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Thursday, May 15, 2008

The Official "Taylor Hicks Day" Inspires Stories from the Soul Patrol

For over a year now, Taylor's Angels has brought you many stories of inspiration and hope that have been linked to Taylor Hicks in some way. Heartwarming stories about how Taylor has positively impacted the quality of life for many of us are abundant. Some share that they are enjoying a greater appreciation for music, but many run deeper and are more profound in their effects on the lives of others. Still other stories have highlighted Taylor's involvement in charitable giving and how those efforts have impacted communities across the country.

We thought it would be great to hear from the you, Taylor's dedicated fans, as to how Taylor has positively impacted your life, so we are sponsoring a contest and the winner will ultimately be decided by Taylor's fan base, the Soul Patrol!

In what areas have you received the most inspiration from Taylor and how has that inspiration affected your daily life? What have you seen or heard Taylor do that has affected you in a positive way? Have you been inspired to give back to your community as Taylor is doing by supporting charities across the country? Have you heard a heartwarming story from the Soul Patrol?

We encourage you to answer any of the questions above or simply share your special story with the rest of the Soul Patrol and become an inspiration to others, just as Taylor has been to us all. Please post your story in the comment section by Wednesday, May 21. After that time the comments will be cut off and we will post a poll where the Soul Patrol can vote for their favorite story. The person whose story gets the most votes wins a set of 5 Taylor Hicks inspired notecards. There are less than 10 sets in existence LaurenSilk gave one of the sets to Taylor in Myrtle Beach last year! As a bonus, one of the cards in this set is signed by Taylor!

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If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to email us at

We encourage everyone to share their special story get the message out to everyone that one voice can change lives!
Grease is the word!

Taylor Hicks on the Today Show!

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RagsQueen said...

Great idea! We've come a long way Taylor in such a short time! It's all good, and there are lots of great stories out there. And those note cards - they are a true collector's delight!

tygrlillie said...

Many years ago, I was in avery bad way. I was broke, pregnant, detitute, and alone - and hurting with an anguish that can't even be expressed properly in words. I don't think that this story is too different than anyone else's who has experianced heartache. I just pulled myself up by my bootstraps, and well, kept on keeping on. The difference for me was along the way, I had lost what remained of my shredded heart. Just put it in ice where nothing could get to it any more.
For five long years, my heart lived in its snowy home while I worked on myself, getting back into college, learning how to drive, raising my baby daughter as best I could. Problem was, I couldn't feel any more. At first, I didn't want to. It really hurt like fire to try, but slowly the things that meant so much to me...well, they didn't matter either. My mainstays - reading, writing, music, plays - they all faded into nothingness. I lost who I was. Then...along came this somewhat dorky guy with a sweet, gentle heart, a very attractive outward appearance, and a voice made for pure sin. That guy was Taylor Hicks.
I had never watched American Idol. Just never caught my attention. I think it was because during the five years it was on, I was iced up, but it just might be that with school and my kid - I didn't much care. But my professor offered extra credit if we watched either Idol or Nashville Star and wrote about who we thought would win. As I spent practically all my free time with an Idol addict, my choice to watch with her was essentially a no-brainer.
I picked Tay out from his audition. Clinially, at first - he has the chops to pull this rabbit out of his hat, and was just different from the rest of the competition to stand out, but then - this amazing thing began to happen. I began to cheer him on every week, looking forward to what he'd do next. I began to enjoy some of the others as well, and began to write again.
During the Birthday week, I laughed s much tearsfell from my eyes, the first tears I had shed in five, long years. It was then that I knew this man had made an enormous impact in my life, though he never would know.
Even now, two years later, Taylor has inspired me to not only exist through life, but to actually live it. I started small - travelling to Nashville - an hour's drive away - to see him during the Idol tour, got on the boards made some truly amazing friends I can't imagine life without now, and met his band from back home, LiMBO (and if there was any ice remaining at that point, those five sweet men sure melted that in a hurry, making me feel loved probably for the first time in my life), devoured stories about him and as I learned about one Taylor Hicks, I learned even more about myself. I learned about being brave, to fight for what I want and need in my life even if everybody around me thinks that it's crazy or breathe real air and to live real life, on my terms.
You know, five years before that January Tay stutted into my life, I thought I would never be free of the hell I had seen. I was returning to a world where I knew I wouldn't be loved or appreciated, coming from an abusive place where I was hurt so bad, I didn't care about my future or what it held for me. Now, I am about two semesters away from having my college degree - something I was told I could never do I don't know how many times. I am still in environmental hell, but know that in a relatively short amount of time, I will be living my American Dream, in a home of my own, in a job I love, with my kid who is a joy like nothing else, in a place I can call home - somewhere near Birmingham, Alabama where I felt like I was home the second I set foot there last March and again in July and can get regular doses of LiMBO to keep my heart pounding and regular intervals of Taylor wherever I have to travel to see him. And you knw what? It feels so good......
who spends much of her time on
Thanks for the opportunity, Angels. You all are a source of inspiration as well. Whomever is lucky enough to be gifted with those beautiful cards well deserves them. Thanks for letting me share my tale.

