When I Was a Star

Have you ever wished you were a famous singer, hearing your music played on the radio? I once experienced the thrill of hearing a song I recorded over the air waves. In the 1990’s, the American Council of the Blind established an Internet station called ACB Radio. It started out as a talk station, featuring programs of interest to the blind and visually impaired and branched out into several channels with varying formats. One of these was a music station called ACB Café. This played songs by Stevie Wonder, Ray Charles, and the like, but it also featured work by amateur musicians such as yours truly.

In the days before high-speed Internet connections and the capability to record in mp3 format, I used a program on my Macintosh computer called Simple Sound to record myself singing “Memory” from the Broadway musical Cats, accompanying myself on my Casseo keyboard. I then used another program to convert the recording to mp3 format which involved dragging and dropping the file, no easy feat for someone with a visual impairment. I then e-mailed the file to the station. This took time and effort, but it was worth it when I heard, for the first time, that recording over the radio, preceded by the announcement, “Here’s Abbie Johnson singing ‘Memory’ from Cats.” I still have that recording and will provide a link below.




Abbie Johnson Taylor, Author of We Shall Overcome and How to Build a Better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver