steven ray tickle tickle 325 'Tickle' and 'Moonshiners': 'To be arrested for moonshining, you have to be caught'Back in August, Discovery Channel premiered “Tickle,” its Tuesday spinoff series from the hit reality show “Moonshiners,” featuring the illegal-alcohol-related misadventures of Steven Ray Tickle and his pals.

At the beginning of the show, the Virginia native located a hidden cache of the privately brewed alcoholic beverage in the woods. His challenge is now to find a way to unload the purloined spirits without running afoul of the law or the original owners.

Of course, a lot of people wonder why the cast of “Moonshiners” isn’t already in jail for the unlawful activities shown on television.

“Well, now,” Tickle explains to Zap2it during a break from filming, “by the time anything airs, it is already in the past. To be arrested for moonshining, you have to be caught with the moonshine, making the moonshine, with the still. You have to be caught in the act of doing it.

“So just camera stills or anything like that, if they want to snap a picture of the TV or a computer, that’s not enough evidence for them to even get a search warrant.

“The one thing any good moonshiner knows is how to stay hidden.”

He also insists that a good moonshiner is not just in it for the money.

“Any moonshiner who does it solely for the money,” he says, “doesn’t have their heart in it. They won’t make as good of a product, and they won’t be a moonshiner for long.

“Customers don’t want an inferior product that doesn’t taste good. Moonshiners do it because it’s something they love doing. They’re doing it for the art of it, the history of it, and for it to be passed to another generation.

“That’s the bigger reasons for doing it. You can make some money on it, but you know what, that’s just a helpful benefit of it.”

Favorite book: “I’ll have to go with the Bible. Just because moonshiners do make alcohol doesn’t mean we don’t believe in God. I know, myself, I do, and a lot of people I’ve talked to in the moonshine community have a very strong belief in God as well. You can’t go wrong with the Man Upstairs. He’s the one who put us here, and He’s the one we need to thank for every single day we have.”
Favorite music: “I do like a lot of country and bluegrass music. I like a lot of rock ‘n’ roll, but I’m more the older rock. I’d have to say that (country singer) Matt Stillwell is one I really like. I actually got to meet him one time before, and he’s an extremely great guy. I honestly feel when you see him onstage, everything that comes out of his mouth is genuinely just him.”
Favorite movie: “I can’t say that I’ve got one in particular that’s a favorite. I like Tom Hanks as an actor. He’s a very accomplished actor; I have respect for him for that. Whenever a new movie comes out that has Tom Hanks in it, I want to see it just for the fact that I know how well his acting is. That makes me want to go see that movie that much more.”

Posted by:Kate O'Hare