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful story! You have brought tears to my eyes. WE have all been so lucky to come in contact with people like YOU, who have been inspired. I love the fact that your dream is coming true. Good luck to you and God Bless!!

Teri (cydter)

tygrlillie said...

Thank you, ma'am. It's simply amazing to me, how one man I'll never meet could impact my life so strongly. If I was ever afforded the opportunity and wasn't terrified to meet him, because I don't want to be forgotten by him (and I so would, lol), I'd want to say thanks. For making me feel stronger, better, happier, more...just more than I ever dreamed I could, more than I deserve, surely.So, maybe he pops on here and reads these things. I hope so. This might well be my only shot. Thanks, Tay. For gifting me back to myself. For teaching me that despite what people tell me every day, I am not worthless and I can make a change in the world, even if it is only my small corner of it. You help make me feel like a true princess, honey. Something everybody ought to feel at least once in their lives, and you and LiMBO make me feel as if I am something special and I am capable and I don't know how I survived so long without your music - your voice - as my companion. Just thank you - for every bit of it, Tay. My world is infinately richer for having you and all your wonderful fans and friends and family in it.

Anonymous said...

Tyg-- your story is wonderful and your thank you to Taylor is absolutely beautiful!!! Thank you for sharing your story with us!!!

tygrlillie said...

The amazing thing, if I might again add to the conversation, is that I have been inspired to help others feel the same way.
Most of the Patrol knows that while I am rich in spirit, in hope, heart and - thank God - health and I have a heart and soul so full, my pockets are indeed too often to let. I was joking with a friend of mine that I had two dollars to buy my kid dinner at McDonald's last night and had to choose between a hamburger or fries, but that really is no lie - I had no more than that. She ate, I went hungry, lol. But still, I may not have funds to actually contribute, I do have my elbow grease. When I went to NOLA for Mardi Gras, I cleaned up a bit during the day the day of the concert. Do I fool myself into thinking I made a difference? No. It's still as close to a war zone as I've ever seen down there. But I saw several people - children and elders - smile and sing right along with me. I took most of the treasures I got there - they call them throws - and deposited them into a hospital for kids in Nashville on my way home. I work for the Clothesline Projec in my college, where women who's life has been touched by abuse make t-shirts to "air out their dirty laundry." And when people approach and say they've never known anybody who has experianced abuse I say "Hi, I'm tyg - and now, you have."
I'm just more involved - with everything. I want to help others succeed. I want to help my friends who have even less than I do, and believe me - that's precious little. And even if I have nothing, I will still be there to help. I help KOPS when I can, I help my church when I can, I do what I can with what I have, usually my words to motivate others into lending their support. I visit hospitals, bases, friends, and homes for the infirm or elderly - so they are not alone. I support my brother, a quadruplegiac, with my mother's help. I dream big now. For everyone I know and love. I cry often, but I laugh more. Taylor has changed me in ways he could never imagine. I may not now nor ever have everything I want from life, but I'll for darn sure have all that I need - and I'll see to it that the others in my life do too, somehow.
I've been so honoured to call myself Soul Patrol, because I believe in it - in what it stands for. For me, it's not about accumulating items that proclaim me a Tay fan - though I have and cherish those items dearly. It's about giving of yourself, your soul, your entity - reaching out to shelter those lost in the storm where you were a short time ago. It's about listening to the stories of those who were there before you, teaching your story to those following behind. It's about dreaming big, not just for you, but those around you. It's about love - a love so pure, so real that a person can never deny it's genuineness. It's about finding a kindred spirit so like your own, from so far away. It's like being a part - small but important - of a real family, when chances are good you've never had that before. It's being able to breathe freely, love totally without fear of reprisal, and getting rid of the pain that haunts you for an hour or two and getting lost in the music. It might have started with Taylor, and thank God it did,'s not even all about Tay anymore. It's not about his music entirely any more. It's about the fostering of spirit, the sharing of souls, the tears shed to build a foundation of giving and receiving, love, affection, and joy unlike anything I've ever known. It's about being who you are and damn the consequenses of that. It's about keeping it real and really keeping it - faith, hope, love, trust, joy, laughter, and more - for all time. I'm proud to call myself Soul Patrol because I know what we are capable of - I see our potential - and our hearts were forever changed by one man who is doing the best he can to emulate these qualities for me. How can I truly do anything less than that?

