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Taylor Hicks Fans Taying it Forward One Soul At A Time

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Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Inspired by Taylor Hicks...An Interview with Taylor Hicks

Happy New Year, Soul Patrol!!! In the spirit of the holiday season, you have all joined us as we reminisced 2007. On behalf of all Taylor's Angels, I want to thank each of you for enjoying our thoughts, our guests' thoughts, and for supporting us in our cause to Tay-It-Forward.

Less than a year ago we formed only because we were fans of Taylor Hicks and we wanted to help one person join his official website. To say that that one act of kindness mushroomed into something none of us ever imagined would be an understatement. With your help, and ONLY with your help, we all sent over 400 people who could not afford to go to Taylor's concerts, we have given back to our troops, we have discovered and supported new charities, and, most recently, we all came together to help out one of our favorite promoters of Taylor's show when he and his family lost everything. When I look back on 2007, the profound generosity of so many people who I only know through my computer just floors me. And when I remember that all of this came about for one reason: because we all share respect, admiration, and love for the music of Taylor Hicks.

Because of our belief in his music, we have each been inspired to come together and to do so much good work. We have been inspired to travel places we might not have otherwise visited and to become friends with people on the other side of your state, your country, our globe.

This very day one year ago, I didn't know the significance that 2007 would have for me. I had no idea there would be a second Birmingham show, much less that it would be the show that made 2500 people cry during Taylor's encore song and that it would be the last one of a week of Taylor shows that I'd share with a wonderful woman from Canada who I had never met until then. I also had no inkling that I would be flying next to and staring in awe at the magnificent Mt. Hood as my plane was descending into Portland; or that I would visit the beautiful venue formerly known as Woodstock in the breathtaking range of the Catskills; hadn't dreamed I'd learn how to play video poker in Vicksburg or that I would even visit the battleground there alone with a fabulous woman I had just met the night before, and I certainly didn't think that I would be able to hug for the first time someone I was about to grow close to over the internet and the phone; didn't have a clue some awesome chick from California would rope me into a killer game of "Name That Tune" somewhere and everywhere between Biloxi and New Orleans; I had never heard of a "HOB" but I was in for a real treat at the one in New Orleans. And Taylor's Angels wasn't even a twinkle in anyone's eyes. Not only did I have no idea what was in store for me, but, every bit of it was inspired and driven by an appreciation of man and his music. Slowly but certainly, going to a new location became more than just catching Taylor in concert, it has become a chance to see a different part of our big and wonderful world, and, most importantly, a time to reconnect with my new friends and to embrace even newer ones. That is the true spirit I take with me when I go to a new city to see one of Taylor's shows. The concert is the icing on the cake.

So, what do I resolve to do (or not do) in 2008? I don't know. I wish I could have 2007 again. That much I do know. But, as the saying goes, I will not cry because it is over, but I will smile because it happened.

With so many surprises that last year held for me, I hesitate to even try to make any New Year's resolutions for 2008. I don't want to be so rigid that I don't have room for more surprises. None of us knows what 2008 holds for us, but my wish to each of you is that your year is as full of the gifts, happy times, and new friendships as mine was last year. My committment to each of you and to myself is to continue helping all of you spread the goodwill that we all accomplished in 2007.


So, instead of coming up with a list of resolutions, I will make a committment. A committment to the Soul Patrol, on behalf of the man who inspired me in so many ways. And I can't think of a better way to begin that commitment than with some words from Taylor himself. So, in appreciation to each of you for the good work that you did last year through Taylor's Angels, we would like to help you start the year off right and re-committing yourself to the Soul Patrol by bringing to each of you an interview we had with Taylor Hicks, the man and the reason we have all been inspired in so many ways. We would also like to share with you some exclusive and never-before seen pictures of Taylor taken by our own Tina-- I think you'll find them as fabulous as we do. Enjoy the interview and pictures and have a fabulous New Year!!! I hope to see each of you in 2008-- I just don't know where yet!

TA: Who is your hero living or dead? What is it about his person that makes them your hero?

Taylor Hicks: I have many heros. Ray Charles is the first that comes to mind. He was definitely my biggest musical inspiration growing up. Ray Charles defined rhythm & blues, soul, and authentic rock 'n' roll. I respected the genius.

TA: What else about him aside from his music, has been an inspiration and motivated you to keep on with your ultimate life goal.

Taylor Hicks: His drive. With so many hardships in his life it would have been easy to give up but instead he pushed himself to do more and achieved greatness!

TA: Taylor , what do you consider to be your greatest strength, and what is the source of the strength of your character?

Taylor Hicks: Perseverance and Self Confidence. You have to expect things of yourself before you can do them. Confidence comes with proper preparation; everything else is beyond your control. I once heard that a successful person is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks that others throw at him or her. I definitely apply that to my own life and use every experience as a learning opportunity.


