THE MARTIN SMITH HISTORY:
Born Feb. 28, 1945, Dilston Northhumberland, England.
He was The Electric Light Orchestra's bass player from Jan. 1986 to Sep. 1986.
Martin Smith was born in North London and began his musical career in the Sixties, where he played in a rock'n'roll show band, he was supporting Gene Vincent at his last ever concerts. While he was playing with Shakin' Stevens And The Sunsets, he met Terry Thomas, who is now a well respected producer in the United States. Martin then founded the group Charlie and recorded two albums with them, before he left the group in 1976 to join Wody Woodmansey´S U-Boat for about 18 month's. After one album with them, he went into production for a while, before he decided to do his own recordings again. He met up with Richard Tandy and Dave Morgan, and helped them on their R & D "Berlin" project in 1984, as well as playing guitar on Richard Tandy and Dave Morgan's Tandy And Morgan album "Earthrise". Martin Smith was a founding member of The Tandy Morgan Band, in which Richard Tandy and Dave Morgan and he recorded the Jeff Lynne produced charity track "Action!".
When Bev Bevan did the 'Heartbeat 86' project for the Children's Hospital in Birmingham, which included The Electric Light Orchestra, they needed a new bass player. Jeff Lynne had been very impressed by Martin Smith's guitar playing and had got to know him during the recordings of "Action!". So when The Electric Light Orchestra were put together again in 1986, Jeff Lynne asked Dave Morgan to phone him up. Martin became The Electric Light Orchestra's last new member from January 1986 to September 1986, on bass-guitar and backing vocals, for the "Balance Of Power" Tour. The Tandy Morgan Band now consisted completely of members of The Electric Light Orchestra. When The Electric Light Orchestra appeared on some TV-shows Martin mimed the bass guitar and backing vocals.
And quite soon after that I got the call……
Martin had a phone call a couple of days ago from my old friend and colleague Dave Morgan. He hadn’t heard from him in a while and it was great to catch up. When they said their goodbyes, it put him in mind of another phone call he received from Dave Morgan many years ago which (it’s safe to say) changed his life, which was never quite the same again!
The gist of the earlier phone conversation went as follows:
"Hello Mart, Jeff Lynne asked me to call you to see if you’d like to join the band".
I went cold and then hot, and then cold again in the space of a nano second!
"What band?" I asked rather timidly. "What band do you think?" said Dave a bit impatiently. "The Electric Light Orchestra, E.L.O."
I think I mumbled something like "That would be great" and "of course I’d love to", and the phone call was over, and my life had changed for ever...
Jeff Lynne, with the 7-piece lineup that supported Time (with Martin Smith replacing Kelly Groucutt on bass), played a small number of live The Electric Light Orchestra performances in 1986, including shows in England and Germany along with US appearances on American Bandstand, Solid Gold, then at Disneyland that summer. The Birmingham Heart Beat Charity Concert 1986 was a charity concert organized by Bev Bevan in The Electric Light Orchestra's hometown of Birmingham on 15 March 1986. A hint of Lynne's future was seen when George Harrison appeared onstage during the encore at Heartbeat, joining in the all-star jam of "Johnny B. Goode". The Electric Light Orchestra's last performance of the century occurred on 13 July 1986 in Stuttgart, Germany.
The Electric Light Orchestra essentially disbanded after that final show in Stuttgart in 1986, but there was no announcement made of it for the next two years, during which George Harrison's Lynne-produced album Cloud Nine and the pair's follow-up (with Roy Orbison, Bob Dylan and Tom Petty) Traveling Wilburys Vol. 1 were released. Bev Bevan approached Jeff Lynne to make another The Electric Light Orchestra album in 1988. Jeff Lynne was not interested and went on to announce that The Electric Light Orchestra was no more.
So what is Garage Studio?
Garage Studio is a professional Recording Studio catering for bands, solo artists, songwriters and composers.
It is the home of Producer/Composer/Musician Martin Smith who has over thirty years experience working with bands, solo artists, songwriters and composers and supplying music for film and T.V.
The studio is a ‘state of the art’ Pro Tools facility and is competitively priced.
Martin started the studio in late 1987 after a term in the Electric Light Orchestra, following a career as a producer, musician and writer spanning the previous two decades.
Although this was still the early days of computer based recording, it became apparent to him that it was going to be the future.
Martin Smith kept himself busy during 1988 with buying the latest recording technology and learning how to use it. In 1990 he started recording his first solo album "Bitter Sun After Dark". It was recorded at the Garage Studios in Sussex and contained 12 instrumental tracks. The privately pressed CD also featured "Down (In G)", a Richard Tandy composition, on which Richard Tandy played the spanish guitar. Richard Tandy:"It's supposed to be a tribute to John Downing, who fell off a boat and drowned. That's why it was called "DOWN IN G". It's supposed to be a clever play on words." The album featured Richard on grand piano throughout. Martin Smith, Richard Tandy and Dominique Glynn were also in charge for the orchestration. After that Martin produced some tracks for Dave Morgan's private tape "All God's Blessings". When Tandy Morgan Smith released "The B.C. Collection" in 1992 with 17 unreleased tracks from 1985 to 1987, Martin was responsible for the post-production by compiling the various demos and adding a few overdubs.
Martin Smith had met up with Paul Harris and worked with him on a six-track mini-album entitled "Backwards With Clout" on which he not only produced, arranged and mixed all tracks, but also played guitar and bass, sang backing vocals and programmed the drum machine. After the recordings were finished, Paul and Martin founded The Paul Harris Band and recorded the promotional cassette album „The Great Divide“ which contained ten songs. All had been produced by Martin Smith, with six songs being also well co-composed by him. The Paul Harris Band took part in the "A Song For Europe '95" contest with their ballad "Spinning Away", but only finished as seventh, which wrecked plans to release "Spinning Away" as a single, despite being given a catalogue number and a handful of promos escaping.
Aside from his duties as bass player for the group, Martin has also been working with B.A. Robertson, and on an album by Misha Calvin, which was given a CD release in 1995 and for West End star Claire Moore.