20 for 20
Smithfield Fair has been described by critics as "a folksy Supertramp" with "a distinct Peter Gabriel vibe". Meaning? They are hard to pin down, hard to pigeonhole, definitely indefinable. The quartet's music has been heard the world over on radio, television, internet radio, film, and stages ranging from festivals to concert halls to house concerts. Smithfield Fair is currently experiencing a fury of downloads from over 60 internet sites. Now in it's 20th year, Smithfield Fair has never chosen the obvious musical path - exhibited on eleven albums - and continues to grow. Despite change and growth, the members of this unusual acoustic and vocal quartet have always considered their music to be song-driven. Songwriters and composers in their own right, the members of Smithfield Fair present critically-acclaimed original compositions bearing strong imagery and message as a perfect complement to more traditional selections. The band's approach to traditional material from their shared Scottish heritage is fresh and brings an evolving and evocative presence to already timeless material. Not 'the norm' these days. Beneath the motive power of Dudley-Brian Smith's ringing guitar work is the exacting fury of Frang's bodhran and percussion work and Bob Smith's fluidly precise bass lines. The combination of that rhythmic muscle is the perfect structure over which to lay Jan Smith's melodic and ethereal accordion work, and the group's hauntingly elegant vocal harmonies. Together, the members of Smithfield Fair create a dynamic atmosphere to transport listeners through time and space, away from their daily concerns and deposit them on safer ground with a feeling of hopefulness. Audiences consistently comment on the enormous sound the quartet achieves and the power and depth of the musical presentation. Reviewers have noted the group's live shows exhibit influences of folk, jazz, swing, pop, and Celtic, while remaining 'a cohesively warm whole'. Smithfield Fair's active touring schedule includes a wide variety of carefully selected concerts, acoustic music festivals, house concerts and coffeehouses, but regardless of venue, the group preserves an intimate relationship with audiences. Smithfield Fair has built a strong following and continues to garner high critical praise for it's music and presentation. The group has shared stages with a veritable 'who's who' of American roots and Celtic music's finest.