Not to be confused with jazz organist/pianist Lonnie Smith
, Lonnie Liston Smith was born 28th December, 1940 in Richmond, Virginia, U.S.A. He was introduced to music at an early age by his father, and learned piano, tuba, trumpet and voice in high school and college. After graduating from Baltimore's Morgan State College with a Bachelor of Science degree in music education, he soon launched himself into performance, working with the house band at the Royal Theater, Baltimore. He moved to New York and nurtured his talent with jazz greats like Art Blakey and Miles Davis, moving from acoustic jazz to fusion, before forming his own group Lonnie Liston Smith And The Cosmic Echoes
in 1973. He is renowned for defying genres, blending atmospheric fusion, soul and funk and is often quoted as a strong influence on acid jazz. He is still writing and touring.