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Obit: Sammi Smith; Feb 2005

GUEST 28 Jun 05 - 12:19 AM
GUEST 28 Jun 05 - 12:33 AM
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Subject: Obit: Sammi Smith; Feb 2005
Date: 28 Jun 05 - 12:19 AM


Seventies star Sammi Smith died at her home in Oklahoma City 35 years after helping kick start the career of Kris Kristofferson whom she first met when he was a janitor.

Her version of the Kristofferson tune sold two million copies and was voted the CMA single of the year in 1971.

It also reached #8 on the pop charts and won a Grammy for Smith and Kris.

Smith said in an 1981 interview that the song ''definitely brought me prestige and no small amount of satisfaction. And it's paid for a few meals.''

She had earlier recorded He's Everywhere - a tune that reached #25 for Mega.

Sammi Smith Sammi was the daughter of a serviceman
and was raised in Oklahoma, Texas, Arizona and Colorado.

At 11 she dropped out of school and began singing pop standards in nightclubs and later moved to Nashville.

It was in Nashville that Marshall Grant - bassist for Johnny Cash's Tennessee Three - discovered her when she was 24.

She signed with Columbia Records and had hits with;

So Long, Charlie Brown,
Don't Look for Me Around and
Brownsville Lumberyard.

She charted twice more on Columbia but never rose into the Top 50 while recording for the label.

Her big break came while touring with Waylon Jennings when she befriended the janitor at Columbia Records - Kris Kristofferson.

Although she never surpassed the success of her Kristofferson cover she continued having hits.

"It was like following a Rembrandt with a kindergarten sketch," Smith said of her post Kristofferson tunes.

Those tunes included For The Kids, I've Got To Have You and The Rainbow In Daddy's Eyes.

Sammi had 37 charting singles in her career but only eight of them made the Top 20.

She also had 20 original songs listed on the BMI publishing site including two tunes named Willie, one named Tony and another You'll Always Be Melvin.

Smith wrote Sand-Covered Angels for Conway Twitty, and Cedartown, Georgia - the title track of a Waylon disc.

Sammi toured with Waylon and he nicknamed her, Girl Hero.

She wrote Cedartown Georgia with Charles Cobble and the late Mack Vickery who died at 66 on December 21, 2004.

In 1973 Sammi moved to Dallas to join Jennings and Willie in their outlaw era.

She had several hits including Then You Walked In and Today I Started Loving You Again.

She moved to Elektra in 1975 for a three-year stint.

During that time, she had several chart entries with such songs as Loving Arms, Days That End in 'Y' (both 1977) and Norma Jean (1978) - a tribute to Marilyn Monroe.

In 1979, she signed to the independent label Cyclone and had a Top 20 hit with What a Lie.

In 1980, she moved to Sound Factory and had one Top 40 and two Top 20 including I Cry When I'm Alone.

At Elektra Records she recorded As Long As There's A Sunday and Loving Arms but in the 80s she had only limited chart success.

Her last hit came in 1986 with Love Me All Over on Step One Records.

Sammi moved from Dallas to Globe, Arizona, in 1975, to live on the San Carlos Apache Reservation, and adopted three Apache children, to complement her four offspring.

Sammi crusaded for many years for the rights and condition of the Apache Indian. She was a direct descendant of the famed chief Cochise and is part Kiowa-Apache.

The singer organized benefits for a high school and in 1978 set up the Sammi Smith scholarship fund for Apache children - Apache Advance Education.

It was designed to teach children to read, write and speak the Apache language, which was in danger of dying out.

It also aimed to increase the number of Apache lawyers and doctors.

She also had an all American Indian band, Apache Spirit.

Memorial services for Smith were held on Wednesday February 16 at the Guardian West Funeral Home in Oklahoma City.

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Subject: RE: Obit: Sammi Smith; Feb 2005
Date: 28 Jun 05 - 12:33 AM

The LAWS and LEGAL limitations, in the colonies, about exploitation of children appear to have developed LONG after the UK.

At 11 she dropped out of school and began singing pop standards in nightclubs

To think a CHILD, like Sammi Smith, in California's earliest 60's, could have be exploited by the likes of the Golden Bear, the Lighthouse, the Icehouse, the Whiskey, the Roxy and a thousand other dive whiskey-joints, makes me want to sing like a motherless child.

Woa, Whoa, WOE!! Let the earthquarks, shake, quake, and rattle that land-or-perdition into the snapping-gapping mouths of the land sharks below.

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