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Louis Smith (musician)

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Edward Louis Smith May 20, 1931 – August 20, 2016 was an American jazz trumpeter from Memphis, Tennessee

After graduating from Tennessee State University he attended graduate school at the University of Michigan While studying at the University of Michigan, he played with visiting musicians such as Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Thad Jones and Billy Mitchell, before going on to play with Sonny Stitt, Count Basie and Al McKibbon, Cannonball Adderley, Percy Heath, Philly Joe Jones, Lou Donaldson, Donald Byrd, Kenny Dorham and Zoot Sims Smith decided to forego being a full time musician to take a job a director of Atlanta's Booker T Washington High School There he recorded two albums for Blue Note

The first, Here Comes Louis Smith, originally recorded for the Boston-based Transition Records, featured Cannonball Adderley then under contract to Mercury playing under the pseudonym "Buckshot La Funke", Tommy Flanagan, Duke Jordan, Art Taylor and Doug Watkins He also replaced Donald Byrd for Horace Silver's Live at the Newport 1958 set His playing on the set was one of his best efforts and was described by one critic as "monstrous" He was a prolific composer and successful band director leaving Booker T Washington to become director of the Jazz Ensemble at the University of Michigan and a teacher in Ann Arbor's public school system He later recorded for the SteepleChase label

Smith suffered a stroke in 2006, and was seen occasionally enjoying live jazz in the Detroit/Ann Arbor area, but did not return to performing

His cousin Booker Little was also a trumpeter

Smith died on August 20, 2016, at age 85


  • 1 Discography
    • 11 As leader
    • 12 As sideman
  • 2 References


As leader

  • 1958: Here Comes Louis Smith Blue Note
  • 1958: Smithville Blue Note
  • 1978: Just Friends SteepleChase, 1978
  • 1979: Prancin' SteepleChase
  • 1990: Ballads for Lulu SteepleChase
  • 1994: Silvering SteepleChase
  • 1994: Strike up the Band SteepleChase
  • 1995: The Very Thought of You SteepleChase
  • 1996: I Waited for You SteepleChase
  • 1997: There Goes My Heart SteepleChase
  • 2000: Once in a While SteepleChase
  • 2000: Soon SteepleChase
  • 2001: The Bopsmith SteepleChase
  • 2004: Louisville SteepleChase

As sideman

With Kenny Burrell

  • Swingin' Blue Note, 1956
  • Blue Lights Volume 1 Blue Note, 1958
  • Blue Lights Volume 2 Blue Note, 1958

With Horace Silver

  • Live at Newport '58 Blue Note, 1958

With Booker Little and Young Men From Memphis

  • Down Home Reunion United Artists, 1959 Fresh Sounds 1642


  1. ^ a b c Feather, Leonard at The Official Cannonball Adderley web site
  2. ^ jazzweekcom Archived 2011-07-13 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Allmusic biography
  4. ^ "iTunes - Music - Louis Smith" Itunesapplecom 1931-05-20 Retrieved 2013-06-15 
  5. ^ Louis Smith Obituary

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