When Clay Aiken is taking his much-needed break I seem to spend time looking for fun Clay moments that I can share. Today, I am sharing something that I almost completely forgot about. Do you remember this??
May 6th, 2004
The Early Show did a week, celebrating Moms of famous singers. On May 6th, the show honored Faye Parker. Faye looked lovely in a green sweater and talked proudly of Clay. She shared lots of pictures and videos. It was a great program.
CBS not only showed the interview on TV, but wrote about the show and interview on their website. They also left a great video of the event. The following is from CBS as they wrote about the show.
A Mom Who Rocks!
Though the spotlight shines brightly on their superstar kids, hard at work behind the scenes are the superstar moms.
The Early Show correspondent Melinda Murphy reports on one of the newest on the scene — Clay Aiken. He and his mother are just getting used to his newfound fame.
Clay Aiken’s new song, “Proud of Your Boy,” is a part of the special edition DVD of “Aladdin,” which he says is a great way to show appreciation for moms. (That DVD will be not be available until Oct. 5.)
“It’s kind of a neat song because it talks a lot about Aladdin with his mother,” Aiken says. “So singing that is kind of neat for me because I think everybody wants to make their mother proud of them.”
And Clay Aiken has definitely done that.
Parker raised her son in Raleigh, N.C. His childhood home is now filled with proof of his success, such as his double-platinum album award for “Measure of the Man.”
The album has now gone triple-platinum, which Aiken says he couldn’t have done without his mom.
“My mother is my idol,” says Aiken. “She’s the person I’ve seen on a daily basis, who maneuver all that life brings you — whether it be good stuff or bad stuff.”
And there has been plenty of both. When Aiken was just a year old, Faye Parker left his abusive, alcoholic father. And for the next five years, she raised Aiken on her own before eventually getting remarried and having another son.
“One of the things she’s really taught me is to take every experience that you have, even the ones you just want to forget, and really learn from them,” says Aiken.
It is a lesson Parker continues to teach.
She says, “The main thing that I would like to say to women is that you are not there to be somebody’s stepping stone or to be somebody’s punching bag. You can get a life, and you can go on, and you don’t have to live like that.”
Just a few years ago, Aiken was practically invisible. But things have definitely changed.
Parker takes it upon herself to check phone calls and lots of mail. In fact, Aiken gets so much fan mail that his mother now has a special room for it above the garage.
Also, there are Aiken dolls, Aiken drawings and Aiken crafts.
Of course, not everybody is so supportive.
“He had a lot of publicity about, ‘Is Clay gay?'” says Parker. “You have to make up your mind if you’re going to get your feelings hurt. I know what’s true. God knows what’s true. And it doesn’t matter what other people think.”
Most seem to think Aiken is great, including his hometown’s museum.
The museum has clothing worn by Clay Aiken when he performed “I Can’t Help Myself.”
Parker notes, “I remember when he did that, there were some ladies at my house that night and he did that little motion — the sugar pie honey bunch. I thought these ladies were going to go crazy. I said, ‘Ladies, that’s my son. Cool it!'”
Aiken may be a sex symbol now, but he wasn’t always so cool.
“He comes in one day with a permanent. Oh, that was awful, terrible,” laughs Parker. “He wore that perm for two years, deliberately, because mom didn’t like it. A few people told him he looked cute. And I said, ‘Honey, your mother will tell you the truth.'”
“Mom always thinks she’s the most honest,” says Aiken. “She’ll tell me if my shoes are ugly or if a song is bad, which I don’t know that I like that much really.”
Before he was sheik, Aiken was a bit of a geek. And some even said he was a mama’s boy.
“He probably is a mama’s boy, but you know he’s not overly mama’s boy that people think strange things about,” laughs Parker.
But in the end, being a mama’s boy isn’t such a bad thing.
“She’s been my rock, she’s been the shoulder I’ve cried on,” says Aiken. “She’s been the most supportive person, the least supportive person in times when I needed somebody to tell me to straighten out. And I would not be here today if it were not for her in so many ways.”
What are some of the perks of having a famous son? Faye Parker says she bought herself a new car and paid off her house.
What a nice, positive write-up. The Early Show has always been kind and supportive to Clay.
To see the video, click HERE