robertoart

Legendary Guitarist Johnny Smith has died.

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Moonlight In...Vermont?

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RIP. He was a favorite of mine.

And I grew up with The Ventures' Walk Don't Run.

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RIP. I saw him on stage once. He didn't play; it was a tribute to Barney Kessel, and Smith read a moving appreciation of him. A real mensch.

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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mQHRPC81DDg

Thanks for posting that. At the time that was recorded, what many guitar players would be doing for the rest of their life was trying to find all those long out-of-print Johnny Smith LP's!

Every jazz guitar player I ever met or read about wanted some of that man's technique. A true legend in the world of jazz on the guitar (a reputation well earned), and by all accounts a great gentleman. RIP.

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How sad...

one of the first jazz record I loved was 'Moonlight in Vermont' that Willis Conover (on his VOA broadcasts) played frequently when it came out!

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Sad news - RIP. His Mosaic box will be on deck today here.

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Sad. I loved his playing. Time to play his Mosaic.

RIP Johnny. Thanks for the music.

Edited by Hardbopjazz

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Sorry to hear this. Never really warmed to his playing.

Edited by J.A.W.

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Though "dirt poor," Smith nurtured his love for the guitar and taught himself to play via an arrangement he finagled with the Portland pawnshops. "In return for keeping their guitars in tune, they let me hang around and play some," he recalls. -Colorado Springs Independent, 3/15/2001

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I really loved his tone and skill. I don't think he ever gained the recognition he deserved. RIP Mr Smith.

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Johnny Smith was a class act all the way, especially in his presentation of the guitar. A giant.

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His playing also had emotional depth. I just listened to his rendition of Round Midnight - beautiful.

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We've just lost the greatest master of the plectrum guitar that ever lived.

Even today, nobody has even come close to the artistry JS displayed with a pick on those records he made on Roost in the 50s.

I bought every one of them, and still bought the Mosaic set.

You could play better jazz than him, you could swing more than him, but you CANNOT play the guitar with a pick better than him.

Rest In Peace, Johnny...

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Terrible news. I hope his family knows how many people will be playing his music over the next few days.

One of my favorite Mosaic sets.

....Down to the jazz room.....

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We've just lost the greatest master of the plectrum guitar that ever lived.

Even today, nobody has even come close to the artistry JS displayed with a pick on those records he made on Roost in the 50s.

I bought every one of them, and still bought the Mosaic set.

You could play better jazz than him, you could swing more than him, but you CANNOT play the guitar with a pick better than him.

Rest In Peace, Johnny...

Sounds like a Johnny Smith vs Tal Farlow partisan feud might be in the air as for "guitar chops". ;)

Anyway, RIP Mr Smith. Here's another one who's appreciated your music (though admittedly I've pulled out my Tal Farlow Verve albums far more often than your Roost LPsthrough the years)

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We've just lost the greatest master of the plectrum guitar that ever lived.

Even today, nobody has even come close to the artistry JS displayed with a pick on those records he made on Roost in the 50s.

I bought every one of them, and still bought the Mosaic set.

You could play better jazz than him, you could swing more than him, but you CANNOT play the guitar with a pick better than him.

Rest In Peace, Johnny...

True. His technique was just about perfect with the pick.

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There are many interesting facts about JS that I've unearthed over the years, but they would mainly interest only guitarists.

However, he received the greatest endorsement of all when he played at Birdland in the 50s, and Bird himself would perch himself in the front to listen to him play.

Which is not to say that JS played in Bird's style- just that Bird recognized the beauty of Smith's genius on the guitar.

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