Interview: Taylor Hicks on the Zodiac, BBQ, and Roadhouse

Taylor Hicks’ energy and variety on American Idol made him a fan favorite. His appearance earned comparisons to Leno, Donahue, and Clooney. With that winning combo, Hicks ran away with the win in 2006 in the show’s fifth season.

Although the show that made him famous is about to fade away, Hicks has shown impressive staying power without having to resort to a run for political office. The Republican National Convention had him perform in 2012; a feature on Jimmy Fallon’s 2013 album, Blow Your Pants Off, earned him a Grammy reference; the Paris Hotel in Las Vegas currently has Hicks on long-term residency.

We caught up with the Captain of the Soul Patrol by email as he jet-set around the country on tour. He’s making his way to Pompano Beach for Kickin’ It Country Music Festival, and we asked him about everything from astrology to the culinary arts.

Comedian Bill Hicks said, “Life is only a dream, and we are the imagination of ourselves.” Your song “Dream Myself Awake” suggests that love life is just an illusion. We live and love a dream. How does your music represent your reality?

Hicks: I think life is a gift, first and foremost. I think the music that I create is an expression of where I am at a certain point in time. I’m just lucky to be able to revisit all of these experiences through the music that I make.

You and I share a birthday with Simon Cowell, Thom Yorke, and Vladimir Putin. What are your thoughts on astrology and determinism?

I really feel strongly about the zodiac. Libras have to have balance. Therefore you and I are compromising not doing a phone interview because we are in different time zones. We are staying in balance!

Do you cook? Can you detail your best recipe?

Being from Alabama, I am very much a foodie. I am part-owner of a decorated BBQ and soul-food place called Saw’s Juke Joint in Birmingham. Google it. I dare you.

What can we expect from your presence at the Kickin’ It Country Music Festival?

I’m really excited to be performing this year. The band is excited to play some serious country roadhouse music. Kickin’ country! 

Taylor Hicks, Pompano Beach Kickin’ It Country Music Festival, 5 p.m. Saturday, June 27 (Hicks goes on at 9:30), at Pompano Beach Amphitheatre, 1806 NE Sixth St., Pompano Beach. Tickets cost $30 in advance, $40 at the door, and $75 for VIPs. Call 954-519-5500, or visit pompanobeacharts.org.

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