A Cool Joel Smith Tune feat. Joel on Bass and Drums
I got to know and become friends with late, great gospel legend Joel Smith when we were on the road on and off for two years with Melvin Seals and JGB, and I had the honor of doing some sessions with him later, as well.
In 2010, for example, I hired Joel to play bass and drums on some of my songs (including “Funkytown” and “Salamander”) as well as to do a bass clinic at Musicians Institute. During that clinic, I saw Joel playing a cool song of his for the students, so the next day in the studio, I said to Joel, “Hey let’s take a break from my stuff and track that cool jam you were playing at your seminar!”
Here is a window into what resulted afternoon. The footage is old, my camera work shaky, and the mix is still rough, but Joel’s playing and groove are, as you’ll hear, magical. (Listen on real speakers or headphones, so you can feel the bass!)
Joel Smith was hugely influential on both bass and drums — many bassists, drummers, and other musicians who knew him refer to him as the “G.O.A.T” (greatest of all time) — and he was also a wonderful, humble, generous guy, to boot. I was honored to know him, and will miss him greatly.
JOEL SMITH (Dec. 6, 1959 – Sept. 8, 2018). Rest easy, brother Joel.