed the post! So nice to catch up on Taylor’s doings and look at the fabulous pictures. Didn’t have the chance to see him in 2012 unfortunately. Hope our paths cross in 2013!

    January 3, 2013
    • ontapblog #

      We hope so, too Margaret! Happy New Year and thanks for reading and commenting. There is a whole year ahead to plan but it would be nice if Taylor visited some casinos outside of Vegas for fans old and new! Thanks again.

      January 3, 2013

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