One could say that Alma Smith was a renaissance woman. Born Mary Alma Foster in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1922, she was mostly known for her work as a nationally and internationally touring singer, pianist, and vibraphonist. Her work led her to perform and record with some of the world's most influential musicians, such as Lou Rawls, Mel Tormé, and Art Tatum. However, Smith also held the established titles of record label owner, composer, and educator. Above all, her personal philosophy on life, passion for music and jazz, and affection for her hometown of Detroit shined through in whatever she chose to do. This oral history depicts Smith's enthusiasm and love in these areas and truly encapsulates the spirit and tenacity of this extraordinary Detroiter.

This interview was conducted in 1989 by Detroit journalist, historian, and musician Larry Gabriel as part of a fourteen-part oral history series for the Graystone International...

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