(born 1948 in Hertfordshire, England
) aka Brod Smith
is an Australian singer-songwriter
player. He has been a member of 1970s bands Carson and The Dingoes
, 1980s Broderick Smith's Big Combo and performed solo. He has also acted on stage in the 1973 Australian version of the rock opera Tommy
and in minor roles on 1990s Television series Blue Heelers
, Snowy River: The McGregor Saga
and State Coroner
. Smith has been involved in writing about 200 songs and has run workshops on songwriting, harmonica and vocals.
Smith and his family migrated to Australia in 1959 and settled, initially, in St Albans
a Western suburb of Melbourne
. In 1962 or 1963 Smith was a member of The Maltese Band on percussion. Other Blues bands he joined included The Smokey Hollows in 1965, by this time Smith was a sales clerk for Allans records store. He joined Adderley Smith Blues Band (1966-1968) on vocals and harmonica alongside Kerryn Tolhurst
(guitar, mandolin). Smith was conscripted into the Army as part of National Service
during the Vietnam War
at Holsworthy, New South Wales
for two years from 1968 to 1970. Upon discharge, he briefly joined Sundown with Tolhurst but left to join Carson.
Carson had formed in January 1970 and was a blues-boogie band influenced by US group Canned Heat
, during 1971 Smith replaced founder John Capek, providing vocals and harmonica. Other members included Greg Lawrie (guitar, slide guitar), Ian Ferguson (bass, vocals), Tony Lunt (drums) and Ian Winter (guitar). After they released a single "Travelling South" / "Moonshine" in August 1971, Ferguson left to be replaced successively by Barry Sullivan and then Garry Clarke; Mal Logan (keyboards) joined later that year. Carson performed at the first Sunbury Rock Festival
in 1972. Smith spent part of 1972 recording two solo singles: "Goin' on Down to the End of the World" released in May 1972 and "Yesterday it Rained" released in February 1973. He also kept up with Carson to record "Boogie, Part 1" / "Boogie, Part 2" which reached #30 on the National charts in September 1972. This was followed by their debut album, Blown
on Harvest Records
produced by Rod Coe, which reached #14 in December.
Australian psychedelic and progressive rock band Tamam Shud were recording tracks for Albie Falzon's 1972 surf film Morning of the Earth including their song "First Things First". Their main lead singer, Lindsay Bjerre was having voice problems so they recorded the song using lead guitarist Tim Gaze; producer G. Wayne Thomas was unhappy with Gaze's vocals and asked Smith to fill in; according to Bjerre, Tamam Shud were not informed and only found out about the switch at the film's premiere; according to Smith, he had Tamam Shud's knowledge and permission.
Carson performed at the 1973 Sunbury Rock Festival, on the Australia Day long weekend. Band members Winter and Ferguson left soon after and by February, Carson had disbanded. A live recording of their Sunbury set, On the Air was released in April 1973.
's rock opera Tommy
was performed as an orchestral version in 1973 in Australia with Smith in the role of The Father (Mr Walker).
Other Australian artists were Daryl Braithwaite
(as Tommy), Billy Thorpe
, Doug Parkinson
, Wendy Saddington, Jim Keays
, Colleen Hewitt, Linda George
, Ross Wilson
, Bobby Bright
, and Ian Meldrum
(as "Uncle Ernie" in Sydney).
1973-1978: The Dingoes
The Dingoes were formed in Melbourne
in April 1973 by Smith's old bandmate Kerryn Tolhurst
. The original line-up included Tolhurst (ex-Adderley Smith Blues Band, Sundown, Country Radio) (singer, songwriter, guitars), Chris Stockley (ex-CamPact, Axiom
) (guitars), John Strangio (bass), John Lee (ex-Blackfeather
(drums)) and Smith (vocals, harmonica). The band was formed to fuse rhythm and blues with Australian Bush music
but it was generally described as Country Rock
. Their best performed singles were "Way Out West" and "Boy on the Run", their 1974 debut self-titled album The Dingoes
peaked at #18. They performed at Sunbury Rock Festivals in 1974 and 1975, making Smith one of the few artists who had performed at all four festivals. The Dingoes rellocated to USA from 1976 for their next two albums, Five Times the Sun
in 1977 and Orphans of the Storm
in 1979. While recording the latter album their management team, headed by Peter Rudge, had been devastated when some members of fellow signing Lynyrd Skynyrd
were killed in a plane crash in October 1977; The Dingoes finally split in February 1979. Smith had already returned to Australia in late 1978.
