| December 12, 2006|
| Pop, blues rock|
| October–November 2006, EMBLEM/Castle Oaks, Calabasas, California|
Taylor Hicks is the eponymous major label debut album by the American Idol fifth-season winner of the same name. The album was released on December 12, 2006 in the United States by Arista Records in association with 19 Recordings Limited, nearly seven months after Hicks won the reality-talent competition in May. Hicks coined the phrase "modern whomp" to describe the album's sound—an amalgam of soul, blues, funk, and Cajun influences with a contemporary twist. The first single from the album was the ballad "Just to Feel That Way".
The album debuted at the number two spot on the U.S. Billboard 200 chart, selling 298,000 copies in its first week. Within one month of its release, Taylor Hicks was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America for shipping over one million copies. However, over a year later it had reached sales of only about 700,000 copies, making it the second lowest selling debut album by an American Idol winner, after Kris Allen and Lee DeWyze's debuts. The album has sold 704,000 copies as of December 2010.
Taylor Hicks (album) Wikipedia
Recording for the album took six weeks, between October to November 2006, right after the culmination of the American Idols LIVE! Tour. The album, Hicks's first full-length endeavor, includes contributions from Bryan Adams, Diane Warren, and Rob Thomas, as well as a few of Hicks's originals which have appeared on his previous self-produced effort Under the Radar. Producer Matt Serletic had only heard about Taylor Hicks for the first time when he was approached for the Idol winner's project.
Collaborations with other artists such as Robert Randolph and John Mayer were mentioned by Hicks in interviews, but failed to materialize due to scheduling problems and the goal to release the album before Christmas. Hicks had also been invited by the estate of Ray Charles to record at Charles's own historic 2107 West Washington Boulevard Studio (a.k.a. 2107-RPM) in Los Angeles, but those plans also had to be postponed until a future album. Hicks would have been the first person to record in the studio since Charles himself.
Fan blog Gray Charles, under contract with Hicks and his record company, gradually released first-hand details of the album, with Hicks providing weekly updates via audio blog. "The Runaround" was the first track premiered on Gray Charles on November 21, followed by "Dream Myself Awake" and "The Right Place", even before they were made available on Hicks's official website and MySpace page. The full album was made available for preview on the VH1 website on December 5.
"The Runaround" was originally intended to be the first single released from the album, and Hicks performed the song on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and The Martha Stewart Show in the run-up to the album's release. Instead, "Just to Feel That Way" was announced as the first "official" single after nearly two months. Hicks admitted that fan reaction to the album contributed to the decision. His second single release was "Heaven Knows" The album's singles, "Just to Feel That Way" and "Heaven Knows" peaked at #20 and #19 respectively on Billboard's Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks chart."Just to Feel That Way"