In The Rear View Mirror
A True Story
Robert A. Chapin
Revised September 3, 2011
I have always wanted to be a singer. At my current age of 64 I am well past my prime for America’s Got Talent, or American Idle. The best I can do now is sing in the shower and even that makes me feel mindful that belting it out at home is not like performing in front of a TV audience. I am also aware that there is a fine line between a performer and the proverbial “lounge lizard.”
My mother was a member of The Sacred Heart of Jesus Choir in later years at our church once we kids were all grown. Even before I left home for the army, she would croon to the Elvis songs and was in her glory. She was pretty good and had a talent that served her well. She was an Elvis disciple, knew every one of his songs and even had a shrine in her living room. When she was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, and capable of traveling, my sister Bonni surprised her with a trip from Western Massachusetts to Memphis. It was the conclusion of a life long dream to visit Graceland.
One of her most memorable accomplishments was the recording of a song by one of the many recording studios in Nashville. She dabbled in poetry and saw an advertisement to “become a recording star”. All she had to do was send them $200.00 and sing her poem acapella and one of their musicians would put music to the lyrics - and that was going to make her a rising star. Actually, it was a flattering testament to her hidden talent.