'I'll Never Smile Again'

'I'll Never Smile Again.' Song by Ruth Lowe. Written in Toronto in June 1939 following the death of her first husband, Harold Cohen, it was introduced by Percy Faith's orchestra on CBC Radio. Tommy Dorsey, who was appearing at the 1939 Canadian National Exhibition (CNE), heard a recording of Faith's performance and arranged for the song's publication by Sun Music. Though introduced in the USA by Glenn Miller on radio, the song was a No. 1 hit for Dorsey on a 1940 Victor recording featuring Frank Sinatra. (This recording was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1982.) A perfect encapsulation of the sentiments of those separated from loved ones by World War II, the song was later recorded by Miller, the Ink Spots, Tony Martin, Sarah Vaughan, and others. The Happy Gang also had a hand in popularizing the song in Canada. It was recorded in French as "Je ne sourirai plus," by Lionel Parent in 1940 (Starr 16380).

By 2004 "I'll Never Smile Again" had become an enduring standard in jazz and pop idioms. It received an ASCAP award in 1940, and was inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame (2003). It was included on a BMG boxed set of Dorsey and Sinatra songs in 1994. It is estimated that "I'll Never Smile Again" has been recorded more than 100 times. Recent recordings include those by Canadians Michael Bublé, Oscar Peterson, Juliette, and the Susie Arioli Swing Band; by Barry Manilow; and as an instrumental by Joe Lovano. Hal Leonard reissued the sheet music in 1997. The song appears in numerous recordings and songbooks of the music of World War II.