Tuesday, January 13, 2009

American Idol Wannabees

"Hello?" I sleepily answered the phone to the voice of my breathless sister.

"Did you hear? American Idol auditions aren't being held in San Diego anymore."

"Oh....oh well then."

Exasperated, Kimberly exclaimed, "Robyn. I really think we should still audition. Devon's sister lives in Denver. We could go there. What do you think?"

Waking up now, I felt a familiar nervous flutter in my stomach. "I guess we could...I just get so nervous thinking about it. What the heck am I going to sing?" My mind raced with questions of how it would work out. Kimberly's kids. My job. Singing in front of all those people. Aaack!

I hurried and got ready for my day job. The day couldn't go by fast enough. I considered calling my clients to tell them I had to cancel our personal training appointments for the night. I was dying to get home, get on the computer, and look at flights, and songs. Ohhhhh, songs. Did I really want to do this? WHAT would I sing? Kimberly's song was a given. She'd performed it dozens of times. Had a Dream, by the Judd's. But me? The one song I'd performed as a solo in High School, When You Say Nothin' At All, by Alison Krause was, as my sometimes-brutally-honest brother said, "not my best performance." Should I sing Shania? Something bluesy? Old? New?

I arrived home, and booked our flights. We were really going to Denver. I couldn't help but get my hopes up. My sister and I had dreamed of singing professionally for as long as I could remember. My problem? I loved being the back-up singer and harmonizer. Deep down, I knew it probably wouldn't work out, but it was an experience I couldn't pass up!

The auditions were over. We'd sung our hearts out for our 10 seconds of glory, Kimberly with Had a Dream, me with my finally-decided-on Mr. Melody by Natalie Cole. A few of the thousands made it through to round two.
We sat in the hotel lobby, exhausted after two days of waiting in long lines and waking up at 4 am to get ready for our big moment. We waved good-bye to our new friend, Chris Daughtry who'd traveled with us on the shuttle from the Red Lion hotel to downtown Denver for some sight-seeing.
"Did you guys make it?" he yelled.
"No! Did you?" We shouted in unison.
"Yeah!" he exclaimed.
"Good luck!"
We should've snapped a picture of this humble family-loving-guy with a southern accent. We thought he was all country. Who knew he'd end up the successful rocker?
The morning after returning home, I took the test I'd purposely waited two extra weeks to take...just to be sure. It was positive. Parker was on his way!
Now, 3 1/2 years later, Kimberly still called me to excitedly remind me that American Idol's season premiere is tonight. It's our show! I read her blog today and laughed as I remembered:
  • our scary hotel room the first night
  • the nasty Mexican food Denver had to offer
  • booking a room in a new hotel for night #2
  • singing over and over for each other the night before the actual audition
  • our "friends" in line
  • visiting my sister's sister-in-law after the audition and almost missing our flight home when her daughter choked on a screw
  • yelling at each other at the height of the stress
  • Kimberly missing her kids
  • wearing our shirts on the way home and being asked if we would sing in the airport "Didn't you hear us? We DIDN'T make it. We are NOT the next American Idol."


Diane said...

Oh the memories. I remember the panic phone call I got from you guys in Denver asking ME to find a cab or something for you. I'm so glad you two have this fun memory together. You SHOULD have gotten a picture of Chris D. I remember you guys telling me you had met someone who you thought was really good. Who knew?! I wonder if he's still humble and nice.

Erin said...

You're my hero for being so brave! What an awesome adventure to have under your belt! And I'm so glad you have little Parker! It would have been really difficult being pregnant and dealing with all the stresses of the show. But for the record..you have an AMAZING voice and totally should have made it. :)

Richard and Monika Mills said...

i loved it when you sang "when you say nothing at all" it was one of my favorite performances ever. I love that song, and you have an amazing voice. I would vote you on Idol every time. You and Kim are so talented.

Melissa said...

Very gutsy! You guys are funny.

Kimberly said...

If I wasn't over 28 I would do it again! It was one of the best experiences of my life because we did it together and had a blast doing it!

Evelyn and Art said...

Oh man, I've never heard that one before. The Parker part even makes it sweeter!!

Hiller Family said...

What an adventure! I'm shocked they didn't keep you guys in the running...

Deanie said...

Such great memories, you guys will never look at that show the same way again!

Christie said...

I think the singing gene missed my side of the family. We'd be the people they show with horrible voices and who Seacrest makes fun of. It wouldn't be pretty.

Maylene said...

That is still so cool that you actually went and auditioned! I can't imagine the whole getting up early thing and waiting in the enormous lines :) Fun memories. I think the Phoenix auditions were on last night but I could only watch bits and pieces because of the usual kid drama around here!

esherman10 said...

So funny...I remember you telling me about that a while back. What a cool experience, even if you didn't make it. I'm excited for a new season, too!

Michael said...

Now that you and Kimberly are over the age limit, who am I supposed to try out with?

The Hipple's said...

I never knew you tried out for American Idol!!! That's so cool!

Aly said...

You guys are so funny! I remember you telling me about that! You are such cute sisters!

Darci said...

Don't you just kick yourself for not getting a pic with him?? I would have.

Sarah E said...

At least you can say you tried. That's more than I'll ever be able to say. You seriously amaze me with all of your stories and all the things you've done. Oh to be like you. :)

Tina said...

Way to go. You are 2 brave girls! And I LOVE the story so much. I didn't know there was an age limit? How lame!

Annakaisa said...

Super cute post!! I just love reading your blog. You are funny! And yes.. you should have taken a picture with Chris! :)

Darcie said...

You two are CRAZY and very brave. I would have NEVER had the guts to try out for something like that. :)

Tami H. said...

I can't believe you guys actually went. way to go, why not. And, you made friends with Chris , how cool. What a good story to tell!