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Guy Mitchell

Detroit, Michigan, USA (1947 – 1960s)

Guy Mitchell (27 February 1927 - 1 July 1999) was born Albert George Cernik, son of immigrants from Croatia, in Detroit, Michigan, USA. At the age of 11, he was signed by Warner Brothers Pictures, to be groomed as a child star, and he also performed on the radio on Station KFWB in Los Angeles, California. After leaving school, he worked as a saddle-maker, but supplemented his income by singing whenever he could. At this point in his life, Dude Martin, who had a country music broadcast in San Francisco, noticed him and hired him to perform with his band. He served in the United States Navy for two years, and after leaving the service became a singer with Carmen Cavallaro’s big band. In 1947 he made some recordings for Decca with Cavallaro’s band, but had to leave due to a case of food poisoning. He eventually went to New York City, and made several records for King Records under the name Al Grant. He won on Arthur Godfrey’s Talent Scouts radio show during this time.

Mitch Miller, who was in charge of talent at Columbia Records, noted Cernik in 1950, and he joined Columbia and got his new stage name at Miller’s urging: Miller is supposed to have said, “my name is ‘Mitchell’ and you seem a nice ‘guy’, so we’ll call you Guy Mitchell.”

His first hit “My Heart Cries for You” was in 1951. In the 1950s and 1960s he acted in movies as well as singing. He did movies with Teresa Brewer and Rosemary Clooney. In 1957 he had his own television show.


Born of Croatian immigrants (Crnic is the Croatian spelling of the last name), in Detroit, Michigan, at age 11 he was signed by Warner Brothers Pictures, to be a child star, and performed on the radio on KFWB in Los Angeles, California.

After leaving school, he worked as a saddlemaker, supplementing his income by singing.

Dude Martin, who had a country music broadcast in San Francisco, hired him for his band.

He served in the United States Navy for two years in World War II, then sang with Carmen Cavallaro's big band.

In 1947 he recorded for Decca with Cavallaro's band, but left due to food poisoning.

He went next to New York City and made records for King Records as Al Grant (one, "Cabaret", appeared in the Variety charts).

He won on the radio show Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scouts in 1949 as a soloist.

Mitch Miller, in charge of talent at Columbia Records, noticed Cernik in 1950. He joined Columbia and took his new stage name at Miller's urging: Miller supposedly said, "my name is 'Mitchell' and you seem a nice 'guy', so we'll call you Guy Mitchell". Bob Merrill wrote hits for Mitchell.

In the 1950s and 1960s Mitchell acted in movies with Teresa Brewer, Pat Crowley, and Rosemary Clooney, Red Garters (1954), and with Brewer in Those Redheads From Seattle (1953). He acted in "Choose a Victim", a 1961 episode of Thriller, and sang in the Braemor Rooms, Churchtown, Dublin, Ireland.

His first hit was "My Heart Cries for You" (1951). He ventured into rock with songs including "Heartaches by the Number", "Rock-a-Billy", "The Same Old Me" and his biggest hit, "Singing the Blues", which was number one for 10 weeks in 1956.[4]

Guy Mitchell (February 27, 1927 - July 1, 1999) was a Croatian-American pop singer, was successful in his homeland as well in the United Kingdom and Australia. As an international recording star of the 1950s he achieved record sales in excess of 44 million units and this included six million-selling singles.

Mitchell also appeared as George Romack on the 1961 NBC western detective series Whispering Smith, with World War II hero Audie Murphy in the leading role.

50s, 60s Hits

Heartaches By The Number

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