Former Season 5 winner Taylor Hicks knows what it is like to ride the ups and downs of winning American Idol. In a press interview before the Season 12 finale, Taylor said his best advice for Candice Glover and Kree Harrison is to “enjoy the wave” while it lasts, and be prepared to catch the next one after it crashes.

WP: Is it nostalgic being back here at American Idol?
I always do, I’m just glad I won. To go through that again, it’s very stressful, I can see it in their eyes that they’re stressed and they’re tired. When you go through a season of television it’s very taxing on the brain and emotionally. You’re getting famous and you’re having to deal with being able to handle fame which is something most people don’t have the opportunity to do. It’s a blessed opportunity. But you can see they are a little… but they will get through it and it will change their lives.

What is your advice for them?
A: That you have to enjoy the wave. I was singing the National Anthem for a Nascar event and I was talking to Patrick Dempsey and “McDreamy” says enjoy the wave. And it’s interesting because it is a wave and they’re on the crest of it right now and they should enjoy it. And then it will crash and then you get back up on one and ride a big one. That’s the way the business works.

You obviously won your season but what other season would you have won?
A: All of them duh! Especially now that they would let me play instruments I think it would be no contest!

WP: So are you Team Kree or Team Candice?
A: I’m not going to tell you that. Here’s the thing, one year I said my winner is… and the next call I get within 25 minutes is you don’t like this person, you don’t like this other person. Seriously! Political correctness always and forever on American Idol. So Kreedace! The Kreedace Clearwater Revival! There’s no way I’m answering that question.