With 12 albums under his belt, Chris Smither qualifies as a veteran of the music industry. His elegant lyrics are arranged simply, with mostly just his own masterful finger-picking and foot-tapping to accompany him. His music qualifies as folk, but the blues influences are undeniable. Smither performed a solo set from WXPN and World Cafe Live in Philadelphia on Oct. 6.
Smither's first album, I'm A Stranger Too!, was released in 1970. After the 1972 release of Don't Drag It On, Smither struggled with alcoholism and didn't release another album until he had fully recovered 12 years later. Since then, he's returned to a regular recording and touring schedule, and had his songs covered by the likes of Emmylou Harris, Bonnie Raitt and Diana Krall.
His latest album, Leave The Light On, was released in September on his own record label. Continuing Smither's tradition of incorporating songs by other artists, the new album includes covers of artists including Peter Case, Bob Dylan and Mississippi John Hurt, in addition to his own powerful material.