Curtis Smith: On the brink of stardom

by | December 8, 2004 12:00 am

By JACQUIE BRASHER

By JACQUIE BRASHER

Hold on to your hats, music world, because here comes singer/songwriter/guitarist Curtis Smith! This 23-year-old graduate of Swainsboro High School and East Georgia College is about to hit the proverbial “big time” in the music industry. And, as most will attest, it couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.

Smith was recently voted “best singer and songwriter” by readers of

Eleventh Hour

magazine, a regional periodical distributed in Statesboro and Macon. “I was totally honored with that,” said Smith. “I was in Atlanta recording in a studio when I got the call telling me about the award. I had seen these magazines around Statesboro, but I never thought I would be voted for.”

Smith is still, in his words, “giddy” from all the attention he’s been receiving. “I’m so blessed and fortunate,” he said. For the past two years, Smith has been recording at Tree Sound Studios in Atlanta. And how he got there is a dream-come-true story in itself. Two years ago, Smith realized he would have to dream a little bigger in order to achieve the kind of success he wanted. “I had an Edwin McCain CD,” said Smith, “and I called Tree Sound Studios and asked to meet with the assistant producer of that CD. A week later, I was in the studio recording for three hours. I’ve been recording there ever since.” Artists who have recorded at this studio include Elton John, Outkast, Collective Soul, Matchbox 20 and Smashing Pumpkins. “The best of the best use this studio,” said Smith.

On Nov. 21 this year, Smith was given the opportunity to sing the national anthem to 80,000 people at the Jacksonville Jaguars game in Florida. So how does one get a gig like that? “I was playing in Hilton Head and the special events guy for the Jaguars told me he loved my voice and gave me his card. He told me he wanted me to sing the national anthem at a game.” Six months later, Smith was singing at the game. “I was given 43 free tickets to the game, which I gave to family and friends,” he said. “I was given rock star treatment!” And that’s not all. Smith said that he has since been asked to play and sing for all the NFL owners at a party at the 2005 Superbowl.

Currently, Smith is recording his own CD of original songs to be released in the summer of 2005. Producing the CD is Noel Golden, whom Smith said has produced artists such as Willie Nelson, Guns & Roses and Metallica. Smith has been told that he has, “16 ‘A ‘ songs. To be told I have a record-full of singles is so awesome.”

The son of Sheila Smith of Midville and the late James “Smitty” Smith, he said his father’s wish was for him to “go back to school. So I did go back and I have one semester left.” Smith is a senior at Georgia Southern University with a 3.4 grade point average.

Every now and then, Smith says he has “surreal moments” where he can’t believe all the good things that have happened to him. “I’ve gone from a kid listening to Collective Soul in my living room to actually sitting in a bus with these guys!” he said. “And I tell myself, ‘This is real.’ I’m humbled every time I get to do something like that. Smith has also been the opening act for singer and musician Edwin McCain, whom he has been a fan of for years. He now counts McCain as one of his good friends. “The day I put (Edwin McCain’s) phone number in my phone was the greatest feeling,” he said.

Before embarking on a national tour, Smith said heis hoping to do a concert in Swainsboro early next year. ”I love Swainsboro so much,” he said. “Everyone has always been so supportive. I am ready to play for my hometown.”

So, as they say in show business, stay tuned.

  • Curtis Smith: On the brink of stardom
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