In Memory of my friend, Tony Smith, of The Gas Holes. Greenville & Greer SC

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by halvis, Dec 17, 2016.

  1. halvis

    halvis Disciple of Leo Fender

    Oct 18, 2015
    nw SC & ne GA
    Chances are you have never heard of him, unless you are an upstate South Carolinean. I first met Tony in the mid 1980s, when I had semi annual advertised vintage/collectible LP sales in my garage. I met him for the second time in the early 1990s, when he walked into my stereo hifi/cd/vintage record store. We became friends after we found out we were both bassists, and both sought out vintage Fenders. We became close friends, and arch nemesis dueling for rare basses in a small market. Then we found out we were both collectors of rare knives, fishing rods & reels, and vintage hifi... if that wasn't enough, we discovered that we were among the 0.00001% of the population of SC that really got into Wishbone Ash and Captain Beyond. It was like we were brothers of different mothers. The deal was sealed when he told me that he once owned an Acoustic 370/301 amp combo of mine. I asked him, I did own one, how do you know yours was mine? "It had HAL JARVIS, ATLANTA GEORGIA inscribed on the chassis inside of the amp head".
    I lost touch with my friend Tony, as I did with many others, when i had to start taking care of my mom who has alzheimers in Georgia, in late 2011. I just found out tonight via deep googleing, after not being able to reach him via his old email addy, internet name, and his ebay name being kaput (Walmartian, love that one) that he sadly passed away in 2014. So to those closest to him, this is very old news. To me, its like losing a brother and just now finding out 2+ years hence. I could share this elsewhere, but i think this is the appropriate place, since he was a bassist, vocalist, keyboardist, guitarist, and fellow lover of music extraordinaire. Rather than share his obituary, I thought I would share a few of his youtube videos, for any who would like to take a look at my friend, who passed long before he should have.

    R.I.P. my friend, you are missed.
    GregC, ERicks, Clark Dark and 2 others like this.
  2. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    Two years ago, or yesterday... the pain is fresh. Nice memorial. Thanks for sharing the videos. I enjoyed them.

    R.I.P. Tony

  3. Roxbororob

    Roxbororob Supporting Member

    Jun 8, 2015
    I didnt know Tony but I took the time to watch the videos that you posted and I enjoyed them just as @rllefebv did. He was a fine player. This is a genuine and fitting way for us to share memories of your friend. Im sure he wont be forgotten.

    Condolences and good Karma.
    another Robert
  4. halvis

    halvis Disciple of Leo Fender

    Oct 18, 2015
    nw SC & ne GA
    Thanks 2 Robert's, for your kind reply, and those that "liked" it. Its tough when we get "called" to take care of our parents, those we are used to taking care of us, but it is our duty. My friend Tony sold or temporarily shared with me exactly 4 basses.

    1. A Fender 72 or 73 black body black block maple neck jazz.
    2. A Fender 65 dot neck jazz that was originally, and had been carefully refinished in Ice Blue Metallic..
    3. A Fender 72 or 73 black body black dot maple neck precision, to match that JAZZ, WHEN HE CAME ACROSS IT IN LOWER SC whilst ON A WELDING JOB. (Tony was always one for having matching J's & P's finish & years, to have on stage.)
    4. A 62 Fender p bass slab neck, which I had been hearing about and hunting for, for many months... and in dealings with the guy, confident he would have $$$ to spend on a new guitar, went to a store that was in my friends TONYS camp while I was out of town, and well, I bought it from TONY afterwards for 2.5 times what he bought it for, and he kept the original brown case. It is what is is, to quote Joe Bonamassa, GUITAR SAFARI!

    Sadly I resold the 65 refin many eons ago, and when Tony came calling with cash in hand, offering me twice what I had paid him for both of the BLACKS, I couldn't say no. (well I could have, but he was nice enough to let me own them for years) Here is another video, playing the black P bass he allowed me to own for a few years, the j bass is visible stage right.

    Tony forgot more about music, than I will ever know.
  5. halvis

    halvis Disciple of Leo Fender

    Oct 18, 2015
    nw SC & ne GA
    I am reminded of a funny story. I moved from Atlanta GA to Greenville SC in 1979/80, and one of the first friends i made there, impressed with my aforemetioned Acoustic 371 combo, Rick Autumglo and walnut P, and playing ability, convinced me to go to an audition for a bass player, in TOOTERTOWN SC. Upon arriving he saw the name GODFREY on the mailbox, and started freaking out and apologizing. He said that RONNIE and RICKEY GODFREY were professional musicians, friends of the Marshall Tucker boys, had a Capital contract with CAPITAL records as GARFEEL RUFF... butterflies, but we were already in the driveway... Swampland:The Garfeel Ruff Story
    I tuffenned up, was gonna go thru with it. Turns out we were in the drive way of their younger brother Marty, who GOD gave sight too, whilst robbing his older brothers of it, but giving them more talent. It was al good, although I did have to learn songs like this one: Well out of my Blue Oyster Cult, Black Sabbath, Alice Cooper, Uriah Heep, ad infinitum wheelhouse. Here is a video of Tony with Rickey.:
  6. ERicks


    Feb 22, 2014
    Are some of those videos in the first post from the Handlebar or Smiley's in Greenville? They look kind of familiar...
  7. Mikhail1


    Apr 8, 2008
    Great tribute! And damn, I miss The Handlebar...
    ERicks likes this.
  8. friskinator

    friskinator Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2007
    Hal, when I read your name in this post, it brought back a distant memory. I think I bought a honeyburst G&L L-2000 from you back in the mid-90s. I used to live in Spartanburg, and if my memory serves me correctly, you came to look at a cab I had for sale. We ended up chatting about basses, and I ended buying the L-2000 off you some time later. I could be totally wrong, but I think it was you.

    Sorry to derail the original topic...