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, 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 And D "Berlin" project in 1984, as well as playing guitar on Richard and Dave's Tandy And Morgan album "Earthrise". Martin Smith was a founding member of The Tandy Morgan Band, in which Richard, Dave 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 had been very impressed by Martin Smith's guitar playing and had got to know him during the recordings of "Action!". So when ELO were put together again in 1986, Jeff asked Dave Morgan to phone him up. Martin became ELO'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 ELO appeared on some TV-shows Martin mimed the bass guitar and backing vocals.
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 played the spanish guitar. Richard:"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.
last modified: 26.02.2000