My first introduction to this song came by way of Nydia Rojas’ 1999 album Si Me Conocieras. It was the only English song on the compilation, and quite frankly the best one out of all of them. What I didn’t know was that millions of people before me had already fallen in love with this song since it was first used as an instrumental theme by Charlie Chaplin in 1936. The first person to actually record the lyrics to this song was Nat King Cole in 1954. Ironically, his daughter Natalie Cole also covered Smile on her 1991 album, Unforgettable…With Love. Other major artists to have covered the song include Michael Jackson (1995), Eric Clapton (1974), Josh Groban (2006), Barbara Streisand, and Harry Conick, Jr., among many others. In fact, Smile appeared on America’s music charts many times – #10 in 1954, #73 in 1959, #42 in 1961, #94 in 1962, and #42 in 1965.
Smile is definitely still one of the most positive songs out there.
Smile, though your heart is aching,
Smile, even though it’s breaking.
When there are clouds in the sky-
You’ll get by.
If you smile through your fear and sorrow,
Smile and maybe tomorrow
You’ll see the sun come shining through
Light up your face with gladness,
Hide ev’ry trace of sadness.
Although a tear may be ever so near,
That’s the time you must keep on trying,
Smile, what’s the use of crying?
You’ll find that life is still worthwhile,
If you just smile.