Michael Joseph Smith is an American jazz and American classical composer and pianist born in Tiline, Kentucky. He has worked extensively in Europe and Asia and he resides in Sweden. At the age of 6 years, he gave his first concert of original solo piano music in Nashville, Tennessee. He served in the U.S. Navy and gave lectures and performances in mid-western America while continuing his study of piano technique.
For the next ten years, he studied Electro-acoustic music and moved to Boston and New York - studying medicine and becoming involved with the New England Conservatory of Music and the Juilliard School in New York. During this period, he developed the philosophy and notation form of his original music later titled "Geomusic" and composed works with this method for various chamber groups, solo piano, and symphony orchestra.
He embarked on his first European concert tour in 1970, completed his first recordings in Italy and developed an interest in Jazz and Improvisation. He moved to Paris in 1972 and completed concert tours and recordings in Western Europe and America with Steve Lacy, Anthony Braxton and others. From 1975 to 1976 he recorded various albums in Europe and America and toured, mostly solo, to: Italy, Poland, East Germany, Hungary, Western Europe, South America and Scandinavia.
He also completed his first recordings with computer and piano in conjunction with Swedish composers Tamas Ungvary and Sten Hanson. In 1977, he was admitted to the Swedish Composers Society and in 1979 he became a member of the International Society for Contemporary Music.
He returned to the United States in 1980 as a composer-in-residence in Georgia. There he completed three ballet projects with various contemporary dance ensembles which culminated in world premiers of the works in Atlanta at the Fox Theater, with the "Stars of American Dance". He has been awarded numerous cultural prizes and stipend's in Europe and Scandinavia. He has composed scores for various major films and television projects, composed music for 10 major ballet works - mostly in Europe with stage design by the world-famous professor in architecture Dr. Abelardo Gonzalez and choreographer Conny Borg and companies such as the Royal Swedish Ballet - and has released 55 recordings of his own compositions in 17 countries, featuring such eminent artists as Jonas Hellborg, Steve Lacy, Michael Shrieve, and Danny Gottlieb. A film portrait of his life entitled "In Spiritual Exile" was premiered in Sweden in 1983 and in the United States in 1984 via National Public Television Network (PBS). In addition, two films were just released about Mr. Smith, both entitled "Virtuosi Studies 1 and 2".
In 1986, Mr. Smith entered a research program with the IBM Corporation of Scandinavia and the Roland Synthesizer Corporation, to compose real-time with computer composition software. In five years, he created 600 new works scored for various ensembles. In December 1988, he performed in Atlanta with prominent American artist Paul Chelko and began a second Artist-in-residency program in Atlanta that lasted until 1990. Since that time, Mr. Smith has written for the Tbilisi Chamber Orchestra, The Moscow Philharmonic, various European ensembles, ballet companies worldwide and has performed and premiered pieces in Tbilisi, Moscow, Brussels, Kassel (at Documenta IX), Beijing, Xian, Atlanta, Bordeaux (at Sigma), Sydney Opera House, South Africa TV, Hong Kong etc. Finished 2 film projects in Sweden, hosted a performance series in Southern Sweden.
During 1993, Maestro Smith lectured and performed at Agnes Scott College in Atlanta, Bowdoin College in Maine, The New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, and the Central Conservatories of Music in Beijing and Xian, China, as well as completed three tours to China. He has finished commissions by Musik i Skåne for orchestra and alto saxophone, performed and premiered new compositions at the 100th Olympic Games in Atlanta. Michael Joseph Smith is President and CEO of his own corporations "World Music (U.S.A.), Inc." & "SEATCO, Inc".
Between 1995 and 2004 he was married to Chinese pop star Wei Wei. The couple had 3 children. Presently he is married to Loreta Greivyte and resides in Tyringe, Sweden. At present he is working with and a member of the board of WR Films in California. As a result, he resides part-time in Hollywood.