Country/rock/blues singer and guitarist Corey Smith hails from Jefferson, Georgia - a small town just an hour from Atlanta and only 25 minutes from Athens, GA - the home of the University of Georgia and the stomping grounds of many big country, indie and rock artists like Colt Ford, R.E.M., Drive-by Truckers and more.
Although he started entertaining his friends with his acoustic guitar as a youngster and continued singing around town while he was at UGA, Corey claims that "settling down in Jefferson was almost automatic." Like many "normal" young adults around the country, Corey married his college sweetheart, landed a job teaching high school, and bought a house in Jefferson less than than a mile from his childhood home. "In retrospect, I wouldn't have it any other way," Corey says. "My attachment to home has shaped my family, my songwriting and my music career. It is the foundation of the life I now love."
By the time he quit his teaching job, Corey had already recorded three albums and was playing 8-10 gigs each month. He sold out his first headlining show at the well-respected Georgia Theatre in 2005 (Fun Fact: The Zac Brown Band opened the show) and has watched his talent blossom into a full-fledged music career. In the past five years, Corey has played over 650 shows; sold 600,000 tickets; and grossed $7.5 million in revenue. His six independently released albums have sold over 150,000 copes and 800,000 singles - well short of platinum, but more than enough to turn the heads of some major players in the music industry.
The Georgia native recently released his newest album, 'The Broken Record,' which is a comprehensive album featuring both old and new songs that reflect how much he's changed over the years, and includes his "most requested hit," an updated version of "Twenty-One."
For Corey Smith, one of the best things about making music has always been getting the chance to hang out and have a good time with his friends. And it's still that way, nearly 10 years after his early days of playing the bars around Athens, Georgia. The big difference now? Well, it seems these days Corey just has a lot more friends to hang with. The crowds at his sold-out live performances frequently number in the thousands-quite a change from the times when he never dreamed of much beyond playing for a handful of his college buddies.
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