Bill Smitka 1955 - 1997
Musician, played with the Buzzards
and The Layabouts
I shall never forget Bill. He
was one of the kindest, gentlest person I have ever had the honor to know.
My chief knowledge of Bill is of playing with him when he was one of the
Layabout members. The
Layabouts were a stormy lot, and he lent a calming air to what could
otherwise be a tense and argumentative lot. Indeed, it was hard to get
angry when he was in the room. I have fond memories of the Layabout trip
to the 1984
Anarchist Gathering in Minneapolis, June of 1987. He sustained us on
the long drive there and back with his humor and upbeat attitude towards
...And, man! Could he play guitar! His lead guitar performance in the
song, "Talk to the Lawyer" always blew me away.
His death was a complete surprise and shock to me. I had no idea he had
been ill. Be it of little consolation to his friends and family, the
occasion of his
funeral was the birth of the Layabouts second manifestation, chiefly
because the core Layabout members came together for in the same place for
the first time in what seemed to be quite some years.
Thank you Bill, for enriching the lives of those of us who had the honor
to have been in your presence.
If you have any memories,
comments etc. about Bill, please share
them with us.