TA: It is perhaps three important attributes personified in you that have endeared you to your fans. In your book, Heart Full of Soul, you elaborate in detail on two of these including your passion for music and your perseverance against all odds. However, the third attribute that you consistently display is one of a caring and compassionate spirit combined with humility. Can you elaborate on these qualities and the experiences in your life that have helped shape your views and actions, which in turn has touched so many, particularly children and those less fortunate, in immeasurable ways.

Taylor Hicks: Being humble is so important. It is so easy to loose sight of the things that got you to where you are. I strive on staying grounded and not get “blinded by the light”. You also have to be selfless in your actions. I believe that actions speak louder than words. Give and you shall receive.

TA: If you had children, what would be the most important things you would want to instill in them?

Taylor Hicks: I would tell them to always be giving, loving, kind, and most importantly respectful. And always say yes when their parents ask them to do something!

TA: Do you have a favorite or daily mantra? If so, what is it, when did you adopt it and what does it mean to you?

Taylor Hicks: I don’t have a mantra, however, every morning I start my day with breakfast. To me, breakfast is the most important meal of the day, it provides the energy I need to start my day off right!

Written and Published by Leslie Mozingo
All photos taken by Tina Shaddix

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Annie said...

Great article, Leslie. So much to think about as the New Year is here now. Thank you, Taylor's Angels, for the membership to HQ. Thank you, Tina, for your exceptional photography. Your photos are among my very favourites. And thank you , Leslie, for helping my dream to come true. God bless you, and MAY THINGS BE GREAT IN 2008!

JaxNative said...

Happy New Year Taylor's Angels!

Great interview.. some of the best questions I have ever heard him asked.

I love this response "I once heard that a successful person is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks that others throw at him or her." Bless him .. we all know there have been more than a few lobbed in his direction.

Beautiful pictures :o)

I wish you all the best in 2008

RagsQueen said...

What a great way to start 2008 - an exclusive interview with Taylor that's not the usual fluff and dribble! Such insightful questions and answers about a musician that has certainly brought together strangers in strange cities for a night of joy and merriment as we have forged together new friendships with others who also enjoy his music. Somewhat the pied piper, I'd say! For Taylor and all his fans, may 2008 exceed your dreams and expectations and may we meet again soon to share our love for his music! SOUL PATROL! Happy New Year!

DidNotExpectThat said...

I totally agree with Jaxnative that this quote should go down as one of the most important lessons of life that Taylor has ever given to us.

"I once heard that a successful person is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks that others throw at him or her."

In other interviews, Taylor has talked much about his hardships, but this quote illustrates beautifully how he built a firm foundation for success!

Thanks, Taylor, for giving such an insightful interview!

Anonymous said...

Great work, Leslie.....another year of Taylor....Angels keep up a great tribute.......

Anonymous said...


#2 Leslie, great blog. Your ability to distill and synthesize what truly was a fantastic 2007 has me looking forward to the coming year with great expectation. 2008 will be great!

#3 Tina, your pictures are captivating. Thank you so much for sharing your art, skill, and talent with the rest of the Soul Patrol.

I am so proud to be a member of the Soul Patrol, due largely to your selflessness and generosity of spirit. Through your work with TA you exemplify the best of what fans/artist's patrons hope to become.

"Beautiful music is the art of the prophets that can calm the agitations of the soul; it is one of the most magnificent and delightful presents God has given us” - Martin Luther, theologian


KarinP said...

Leslie, I can't think of a better way to start a New Year. I agree with PTD - the new LOGO is very nice and perhaps the entire queue for 2008 can be taken from the LOGO - BELIEVE!

As we all open the door labelled 2008, we may stand in the doorway and gaze down the hallway but to find out what lies ahead, it is necessary for us to put one foot in front of the other "believing" that the year will bring us "hope" for many new beginnings!

A very insightful interview and as always, I truly appreciate Tina's talent in capturing the many special moments of Taylor!

belle said...

Fantastic article! I hope you are able to more great things this year but I am positive you will. :)

Great pictures too!

I love how smart and mature Taylor is. Makes you love him even more. I don't know even what more is when you've given most. Oh well!

Happy New Year to you!

yayamiss said...

Taylor is a great performer and entertainer. He is also a truly kind and generous person to his fans. Thanks Leslie for this great article and Happy New Year to all of Taylor's Angels! Can't wait for what is to come in 2008. I have so many great memories of 2007 with Tay. Can't wait for the new DVD Whomp at the Warfield - any one have any idea of a release date?

See all of you on the road following our Silver Fox!

tishlp said...

I don't know what to say, everyone else took my thoughts, LOL. Seriously that was a beautifully written article and the interview was inspiring. I think you captured the essence of Taylor Hicks, the man.

Gypsee said...

GREAT questions and answers! I particularly like the one about kids...very insightful on both the interviewer and the subject!