Recognized throughout much of his career as "the world's greatest living entertainer," Sammy Davis, Jr. was a remarkably popular and versatile performer equally adept at acting, singing, dancing and impersonations — in short, a variety artist in the classic tradition. A member of the famed Rat Pack, he was among the very first African-American talents to find favor with audiences on both sides of the color barrier, and remains a perennial icon of cool. Davis made his stage debut at the age of three performing with Holiday in Dixieland, a black vaudeville troupe featuring his father and helmed by his de facto uncle, Will Mastin; dubbed "Silent Sam, the Dancing Midget," he proved phenomenally popular with audiences and the act was soon renamed Will Mastin's Gang Featuring Little Sammy. Later rechristened the Will Mastin Trio, in 1946 they opened for Mickey Rooney, who encouraged Davis to begin including his many impersonations in the Trio's act; where previously they had exclusively performed music, the addition of comedy brought new life to the group, and by the beginning of the next decade they were headlining venues including New York's Capitol club and Ciro's in Hollywood. In 1954 Davis signed to Decca, topping the charts with his debut LP Starring Sammy Davis Jr, followed by a series of hit singles including "Something's Gotta Give," "Love Me or Leave Me" and "That Old Black Magic." In 1972 Davis topped the pop charts with "The Candy Man," from the film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.