Spread a Little Happiness

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"Spread a Little Happiness" is a song by English musical comedy composer Vivian Ellis and writer Clifford Grey from their 1929 musical Mr. Cinders. Ellis was suffering from a fever of 103 °F (39 °C) when he wrote the song.[1] In the original production it was sung by Bobby Howes as Jim, but Binnie Hale was the singer on the 78 RPM record that was released.[2]

English musician Sting covered the song for the soundtrack of the film Brimstone and Treacle. In 1982 it reached #16 on the UK Pop chart.[3]

The song was used as the theme tune for a 2009 BBC Radio 4 comedy series of the same title, written by John Godber and Jane Thornton, set in a Yorkshire sandwich bar.[4]


  1. ^ "Mr. Cinders review". Musical-Theatre.net. Retrieved 22 September 2008. 
  2. ^ Columbia black & gold no. 5334; matrix A8686
  3. ^ "Chart positions". bebo.com. Retrieved 24 September 2008. 
  4. ^ "Spread a Little Happiness, Series 1, Episode 1". BBC Radio 4 Extra. 2014. Retrieved 2 July 2014.