Taylor Hicks and Vanessa Minnillo had fun together joking around when he stopped by TRL this week to promote his self-titled debut album. Taylor's come a long way in the past year and don't think he doesn't know it. Still, he got a lot of slack back in October when he spoke negatively of American Idol, saying he thought it was fizzling out. He also said that he never watched the show before and only went on the show to further his career. Here's more:

"I want to take that opportunity and exposure: you either come to see me, buy my album or you don't," the Alabama native said. "I'm not trying to meet expectations. If you can say you're a working musician, then you're doing something good."

Responding to cries that he was biting the hand that fed him so heartily, Hicks [attempted to explain himself on LA's KIIS FM recently], saying, "I'm giving up my crown soon. That's what I meant. I'm just now learning about how the media can turn things around.

"I'm very grateful to that show, and we're like one big family. It was taken completely out of context. I will be watching next season on my tour bus."

Looks like Taylor learned the hard way not to bash AI. We're just happy he never colored that hair of his. For more pics of Taylor dancing and having a blast on TRL just