www.johnnysmith.org is the official website of jazz guitarist Johnny Smith and is operated on behalf of the Johnny Smith Estate.
© 2015, The Johnny Smith Estate
The Official Website of Jazz Guitarist Johnny Smith
“An extraordinary virtuoso. As far as I'm concerned, no one in the world plays the guitar better than he. They might play it differently, but nobody plays better.” -
“Man, I can never be that perfect. No one plays like Johnny Smith.” -
Johnny Smith is remembered affectionately by many jazz listeners for his huge hit ‘Moonlight in Vermont’ in 1952. Meanwhile, rock guitarists celebrate him as the composer of the Ventures’ instrumental hit ‘Walk, Don’t Run’. Serious jazz guitarists, however, still acknowledge him as the benchmark of musicianship by which all other jazz guitarists are measured. His superior technical virtuosity, quality of tone and musical sophistication remain unrivaled on the plectrum jazz guitar.
After stepping out of the shadows as a largely anonymous studio musician, he became the most revered guitarist on the New York jazz scene during the golden era of the 1950s. Johnny Smith was a regular feature on the bill at the major jazz venues, such as Birdland and the Embers, playing opposite legendary figures including Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Count Basie, Lester Young, Miles Davis, Billie Holiday, Art Tatum and George Shearing.
His meticulous approach to his musicianship, immaculately smooth and clean playing, full-
For many jazz guitarists, Johnny Smith’s influential role in raising the standards of technique and musical sophistication on the jazz guitar places him alongside Django Reinhardt, Charlie Christian and Wes Montgomery as one of the legendary and most significant figures in the development of the jazz guitar. An extraordinary virtuoso…
|An Appreciation (Part 1)|
|An Appreciation (Part 2)|
|An Appreciation (Part 3)|
|Interview (Part 1)|
|Interview (Part 2)|
|Albums on Other Labels|
|Moonlight in Vermont|