poetcindy said...

Tyg Your story is so beatiful. read it to my daughter and she even got teary. Mine is nothing has heart touching as that but Taylor has made an impact on all of us in one way or another.

Taylor has inspired me in many different things. But mostly in writing. I have always enjoyed writing, however I had gotten to a point in my life where I was just writing articles about things that would make me a few dollars. The fun of writing was not there any more. Then I discovered Taylor. I started writing articles about Taylor. Then I started interviewing fans and writing articles about their Taylor experiences in attending concerts and/or meeting the Soul man. Writing for the fun of it was back again. I so loved sharing with people any information I could find about Taylor.

Because I had written so many pieces about Taylor the site I was submitting them to, wrote and asked me if I would like to interview Taylor himself. I remember reading that email over and over again convinced I was not reading and understanding it correctly. I mean to write and ask if I wanted to Interview Taylor over the phone. I just could not believe this was actually going to happen. Up until the day the phone rang and I heard Taylor’s voice I still felt this was a joke and it would never in a million years happen.

I can still remember the nervousness, joy and excitement I felt that day. After the interview was done and I let it settle in that I had actually talked to Taylor Hicks and was now going to publish this interview online for everyone to read, I realized how much I enjoyed talking with him about his music and future plans. A few days later the people who had set up the interview with Taylor emailed about interviewing Kat McPhee and then Kellie Pickler.

I knew there were several other musicians I would love to interview but wasn’t sure how to go about getting interviews with them I remembered Taylor saying that if you have a dream you have to go after it and work hard and that dreams do come true. So I started emailing various musicians always letting them know about my previous interviews, definitely Taylor and requesting interviews with them. I have since interviewed several musicians and even got a second interview with Taylor.

I tell everyone it is all due to discovering Taylor and enjoying his music so much. That first interview with Taylor gave me a chance to get other interviews and it just grew from there. Taylor inspired me to go after my dreams and work hard to make them happen. There is no doubt in my mind that being a fan of Taylor is the reason I moved on to the field of interviewing musicians. It doesn’t pay great that is for sure, sometimes nothing, but I am having a blast and loving every minute of it. Some things in life mean much more than any amount of money.

My kids love to tell their friends and teachers who I have interviewed. They are so proud that they can say their Mom has talked to so and so. My daughter has already let me know that she wants the taped recordings of the interviews left to her so when she has kids and grandkids she can share them with them.

Taylor put the love of music and writing back into my heart.

tygrlillie said...

