Jimmy Smith is a true vocalist, however, after he was sent home during season 12 of American Idol fans wondered what would be next. Would he continue singing and performing? Would he return to his day job and give up? One thing is for sure, Jimmy Smith is a fighter. From his huge upbeat personality to his exceptional vocals, Jimmy Smith is pure talent through and through.
1. At what age did you realize you wanted to pursue music?
I'd say early on in high school when I began performing at school talent shows and ball games. The crowd reaction became a validation for me..there's just no other feeling like it. I wanted to know what steps I needed to take to make whatever feeling that was my job.
2. What artists did you listen to growing up?
I was fortunate enough to have parents who listened to great music. I can remember being young and soaking up Fleetwood Mac, The Eagles, Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers, Bonnie Raitt, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Steve Miller Band, Creedence Clearwater Revival.. lots of classic rock influences full of harmonies that I still love today.
3. What artists are your favorite today?
Sara Evans, Keith Urban, Sheryl Crow, Chris Stapleton, Charlie Worsham, Lady Antebellum, John Mayer, Dave Barnes, Augustana, Lee Ann Womack, Kenny Chesney, Jonathan & Joshua Singleton, Jewel… I can't leave out the fact that I'm a big 90's rock/pop aficionado. I love me some Gin Blossoms, Vertical Horizon, Collective Soul, The Goo Goo Dolls, Alanis Morissette, Matchbox 20, Savage Garden, Third Eye Blind, The Barenaked Ladies…the list goes on.
4. If you could duet with any female singer, who would you pick?
My gut reaction is Stevie Nicks but Sara Evans would be my pick. My cousin Mandy, who was like an older sister to me introduced me to her music at a young age and I've been a fan and followed her career ever since.
5. Do you have a favorite place to perform?
I'd say a venue where I really cut my teeth as a performer and played with a band of good friends for a few years in my hometown of Waynesboro, Tennessee – it's called Jeanette's Food & Entertainment. I love being surrounded by family and friends who are a big support system but it's just a different experience when you get to perform where you call home. There's an infectious energy there and an intrinsic sense of pride and gratitude whether it's a packed house or a couple of the late night regulars.
6. One food you can't live without?
Seems like another list question, but if I had to pick one I'd probably say chips & salsa. I can absent-mindedly set a record at a good mexican restaurant.
7. If your life was a movie, what would the title be?
Sarcastically Yours : The Ballad of Jimmy Smith
8. Do you think country music should evolve?
I think all music should evolve and it does sort of naturally anyway. I think it's human nature to be resistant to change and what might seem comfortable and expected. Not all change is seen as positive but I do believe there is a place and a fan for all music. As artists and songwriters we can either jump on board with what's out there or go in our own direction. That's the beauty of being a creative person. I think as long as your heart is in what you do, you can't really argue with the honesty of that.
9. Beer or whiskey?
What's the occasion?
10. Any new projects in the works for you? What can we expect to see in the future?
I just released my new single "Wake Up With You" a few weeks back which I'm pretty proud of. I'm working with a new producer now on some new material and I'm continuing to write and play around Nashville. I'm really excited to continue to evolve and develop my writing and continue to work toward making music my full time job. I wanna say a thank you to all of my family, friends and supporters out there. All of your love fuels me to keep working and growing as an artist and person. I'm excited to see where we head next!
If you would like to check out Jimmy Smith, you can follow him via twitter @jimmysmithmusic.
For more country music news and gossip follow me via twitter @brittwv.