Matt Smith And 'MSG'

Fayetteville guitarist to release new CD with Jeff Sipe, Reed Mathis

By Daniel Gold

TFW Contributing Writer


March 12, 2011
10:30 PM
Greenhouse Grille, Fayetteville

Tickets on sale now at Greenhouse Grille. Tickets $15

Matt Smith, guitarist of The Flipoff Pirates and many other Northwest Arkansas music groups, is proud to announce the release of his brand new album, “MSG – Now Or Never” featuring Jeff Sipe on drums and Reed Mathis on bass.

The highly acclaimed musicians recorded together as a trio for the first time, under the band name “MSG”.  The album, titled “Now Or Never”, will be released March 12, 2011, at a concert and CD release party at Greenhouse Grille, a restaurant and music venue in Fayetteville (located at 481 S School).  Smith recruited his dream team rhythm section for the MSG project.  Early progressive rock work by Sipe, and Tulsa band Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey with Mathis on bass, are two of Smith’s strongest musical influences. The new CD also features Smith’s dad (Gus Smith) and 5 year old daughter.

Jeff Sipe is a world renowned drummer who has played with Jeff Coffin (from Dave Matthews Band and Bela Fleck & The Flecktones); Col Bruce Hampton & The Aquarium Rescue Unit (with Jimmy Herring now of Widespread Panic and Oteil Burbridge now of The Allman Brothers Band); Leftover Salmon; Trey Anastasio Band (from Phish); Hellborg Lane & Sipe; Project Z; Susan Tedeschi and Derek Trucks; Alex Machacek; Keller Williams; Zambiland Orchestra; and members of Grateful Dead.  Sipe is widely recognized in the recording industry as a premiere, world class drummer, and is highly in demand for studio recording sessions.  Matt Smith invited Sipe to record the MSG album at Crisp Recording Studios in Fayetteville, Arkansas, in June 2010.  Sipe obliged and delivered an incredible drum performance on the album.

Reed Mathis, a founding member of Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey and JFJO bassist for 15 years, went on to join Tea Leaf Green, and plays with Marco Benevento Trio, 7 Walkers with Bill Kreutzman (Grateful Dead), and Steve Kimock Band (who Mathis first joined on stage at a show in Fayetteville at the venerable Chester’s Place on Dickson Street).  Mathis is recognized for his unique and creative bass guitar stylings, originality, and composition skills.  Mathis is also an experienced record producer. Smith invited Mathis to join the MSG trio recording sessions when Mathis was in Northwest Arkansas for performances at Wakarusa Festival with Tea Leaf green and 7 Walkers.  Mathis recorded with MSG in Fayetteville in the morning and performed on stage for thousands of fans that evening at Wakarusa.

Matt Smith was born in Harrison, Arkansas, in 1978, and began playing guitar in 1988.  Smith has performed with his band The Flipoff Pirates since 1997. Smith has been based in Fayetteville since 2001.  Smith is in the Hall Of Fame for the Northwest Arkansas Music Awards, and has collected 9 NAMA’s with projects including Flipoff Pirates, Joseph Isreal, and his jazz projects.  Matt & Gus Smith, Matt’s father, play together regularly as a jazz guitar outfit.  Matt & Gus Smith will also release their new jazz CD on the day of MSG’s CD Release Party, March 12 at Greenhouse Grille.  Smith originally learned guitar from his cousin, Philip Smith (The Lovin’ Spoonful), and Clint Strong (Merle Haggard, Joey DeFrancesco).  Smith has performed with Michael Franti & Spearhead, Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey, Rob Wasserman with Willie Waldman, members of The Wailers, and many more.

Categories: Music
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