American Idol winner Taylor Hicks recently returned from an Armed Forces Entertainment tour, where he entertained troops at eight military bases across the Middle East in Bahrain, Kuwait, Jordan and Djibouti.
“One of the highlights of my career was performing for our service men and women overseas! It was an amazing experience to bring a slice of home to our bases overseas,” shared Hicks.
The tour followed the release of Hicks’ first official single in 14 years, “Porch Swing,” released via Epochal Artists / TLG / INgrooves. Written by Hicks, Runaway June’s Jennifer Wayne and Jason Deere, the country soul ballad was recorded at Zac Brown’s Southern Ground studio in Nashville.
Hicks debuted “Porch Swing” live on the “The Bobby Bones Show.” Bones, who declared himself leader of the “Soul Patrol,” also selected Hicks as his National Spotlight Artist of the Week for “Country Top 30 with Bobby Bones.” Hicks also performed the song live on WSM’s “Coffee, Country & Cody” and received a surprise invitation to make his Grand Ole Opry debut on June 16.
Taste of Country described “Porch Swing” as “an easygoing, romantic soul melody that stays faithful to several of his diverse musical influences and home genres,” while People compared Hicks’ “bluesy and soulful sound” to Tyler Childers and Chris Stapleton. Celeb Secrets added, “The ear-grabbing guitar licks intertwined with his nonchalant delivery transformed the easy-going track into a perfect Sunday morning jam or a breezy joyride anthem.”
Hicks appeared as himself and performed “Porch Swing” in Samuel Goldwyn Films’ 2021 romantic comedy “Stars Fell on Alabama.” His acting roles also include starring in Serenbe Playhouse’s 2019 production of “Shenandoah,” touring as Teen Angel in “Grease,” appearing on “Law & Order: SVU” and hosting the INSP series “State Plate,” which won the Cynopsis TV Award for Best Reality Series (Travel) and is available now to watch on Amazon Prime and Peacock.
Since winning “American Idol’s” record-breaking season five finale, Hicks has gone on to achieve RIAA®-certified platinum status and make history as both the first male Idol champion featured on a GRAMMY®-winning record (Jimmy Fallon’s Blow Your Pants Off) and the first to land a prestigious Las Vegas residency. He also co-owns Saw’s Juke Joint in his hometown of Birmingham, crowned one of the “25 Best Barbecue Spots in America” by Men’s Journal.
Photos from Taylor Hicks Armed Forces Entertainment Tour
ABOUT TAYLOR HICKS:
For Taylor Hicks, winning “American Idol’s” blockbuster fifth season was just the beginning. Hailed as “part Stax, part Motown and part honky-tonk” by The New York Times, Hicks’ intoxicating blend of soul, blues, country, and rock ‘n’ roll quickly rendered him a household name as he progressed to the show’s record-breaking finale in 2006, a historic television event which drew an audience of more than 200 million viewers. Hicks immediately followed his “American Idol” victory with a No. 1 Billboard single and an RIAA®-certified platinum debut, and soon went on to make history as both the first male “American Idol” champion featured on a GRAMMY-winning record (Jimmy Fallon’s Blow Your Pants Off), and the first to land a prestigious Las Vegas residency. A versatile artist, actor and advocate, Hicks has since ventured into theater, television and film, starring in Serenbe Playhouse’s 2019 production of “Shenandoah,” touring as Teen Angel in the popular Broadway musical “Grease” in addition to appearing on “Law & Order: SVU” and hosting the INSP series “State Plate,” which won the Cynopsis TV Award for Best Reality Series (Travel). Hicks’ passion for southern cuisine led him back to his native Alabama, where he opened up SAW’s Juke Joint, a restaurant crowned one of the “25 Best Barbecue Spots in America” by Men’s Journal.