The legendary singer/songwriter, poet, artist and author, Patti Smith turns 74 today. Smith was an vital and integral member of New York’s punk rock scene of the 70s — and her work has managed to influence countless artists, including R.E.M.’s Micheal Stipe, Garbage‘s Shirley Manson, The Smiths, and countless others.
Personally, I’ve loved her work for some time, and I’ve had the pleasure of seeing her four times:
- The first time, I had won tickets for a Marc Bolan/T. Rex tribute show at Central Park’s Delacorte Theatre. Apparently Moby was in the crowd, and someone pulled him on stage for a cover of “Bang a Gong (Get It On)” or something like that. And Patti Smith fittingly covered “Children of the Revolution.”
- The second time, was at Castle Clinton.
- The third time, I saw her open for Neil Young at The Garden. Yeah, seriously.
- And the fourth time was at Book Expo, where she was interviewing Neil Young, as part of the promotion for his memoir.
I thought that the best way to celebrate Ms. Smith’s birthday was some incredible live footage of her during the years. Happy birthday, Patti!