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Frank V. Smith

  • Music
Smith, Frank V.

"The fellowship allowed me to put aside the not-soglamorous side of making a living as a jazz musician - the wedding gigs and grand openings - and enabled me to learn new ideas, experience new sights and sounds, and have time to create new music."

Frank's plan for Creative Renewal included time to learn more about musical composition, time for travel, and quiet hours to create music. He began by learning musical composition techniques and writing charts for different musical instruments with the help of Jim Edison, a local music educator, composer and musician. He studied classical bass with David Murray, associate professor of bass at Butler University, focusing on classical bowing techniques for the upright bass. Frank also collaborated with another Creative Renewal Fellow, Peter Hansen, bassist with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra. Throughout this past year Peter and Frank shared classical and jazz bass techniques and playing concepts.

The second phase of Frank's fellowship involved traveling to Europe. Frank traveled to London and Edinburgh to experience an international jazz festival and a theatre fringe festival. "Peter Hansen and I met up while we were both in Edinburgh to spend an evening enjoying music together and sharing notes on our travels in the U.K. and our Creative Renewal experiences." His next stop for inspiration was to experience the visual arts in Paris. He spent the majority of his time in Barcelona, taking in the performing and visual arts, culinary arts, architecture and music of Spain. "The fellowship impacted my work through visits to Edinburgh, Paris, and Barcelona by renewing my creative spirit and opening the door for me to create new music. I am now currently working on new musical compositions that are a direct result of my fellowship."


  • Performed with jazz greats Dizzy Gillespie and Teddy Wilson
  • Bassist, American Pianists Association Jazz Fellowship Competition
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