December 7, 1942 Brooklyn Heights Boy Harry Chapin is Born

Today is the birth anniversary of Harry Chapin, who was born in Manhattan, but raised from age ten in Brooklyn Heights (Hicks Street) and began his music education in the Grace Church youth choir along with Chicago’s Robert Lamm. The Brooklyn Eagle remembers him in today’s edition.

Chapin’s legacy is not only his music, but the annual Hungerthon which raises money each year to help feed the needy in America. I had the honor of working with the organization during my tenure at WXRK radio back in the 90s. They’re good folks who do great work.

For people of a certain age, Harry’s appearance on the Mike Douglas Show in the mid-70s sticks in our minds not for the brilliant performance of his “Cats in the Cradle” but for the bizarre reaction it received from child star/co-host Mason Reese.

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  • nabeguy

    Hard for me to believe he would only be 68 today if he had lived. When he was my babysitter back in the mid-60’s, me being all of 6 and him being already an adult of 20, I alway thought that the magic he wove with his guitar and gentle voice would last forever and always serve as my path to slumberland. Rest easy, my friend….your magic still remains in my heart.

  • Peter

    Must have been weird growing up with a December 7 birthday, when the country was mourning for those lost on Pearl Harbor (imagine having a Sept. 11 birthday the past 9 years).

  • nabeguy

    In a rather bizarre coincidence, there is a Chapin family picture of the father holding his infant son James and reading a newspaper with large headlines about the Pearl Harbor attack. Exactly a year later, Harry Chapin was born.

  • exclark andwillow

    i think that’s Steve Chapin on guitar and John Wallace on bass in the video.

  • nabeguy

    John Wallace on bass, Ron Palmer on guitar, a fill-in on cello (not Scott)