1979-1988: Big Combo and others
After his 1978 return to Australia, Smith fronted various bands with his name featured: Broderick Smith's Hired Hands (1978-1979), Broderick Smith's Big Combo (1979-1982), Broderick Smith Band (1983-?) and Broderick Smith and the Noveltones (1988). Of these Big Combo provided his best known latter releases with the singles "Faded Roses" and "My Father's Hands" and the album Broderick Smith's Big Combo
1990s: Television actor
Smith has appeared in brief TV roles including episodes of police drama Blue Heelers
in 1994's "Adverse Possession and 1997's "Bloodstained Angels"; 1998's historical drama Snowy River: The McGregor Saga
episode "Prince of Hearts and crime drama State Coroner
episode "On Thin Ice".
1990s-2000s: Workshops and duos
Smith has delivered numerous workshops on songwriting, harmonica and vocals to schools within Victoria. He considers himself to be primarily a lyricist, his songwriting technique typically involves writing the lyrics in prose form, music is then written (usually by someone else), finally lyrics are changed to suit the music. Smith believes "lyrics should say something and not just be something to sing along to."
Smith performed as a duo with Mick Ahearn (keyboards) in the late 1990s and produced other recording artists at Harcourt Valley Recorders. He also performed with Mick O'Connor on piano in the early 2000s, sometimes they added Pip Avent on tuba and Tim O'Connor on drums, with this line-up Smith recorded Too Easy in 2002.
- Carson (1971-1973)
- Blown (1972, EMI Harvest Records LP)
- "Rock and Roll Game" / "Better Times Will Come About" / "Sunday in the City" / "Banana Power" / "Boogie" / "Let Me Sleep" / "Up in Queensland"
- On the Air (1973, EMI Harvest LP) Live performances from Sunbury Rock Festival
- "Dingo" / "Laid-back Feel" / "Dust My Broom" / "Hey Joe" / "Boogie" / "Sunbury Jam"
- Blown / On the Air (2000, 2 LPs on a single CD)
- Travelling Highway Blues (Best of Carson) (2000, compilation by Raven Records)
- "Travelling South" / "Moonshine" / "Sweet Little Angel" / "Boogie (Part one)" / "Boogie (Part two)" / "Rock and Roll Game" / "Better Times Will Come About" / "Sunday in the City" / "Banana Power" / "Let Me Sleep" / "Dingo" / "Laid-back Feel" / "Dust My Broom (live)" / "Friday Night Groove (live)" / "Bad Luck Feeling"
- The Dingoes (1973-1978)
- The Dingoes (1974)
- Live at the Station (1976)
- Five Times the Sun (1977)
- Orphans of the Storm (1979)
- Way Out West - The Best of The Dingoes (1992)
- Broderick Smith (groups and solo) (1978-2002)
- Broderick Smith's Big Combo (1981)
- "Last Train from Mobiltown" / "Faded Roses" / "Tightrope" / "High Rise" / "Back Off, Baby Brother" / "I Was Here" / "Fortune Favours the Bold" / "My Father's Hands" / "The Devil Drives (Ray's Song)" / "Ruby in the Snow"
- Broderick Smith (1984)
- Suitcase (1992)
- My Shiralee (1994)
- Songster (1995)
- Crayon Angels (1996)
- Too Easy (2002)
- Journal - The Best of Broderick Smith (2004, MGM) career-spanning compilation including Carson, The Dingoes, Broderick Smith's Big Combo and solo material.
- The Woodpickers (1998, 2004)
- Reason and Dream (1999)
- Me and Ned Kelly (2005)
- Backsliders (2006- )