April 16, 1889 – December 25, 1977
Charles proved to have talent at seven years old, when he made his debut at a music-hall. Hannah Chaplin, Charles mother, had a stage career, and often took Charlie with her. During one performance she lost her voice, provoking a hostile reaction from the audience. She pushed Charlie on stage and with awesome self-assurance he sang a comic cockney song, a popular song of the day, 'E Dunno Where 'E Are', to the great satisfaction of the audience, who threw money on the stage.
In the mid teens Chaplin was present at various recording studios, where there was a spate of songs about him. 'Everybody's Crazy Over Charlie Chaplin'; 'They All Do the Charlie Chaplin Walk'; 'Charlie Charlie'; 'The Charlie Chaplin Fox Trot'; and 'When the Moon Shines Bright on Charlie Chaplin', this last one to the tune of 'Red Wing'. In 1925 Chaplin conducted Abe Lyman's Orchestra, with two dance tunes he composed, 'Sing A Song' and 'With You, Dear, In Bombay', and are found on 78 RPM record, Brunswick 2912. Chaplin did not sing on record, but he can be herd singing for the first time in 'Modern Times'.
Smile is a song based on an instrumental theme used in the soundtrack for the 1936 Chaplin film 'Modern Times'. Chaplin could not read music and needed the help of professional composers, and yet he composed music for many of his films. He taught himself to play the piano, violin, and cello. His tunes were put to paper in a close collaboration with composers and musicians. According to film historian Jeffrey Vance, "although he relied upon associates to arrange varied and complex instrumentation, the musical imperative is his, and not a note in a Chaplin musical score was placed there without his assent." Smile was originally sung by Nat King Cole in 1954.
Smile - Victor Young 1954
ALSO ON THIS DAY IN MUSIC HISTORY
1923 - Benny Green, jazz trombonist born in Chicago, Ill. (d.1977)
1925 - Edie Adams, singer/actress born in Kingston, Pa. (d.2008)
1929 - Roy Hamilton, singer born in Leesburg, GA (d.1969)
1935 - Bobby Vinton, singer born in Pitts., Pa. (age80)
1935 - Haskell Cool Papa Sadler, blues singer/guitarist born in Denver, CO (d.1994)
1939 - Dusty Springfield, singer born in London, England (d.1999)
1963 - Al Goering, pianist/arranger dies at 64
1992 - Andy Russell, drummer/vocalist dies of stroke at 72
1997 - Mae Boren Axton, song writer dies at 82
2007 - 41st CMT Music Awards
Entertainer of the Year Kenny Chesney
Album of the Year It Just Comes Natural George Strait