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Sunday, July 13, 2008

Taylor Hicks and The Business of Celebrity

Taylor Hicks recent news concerns the early release of his CD titled, "Early Works". This being a compilation album containing most but not all of the songs from the two pre-reality show CDs that Mr. Hicks had created. Now certainly fans of his have likely already purchased "In Your Time" and "Under the Radar". earlyworksI never bought the "In Your Time" because the price was too high. For the most part you'd pay anywhere from $25.00 and up and it contained only about seven songs, three were covers.

Having taken economics in college, I understand the whole concept. Price regarding a product, it's all about supply and demand, baby. That's what drove that little body of work to become such a pricey little collector piece. I got that. I made the decision not to buy it though for that very reason. Besides you could hear those tunes on-line whenever you wished for the most part. Now Boogie Board moderator and past Gray Charles poster, and of course, obviously, big Taylor Hicks' fan, AmyH outlined her emotions in her blog, "Crafty Peaches" which I read today. I enjoy AmyH's writings, and she covers in a very diplomatic way the concept of the past CD market prices and the current Taylor Hicks CD that is simply a compilation of past tunes.

AmyH's point carries much food for thought regarding the concept of cost, how price can fluctuate with demand. She is left feeling somewhat conflicted regarding have paid that $25.00 for the "In Your Time" when now, sans a few tunes such as "Hell of a Day", which is on Taylor Hicks' post-Idol Wal-mart edition CD, you can have both CD's on one plastic disc for much less. Quandary for the conflict, did Mr. Hicks use market strategy in the pricing of his music? Of course he did. It's business. Now did he charge those high prices back then with a scheme in mind to re-release the two CD's onto one? That I'm not sure of, I think this new release of the "Early Works" was something cooked up in the not so distant past. In fact, I could see this being something decided upon when Mr. Hicks first CD from his stint on Idol was not met with the kind of reception that had been anticipated by many fans as well as Mr. Hicks. You know, go back to the drawing board, so to speak.

It is rather pointedly coincidental that with Mr. Hicks taking this role in "Grease", the resulting positive exposure he's reaping from this gig, that this compilation CD is released now. Certainly Mr. Hicks could have anticipated the potential need to have something relatively immediate to offer his fans and potential new fans. An offering to exemplify the product he created before Clive Davis and 19E got their talons into him. Perfect ideology for a lead in for any new works to be released as well.
Think about this too, soon after season five ended of America Idol, Taylor Hicks was approached to do a book, a 'life story' type to describe how he went from 'there' to 'here' sort of thing. Granted he's a young man and had plenty of experiences to talk about, but he is a tad young for a "Life Story" type of novel. Thing is he knew there was a market out there who would buy it. When the book first came out to the tune of about $25.00 his Idol fans were snatching it up and even buying large quantities to ship to the U.S. troops overseas - still do. Time was right to have such a piece of material out, you know that adage, strike while the fire's hot, no matter how brief, time-wise the man's career truly was, to date. Think about it, ten years as a struggling musician...ten years goes by in a heart blip when you consider how quickly time seems to pass when your children grow up in the span from one to ten years old.

So any fans that may bemoan having spent triple the cost of the "Early Works" CD in the past for that real very early work, "In Your Time", look at what you possess as a fan. You bought something that was the authentic Early Works in its original format. I'd recommend that possibly you save those CD's and purchase this new version to play in your home or car and save the others for what they really represent - memorabilia and collector's items. Too think of them as what else they represent; a study in business and economics, supply and demand.

Life should be a learning event, just ask Taylor Hicks. He's now entered into another supply and demand venture. Reading over on his myspace was this announcement:

Friday, July 11, 2008 Share Some "Summer Lovin’" With Taylor Hicks!
"Hey Soul Patrol Members, Membership has it's privileges. Make sure you take advantage of the Meet & Greet packages available exclusively to fan club members for a limited time as they will soon be made available to the general public! Not a Soul Patrol Member? Join now to take advantage of this exclusive offer. Don't wait, because Taylor will be gone just like "Greased Lightnin'"...

