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MUSIC - Ronny Smith - jazz guitarist, composer and arranger

REVIEWS   -   VIDEOS


Originally from Baltimore, Maryland. Ronny is a self-taught musician who began learning to play the guitar, by ear, at age 12. Ronny said, he learned by strumming along to songs he heard performed by musicians such as Wes Montgomery, Joe Pass, and George Benson. These musicians represented his greatest influence while growing up.

Ronny played guitar in R&B bands (basement style) and in jazz and "jam" bands, while in grade school and high school. He later played in the Jazz band at the University of Maryland, at Morgan State University and also Elizabeth State University in North Carolina. While in college, he had the opportunity to be part of a band that played with the famed Motown singing group, the Marvelettes and also with drummer and Philadelphia jazz icon Bobby Durham.

Ronny left college in his senior year to enlist and became a member of the U.S. Army Band. While with the band, he toured extensively in the United States and Europe. He had the opportunity to share the stage with R&B singer and actress, Melba Moore who performed with the band.

"He has recorded with some of the top session musicians of the Nashville and California scene, including John Hammond (Player A), Gary Lunn (Peter Cetera), Pat Coil (Michael McDonald), Craig Nelson (Ben Tankard), and Dan Needham (Euge Groove), Scott Martin (Quincy Jones) Andy Martin (Gordon Goodwin’s Big Phat band), Stan Martin (Quincy Jones)."

Ronny has recorded Six CD's . His first, "Long Time Comin", "Laid Back" (2002), "Got Groove" and "Simply Stated" on which he was backed by a number of well known musicians. Over the course of recording Ronny has played with Chris Rhodes - bass, Trendle Thomas - Keyboards, David Gladding - drums, Wake Campell -sax. On the "Laid Back" CD, Glen Arnette played keyboards. For  "Just Grooving" (2009), Ronny said he recorded with a number of musicians to produce the CD. He released "Can't Stop Now" (2013).

REVIEWSS

Can't Stop Now (2013)

Guitarist Ronny Smith has been on the Smooth Jazz Therapy radar since 2007 and the release of his excellent ‘Simply Stated’. Two years later the equally good ‘Just Groovin’ hit the streets and now, after what seems way too long, Smith is back with ‘Can’t Stop Now’. It finds him in partnership with producer Eric Copeland and, with ten well-chosen tracks, is a superb example of the tight melodic style that categorizes his playing. ~ Denis Poole - Smooth Jazz Therapy

Just Groovin (2009)

Guitarist Ronny Smith developed his trademark salve for making evenly flame broiled smooth jazz swath in gorgeous harmonic forms and lounging grooves on his 2007 record, Simply Stated. Keeping true to his trademark sound, Smith launches his follow up disc, Just Groovin’ this year with a collection of tunes resonating in clear blue skies and uplifting moods that soak the listener’s aural senses in sheer serenity. He is an active bandleader and mediator, directing the movements of the tracks with his gentle coaxing as he softens the turns and connects dangling pieces to create full-bodied compositions. His music is archetypal of smooth jazz material and sticks to its parameters showing similarities to saxophonist Tim Cunningham’s caressive stroking and keyboardist Gail Jhonson’s buoyant wavelets. It is an album that is sure make you happy. ~ Susan Frances - Jazz Review

Just Groovin (2007)

Ronny Smith’s current record Simply Stated  has a velvety refinement and butter-whipped fluidity that awakens good feelings in the listener. Produced by Ronny Smith, who also handles the guitar parts and keyboard programs, the album officiates a smooth jazz fest creating a lightly sweetened atmosphere and moments of thermal bliss that wraps family and friends in love. The gentle interaction and periods of bubbly engagements from the instruments are comfortable and exudes of happy feet. Contributing to the mix are Vernell Mincey on drums, George Campbell on saxophone, Gerald Chavis on flugelhorn and trumpet and Conley Whitfeld and Dexter Whitaker on bass, whose parts are so much a part of the music patterns that they morph into each other. This understated quality in the instruments enhances the songs calming flux and serenity which is a recurring theme throughout the album. ~ Susan Frances - Jazz Review

VIDEOS:

Ronny Smith - Lift Off
Ronny Smith - Bossa Awhile
Ronny Smith - Here we go again