“I don't know what religion Hal Smith practices, and it would be rude of me to ask, but he works miracles when he plays. His rollicking beat makes any band sit up straight and play a thousand times better. He listens to his colleagues and doesn't overshadow them. Just hearing Hal play a four-bar hi-hat introduction is a treat. He's an old-fashioned musical drummer in the best contemporary way: he loves the many sounds he can get from his drum set and he generously shares them with us. I am sure that the ghosts of Dave Tough, George Wettling, Sidney Catlett, Zutty Singleton, and Baby Dodds, wherever they might be, feel cosmic pleasure when Hal Smith swings out. As do we!”
– Michael Steinman
Michael Steinman’s widely-read jazz blog, www.jazzlives.wordpress.com, offers live performance videos, rare photographs, commentary, interviews, and musings on the art of jazz.
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Last Update: June 1, 2016
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