Born Frankie Robinson in Detroit, the youngest of seven children born to Clarence and Elizabeth Robinson. He was nicknamed "Sugar Chile" by his mother. Although neither parent was a musician, Frankie began playing piano by ear at the age of two. At the age of three, he won a talent show at the Paradise Theatre in Detroit. By six, he was playing guest shots with Lionel Hampton's band and the Frankie Carle Orchestra. In 1946, he made a cameo in the Van Johnson film "No Leave, No Love" performing "Caldonia". In March 1946, Robinson performed at a gala in Washington DC for President Truman. He played four numbers including "Caldonia" during which he shouted out, "How'm I Doin', Mr President?" This became a popular catch-phrase. In 1947, he was the subject of a seven-minute film entitled "Frankie 'Sugar Chile' Robinson." In 1949, Robinson made his first recordings for the Capitol label. His first two releases were "Numbers Boogie", which made it to number four on the Billboard R&B charts, and "Caldonia" which reached number 14. Robinson toured and recorded until 1952, when he requested that he be allowed to return to school. He graduated from Northern High School at age 15. He went on to attend Olivet College in Michigan, and graduated with a degree in psychology in 1960.
- IMDb Mini Biography By: Joanne King
Shared for historical purposes. I do not own the rights.