Tunes on Tuesday: Let A Smile Be Your Umbrella

Why this tune?

This week’s inspiration comes from the delightful Umbrella Cover Museum on Peaks Island in Portland, Maine, which we visited over the weekend. The museum was founded by Nancy 3. Hoffman in 1996, when she found herself with several umbrella covers she didn’t know what to do with. That odd decision evolved into a permanent space on Peaks Island, where she displays highlights of her collection of over 2,000 covers from 71 countries. She sees the museum as a way to celebrate the mundane in everyday life.

The song “Let A Smile Be Your Umbrella” was a natural choice as the theme song of the museum. It was written in 1927 by Sammy Fain with lyrics by Irving Kahal and Francis Wheeler. Hoffman performs it for museum visitors, accompanying her vocals on the accordion.

I couldn’t resist the opportunity to celebrate the museum with this virtual duet.

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Bing Crosby


Published by Oren Levine

Jazz pianist and composer in Washington, DC. Also a digital product and technology professional working at a small DC nonprofit

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