1. Taylor Reuben Hicks is an American singer who won the fifth season of American Idol.
2. Hicks got his start as a professional musician in his late teens and performed around the Southeastern United States for well over the span of a decade, during which he also released two independent albums.
3. Upon winning Idol, he was signed to Arista Records, under which his self-titled major label debut was released on December 12, 2006.
4. His energetic stage performances and influences derived from classic rock, blues, and R&B music had earned him a following of devout fans, who have been dubbed the “Soul Patrol.”
5. The second single was confirmed to be “Seven Mile Breakdown” via his Myspace page. In May 2011, Taylor Hicks opened ORE Drink and Dine restaurant in Birmingham, Alabama’s Crestline Park.
6. Birmingham Magazine readers voted ORE as Birmingham’s “Best New Restaurant” in the fall of 2011. On June 14, 2011, Taylor Hicks performed at Bama Rising: A Benefit Concert For Alabama Tornado Recovery at the Birmingham Jefferson Convention Center.
7. According to Billboard, the Bama Rising benefit concert raised an estimated $2.2 million for Alabama tornado relief efforts.
8. Taylor Hicks was born in Birmingham, Alabama on October 7, 1976, to Bradley Hicks and Pamela Dickinson.
9. He and his family moved to the suburb of Hoover when he was eight years old.
10. His parents divorced, and stepmother Linda shared custody of their son until he became of age.
11. Hicks has suggested his difficult childhood as the reason for his turning to soul and blues music for solace.
12. He bought his first harmonica when he was 16, for $2 at a flea market in Bessemer, Alabama, and taught himself to play blues harp.
13. He discovered that he possessed perfect pitch when he was able to recognize the pitches of ordinary noises and mimic them on the harmonica.
14. He played varsity baseball, soccer, and basketball while studying in Hoover.
15. He then pursued a major in business and journalism at Auburn University, but lost interest and dropped out after three years.