Sara Hickman sings!

By Phil Plait | December 8, 2008 4:30 pm

I’ve been a huge fan of singer/songwriter Sara Hickman since like 1990. She is a fantastic singer, and her songs are intelligently and lovingly written. I’ve seen her in concert a few times, and she’s wonderful. She lives in Austin, Texas, and is also very giving to the community, sponsoring projects for kids and people in need.

My family spent Thanksgiving visiting friends in Austin, and they knew of my unrequited crush on Sara. So after some finagling, they managed to get her to come to their house and give us a private concert! I was swooning the whole time, but managed to get some video. With her permission, here is Sara singing one of my favorites (I asked her to sing this, in fact), "Simply". It’s a love song. On the video I missed the first few seconds of her description; she’s saying she wrote this song when she was 17 and had a crush on a boy… the actual song starts about 2 minutes in, but listen to her intro since it’s delightful.

She was a total sweetheart, even letting The Little Astronomer use her guitar and play a song she’s learning.

You can find out more about Sara at My HUGE thanks to Gennie and Bill for getting this put together!

Note added after I initially wrote this: To see what else Sara is capable of — in a totally different but hauntingly beautiful way — watch this video of hers of "Mad World". It’s astonishing.

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Cool stuff, Time Sink

Comments (17)

  1. TravisM

    Dang. I’ve been playing guitar for 20 yrs or so and I just love her finger picking. 17? I started at 7 on an old box guitar I got for christmas, messing around. I don’t count until I was 9 when I got my first electric. Maybe I should pick up the old acoustic…

  2. JoeSmithCA

    Phil, I’ll point this out before anyone else does:

    “even letting The Little Astronomer use her guitar and play a sing she‚Äôs learning. ”

    should be

    “… and play a song…”

    Shocking–a spelling mistake from Phil in his blog. Well that destroys my image that Phil has perfect spelling ūüėČ

  3. You gotta love a song with a good story.

  4. Rob

    Man, I’ve had Sara’s SHORTSTOP album ever since “I Couldn’t Help Myself” hit the airwaves in… 1990… (I’m apparently getting OLD)…

    That song just mesmerized me back then — still does now, and most of that album just really works for me. “Take It Like A Man”, especially. That’s just a great song.

    One of these days I need to dive further into her catalog, as I’m sure there’s more delicious stuff therein.

    Thanks for the video, Phil, and thanks to Sara for letting it happen! She’s a very cool frood!

  5. Thanks for the link, Phil! She’s teh hawt! Great story leading into the song! That boy must’ve been dumber’n a post! What a great surprise having her come to the house and play!

  6. OMG! Most of the commenters on her Mad World video are haters. YouTube is full of suckage sometimes. Anyway, I like her!

  7. Flood

    Heh, if you want to preserve your faith in humanity you should never, ever read YouTube comments. Nothing good can come of it.

    Thanks BA, for the musical treat.

  8. ShavenYak

    Holy cow, that is totally awesome! You are one lucky dude. Like Rob, I have Shortstop also and haven’t listened to much of the rest of her stuff.

    I’m not so sure I dig her fashion sense there, though.

  9. Rich


    What happened to Bad Astronomy? All this blog has is mostly you promoting your book, your favorite author/musician, Dr. Who, etc.? It was not like this 6 months ago. I am deployed to Iraq and I use to get funny, and knowledgable info from BA. Give it back, please….

  10. Harold McTestes

    Very talented. I also like her version of Mad World. I’ve been trying to learn it on piano and it’s kicking my butt. She gave me some much needed inspiration!

  11. You might also like a band called disappear fear.

  12. domini1018

    That brought tears to my eyes. Gorgeous! I’ll have to check out her other songs now. ūüėÄ

  13. Joey Joe Joe

    What Rich said.

  14. Dale Madison

    Phil, thanks for reminding me of Sara. I bought her earlier albums and loved listening to her. But through years and a lot of moves the CDs kind of got lost. thanks for reviving great listening memories. She is great.

  15. Hey Phil,

    I’m sitting here, recovering from surgery, and using this time of healing as an excuse to try and catch up on email, including several HUNDRED of your BABlog postings that have my in box almost full. I thought this post was a pleasant enough departure for a change, nice, quick, simple, and allowing me in indulge in my OTHER passion, Music. I’m always a little hesitant when someone recommends his/her favorite singer/songwriter to me to listen to, especially if I’ve never heard of this person, considering how most are so earnest and sincere…and still suck. I figured, for all the time you’ve listened to me, it was only fair that I spend a few minutes and listen to you…at least your advice. Science and skepticism, I’m with you…music, I’m a little less trusting. I found “Simply to be pretty and delightful, and the intro had me smiling, so, all in all, a very good recommendation. THEN, I decided to check out the link for “Mad World.” There have been a few times when a song came on that was so stunning and beautiful that everything around me had to stop so I could listen to it, concentrate, and soak it it. This was one of those moments. After I picked my jaw up off the floor, I had to watch it again. Haunting and beautiful is perfectly accurate…and doesn’t begin to do her justice. Fantastic post!!!! In the realm of touching the soul, this ranks up there with spending time observing the Veil Nebula under Texas dark skies in the 36″. There is beauty and wonder all around us in Nature, some “out there” and some even made by humans. Lisa came down to watch as I hit replay again and is sure she’s heard this before…maybe on “Grey’s Anatomy” or some “CSI”? I’m looking up where to buy this as soon as I hit “submit.” Thanks. Bob

    PS: To Rich, I would think if you were deployed in Iraq, this might strike you as more than a mere song, especially considering your position. Be careful out there.

  16. Kathy

    Thanks so much for putting this You Tube out there. I came across this and I was thrilled. I fell in love with Sara’s music in the early 90’s and I even played this song on my guitar and sang it at my husband and my wedding! My husband and I both are fans of Hickman’s music. I was touched that she had shared it at friend’s wedding. Thanks for reaquainting me with her wonderful music.

  17. Rich U.

    I’m not surprised she did this for you. I’ve known Sara for some years now (she even recorded a song I co-wrote, and she let me sing backup with her!), and I know of no one more loving and giving. She stays MASSIVELY busy, both with her music and with her charitable work, yet she made time to come out and give you a private concert. Sara is a rare and wonderful person, and did you notice that she has gorgeous eyes?


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