MP3 Ron Smith, Jr. - Ready for Anything
You will definitely get caught up bopping to these original songs with a direct flavor of The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Van Morrison & James Taylor
14 MP3 Songs
POP: Beatles-pop, EASY LISTENING: Soft Rock
maybe it was the innocent harmonies of the ink spots and platters that opened ron''s ears to music. perhaps the drum slapping early rock and roll sound of bill haley and the comets was what first stirred excitement in the young one''s soul. whatever the cause, the musical vibrations for ron and his five brothers began in their south buffalo home where ron sr. and phyllis smith always had a record spinning or a radio playing.
but these earliest influences were merely setting the stage for a much more powerful musical influence to come...namely... the beatles. the group''s immense talent, particularly their songwritng ability, enamored ron, and he soon attempted to string words together, penning "you''re my kind" at the age of 9. ron was encouraged by these middle class heroes who were fast becoming the greatest composers since beethoven, despite the fact they could not "read" music.
in the late 60''s, ron''s favorite musicians became the singer/ songwriters...cat stevens, james taylor, paul simon, van morrison and jackson browne to name a few. but it wasn''t until the mid-career album "blood on the tracks" by the legendary bob dylan, that ron bought a guitar and began learning dylan- style chords which allowed him the ability to put his words to music. dylan''s lyrics of simple truth also impacted ron''s lyrical direction.
of course music was only a small part of what was going on in ron''s life. he married his "childhood sweetheart", gail davis. they had 3 sons between 1973 and 1984...eric, christopher and benjamin. ron earned a b.a. in journalism while raising his family.
family life has always been extremely important to ron, and also to his musical development. he entertained his sons with compositions written for them about the life that surrounded them. more and more ron played at family gatherings where he was constantly supported and encouraged. ron also wrote a number of tunes about his extended family members, mainly his nieces and nephews.
today gail and ron live in hamburg, ny.. gail''s a registered nurse and ron remains a gm employee (and proud union representative). two grandchildren have been added to the family tree, kelsey (eric) and anderson (chris and kelly). the family belongs to hamburg''s sts. peter and paul church. along with music, ron enjoys scuba diving, jogging, traveling and sports. ron''s mom passed away in 1993 and his dad remarried (shirley), and resides in sunny florida. three of his brothers families live in the buffalo area, one in syracuse, ny and one in boston, mass. all his in-laws and their families live in buffalo.
ron continues to play at small gatherings, usually family, and is often joined by his nephew nick cavarella on guitar and son eric smith, who occasionally chimes in with his soft vocals. both join ron on his new cd.
ron has written over 100 songs, 70 to 80 which he cares to remember. he includes 14 of his favorites on this, his debut album "ready for anything". while many of the songs are from the last decade, there are a few earlier ones including "day off in july", and "ode of love" from the late 70''s.
ron''s songs represent more than family. social commentary is obvious on tunes about kurt cobain (''fame don''t last''), and ted turner (''glory of his name''). the family''s annual retreat to mexico is represented with a couple of cancun numbers, while aging becomes the focus of "faith hope and love" and "young man''s style". ron''s christian faith is sprinkled throughout the cd that contains other mainly upbeat numbers of simple living.
with the backing of his business manager, youngest brother glen, ron recorded his cd at "outer limits studio" in buffalo. he is joined on the cd by friend and fellow gm employee eric mohr, easily one of the buffalo area''s finest guitarists. producer and multi-talented musician ken rutkowski adds flute, sax and keyboards, while the dynamic drum and bass collaboration of sound belongs to studio musicians cave wilson and tim mroz. the cd was released in february 2005.