Dwayne Smitty Smith, known to most simply as ìSmittyî, has had a passion for playing bass since the age of 12. Smitty’s funky-groove style was influenced by artists such as Larry Graham, Parliament Funkadelic, Weather Report and Marcus Miller. Born and raised in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, Smitty began his musical journey in high school with the band 14 Karat, playing in and around the D.C. area. After high school, Smitty spent the next four years touring the world with the United States Air Force Band production, Tops In Blue, for which he was the driving force and musical director.
Because of his undeniable call to play music and a burning desire to answer that call, Smitty moved to the Los Angeles, California area. Smitty burst onto the scene and after only a year in Los Angeles, Smitty began his first professional tour with Anita Baker, promoting her award-winning Rapture CD. That tour launched Smitty’s career and spring-boarded him into the mainstream where he became one of the most sought after bassists in Los Angeles. He went on to tour, perform and record with nationally and internationally known artists from all genres of music, such as Will Downing, Gerald Albright, Natalie Cole, Boney James, George Howard, Jeff Lorber, Everett Harp, Maysa Leak, Norman Brown, Keith Washington, Sheena Easton, Kirk Whalum, Teena Marie, Deniece Williams, Peter White, Ron Brown, Howard Hewitt, Tom Scott, Cherrelle, Bobby Lyle, Michael Paulo, Chante Moore, Doc Powell, Mikki Howard, Michael White, James Ingram, Tom Jones, Jeffery Osborne, Lee Ritenaur and The Isley Brothers, just to name a few.
Smittyís session work includes recordings for television sitcoms Sinbad, Thea, Sister Sister, Matt Waters and South Central; the musical tracks for the stage production ìThe Legendî which was written and co-produced by Debbie Allen and James Ingram. He held down the bottom as the ìresident bass playerî on the Rick Dees Show and also recorded on the soundtrack for the movie ìAliî.
Smittyís funky bass can also be heard on various recordings such as Boney Jamesí ìSeductionî, for which he co-wrote the song ìWithout A Doubtî(which he received a Gold Record); Michael Pauloís ìMy Heart & Soulî, Kirk Whalumís ìColorsî, Will Downingís ìSensual Journeyî and Willís current CD ìemotionsî, as well as Birds of a Featherís ìStand Togetherî and Rhythm Logicís ìRhythm Logicî, two groups which Smitty is a member.
Smitty is also Producer and Musical Director of the Starlight Jazz Serenade, an annual benefit concert held in Los Angeles, in its fourth year, showcasing the current top jazz artists in a benefit concert to support Hands for Hope, a non-profit organization helping underprivileged youth.
With so much God-given talent, it was only a matter of time before the inevitable: Check out Smittyís debut solo CD, ìThis Is Meî … the continuation of a wonderfully blessed career!