Taylor Hicks: Whomp at the Warfield
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Taylor Hicks performs a roster of his biggest hits and favorites before an enthusiastic "Soul Patrol" of fans. Mixing R&B, rock and blues into one incredible package, he'll knock you out with one show-stopping performance after another!
Songs: Gonna Move, Give Me Tonight, Heart and Soul, Just to Feel That Way, My Friend, The Deal, Hold on to Your Love, Wherever I Lay My Hat, Soul Thing, Heaven Knows, The Maze, Right Place, The Runaround, The Fall, Badge, Naked in the Jungle, Just to Feel That Way, Wherever I Lay My Hat, My Friend, Heaven Knows
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The 84 minute show was taped during Hicks' post-Idol tour in '07, this stop was at the famous Warfield Theater in San Franciso. He was still riding high in the wake of his victory, the press - and certainly not the public - hadn't turned on him yet. The crowd is enthusiastic, but thankfully we are spared excessive shots of them. The focus is on Taylor and his seven piece band. The musicians are all spotlighted with solos throughout. The rhythm section is especially impressive. Hicks plays guitar, acoustic and electric, as well as several harmonica solos. His vocals are strong and impassioned.
The video and audio (including a 5.1 surround mix) are of excellent quality. This was a professionally recorded show.
The bonus feature - billed as "An Interview with Taylor Hicks" - is actually a 30 minute long featurette that includes solo acoustic performances of two songs not featured in the concert. Hicks introduces each with some background on the songs. The interview is very interesting, demonstrating his deep appreciation of music.
If you're a fan - someone who follows Hicks' every move, or maybe someone who liked him on American Idol and haven't seen him since - this is a must-have DVD. If you aren't a fan - drop all the preconceived notions you may have about him being the "worst Idol winner" and all that nonsense. If you like old school r&b, soul, and blues rock then you are sure to enjoy this concert.
I have absolutely no complaints about this DVD. Not one! From start to finish, Taylor never stops. He is the ultimate showman and musician. How he keeps up that energy is beyond me. This is not the Taylor Hicks you saw on the American Idol stage. This is the Taylor he wanted us to see during his days on American Idol but was obviously restricted. If you liked him on the American Idol stage, you will love him in this concert where he gets to show what he is truly made of - a musician filled with soul and a deep love for the music he performs. You can tell he feels every note while on stage and he is one with his band at all times. And what a band it is! It is one of the best bands I've heard in a long time. Of special note are the drummer, Felix "D-Kat" Pollard, and the sax player who also plays flute and percussion, Brian Gallagher. I mean, this band is tight!! And, they are the perfect fit for Taylor. (I should add that it was so great to hear a sax. You just don't hear that much anymore. Real musicians playing real instruments!! Wow! What a concept!)
Again, if you like Taylor Hicks - at all - you will love this DVD concert from his San Francisco gig at The Warfield. If you like Taylor Hicks' music, just wait until you hear what he does with his tunes in concert. He gives them a whole new facelift with different takes than the studio recordings. While I like his CDs, how he makes the songs come to life on stage is something you've just got to see and hear to believe. I always said Taylor is someone you need to watch and this concert proves it. He is at home on the stage. At one point, I could have sworn that Joe Cocker entered his body and took over, and then he does a complete 180 and takes off on a funk rendition of Heaven Knows and The Maze.
Speaking of song titles, I realize after being entertained to the max by Taylor and the band that there are several songs that should have been released as singles and should have been hits. For instance, his encore performance of The Fall fits right into the singer/songwriter genre so popular in the 1970s. Had Taylor been around in the 70s and 80s, he would have surely been a bigger hit than he is now. Incidentally, I can't believe he is not as huge a success as he should be, especially in light of the mediocre talents of so many who are idolized by the young CD buying / iTunes downloading public. But, I digress about the songs that should have been hits - The Maze is a nod to the Maroon 5 sound (and that's a good thing!) and should have been a hit. Wherever I Lay My Hat is a superb tribute to the great Marvin Gaye. The heartfelt My Friend (an early recording for him) was moving and could have been a hit for him if reintroduced to the public. He could have done a remix of Heaven Knows (a great song already in its original form) with the funk he does so well and had a hit with it. They (record company, powers that be, etc.)did him wrong by not releasing more singles and not promoting his first album after his American Idol win more.
Then, there's the song Give Me Tonight which would have been my pick for his first single off that album. It shows off his pop side. But, there's so many sides to Taylor and they are all filled with talent and pleasant surprises - including pop, soul, rock, R&B, the blues, funk, you name it. Sometimes, he and his band blended them all into one for a truly unique Taylor and the band style. Just when you think it couldn't get any better - it does! During his encore, he breaks into a tribute to Eric Clapton with the Eric and George Harrison penned Badge. Badge has always been a favorite Cream song of mine and Taylor and the band put their own spin on this great classic. Then, after being on stage and never stopping for a moment to take a breath, they rip into Sly and the Family Stone stylings with Naked In The Jungle and I Want To Take You Higher. Superb! And, what a way to end the concert. Yet, it left me wanting more.
Taylor Hicks should be a bigger star than he is. Watch this DVD concert and I'm sure you'll agree. If you have any reservations about buying this, toss those reservations aside and purchase it. It is worth every penny. I would pay triple to have this in my library. As soon as I watched it, I wanted to immediately watch it again. If you like Taylor, you'll love this concert.
I said I had no complaints. If I did, it would not be about this DVD or the concert. It would be that I wish there was a companion CD so I could have these great new inventions of the Taylor Hicks set list on CD as well as his takes on the aforementioned classics such as Clapton & Harrison's Badge. Oh, and if you're wondering, yes he shows his talents on his well loved instruments - the harmonica, guitar and organ. Taylor is an amazing, unique talent. His band is amazing and among the best I've ever heard. Together, Taylor and his band are dynamite. How anyone could not feel entertained, moved and feel better while watching and after watching this concert would boggle my mind; like it boggles my mind he is not on the top of the charts. He should be!
I hope Simon Cowell has seen this concert. We all know that Simon was never much of a Taylor fan. This concert shows just how wrong Simon was.
If you are a Taylor Hicks fan, you must have this DVD!
The talent of the winners of "American Idol" has been steadily going down the last few years. Taylor Hicks was the last winner with true star quality. "Whomp at the Warfield" proves it.