image of Chris Smither

The UVM Lane Series presents its final concert of the 2012-2013 season on Friday, May 3 at 7:30pm at the UVM Recital Hall.  Folk singer-songwriter Chris Smither will make his first appearance on the Lane Series stage, bringing a deep understanding of traditional American folk and blues that he has developed and honed for more than forty years.

A profound songwriter, Chris Smither draws deeply from the blues, American folk music, modern poets, and philosophers. Reviewers continue to praise his dazzling guitar work, gravelly voice, and songwriting.

Born in Miami, during World War II, Chris Smither grew up in New Orleans where he first started playing music as a child. The son of aTulane University professor, he was taught the rudiments of instrumentation by his uncle on his mother’s ukulele. With that bit of knowledge under his belt, he was hooked. In his early twenties, Smither turned his back on his anthropology studies and headed to Boston at the urging of legendary folk singer Eric von Schmidt.

It was the mid-’60s and acoustic music thrived in the streets and coffeehouses there. What quickly evolved from his New Orleans and Cambridge musical experiences/influence is his enduring,singular guitar sound – a beat-driven finger-picking, strongly influenced by the playing of Mississippi John Hurt and Lightnin’ Hopkins, layered over the ever-present backbeat of his rhythmic, tapping feet (always mic’d in performance). He has toured with such musicians as B.B. King, Bonnie Raitt, Nanci Griffith, Ramblin’ Jack Elliott, Dave Alvin, and Tom Russell.

His 12th studio album, Hundred Dollar Valentine, was released in June, 2012, and is comprised entirely of self-penned songs – a first for him.  With longtime producer David “Goody” Goodrich at the helm, this newest collection sports the unmistakable sound Smither has made his trademark: fingerpicked acoustic guitar and evocative sonic textures meshed with spare, brilliant songs, delivered in a bone-wise, hard-won voice.

Tickets for the performance are $25 adult / $15 student. The concert is generously sponsored by Farm Fresh Radio 102.9FM. For more information, visit the Lane Series website.

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