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Sean Smith

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Sean Smith, a pitch-perfect, fluid, and elegant bassist, is one of the busiest young players on the international jazz scene. A first-call sideman with over 50 recordings to his credit, he has also released two CDs as leader of his working quartet, Sean Smith Quartet Live! in 1999 and Poise in 2001, both featuring his own varied compositions. Poise, with superb bandmates Allen Mezquida (alto), Keith Ganz (guitar), and Russell Meissner (drums), was recorded with a minimum of technological interference and has unusual clarity and warmth; its 13 Smith originals reflect his evolving maturity and singular voice. Smith is a prolific writer whose soulful, melodic compositions have been recorded by Phil Woods, Mark Murphy, Bill Charlap, Bill Mays, Leon Parker, Barbara Sfraga, and Gene Bertoncini, on whose 1998 CD Smith's dreamy "Japanese Maple" was the standout cut. An active collaborator with legendary vocalist Murphy, Smith's "Song for the Geese" was the title tune of Murphy's 1998 Grammy-nominated CD. Smith has toured the world's major jazz rooms and concert halls, performing with such luminaries as Gerry Mulligan, Benny Carter, Flip Phillips, Clark Terry, Lee Konitz, Art Farmer, Tom Harrell, Rosemary Clooney, and Peggy Lee. An active collaborator with Murphy, he has also been a member of the Jacky Terrasson Trio since 2000. Smith, who graduated from the Manhattan School of Music in 1990, did not burst on the scene overnight with an incandescent lucky break. Known as a gentle, thoughtful man who rarely beats his own drum, his career path has been a gradual rise, fueled by talent, hard work, and an upward spiral of recommendations. Born in 1965 to non-musical but supportive parents, he started on the alto sax in fourth grade, moved to the electric bass and rock & roll, and then found a deep connection to the acoustic bass in high school and began his explorations in jazz. Profoundly influenced by Miles Davis andWeather Report -- especially Wayne Shorter and Jaco Pastorius -- Smith was attracted to music with depth and emotion, and soon began writing his own. His tunes are evocative, cinematic, and singable, with flashes of dry wit, and have been gaining wider attention among lyricists. ~ Judith Schlesinger

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