I remember being so excited for you, Cindy. I knew you were an accomplishe writer, but Taylor inspired you to dream bigger than what you thought you could and I am so incredibly proud to call you friend.
That's one of the many perks to this whole thing. I have met some amazing friends that - were it not for Tay and his beautiful music - maybe, no probably, I would never have met. You, and others like you are why I am in this. I know Tay says "it's all about the music," but it stopped being 'only' about the music fairly quickly for me. Sure, yeah - no doubt, the music is integral to what it's all about, but at the core - if we look past the jealousies and pettiness that can sometimes occur, there's more. I've met some amazing people - artists, writers, singers, songwriters, and so on. I met this beautiful mosaic artist who's works are only eclipsed by her generous heart. I've met the best blues guitarist in this modern era in my opinion. I've met a sweet pair of bassists who hold my heart in their hands. I've met an adorable saxaphonist who makes me weak in the knees whenever he plays. I've met several singers and songwriters who just amaze me. I met a club owner who actually got me - who hates bars as a rule - t want to come back. Nurses, teachers, animal lovers, and more. Just so many differing types of people, so many hearts held together by one string.
My life is so much richer than it could ever have been without Taylor. And his voice, his heart, his soul tells me my work isn't done yet. There are still "miles to go before I sleep" as Robert Frost would say. I still have so much life to live. I want to visit New York and see a Broadway play some day. I'm not sure I'll get there before Taylor leaves, because I'd sure like to see that, but...I don't have to. I want to get to a Yankees game while I'm there, maybe see something else equally enthralling, pay my respects at Ground Zero and honor those lost that day. I want to go to California and see the Universal Studios there, maybe walk by the Kodak Theatre, or go to the Magic Mansion. I want to hear some real dirty blues and eat pizza in Chicago. I want to romp through a cornfiels in Iowa. I want to see and do and be so much more than everyone in my life thinks I am capable of, so much more that I wonder I'm capable of...but because of Taylor, I might be. I'll try my best to be.I want to make people notice me instead of hiding out in the shadows all the time. No one really believes in me but me...and now, you. My friends all over the country, the world, who call themselves Soul Patrol. You believe I can, too. I want you - all of you - to be proud of me. See? Look what I can do!
And as a someday dreaming to be pulished author of some type, Nope, it's pretty heart-warming to me.Squeeze your daughter for me, Cindy. Encourage her, praise her, love her for all she's worth and more. tell her how special she is and make her believe you. A mother's love and abject acceptance is all. I hope so much for you, for her, and everyone within the "sound " of my voice to know they are never, ever alone any more. Even as shadows lengthen, and dark creeps in - reach out. I will be there. And I am not alone any more.

Anonymous said...

Grey-haired Guys

I believe that we are all stronger than we know. One morning the love of my life left, and he never made it back home. Things just happen in life, as they say, when we least expect them. He had prematurely grey hair, although it was no longer "premature" when he died.

I moved on because that's what we do. Winters can be brutal where I live. It snows and snows. Three years ago during a cold January, I remember thinking, that I really needed something different to watch on TV. I had only watched the Carrie and Rueben finales. I had no idea what was going on. I did't find the auditions very good and I did not happen to watch the ones from Las Vegas.

When the Hollywood competition started, I was just looking for evening entertainment...and here was a Southern soul singer with prematurely grey hair!

In an entirely different way, Taylor Hicks filled the void in my life and in my heart. And now, in so many different ways, my days are just as full of love and life as the morning my first grey-haired guy was gone.

Taylor Hicks has inspired me not only to live life again, but to connect with others. He has given me the greatest life back.

The Taylor Hicks Community

Anonymous said...

You guys are all making me cry!! Wonderful stories !!!!! Thank you!


tygrlillie said...

That truly is a lovely story. I love that we can all share exclusively with each other the joys of how a Tay fan has helped us through whatever it s that we've endured. my heart aches that you've lost the one gray haired guy in your life for now, but I truly believe that you will find each other again. In the meantime, we have each other and Tay for company.

poetcindy said...

San That is a beautiful story. Taylor has touched people in ways that I don't think he could ever imagine.

TY I was so nervous and paced and stuttered like crazy while tryig to talk to Tay but I made it through and will have that memory forever.

With each interview I learn more things and am not as nervous anymore but poor Tay he was guinea pig lol

But if I could have chose any musician in the word to interview first it would of course have been Tay so it was definetly a dream come true. I told friends online I dreamed to one day get to interview Tay. Never did I think it woud happen though.

The Sp could write a beautiful and touching book on he ways Taylor has influened them, made them take chances or just made them believe that dreams do come true.

tygrlillie said...

You know, I was thinking of doing something along those lines, but I don't know reputable publishers. I think it would be a treasure though. Would you like to collaborate on that with me maybe?

Taylor's Angels said...

Thanks to each of you for sharing your beautiful stories!!! We're all blessed to have each of you in our lives and in the Soul Patrol!!1
Tyg-- please check your PMs at the HQ!!!