Besides reading on the thick slice of Velveeta side, the writer of that blog post sounds like a carnival barker, "Come one, Come all, take your chances!" What this post is alluding to is how fans can now lay out to the tune of $475.00 tickets for two to "Grease" and a brief, I think it's ten minutes, meeting with Mr. Hicks in his dressing room. It also invites anyone interested to join the Headquarters site, which is about $25.00 too, I think. I have never joined that site, abstaining from paying fan sites one of my many quirks. Certainly with the positive New York press and the havoc that has apparently been being created on the Broadway Fan Boards regarding Taylor Hicks this latest development in Soul Patrol economics doesn't surprise me. Once again Mr. Hicks is going to strike while that Soul Patrol Iron is hot and Greased.

Many of his fans will likely become enthusiastic at this prospect of meeting the man face to face and having a quiet little sit-down. It would beat the usual fan frenzy after the show settings or the rushed Meet and Greet formats in mass venues. I can't knock the guy for doing it, time will tell how well this works out for him. I don't know of anyone else in the Broadway market who has ever done this, but then I'm not an expert on celebrity events. I will say the whole concept while thought out as perhaps a fan perk as well as a way to justify the man's ten minutes just sits sideways with me. I find this more conflicting to embrace than the idea of purchasing the "In Your Time" for $25.00 versus "Early Works" for about $11.00. It just smacks of allowing yourself to be 'pimped' out and I don't like to think of Taylor Hicks in that manner. Perhaps the semantics of this new development being a little over thought by myself. After all, the art of celebrity is a business, and that lesson in economics always holds true. thgreased
"Let's Make Lots of Money" aka "Opportunites"

video c/o capzo


  1. Anonymous11:14 PM

    Sunny, don't need to post this but FYI. Check out karoray aka Henry8's comment:


  2. Boogie Member1:20 AM

    Here Sunny the actual dialogue - get how crazy azz JAT carries on over there. You know you're 'hot and cold' if you're not brain-washed and fawning.

    4Tay says:
    New post-
    I got this in my google alerts today. The article discusses Taylor's Early Works (with a quote from AmyH's blog ), Grease, Heart Full of Soul and meet and greets.
    My apologies if this has been posted here already!

    This is the link from spinshack's blog.

    then Lubiana comes back with:
    New post-
    LOL- Great blog! Congrats AmyH on being quoted and praised in that article. And I love the Pet Shop Boys video at the end too!

    Then your old friend Karoray, JAT, CEE or henry8 retorts:
    Perhaps your might want to read before that latest blog where she likens Taylor to a pimp for selling meet and greets.
    And she also defends the blog that that ridicules Taylors fans.
    I agreed with that latest blog also, but you never know what you are going to get with her.

    AmyH then has to correct that's it is not an articel (duh) it's a casual blog post, like any moron can't figure that out:
    Not an article - a blog by a casual blogger.

    See karoray's post.
    (She's a two faced bitch like henry8)

    Lubiana comes back with:
    Okay, I've never read her stuff before so I didn't know. I just liked that particular blog.

    4Tay who seems like a nice person says:
    New post-
    Maybe a title change from article to blog is needed?
    Never read her before either. This one was interesting to me.

    AgingHippie writes:
    Agree it should be changed to blog - "article" gives it too much weight.

    Sunny has been around quite a while and shows up often in alerts and used to be on a number of sites. She has another blog called Idol Blues as well.
    Always read her writing carefully - she does blow hot and cold - often in the same piece - - and is good at "damning with faint praise" regarding Taylor.

    just a for-what-it's-worth observation .

    Then they go on about the same old shit that it's his money, he isn't extravagant with it and blah blah blah. Meanwhile on other sites and in this forum before, they've ranted about his 'exquisite taste' in expensive shoes and clothes.

    Anything he does is great with these people and if you don't kiss his polished Italian shoes all the time you're shit.

    Lubiana and 4Tay are not as bad as some of the others.

    Just adding to the blog for you.

  3. Thanks for those - but I read the Boogie site too. I know all about henry8 and all the others.

    Henry8 possesses limited and selected reading skills since I don't call him a pimp, I just bring up a thought and questions.

    She may be mentally ill you guys so don't be mean. I accept her as she is warts and all. hahaha.

    I was about to go to bed and found these in moderation, so thanks. Lubiana posted on my Wordpress site today.

    Hell I don't care, if any of them or none of them approve of me. If I did I'd only write shit they would like - man, I know how to do that too.