Byther Smith

Genres: Blues Musicals & The Arts
Decades Active: 1980s 1990s 2000s

Biography

17 April 1933, Monticello, Mississippi, USA. Smith began playing guitar in church, but after settling in Chicago in 1958 he started singing blues and was tutored on guitar by Herbert Sumlin and Freddie Robinson. He recorded for several local labels (including, reputedly, Cobra Records and Vee Jay Records), and worked with numerous gospel and blues groups, occasionally sitting in with his cousin J.B. Lenoir. In the late 60s he left music, returning in the early 70s as house guitarist at the famed Theresa’s Lounge in Chicago, and enjoying a minor hit for CJ Records with ‘Give Me My White Robe’. In 1983, Smith recorded an acclaimed album for Grits, with the follow-up two years later being reissued in 1991; Smith has also recorded for JSP, Bullseye and Delmark Records. Smith is a modern, though traditionally rooted, Chicago bluesman with a very large repertoire. He possesses a powerful voice, which, when mixed with his blistering guitar is often quite...

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