||This article includes a list of references, related reading or external links, but its sources remain unclear because it lacks inline citations. (April 2012)|
Gentle Ben wrestles his own voice (Candy Candido).
December 25, 1913|
New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
|Died||May 19, 1999
Burbank, California, United States
|Spouse(s)||Anita (his death, widow)|
Candy Candido (December 25, 1913 – May 19, 1999) was an American radio performer, bass player, vocalist and animation voice actor, best remembered for his famous line, "I'm feeling mighty low."
Born Jonathan Joseph Candido on Christmas Day in 1913 in New Orleans, Louisiana, Candido, who later used the legal name John B. Candido, was a bassist and vocalist in Ted Fio Rito's big band, and they can be seen in a Soundie, "Ma, He's Making Eyes at Me." In 1933 he married Anita Gordon, a singer who worked in radio and as the Singing Harp in Mickey and the Beanstalk (1947), and the singing voice for Jeanne Crain in State Fair (1945) "It Might As Well Be Spring."
Candido's distinctive, three-octave speaking voice became familiar to radio listeners and moviegoers. Speaking his lines in his normal tenor, he would suddenly adopt a high, squeaky soprano and just as suddenly plunge into a gruff bass. His weekly repetition of "I'm feeling mighty low" on Jimmy Durante's radio show made it a national catchphrase. The running gag became so familiar that he recorded a song of the same title with Durante. The line can be heard in the 1950 Bugs Bunny cartoon Homeless Hare, although it was not spoken there by Candido.
Candido provided the voice of a skeleton in Abbott and Costello in the Foreign Legion, and he later teamed with Bud Abbott during Abbott's attempted comeback in 1960. He was the voice of the bear in the Gentle Ben TV series, and he worked as a voice actor on animated films, notably for Walt Disney, where he portrayed the Indian Chief in Peter Pan, one of Maleficent's goons in Sleeping Beauty, the Captain of the Guard in Robin Hood, Brutus and Nero in The Rescuers, the deep voiced escaped convict (Gus) in the Haunted Mansion attraction and Fidget the peg-legged bat in The Great Mouse Detective. Black Bear growls in The Fox and the Hound. Other animated films with Candido voices: Chuck Jones' adaptation of The Phantom Tollbooth, and the Ralph Bakshi movies Hey Good Lookin' and Heavy Traffic.
His various credited and uncredited roles as an actor, bassist and vocalist in live-action films include Sadie McKee (1934), Roberta (1935), Only Angels Have Wings (1939), The Wizard of Oz (1939), Rhythm Parade (1942), Campus Rhythm (1943), Sarge Goes to College (1947), Smart Politics (1948) and The Great Rupert (1950).
Candido recorded a few children's 78rpm records for Capitol Records:
CAS-3105 - Side one "I'm Popeye the Sailor Man", side two "The Little White Duck". (1952)
CAS-3156 - Side one "You're Nothin' But a Nothin'", side two "Barnacle Bill the Sailor". (1953)