Something about Slim

Little-memo-slim-blogI am the reason my father liked Slim Whitman. When I was a baby, my mother went to the local record store to find a recording of someone, anyone, singing “Down in the Valley,” a song I favored. Mom wasn’t picky. The clerk found the song on a new, long-playing album – “Love Song of the Waterfall,” by Slim Whitman, a country singer. Not knowing what she was getting into, Mom purchased the record, took it home, and popped it on the turntable for a spin. And immediately she was flabbergasted by the high tenor yodeling that Slim could produce. But I liked it and so did my Dad. By the early 1980s he had 20 or more Slim Whitman albums, from Irish ballads to Christmas classics.

When I was in college, my friends and I celebrated Slim’s birthday with a dorm room party, cheap Lambrusco, and “Love Song of the Waterfall” playing at full blast. Afterward I wrote a letter to Slim (in care of the fan club address on one of Dad’s albums), telling him about the party and our Sternweis family Slim fan-dom, and he replied — with this autographed photo and “A little Memo from Slim.” His was the only celebrity autograph I ever sought out.

Slim Whitman was born January 20, 1923, and he died June 19, 2013. May he forever yodel in peace.

Laura Sternweis

P.S. Read about Slim’s career in Rolling Stone. Watch some of his performances on Youtube.

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