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Steven Paul Smith, 6 August 1969 Omaha, Nebraska, USA, d. 21 October 2003, Los Angeles, California, USA. Raised in a musical family, acclaimed singer-songwriter Smith first recorded with Portland, Oregon-based alternative rockers Heatmiser. Despite achieving a modicum of success with this bands generic Fugazi -inspired hard rock, Smith felt happier recording acoustic material on his home four-track set-up. His solo career began after he mailed a tape to local independent label Cavity Search. His debut set, Roman Candle, appeared in 1994. The album introduced Smiths sparse folky style and introspective lyricism, redolent of the work of English singer Nick Drake. Later releases appeared on the Olympia, Washington-based independent label Kill Rock Stars, as Smith balanced his solo career with his continuing involvement in Heatmiser.
By 1997s Either/Or, Heatmiser had split and Smith relocated to Brooklyn. His big break came...