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Artist Profile: Spencer Smith

Noted on Urban Dictionary as the “best looking member” of alternative band, Panic! At the Disco, Spencer Smith is a millennial drummer with the skills and attitude to embark on a drumming career without boundaries. Preferring to maintain his technical mastery over driving rhythms and strong beats instead of improvisational fills, Smith brings a strong dance groove to the music produced by Panic! At the Disco.

At the age of 12, Spencer Smith began drumming in Pet Salamander with friend, Ryan Ross, covering songs from bands like Blink-182 until later forming Panic! At the Disco with bassist Jon Walker and vocalist Brendon Urie. Eventually, Ross and Walker left the band, as documented in the short film, The Overture.

Smith understands the delicate balance within a song that may or may not require such strong drum beats, and refers to bands like The Beatles and The Who as inspiration for this unique style of drumming that allows a song to stand on its own, without the need for extraneous additions to its core sound. With the release of Panic! At the Disco’s latest album, Vices & Virtues, both Smith and vocalist, Brendon Urie, return to the familiar sound and drumming that fans grew to love in the multi-platinum A Fever You Can’t Sweat Out.

When not performing, Spencer Smith spends much of his time practicing, drilling and creating the very same rhythms he is known best for as the drummer for Panic! At the Disco. He credits, among others, Meinl Cymbals for the subtle, retro sound of his drumming and percussion, particularly the Byzance Traditional Thin Ride.

His advice to future drummers is simple: keep learning and take it slowly.

If the rhythms and percussion on Vices & Virtues are any indication of the reflective and subtle style of drummer Spencer Smith, then he has an expansive career ahead of him, carving a unique niche in alternative music that relies less on auto-tuning and show-stopping solos and more on the true feeling and vibe of the music.

17th Jun 2015

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